Friday, August 10, 2012
I'm not sure how I feel about the term "gotcha day," but it seems to be what everyone, in the adoption world at least, will recognize as the day we finally had Eli with us. Forever.
Heading over to the care center on "gotcha day," I was more nervous to see Eli than when we met him for the first time. Would he remember us? Would he want to leave with us? Were we ready for this?
When we pulled into the care center the kids were in the middle of lunch. They trickled out of the dining room a few at a time, and then suddenly we saw him across the courtyard. He looked at us a bit timidly, unsure what to do, but he definitely remembered us.
Only the nannies were at the care center when we arrived; none of our agency's in-country administrative staff were there. We stood there wondering what to do--could we just take him? Did we have to sign him out? A bit of annoyance crept into our delightful moment, our agency once again not being there to help us with a fairly major milestone.
So we changed him into the clothes we brought and spent some time with all the kids, whose families back home miss them so much.
And Brad gave Eli his backpack. It was nice to upgrade him from the ziplock bag in which he'd been keeping all his treasures.
Right before we left, one of our agency's in-country staff returned to the care center. We asked him about our meeting with Eli's birth mother and he seemed not to know what we were talking about.
He asked when we were leaving Addis and said they'd try to get in touch with her to see if she could come to the city. Something our agency's US staff had assured us weeks ago was already in the works.
We took Eli back to our hotel, and he had a great time checking out all the stuff we'd brought for him.
And changed him into some jeans because the adorable 3T convertable pants we bought him at REI were too big around the waist for our little string bean. (We learned the importance of those elastic adjustment tabs on the inside of pants.)
After a short nap we had dinner at Lucy Restaurant, which had been a favorite of ours on our court trip. Brad and I ordered a strawberry juice for Eli, which he was reluctant to drink. So we each had a taste to show him it was ok, and it was delicious. It was basically pureed fresh strawberries. Yum.
Sandy, if you're reading this, you already know what happened next. Yes, you warned me specifically about juice.
To spare everyone the details, let's just say Brad and I started taking Cipro the next morning. Ugh.