Tuesday, February 21, 2012

Monday, February 20, 2012

Sunday, February 19, 2012

Weekend Update




If we're ever rich, I totally want to have an aquarium of jellyfish.


Tuesday, February 7, 2012

Bad Adoption Days

Some days are better than others up in my head. There are times when I can relegate E and Z to the back of my mind, assume that it's going to take a few more months for them to come home, and then move on with my routine. Those are the good days.

There are lots of moments, however, that I walk into work and when someone greets me with, "Hey! How's it going?" all I really want to do is put my head down on a counter and yell, "MY BABIES ARE IN AN ORPHANAGE. NOBODY IS GIVING US ANY INFORMATION ABOUT WHEN THEY'LL BE ABLE TO COME HOME. ALL I REALLY WANT TO DO TODAY IS CHUCK ROCKS AT THINGS AND SCREAM AT SOMEONE. HOW DO YOU THINK IT'S GOING?" Thankfully, I've so far been able to stifle that urge.

In November, probably around Week 16 of waiting to be submitted to court when we'd been told it would take 1-5 weeks, I got out of my car to pump gas and locked my keys inside. There had been plenty of moments of receiving frustrating news in the previous months when it would have been appropriate for me to have a meltdown. It hadn't happened though because we were so emotionally drained that even crying seemed pointless. Imagine my surprise then when the gas station clerk started to refuse to let me use his phone (mine was locked in the car) and I realized that I was about to have a Big Ugly Cry right there in the gas station. My sniffles were enough to convince the guy to let me make a call just so he could clear me out of the building. I then proceeded to walk out to the gas pump, lean against my car, and have a complete sobbing breakdown complete with hyperventilating and lots of nose blowing on the paper towels you're supposed to use to clean the windshield. Paul was *ahem* mildly concerned when he arrived to rescue me with a spare key, but I think he understood that sometimes the relentless nature of this entire process can rear its head at completely inappropriate times.

Today was another one of those days that I would describe as a Bad Adoption Day. There was nothing particularly bad that happened. It's just that it's been less than two weeks since we passed court and it already feels like we've been waiting an eternity. I have no idea how I'm going to endure the rest of this wait. It feels completely insurmountable. My babies are in an orphanage. We haven't received any updates about them since we returned from Ethiopia. I miss them. I worry. I'm tired.

On our way home this afternoon, in the midst of telling me about saying the Pledge of Allegiance at school, Atticus and Norah were talking about the Great Central U.S. ShakeOut that they'd participated in at school today. For someone who teaches older kids like I do, this meant three minutes of attempting to convince thirty teenagers not to giggle too much as they tried to cram their oversized bodies beneath undersized desks. For preschoolers, however, the experience had carried a lot of weight and they were very intrigued about earthquakes. Suddenly Atticus said in the most worried little voice, "Mama, my teacher showed us a map of where earthquakes happen and it looked like they happen in Ethiopia where our brother and sister are. Do they have earthquakes? Who's going to take care of them if they have one? They won't know to get under desks. They're too little to even have desks."

Gulp. Breathe in. Breathe out. Add another line to my list of concerns. I finally ended up explaining that while they do have some earthquakes in Ethiopia, I didn't think they would be having any soon. Atticus and Norah talked it over and decided that if there is an earthquake the caregivers will put E and Z underneath their cribs and stay with them until it's safe to come out.
The big siblings seemed satisfied with this plan and moved onto other quandaries. I'm still a little stuck though.

I wish I had a conclusion to this stream of consciousness - some sweet little platitude that would wrap everything up in a neat little package and make me feel like I've arrived at some sort of resolution about this subject. I don't have one yet though. Right now I just need to acknowledge that this situation kind of sucks sometimes. It's uncomfortable. It's unfair to E and Z. It makes me want to climb out of my own skin some days. I'm pretty sure it's going to get better eventually, but sometimes I just have to wallow in the reality of what the situation is right now.

The Pledge of Allegiance




The students at Atticus and Norah's school get to take turns reciting the Pledge of Allegiance over the loudspeaker in the mornings. It has been a very big deal in our house because Atticus was picked early in the year and has been lording it over Norah ever since. She has been desperate for her turn and once went so far as to dash across the parking lot at dropoff in an attempt to reach the principal and plead her case. Today was finally the magic day and Norah was chosen along with a few of her friends to go to the office for announcements. She was so proud!

[Editor's Note: I don't know why the embedded YouTube video of Norah cuts off the right side. If you double click on it you can see her face the entire time. I tried using YouTube's stability control - advertised to cut down the amount of visible shaking in the video - but I don't think it was ready for the type of motion that Norah generates when she's excited.]

Saturday, February 4, 2012

It's Family Day!



Four years ago on this date we met Atticus and Norah for the first time. We are one lucky couple.

Paul marked the occasion by commissioning a Family Day cake from his coworker Laura. Didn't she do a fabulous job? Please take note of her incorporation of the Ethiopian and USA flag colors along with Atticus's fireman outfit and Norah's princess dress. The cake is delicious and the decorations were much appreciated by the kiddos.

Happy Familyversary!