Well, our moment was certainly a sweet moment! After picking up the kids from school, I nonchalantly drove them downtown to get an after-school treat at Black Rock. Daddy happened to meet us down there, since he works a few blocks away, and as they sat down chatting about their day, sipping their sugar-laced concoctions (I’m such a great mama), Daddy slowly spun around his laptop on the table to show them something…
- squinting eyes adjust to black and white screenshot of a document
- slight tilt of head to the left (because we all know we can read better if we tilt our heads)
- opposite tilt to the right (because for some reason the left-shoulder-tilt isn’t working today)
- faces scrunch in confusion, and Logan’s characteristic one-eyebrow raise communicates the general consensus of ‘this is not in English’.
- split second of relaxed-scrunching of eyebrows as realization sets in: this is a Haiti something-or-other
- all three kid heads flip expectantly to mom and dad’s faces in wide-eyed disbelief
- “Is that…?” “No way.” “Wait. Is it?” “No its not…” “It is?” “Is it?” then all three at once – “Is it REALLY?”
- Cue immediate welling of tears for Braeden and Logan – as their jaws dropped with a clunk to the table, as Abby (in true Laura-mini-me fashion) erupted in hysterical screeching and proceeded to chuck her napkin of leftover croissant and flaky croissant crumbs across the table in excitement and then giggled uncontrollably! (for a little history here: Kris and Laura first met in November 2000 – and subsequently got engaged a month later – they sat down with Laura’s parents at a Mexican restaurant a short time prior to the engagement to let them know that they were very serious about making the “them” a permanent fixture in the family. However, Laura, in such an unknown and nervous anticipated state of such a momentous topic of discussion, started laughing uncontrollably, which became like a communicable disease and spread to her mother. Within minutes of trying to have a very serious, sobering conversation about the depth of Kris and Laura’s relationship (albeit only about 3-4 weeks old…???!!) both mother and daughter were giggling and guffawing (they pretty much have the same laugh when they get going) and gasping for breath as Kris and Laura’s dad tried to pretend (to the rest of the calm dining guests) that this was so completely normal. (Kris had yet to realize just how normal this would be…) Anyway – like mother, like daughter, like daughter again! Abby is a nervous and excitable laugher!
- When all three settled into the news there were huge grins all around, and the questions started flying – “When do we get to go?” “How long to we get to stay?” (and from Logan, of course) “Oh my gosh. What am I going to wear? I need new shorts!” and Abby…”Wait. Can I wear my crop leggings there or will I be too hot?” and Braeden…”No, like for real.When are we going?!?”
I have no idea what that conversation looked like to the rest of the world – I apologize for the croissant mess, because in all our giddiness, I’m pretty sure we forgot to clean up the floor! We probably looked a little odd, kids crying, croissant flakes flying, incessant questions and hysterical giggles in the middle of the coffee shop – but one thing I know for sure – these are moments where I’m so thankful for my family. The laughing, the crying, the craziness, the solidarity of myself and Kris’ parenting, and the village of friends and family surrounding us that has helped us raise compassionate, loving kids who genuinely would give up their entire livelihood to love on this little boy!
Kris and I keep circling around the same conversations whenever we have free quiet moments – we are SO excited for our kids to experience this introduction to the rest of their lives! This is the moment it all gets REAL, folks. This is the electricity and connection that will happen in one moment with a first touch of a hand to a shoulder, or fingers grasping onto a hand, or even just the first eye contact with each other. This moment will change them, whether they realize that or not – it did for us, and we are just floored that we get to be finally in this countdown period for their first meeting!
So many are asking, so I’ll say it again, that no – we won’t be able to bring him home on this trip. We are still looking at 6 months or maybe longer before we are able to have him home – but hallelujah, we have already made it through over THREE YEARS of waiting – we can make it through six months. Lord willing, it will be shorter than that and the rest of our process will be divinely expedited so this little smiling man can be home with us! But for now, we are so happy with being able to go visit! We are already looking at the calendar to find the next time we can go down!
As of now, our tentative travel dates are NEXT WEEK – Sept 22 – 27th, which would give us 4 days at the orphanage (two of those are school days, so we would have shorter time with him on that Friday and Monday) but over the weekend – we can be at the orphanage Saturday and Sunday all day! If, for some reason the flights/hotel can’t be booked for next week, we will bump the trip one week and travel the following week. SO EXCITED!!!
Thank you again for your incessant prayers – we cherish them more than any of you even realize!