Tuesday, August 30, 2011

ETHIOPIA ~ DAY 5 (Thursday)

DAY 5 in Ethiopia was our "big day".......our.....COURT DATE!!!

As I said last post, Jeff and I prayed together before falling asleep the night before this big day.  And I awakened several times throughout the night, feeling as though I was still praying.  Does anyone else ever do that?  Fall asleep praying and awaken feeling as though your prayers never stopped?  I do.  Quite often, actually.  Especially if something or someone is laid heavy on my heart.

Well this night of restless sleep, our SON was on our heart!  I was fervently praying.  Though I was also beginning to fear that we were not going to pass court.  I began to fear that our MOWCY letter would not be present.  Afterall, this was the pattern as of late.  This was what we were told to expect.

However, I would "thought-block" such thoughts ~ and replace them with verses that built my faith.  Strengthened my ability to continue to BELIEVE.  Believe for a miracle.  From my God who was the creator of the world.  Lover of my soul.  My heavenly source of just such a miracle.

I awakened that morning earlier than any other, so I climbed the flights of stairs to the rooftop, and enjoyed another sweet "rooftop experience" with my Heavenly Father (there is a patio on the roof of our guest house that provided me great one-on-one moments with God, while also providing me a serene and amazing view of Addis Ababa).  I was there alone.  Just me and God.  Taking in the view of my son's birth heritage.  Feeling God's presence.  Feeling Him assure me that no matter what resulted from Court, He still was on the throne.  He was still in control of bringing our son home to us!

I could hardly eat breakfast (though it was as delicious as the previous ones), and I felt almost like I was walking through the morning routine without really being present ~ I was still in my head and heart, in fervent prayer, I guess.

We all climbed the stairwell and walked the long narrow hall to the court room.  We filed into this medium-sized empty square room.  Empty, that is, except for the many others who were there waiting to see the judge as well.  I called it "empty" because there was no court stand or anything grand and court-like in it.  Just a square room with a few chairs lining the walls.  We all entered and, together,  awaited our turn to be called before the judge.  With so many peeps in this room, it actually became quite warm.  

A highlight of the wait was meeting in person, Bridget Sullivan and her family!  She is a precious friend from "early AWAA days" {aka.....the first couple of months of us joining the AWAA yahoo group}.  Bridget and her husband were adopting Eyob when we started this process, and have since brought him home...and were there for a court date for their two older daughters they are now adopting!!!!!  Such a sweet treat to meet them in Ethiopia!  

All five families were called before the judge simultaneously ~ us, the Kleins', Boosalis', Seevers', and the Masons'.  We all sat down before the judge (who sat at a regular-looking desk) and she asked us general questions that we all answered yes/no to as a group.  We were in there less than five  minutes, and she told all of us that "All things look good to me, however, I need the MOWCYA letter for each family.  They are one month behind on their letters.  As soon as I receive those letters, you will have passed."

That was it!  We were done.  Grateful for "passing" according to the judge, we were all celebrating the passing of this step TOGETHER!!!  Now, we all just needed God to move BIG on all of our behalf and bring in those letters before court closures!  This brought us all to our knees, as we knew we only had sixteen days left before the courts closed......and the judge had just told us that MOWCYA was one month behind!

"Nothing is impossible with God!"  Luke 1:37

Court took long enough that we were unable to do the coffee factory tour that AWAA had planned for us to do.  So, we went to lunch at the Amsterdam restaurant.  I was so overjoyed that the judge did not see any issues with ANY of the familie's cases!  Praise God!  However, if I were to be honest, there was also a part of me that was disappointed that we did not pass court.  

He was not yet "officially" OUR SON.

It kind of felt like we had just gone to the hospital, thinking "this is it!"  Thinking that Baby "K" was going to be "delivered" to us today!  And being sent home.........after being told, "It is close to time, but not quite time."......"False alarm".........."These are just Braxton Hicks contractions"..........  

The judge sent us away with her APPROVAL!!!!!  Such GREAT "contractions" to be experiencing!  We were getting so close we could begin to feel the reality of this baby officially becoming our son!

He SO was already our son in our hearts......nothing a judge would say could alter that!  I just wanted to celebrate the JOY that the Ethiopian courts acknowledged this fact too!  So, the wait continued.......

After lunch, we were able to then go to the Transition House and spend the afternoon with our children!!!  It was so special to go into OUR Baby "K's" infant room, swoop him up into my arms, and snuggle him close ~ knowing that although we did not get all of the good news we had hoped for, we DID get good news!  And we were one HUGE step closer to finalizing this precious adoption!!!!

We had an extra-special day with Baby K that afternoon.  And when it came time to leave, I struggled to place him back into his crib.  Even though he was sound asleep in my arms.  I just loved feeling him breathe.  Watching him sleep.  Feeling his heart beat next to mine.  Holding him close.  We had come so far in this adoption, and I didn't want to lay him down.  Not just yet.  So I didn't.  Until it was absolutely time to go.  The van was leaving.  Then, Jeff and I placed him in his crib and watched him remain deep in his slumber.  Only then were we able to quietly tip-toe out of his room.  Until tomorrow........

After sharing the afternoon with our beautiful babe, we went back to the Transition House.  Boy, were we tired!  The emotions and previous long night with little sleep was catching up with me!  I "took a nap" and woke up with 10 minutes to get ready for our "Ethiopian Traditional Dinner."  

Great food ~ though Jeff's and my tummy was so upset we could hardly eat anything.  We weren't sure if we were actually sick, but our bellies were definitely upset after about day 3 and thereafter.....  The Ethiopian dancing was unlike anything I had ever seen before!  As a physical therapist, I could not kinematically make sense of how these people were moving that way!  Especially the men!  C.R.A.Z.Y!!!  I would post a video, but I hate to ruin the surprise for anyone.  You will be amazed.  Trust me!

What a great night this was!  Here are some photos of that evening.......
 We ate dinner (front row seats!) while they entertained us 
with Ethiopian traditional singing, music and DANCING!

Close-up view of some of their instruments.

 This was my dinner on a Mesob table.

 More dancing ~ love the colorful dresses!

 And men's skirts.

 Okay, so this doesn't quite capture how FAST this woman 
was shaking her head in circles!  I'm talking Crazy amazing!

 David and Abram ~ our drivers who took us everywhere all week!

OH! How this SO doesn't even TOUCH the 
crazy dance moves this guy has!!!!

After this night of FUN, we all went back to the Transition House and pretty much went to bed.

One full day.

One blessed day.

One huge step closer to bringing our son HOME!!!!




Shannon said...

Love the pics! I can't wait to experience it myself!!!
Guess what? You've made it just about half-way through closures! Tomorrow is September, which could be the month you hear the words "you've passed court!" Praying courts open at the end of September and the first thing on their to do list is to pass the Marquezs!

Post a Comment

We Love Your Kind Thoughts!