Monday, February 18, 2008

Gotcha Day

Pictures: Caleb arrives in my apartment; Caleb enjoying the remote (recognize this sweater, Meredith?); eating a . . . banana
Guys, you all leave such sweet comments that I just sit here and say 'awwwww' Teresa and Scheri, those are very precious notes. I miss you so much and will hopefully be home next week. We're almost there. You know, God asked our whole family to do a very important thing. Right now, the hardest part of obeying God is having to be apart for such a long time. But it is almost over and then we will all get to enjoy Caleb the rest of our lives and know that we made GOD happy.

So guess who's sound asleep in the next room dressed in the cutest footie-pajamas from Meredith. Let's see: he has long light brown hair, blue eyes, a great giggle, chunky little fingers, adorable little toes, and is in my humble but right opinion the cutest little boy in all of Ukraine. (Now I didn't say in all the world because I just happen to have the other 4 cutest children already at home--hey! many of you have never seen pictures of any of us so how can you dispute) It is so hard to believe that Caleb is actually here after all those years of adoption dead ends and all those months of paperwork hassles and re-dos. He was who God had in mind all along.

The day started at 8 am with the usual driving from office to office and from town to town and sitting in the car most of the time. The funny thing was that it finally occured to me that my cell phone has games on it so what am I doing while all this momentous paperwork is being passed from hither to yon? I'm playing Snake and trying to play Bowling (a little too true-to-life since the ball kept going in the gutter) But finally the time came to go to the orphanage for the last time. We'd already dropped off the clothes so the workers had him all dressed. There were at least 6 caregivers in addition to the doctor who were gathered to tell him good-bye. He has obviously been a very well-loved little boy. I had written them a note of appreciation for all the good care he has received--I hope someone will translate it for them. For some reason, Dima seemed to be in a huge hurry to get out of there--maybe the ladies were telling him not to prolong their agony or maybe they didn't want Caleb to see them cry. My eyes were teary, I know that.

I had hoped to get to take a picture of his bed, where he ate, where he played. Dima asked but was told no. Dima said I was not supposed to see any other children and I guess other children would be in those areas. I'm kind of sad about that--because it would be so great for Caleb's baby book--but obviously it is not my call.

But I definitely was not sad about getting my son. He had no problem at all being in the car--just enjoyed watching the people and cars and scenery. He chattered for awhile and then ended up falling asleep on my lap which was very sweet. I was bummed to have to wake him up to come into the building. But he woke up without a problem, wasn't grumpy, came into the apartment and checked everything out--opening and closing drawers, opening and closing cupboards. He grabbed the phone right off the bat and probably called Zimbabwe but the bill didn't come to me. He had a lot of fun with the empty plastic water and Cola Light bottles-he whacked on various surfaces, used the bigger one to bat the smaller one, actually moved the smaller bottle all the way across the rug in this way. He played for quite awhile with the poseable bunnies (I remembered the sign for bunny so kept doing it when I said bunny and he was watching my hands) and finger puppets and Color Wonder markers we've had at visits. He wasn't particularly interested in the very soft stuffed puppy. I sang him 'Jesus Loves Me' and 'Jesus Loves the Little Children.' He showed me a little dance. I'd seen him holding hands and swaying with Dima so I tried it except this time Caleb showed me a couple more moves--he backed up a step or so, turned in a circle (so I did, too) and then came toward me to clap my hands. He ate a banana and quite a few dry fruit loops (which he seemed to chew well and swallow OK.) When I came near his bowl without food in my hands, he told me Neh-Neh--like he was afraid I was going to grab his chow. I kept giving him a few more and a few more and finally he just handed me his bowl so I assumed that meant he was done. And he got down from his chair and let me wash his fingers. He threw the little bite of colby-jack cheese I'd handed him earlier and later when I offered him some boiled potatoes he wasn't interested. So I guess he was full.

I gave him sort of a bath. He stood in the water without a problem but wouldn't sit down. He let me soap him up and rinse him off using the mesh scrubber so it worked but I was afraid he would slip.

At one point during the afternoon, I'd laid him on the bed cuz I thought he might need to finish his nap but he wasn't interested and got back up to play. But around 7 he started getting kind of whiny and started swaying back and forth in the bedroom doorway so I took him in and he was very content to help me take off his clothes and put on his jammies. I had him laying very quietly with me humming softly and rubbing his hands but I guess I quit too soon. I sat up on the edge of the bed and pretty soon he was sitting up, too. So I thought, I'll just lay down on my side of the bed and he'll lay down again pretty soon. Nope, he got out of bed. So I got back up, laid him back down and started in on my lullabies and rubbed the side of his face real softly and he fell asleep laying crossways right in the middle of the bed. I hope I can get in without disturbing him too much--if I can find a spot to sleep!


Christina said...

Congratulations on your new son, Caleb! I am glad to hear that your first day together went well! I bet you will be smiling in your sleep tonight!

RR Group

Charissa said...

Oh What a sweet thought...Caleb in footie pajamas. Joy, you better find somebody to help you put some pictures on this blog or you may have a lot of very upset RR aunties when you get home!!

Amy W said...

What a wonderful day with Caleb! I am so happy for you Joy, this is just so heartwarming to hear how he played with you and then fell asleep right in the middle of the bed! That is just too cute! Prayers for everything else to go quickly for you so you can soon be on your way home with your new son! Congratulations!

Shelley said...

Congratulations Joy!!!! Any word on how long the passport is going to take?

Anonymous said...

AWWWWW!!! that is what is all about, congrats mama!
Amy O.

LIN said...

Your first day went so well!! I am so happy for you, I can't wait. If you want I'll bring an umbrella stroller for you when I come.

Anonymous said...

Congratulations mom!!!1
Can't wait to see pictures.

Kathryn G. said...

Dear Joy,

We think of you often and pray for you all. We'll have to have you "Show and Tell" Caleb for one of our support group meetings when "all y'all" get back to southern Idaho!

Love you and miss you!


--Jay, Kathryn, Colette, and Emma

Anonymous said...

Congratulations on your new son!!! we need pictures!!! we hope you two are having fun. joy , i admire how strong you are. i keep trying to decide if i will stay by myself, when we are there,or go home and go back.thanks for letting us follow your journey. Jody & Gary

AZmomto7 said...

I am so thrilled for you, it is quite the day when we finally get to take our kids from the orphanage. Caleb sounds like such a sweet boy, and no tears this time? I know that had to feel wonderful! Congrats, it is a happy day!!