Thanks so much for all of the wonderful prayers because I KNOW that they helped to make today a so much easier. Leaving was and is in no way easy…but we made it and in the midst of “making it” we had an absolutely precious time with Selah and God opened doors on our behalf that helped to bring so much peace to our hearts.
As soon as we arrived this morning we went inside and our wonderful agency representative and translator asked if we could possibly see the area where Selah lives each day. She explained to the director that it would do so much to bring peace to our hearts as we waited and it would also help us to relate more to Selah’s daily life. The director gave us her blessing and first invited us into her office where Selah was waiting for us! There she sat waiting and as soon as she saw us she jumped up with her big smile that fills her beautiful little face! She jumped right into my arms for a hug and then into Daddy’s too! We had brought a bag of candy and had saved enough bubble bottles for each child in the orphanage and the director let Selah hand out the treats to all the boys and girls. It was so cute…she loved sharing her treats and loved being in charge!
One of the caregivers then took us on a tour. We got to see Selah’s sleeping area that she shares with about 10 other children. She has a little white bed and they have all the beds neatly made and on her bed was the blanket we had brought for her. They are making sure she has it to sleep with all the time and promise to remind her that it is from Mommy and Daddy. They showed us her personal little closet and cubby, the bathrooms, and the playrooms. It truly was a nice as I could imagine an orphanage being in a place where they have little money. The ladies that work there seem to really love the children. They do the very best they can with the little that they have. Everything was so nice and clean and tidy and organized which helped me to understand how important routine is to her. She has lived a life with almost the very same routine every single day…everyone is expected to do the very same thing with the group and there just isn’t a great deal of differentiation. This is what they have to do to best serve many children with few employees. So, each time we did something new or different and she would become nervous and begin rocking and tapping the sides of her little face, I knew it was because of how strange it must feel to her to be outside of this routine.
As we were touring, all the sweet little angels that live there just attached themselves to us…the look up at you with these big sad eyes that just seem to say “I want a family, too….me too…”. It is heart wrenching. I wish I could do something to ensure that each one of those angels had a family…. There was one little boy who kept giving us hugs and literally wrapped his arms around Bryan’s leg and didn’t want to let go. He looked at us with the hugest brown eyes I have ever seen in my life. My big ol’ solid rock of a husband had a lump in his throat…and I was right there with him. Maybe someone out there reading this would love to be his forever family? I can promise you he will melt your heart in less than one second!
We talked with the director a bit more, asking a few questions, and getting such a good feeling from her. We left her our webcam and she gave us her skype account and we set up times when we can skype with Selah! How incredible is that? She also looked through all of the special books I had made for Selah about our family and special toys, baby doll, and a talking picture frame with all of us telling Selah how much we love her! She assured us that she would make a point of either reading the books to her herself or having one of the caretakers do it on a regular basis. She was so kind to us and told us she was so happy for Selah and that she could tell that we truly loved her and would take wonderful care of her. I just kept smiling and crying and thanking her. When Selah was near me, I could hold in the tears, but when she wasn’t I lost that strength and the tears poured.
She understood the trouble we were having with saying good-bye and to help ease that pain and help Selah have a little bit more time with us, she let us take Selah into the village for lunch as well as our regular playtime. That gave us an extra hour! So, off we went into the village to play at the park where she immediately headed to the snack stand and wanted her peach juice….and yup…you guessed it…drank it down in less than 2 minutes! And that lead to a wet diaper (they don’t potty train until 5) which I had to change in the middle of the park and she was quite uncomfortable with that!!!! But, she handled it remarkably well and we ended up laughing together over the awkwardness of the park bench :-)
After the park, we went to a restaurant where our translator ordered her a soup that was similar to what she usually eats. She ate some of it, but once she tasted my chicken and French fries…the soup was history! She will definitely fit into the American way of life! She LOVED the little chicken bites and HAD to have ketchup on those French fries! She made us laugh so hard because she was doing the “raise the roof” dance move to the pop music that was playing loudly at the restaurant! She loves music so much and always sings along with an uncanny ability to pick up the melody and rhythm immediately! The second she heard the music up went the hands and perfectly to the beat, I mind you!
Then came the time to take her back…the time to say “good-bye”. She wanted Daddy to carry her and he said that the closer we got, the tighter she held onto his neck. It was as if she knew something was going on. We went back to the director’s office and chatted and had a last couple of giggles and lots of hugs and kisses. Bryan kept whispering in my ear to stay strong…I think he was doing it halfway to help me and the other half to help himself. We did it and made sure her last memories were of smiles. She blew us kisses and left to go take a nap. They shut the door and again the tears fell. I could feel God, though and I could feel His presence and His gentle reassurance that it would all be okay. I just needed to focus on the future and the still miraculous fact that this beautiful little girl was going to be ours and we were being given this incredible gift.
So now….I think about the day that will soon come. The day where I will have three noisy kiddos running through the house and a quiet night in the future when I will not have just two rooms to go to before I sleep, but rather three. Now I quietly go into each room and watch Zachary and Landon sleeping peacefully and I kiss their little foreheads and whisper my prayers of thanksgiving to Jesus for allowing me to be their mommy and then whisper into their ears “ I’m so glad that God gave me you”. But soon, that quiet night will come, and I will have a third bedroom to go into and I will quietly whisper..”Thank You, Jesus, for letting me be her mommy” and then “I’m so glad God gave me you.”
5 days ago