Saturday, October 23, 2010

My Crown

Our Beautiful, Smart, Creative, and Kind Son, Bute!

Showing Bute his new family.
A kiss for Mama :)
All smiles! This is my one of my favorite pics from the trip!
First encounter with Daddy. He was a little shy and averted his eyes.
Required proof (newspaper) for IR3 visa at embassy in a few weeks! Also take note of Bute's pipe cleaner crown. We made these with him the first day we met him and then after court his Dad shared with us that his name means "my crown." I cried. How amazing is that! Bute is my crown and his birth father's crown! ANd I think he knows it... :)

I still cannot believe this is real. Like really, really real! I am legally a Mama to two. I just wish I could have them both in the same place. I cannot describe my joy and heartache thru this week's adventures- the sights, sounds, smells, everything associated with this trip to Ethiopia for court. It is just too much... court was more emotional than I imagined. Immediately my mind wandered back to the waiting room at the hospital in Atlanta two years ago and the nerves and excitement and fears of that day, except this time all of those emotions were multiplied and complicated. This time I had to watch the pain in the birth families' faces as they made a decision that was the best for their child at this time. It is not an easy decision. Adoption isn't just a happy thing, there is also loss that comes with adopting, both for the child and the birth family. But then I was also privileged to watch the birth families smiles as they saw each adoptive family come out of the court room crying as well. While they ached, they were delighted to see hope and opportunity for their children. We experienced all of this with Bute's (we are changing his name slightly when he returns home to Bunte) father. We even had the opportunity for all of us to meet together at the care center after court (Wes, me, Bute, and his birth father). The images of this day will never go away. I just cannot write what I want to express and most of the emotions and stories of this week will be Bute's alone...

Maybe I will be able to write more clearly once I am home. For now, back to waiting at the airport in Frankfort...

Tuesday, October 12, 2010

Trying Not to Freak Out...

about leaving my boy. Seriously. I need to get over and I know that once I am Ethiopia I will be very distracted, but right now it just makes me sad to leave my sweet boy. When we leave on Saturday I will spend my first nite away from my son. It is a little ridiculous that I am this upset about leaving him. I would say that I am the one with attachment issues here, not Payton. Anyhow, the only other nite he spent away from me was the nite he stayed with his birthmother at the hospital. I know Payton will be good hands while we are away, but it is always hard to let go.

On Sunday I found out that our previous set of childcare plans would not pan out (my friend that was going to watch Payton/house/dogs/horses fell and broke her arm and cannot care for Payton now.) I started making a ton of phone calls and piecing together a new plan for Payton. Whew. I think it is (mostly) arranged. Now I am working on house/dog/horse sitter arrangements.

We are not really packed AT ALL! Which has me freaking out! However, I now have a rough sketch of my lesson plans so I am finally starting to calm down on that end (tho the papers will NOT be graded when I leave.)

Wes got his last three shots today and paid up on all of his vaccination not covered by insurance(yellow fever/typhoid/etc). It was a hefty $196 worth of shots. I am still waiting to hear back from my insurance company.

We have ordered a photo book for Bunte and I am going to make him a mini-poster of our family tonite. We were not going to tell him who we are, but several families that returned last week said that the older kids and nannies tell them as soon as you get there. So I guess when he meets us the cat will be out of the bag. I have a lovie, small truck, a stuffed animal, his picture book, a picture of us on string for him to wear, and poster (all to fit in a one gallon bag!) We can only give this to him ourselves if we pass court next Thursday, otherwise we will leave it with the nannies! Please pray with us! If all goes according to plan, we are slated for a November 17 embassy date. I would have never imagined that our date could be this early! AMAZING! This is VERY hopeful thinking, but God has worked miracles so far, so I am not going to place a limit on His faithfulness now.

I cannot believe that in one week I will be able to hold my son in my arms for the first time. What an amazing feeling! My mind is so overwhelmed that I cannot even begin to describe everything I am feeling right now. So, with that...I am off to *start* packing and pray that the plane does not crash (I HATE planes).

If you are the praying type, here are some specific requests:
1. Safe travels for Wes and D.
2. For Payton to adjust to all the transitions while we are away.
3. For the birth parent to safely arrive and testify at court (needed to pass court).
4. For all of the paperwork to be ok'd during court (needed for us to pass).
5. For Little B's heart to be safely guarded and prepared to meet us (and then for us to leave again).
6. For us to process all of the sites and sounds of Ethiopia so that we can share in Little B's culture and remember it well for him as he grows and asks questions.
7. For our health- we are well vaccinated, but we want to enjoy the moment of meeting B, not be so sick that we miss out on the joy.
8. For the other children at the orphanage who are waiting on families to not grow hopeless, but live happily as they wait on their forever families (btw, if you have ever considered adopting, our agency has over 15 waiting boys from ages 1-9 that need homes!)

WHEW!