I got maybe a total of 6 hours of sleep during the entire trip. I stressed over the details of the flights, fretted when we didn't get picked up at the airport in CAP, and nearly had a panic attack as I felt I was suffocating in the middle of the only night we slept at COTP. Jason, on the other hand, had a great 'vacation'. He loved all the flights, the tour of PAP, trying new foods, and just the adventure of it all.
Our time at COTP wasn't nearly long enough. We were covered in kids as soon as they woke up from naps on Saturday. It was beautiful to see Jason's arms always filled with kids. Three kids in particular didn't want him to put them down. One little guy, who was recovering from surgery, was an absolute love bug. He wrapped his arms around Jason and snuggled into his chest.
The little girl didn't want much to do with us at first. She's full of spunk and personality. And she only does what she wants to do when she wants to do it. She's exactly like her big brother. She has the sweetest giggle and most beautiful smile. But as soon as she sees a camera come out, she loses the smile and turns her head. Again, exactly like her big brother.
Sunday afternoon we traveled to PAP. It was pouring rain when we left. We were given a broken umbrella and ran to the plane, laughing as we jumped in the puddles. The wind was whipping, and I said a lot of prayers about our quick flight.
While rain is cleansing and healing and puddles are fun, my heart was raining as much as the skies. I met her. I held her and kissed her and made her laugh. She fell asleep in my arms.
I don't want to leave her.
At 6:15 on Monday morning we were picked up for our appointment at the US Embassy. We waited outside until 8:00 before being called in. To a waiting room. With about a hundred people. Where we waited even more. The process was emotional for a variety of reasons. Not having all the required paperwork, having left the little girl behind, not knowing what to expect.
At one point we had to raise our right hands and swear to the truthfulness of the answers we were about to provide during an interview. The question that got me: "Do you feel you bonded with her?" How do you answer that? I started to cry. My response: "I want to bring her home right now."
I must have said, "Thank you Jesus" about 20 times on the trip. From seeing Nick's face to the Embassy having our I-171H printed to landing in Miami. The trip was a series of short prayers that were continually answered.
We are blessed beyond measure that we can be on this journey to bring our little girl home. We are blessed that we were called and have the resources to do it. We are blessed that we had the chance to meet her.
I'm not patient and I'm not a saint and I'm not a wonderful person. Right now I'm sad and bitter and cynical. This process started 18 months ago. Our paperwork has been in Haiti for nearly 9 months.
I'm tired of the process. I'm tired of errors. I'm sick and tired of the unexpected and the extra money and the non-stop flow of additional paperwork.
To answer the #1 question we've heard since we got back, we have absolutely no idea when she'll be home. There's no timeframe. No details. No general idea. I will apologize right now if I'm rude to you when you ask that question. (Unless you're my sister or Amy S or Mary or another adopting mom - then I won't lose it for some reason.)
I suspect this is what most parents go through after they've met, fallen in love with, and had to leave their child.
In all of this, the emotions, the impatience, and the ugly...I trust. Our God is bigger than a broken process. He is with her and all 147 million orphans every single day. They are not forgotten. They are not unloved. They have a father who loves them greater than I can ever comprehend.
And because of that, I can sleep at night and trust that - one day - she's going to be home.
|This says it all.|