Monday, June 16, 2014

So This is Jet Lag

We got home from our travels Friday evening. Which was ironic because we left Ethiopia on Friday. The whole gaining eight hours on the way back was a complete trip. Ha. Trip. I'm hilarious.

Anyway, we have now been home for about three days and I feel mostly like I've been hit by a bus all the time. Jet lag. There's just nothing like it. So what I'm saying is I'm really looking forward to feeling like this in a few weeks or months while transitioning my non-English speaking son to the US and into our family. Who said I wasn't going to be sleep deprived because we weren't parenting an infant? LIES.

I kid a little. Of course we'll do anything to get him here and make him a part of the family. The past three days have been a mix of emotions. I'm taking up my traditional coping mechanism of staying way too busy. Which does seem to help. The day we traveled when 5pm ET-time hit I got pretty sad. I realized it was the first day that IC had no visitors at the transition home. Had we been there, we would be back on the bus at that time to go to the guest house with a day full of memories. But no memories on Friday. Just tired traveling. When my days stay full, I focus less on the heartache that someone else is getting to visit their kids while our little guy is being shooed off the porch to play by himself.  So, busy it is.

Saturday was a fun day celebrating my friend's birthday at the winery. Girls, stories, wine. Great times. Oh yeah, and we did the most fun adoptive parent thing ever. We went to Target and on Amazon (at the request of some super friends) and we registered for our little guy's non-baby showers. That's right. Registering for a 7 year old HAS to be more fun than an infant. I mean, not that I know from experience. But when they gave me the little "congrats on registering" packet, it came with a bottle, a pacifier, and breast milk storage bags. Meanwhile I registered for Legos, Toy Story, and a dinosaur nightlight. I mean, who's winning here? Totally the elementary-age registry. Seriously, though, we would have never done it had we not been prompted. And we had a really good time and felt super blessed at just the thought.
Seriously so fun

By 6pm Saturday I was begging E to let me fall asleep. He held me off til 8pm. By 8:09 I was out. Like, can't move me, I-hope-the-house-doesn't-burn-down-because-I'm-not-going-anywhere, out. Which was good. I needed it.

Yup. This is how I feel most of the time right now. P.S. I missed this girl.

I had been anxiously awaiting Sunday. I missed all my little people. And also their parents. It was a good, busy day. Lots of hugs. Lots of well-wishes. We are so, so blessed by our church community. Say what you will about big churches but I have always felt so loved and had such a personal experience at our church. E got wished "Happy Father's Day" on multiple occasions. He told me that it secretly made him really sad each time, knowing that our little guy wasn't home with us yet. I promised him it was just everyone wanting to show love and express congratulations. It's hard to express how it feels to be so overjoyed to have met your son and so torn up to not have him home.

In general Sunday morning was great with lots of celebration and hugs and love. But, it made me realize how overwhelming it will be for IC when we get home. And it made me confident in our decision to cocoon when we get home. I'll talk about this more in-depth when we get closer to travel but for those who've not heard of it, let me give a brief explanation. Cocooning is the process of trying to simplify life, stay at home, and bond with your new kiddo as much as you can for a period of time. During this time, we won't be going to church...we'll be live-streaming from home. We want our little guy to have time to bond with us before we send him into the wide world of everything else. More on that later. But Sunday was just a good reminder of why we'll take our time on the first church visit. It was amazing support to me but if I didn't know any of those people and I didn't speak English I might be a little shell-shocked.

Sunday afternoon we celebrated Father's Day at my parents' house. My mom and my friend Amanda put on a Noonday fundraiser for our adoption. It was a wonderful time to share Noonday's mission and work in developing nations while also celebrating our time with IC last week. We showed the official "meetcha" video to the parents and got lots of hugs and support. I could not be more thankful for parents who love us and IC so well. They are absolutely over the moon in love with him and it is just beautiful to watch.

Mom and I surrounded by beautiful Noonday jewelry

We got home late so any semblance of making up for jet lag disappeared and I feel like I'm back at square one today. I seriously think about the time I get back to normal it will be time to head back to Ethiopia. Which is perfectly fine with me. Today consisted of laundry, grocery shopping, and oh yeah, calling the US Visa processing center.

A word about calling the Visa processing center. You all, our friends and supporters, have been so faithful to lift us up to the Father and love us and ask for God to bring our son home soon. Today was another little blessing that shows your prayers at work. When I was in ET, my friend Colleen was lamenting how long it took her to get ahold of the Visa people. Her husband had been calling for a week straight on behalf of their eight-year-old. While we were there, she finally got in but it took 1.5 hours on hold. I realized, after talking to a few people, her situation was not unique. Most people spend about a week trying to get their receipt number (needed to file a Visa request) and when they do finally get in, they spend several hours on hold.

So today when I got the instructions I figured I'd just give it a try. For fun. And five minutes later, I was in!!! I was on hold--a huge step in the right direction. Eight minutes later I hung up my phone. You guys. THIRTEEN TOTAL MINUTES. OK, I am just realizing the significance of that. How fun! Anyway, I spent 13 minutes today trying to get IC's visa application started. And it's officially done. And now we wait more. But a BIG hurdle has been cleared. Praise the Lord.

So to recap: Tired. Visa processing. Waiting.
Yup. That tired. And yes, that's my Kids Club shirt. Trying to feel like I fit in.

I plan to make a list of all the things I want to do in our waiting time. And I'm secretly hoping not many get done because we get the call to fly quicker than we could anticipate. Again. Thanks for praying for us!

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