Monday, August 13, 2012

Trip One - Day One

Our trip here was so super long. I thought I would be able to sleep on the flight, but had no luck. Once we arrived I thought we were going straight to a hotel close to the airport. Again, I was wrong. Our guide met us at the exit and told us we would be driving to the orphanage city right away and it was a 3 1/2 hour drive. We had just completed an 18 hour combination of three flights. We loaded up in a van with no a/c and headed out. My stomach was in knots.

I hardly remember arriving at the hotel.  There was one detail etched in my memory though. At the turn to our hotel there was a road sign. You know those signs that say "Children Playing" or "Slow. We love our children." It was one of those signs only it was in the local language with English translated at the bottom. The translation said this..."Save The Child"

I don't really think I need to explain much more about that sign.

We got settled into our room, went down for dinner and enjoyed it very much. We love the local food. I was nervous about not being able to eat, but the food is awesome!

After dinner we went for a stroll to explore the city around our hotel, came back to the room, showered and went to bed. Only, I did not sleep. I did not sleep on the plane. I did not sleep in the car. I did not sleep in the hotel room bed. I was wide awake and as nervous as ever. Oh, by the way, my husband slept on the plane, slept in the car and slept in the hotel room bed. At 7am this morning I fell asleep. At 8am this morning the alarm went off. We got ready, had breakfast, went for a walk around town and came back to our room for a few minutes before leaving. During those moments I wrote in my journal and prayed. I wrote about the fact that in just a few minutes I was sure I would be a different person than I had ever been before. After writing I noticed scripture in the margin of the page that says this, "The Lord is my strength and my shield; My heart trusted in Him." Psalm 28:7. I found this so fitting. I prayed on this as we made our way to the orphanage. I cannot explain the way I felt in the car. There is no such description.

When we got out of the car we saw a worker carrying a baby into what looked to be an emergency vehicle. I got even more nervous. When we stood in front of the massive building I could not believe it. This place is huge. There were many plants. Very well cared for plants. That's all I'll say on that. Then there were many steps leading up to the building. These were grand steps as if we were going into some fancy governmental building. Suddenly I realized I could not breathe. I immediately started to pray for the strength and ability to breathe. I prayed for the Lord to be my strength. I could not really figure out what I was doing in this place. It was definitely one of those moments that you feel like you are not inside your own body but you are watching the event like a fly on the wall.

Our guide spoke to several people as we stood in the hall not understanding any of it. We were asked to be seated in the director's office and I was so nervous about what he was going to say to us. Then, suddenly, we were escorted out of the office, out of the wing, down stairs, up stairs and into a room full of toys in which we were told "the child" would be brought. We waited for about 15 minutes that seemed much longer.

The door opened and a woman in a white nurse dress brought her in. Whoa! Here she is. A real, living, breathing, very little person. No longer a picture. She was scared and making lots of sounds, but not crying. She did not want to come to me. The guide said that is a good sign. I agreed. We slowly began to play with her. She does not know how to play. We were in awe over her. She is so different from the picture in real life. It is her, but she is smaller and just different. She is beautiful. I love her hair. Her eyes, oh, her eyes. I had no idea how blue and beautiful they are. We made eye contact and held each others eyes for a lengthy amount of time. This was a moment that nearly brought me to tears. A moment of our souls touching.

She puts her toys and everything in her mouth. She kept chewing on her shoes and we kept re-directing her. She didn't like it but she caught on. We visited for about an hour and a half and it was wonderful. The caretaker came back for her and they left just like that. We left the building and were told we would return in four hours.

Nothing in between those hours matters. We went to eat and just chatted about her and how amazed we are. We then walked around the town some more. We came across a pharmacy type store and went in. We found a baby chew toy/rattle and bought it for her. We rested for a bit and it was time to go back.

When she was brought in this time she was different. She was in a different outfit. She was happier and we could tell her belly was fuller. She was happy to see us and we started playing right away. We gave her the toy we had purchased and she loved it. We noticed that she had nearly chewed holes in her little shoes. It was a wonderful visit and she was not happy that it ended. Neither were we. She reached out her arms for me and it broke my heart. The caretaker smiled and told our guide that "she has attached to me in just two visits." I know this could be a good thing/bad thing, but it happened in a good way.

We have had dinner, talked to family and friends, showered and are now completely exhausted. I wanted to share this day with you before I go to bed. We cannot wait to see her again tomorrow. Thank you to all of my friends and family. For everything. Good night.


  1. Praises for such a wonderful 1st & 2nd visit with YOUR precious little miracle girl :) Praying for you guys!!!

  2. Michelle, It was so nice to meet you at the airport. We had the same last few days so I especially loved reading how you''re doing and how your first visit went. Ours went well too. Hopefully we'll get some rest before we do the traveling all over again.