The kids are finally sleeping. I already have so much to write and we have only been to the care center once and the rest of the time we have been in our guest house. To begin, Belay was sitting in his beloved bumbo when we got to the orphanage to get him. There were a gang of kids hanging out outside when we pulled in, naturally Adi headed right there and began playing, so it took us a few extra minutes to actually see Belay. He was a little nervous at first and one of the nannies said that he gets overwhelmed by all the new faces (just like his daddy).
The afternoon went well from there on. He had a bottle in my arms and fell right asleep, and on the ride back to the guest house he loved sitting on his daddy's lap watching the action out of the window.
Adi had fun playing and at one point we saw that she was sitting in the merry-go-round alone and directing a handful of boys to spin her as fast as they could.
All the kids there were amazing and I can't wait to go back and spend real time there getting to know them. I just have to tell one little story, and I won't mention names, but one little boy just received a photo book of his new family and I had been watching him for quite a while showing it off to all his buddies, so proud of what he had. He finally made it over to me as I knelt next to him to see the photo, he flipped each page one by one and kissed every single picture. It melted my heart, his is one special boy. I had no idea these books meant so much to them, but they do so famlies...keep em comin
Our afternoon with both kids was uneventful, they were playing nicely together and both fell asleep on their own very early. Moments after I passed out, adi woke me with a burning fever. We then spent most of the night up with her. Other than the fever she has no symptoms so we are wondering if it is just her body adjusting to the time and travel, like ours are. Regardless, none of us got any sleep, except Belay. He slept through it all.
The lack of sleep caught up to us all today and we weren't able to go anywhere or do anything except function (barely). I did wake to the sound of giggles and laughter and was a little confused because Adi was still asleep next to me. It was Belay, he was finally coming alive. I can even get him to crack up by tickling him under the chin. He is tiny tiny but is eating like a champ. His arm is maybe the diameter or a quarter, if that. And his 6 month pants fall right off (he is almost a year) But he can take 2 or 3 steps at a time if he really concentrates.
There is also a play room at the guest house and a nanny whose job it is to watch and play with any of the kids. While we haven't left the kids yet, we have spent a lot of time playing with her( Belay loves her)
She is a sweet woman. In our times up there playing with her she has shared a lot of her life with me and while I don't feel right going into too much detail in such a public place, I will share a little. She speaks a lot of the poverty and droughts in Ethiopia. She also is grateful for the upcoming election in hopes that a new government may help her family eat every day. She also reviled to me that she has passed her chance to ever marry because her family has no money and no man will choose her family if there is no dowry. This broke me. She is young, and beautiful. Her eyes light up when she sees my kids and begs me to leave them with her, and because of the famine and poverty in Ethiopia, she cannot ever share the love of a husband or family.
So tonight I am filled with sadness and love. Love for these people, for them giving us Belay and sadness that it has to be this way.