Then we flew 17 hours to Washington DC. We stopped in Rome to refuel and that was pretty awesome. I took that time to get Kalkidan up and moving around for a bit. It was about 9 am when we landed there, so we went to the back of the plane and got a little glimpse of Italy. I hope to see more of it one day! Once we got to DC, we had obviously missed our connecting flight, but thanks to my awesome friend Erica and my awesome husband, who I texted while we were stuck in Ethiopia, Kalkidan had a seat on the next plane to Cleveland. Somehow, someone was confused in DC, so it took a while to get me a ticket, but we got them. I had to run to our gate, which is not easy carrying a 35 pound toddler that is beyond exhausted. She refused to walk so when I would put her down, she just stood there and cried. That was the hardest part of the trip home and I'm so thankful it's over. We got to the gate with 1 minute to spare, landed in Cleveland just fine and the fam was waiting to greet us with a big sign! It was a nice little welcome home and just perfect for our scared little girl.
|From the day I went to get her from the Transition Home...November 18th.|
|The day after I picked her up forever. And her new fro. :)|
Everything is an adjustment around here, but we are figuring it out. Makayla and Addison have been bossing her around a lot and not including her as much as I thought they would. But I think that's pretty typical behavior. They really wanted her to come home, too, but now that she's here, they are trying to figure out how to include her and share life with her.
|Our first photo as a family of six!! I still can't believe this is my life. :)|
It's hard because we don't know the trauma that she has endured in her life. We know very little of her story before she came to us, none of which we will be sharing. It is her personal story so if she wants to share it when she is older, she can do that, but we won't be making that decision for her. So we don't know what triggers some of her emotions and why, which makes it difficult to try to remedy the problem.
So yeah. Life here is hard. We are getting through it day by day and literally taking it one step at a time. I think everything that we are experiencing is totally normal because having an adopted child come home is no different than having a biological child come home. I mean, it is different in some ways, like your bio kids don't have trauma that you will never know all the details of, but it's the same in that everyone needs to figure out how to get along. And life changes with each new addition to the family, no matter how they enter the family.
We have had some super sweet moments of course, too. And no matter what, the good always outweighs the bad. We press on through the bad times, pray through it all, and hope that we will all do better the next day.
Yesterday we dropped Makayla off at preschool and Kalkidan blew her a kiss and said 'Ciao!'. Then Addi said, 'Bye sissy!' and Kalkidan said, 'Bye sissy!'. It was so precious!! She also says: Mommy, Daddy, No, Thank you, Please, Ababa (Daddy in Amharic), Nay (come), Bie (eat), Ow (yes) and some other things I just can't remember right now.
|Daddy and his littles.|
Kalkidan on Dec. 4th: 34 inches and 33 1/2 pounds
Addison on Oct. 15th: 32 inches and 23 3/4 pounds
They tell me Addison is too skinny (5th percentile) and Kalkidan is too short (5th percentile) so maybe they just meet in the middle? HAHA!
That's all I can think of right now. A friend of mine posted this quote on Facebook the other day and I can't stop thinking about it. It's totally my life right now, but I wouldn't want it any other way. God is good. Always.
"Remember, one who enjoys more is bound to suffer more because he becomes very sensitive. But suffering is not bad. If you understand it rightly, suffering is a cleansing. If you understand it rightly, sadness has a depth to it which no happiness can ever have. A person who is simply happy is always superficial. A person who has not known sorrow and has not known sadness, has not known the depths. He has not touched the bottom of his being; he has remained just on the periphery. One has to move within these two banks. Within these two banks flows the river." -Osho