Current Child Count

  • HOGAR DE AMOR I: 11 babies
  • HOGAR DE AMOR II: 6 boys
  • HOGAR DE AMOR III: 8 girls

Tuesday, May 26, 2009

adoption, birthday, twins, and other randomness

Today was Christmas! That’s what the joy of an adoption feels like! Today for the 11th time I witnessed the “first encounter” between new parents and child (I missed the two others because of no advance notice). I ALWAYS get choked up or even sob (THAT was embarrassing, but it was for the adoption of our first child ever).

Every single time I re-live how it was to meet our new baby Emma for the first time in Russia. When you’ve seen/felt/experienced/lived through something that moving, you can’t help but put yourself in the shoes of others on the same path.

The emotion in the car was palpable on our way to Casa de Amor III for the first meeting. My social worker stayed past her normal hours to allow them the chance to meet M. today. The other Italian couple adopting wasn’t so fortunate; because their hearing was also late in the day, the home where their new son and daughter live (I saw them just a few days ago, clinging to their pictures of the couple!) said they don’t work late and that they can come tomorrow.

There are no words to describe it…

Tante emozioni, indeed!

Tomorrow I will live it with them from 10am-6pm (minus running a little girl to the doctor) and I can’t wait! I also can’t wait to learn more Italian. I LOVE learning new languages when I can immediately put what I learn into practice! If I can at least understand them, I can help them communicate better with M. The new mother speaks some English, but it’s easier to stay in the more similar Spanish and Italian….although we’ve already had jumbled conversations using words from all three languages. Love it!

Baby V and the new puppy at CDA III

My birthday weekend-and-Monday was great! After three days straight of cake (try FOUR types on Saturday) I’m, ah-hem, considering my diet options.

And look at this:

My first present: Ghirardelli chocolate from the US, from a missionary mother (bless you!).

My second present: a box of chocolate from my two right arms in administration.

My third gift: you guessed it! Assorted chocolate bars, plus other snacks, lotion, and a BOOK (love you, Alseths!!).

Do people think I’m stressed or something?!

Saturday morning we went to the park to celebrate birthdays of a volunteer and B. turning two (I didn’t take my camera, so will have to get pics from those who went). We were something like 14 adults (from New Zealand, US, Bolivia, Norway, England) and 13 children. Pretty good ratio, I’d say!! If our degree of dirtiness after three hours of much playing and much snacking is any indication, then we had a VERY good time indeed. I had to completely change!

On Sunday I was on the praise team playing keyboard (same as for my 21st birthday), which I loved! Didn’t want the music to end this week—we did one of my favorite Hillsongs, another fast one from Hillsongs, and several other favorites and the congregation really entered in.

That afternoon a nap sounded about the coolest thing as well as finishing a book (“The Open Door” about a children’s home in the US in the 40s and 50s) but it wasn’t to be as I talked to several members of my family by phone. This is the first year I’ve not been with them on my birthday….

Before leaving for the evening, I peeked in on the babies. Two were up on all fours considering crawling and Twins E & E were standing up thinking about walking and the tias were encouraging all of them—really cute! Then I went to the room with the toddlers and someone, I think boy A?, looked at me and called out “mommy!” and 3 or 4 others followed suit. They rarely call me that, or not multiple at once, and on my birthday, too! Melted my heart. And they’ve continued it since that day. (And it's Mother's Day week here in Bolivia!)

The Holmans then blessed my socks off Sunday night! First we met up (they were with their 7 youngest) at a new restaurant in town that has some semblance of “Tex-Mex” food. Yum!! Then I joined them in my parent’s former Bolivia SUV to go to their house for the cookie cake Denise Holman had prepared. It was so close to what I remember of cookie cakes in the US that I had to ask my Mom the next day if she had divulged the recipe for the cake and icing!!

Their new three story house with pool and back house is really lovely…..and it was really funny to be in it, sitting on my parents old couch, telling time by their former clock, and noticing their lamps all over the place. And to see that Faith has my first bed, the one I slept on till my feet hung off over the footboard!

After a while their oldest 3 arrived back with my new volunteers, and we continued chatting. It was a relaxing evening and so refreshing to be out of the Baby Home and forget about it all for a bit AND be in the middle of family life again.

Muchas gracias, familia Holman!!

Today is the one year anniversary since these two live wires arrived...

...weak, hungry, and sick sick SICK. How they have changed!

Now if I'd had my way today, I'd have fixed them all up and tried hard for some great pictures (although they are extremely active and don't appreciate being still at all), but there was no time. I barely had a minute to take two before M's parents arrived.

Today I also had an excellent time at CDA II, chatting and lunching (more chatting than anything) with the kiddos. Maybe I'll write about it tomorrow, but for now more tasks call my name....


Gallo Pinto2 said...

They're HUGE!!!

So glad you had a good birthday! I'm sorry you couldn't be with your family but I'm glad you have wonderful friends there!

and LOVE the pic of M with her new parents! I bet she is just so excited!

Joyful Mom said...

What a beautiful, newsy post. Happy Birthday friend. How wonderful that you had such a special day. Sorry you missed your family. May you be so blessed in the year ahead and may our Father open more doors for you than you could ever imagine, may He continue to show Himself faithful in your life.

Love the adoption stories--what an amazing thing to witness, it must make what you do so absolutely worthwhile! And it is.