Gotcha Day Part I
Gotcha Day Part II
How could I possibly describe the feelings of meeting a face you have loved only in a picture. In the moments before he came into the door, thoughts ran through my mind like an Ethiopian distance runner: fast yet steady...giving me what seemed like an eternity to think on them.
Which of the five photos would he resemble the most?
Would there be screaming? crying? loud noise?
More importantly: would it be out of joy (from us) or fear (from him)?
Should I take him right away if he is scared?
DO I know ANY Amharic words I can attempt to say?
Is this really happening?
It was happening and, in only moments, I could see a lady dressed in white (the give away of the nannies) and in her arms was a small child. My need for glasses was temporarily healed and I recognized him from a distance which normally requires much squinting. There he was...coming across the courtyard: a perfect mixture of his photos and the boy we had grown to love.
She walked in the door, quickly handed him to me, and was gone. All was calm. The room was quiet and Geda lay still against my chest. The mass of emotion seemed to be caught up in a dense air...not bouncing here and there in wild screams or joyous shouts as I had imagined... but it felt as if a quiet, thick cloud of feelings had overtaken the room and had overtaken us.
The enjoyment of those first few moments will always be remembered as quiet and calm: perhaps even a sigh of relief that the process which had taken so long...with so much anticipation and work...was now being realized in our new beautiful baby boy. It was truely surreal.
Soon, a van pulled through the gate and out stepped two couples from Dove...here to meet their children for the first time...and then another couple who I had been in contact with. It was wonderful to see them and we enjoyed very much sharing our time with them; but I was grateful for the silence of the empty room when we first held our little darling. It was one of the last times we would have the room to ourselves as the next days were filled with large groups of French adoptive parents and our fellow American Adoptive parents.
The rest of the visit was spent switching our sons back and forth...enjoying the familiarity and love we had with Oliver and holding on to the newest joy in our lives. Noah spent the entire visit snuggled into our chests...no doubt unsure of the new room, new people, new sounds.
I didn't realize the immediate new bond that had formed until I saw the lady in white come through the door and heard her say the name "Geda." No! Tears welled in my eyes and after many kisses and "I love you's" we let him go from our arms. "Goodbye son. We'll be back soon"
She left me empty handed and the awkward feeling of "well, I guess we can go" came over me; but I didn't feel like going. We said our goodbyes and got into our car and then we left...just as we had arrived; yet we left with the realization of our dreams. We had seen and held our son!