Tuesday, March 13, 2007

Final Preparations!

I'm in my final couple of days of preparation before my entire family is together in Addis!!! Yesterday I washed the sheets for all four kids and made up the bunk beds. It's time to switch over to summer sheets. As I made the beds (which takes forever when doing two top bunks!), I thought of how many times I've already made these beds up for these two kids only to have the seasons change, or some friend stay at our house and sleep in their beds. My heart suddenly realized that this is for real. This time, my very own children will be the ones sleeping in their beds. I began to cry. Who knew that making beds could be such an emotional experience?! :)

I must write about my Saturday. Avery informed me that we couldn't go to the beach as a family as I had wanted to do. The reason being that he had an all important meeting with some guy in Bikers for Christ at 5:00 at a coffee shop. Evidently the guy had some donations for us to take to Ethiopia. I was a bit annoyed because I had really wanted to escape for a day with my little family of four one last time before we become six. But I did have a ton of stuff to do, so I didn't complain too much about staying home.

So, at 4:50 I was pretty dirty and in my sweat pants and still had more housecleaning that I was trying to accomplish before I started cooking supper. That's when Avery announced that in 10 minutes we all had to leave for this meeting....uh....WE???? What's up with this "we" business??????? But the guy did have donations for Ethiopia. Mind you, I'd never met him and wasn't feeling particularly social. But I did want to encourage his heart for Ethiopia. So I threw on some jeans and considered washing Lucas's face, but I don't think I ever actually did that...

On the way to the coffee shop Avery asked me if anybody had said anything about planning any sort of adoption shower for us and I told him that I didn't think anybody was going to do that. I was a little sad because I was sure that if I was adopting a baby that there would have been a shower. But these are older kids and I just figured that nobody in my life saw it the same way. Oh well. I knew that people would still love them very much....they just didn't think they were party material....sigh....

So, when we got to the coffee shop I could see somebody holding a camera in the back of the shop and they were obviously taking a video of me. I was quite annoyed. I figured that it was this mystery biker person and he was so zealous about his donation to Ethiopia that he wanted to capture the entire thing on video. I normally am not a grouchy person. But I was so busy, not particularly kept, had a ton of stuff to do, and didn't really want to be video taped. But what can you do? So I smiled. :)

When we got closer I saw that it was a friend of mine and I though, "Huh. What a coincidence. She must be trying out a new camera. Still. Weird! I'm not in the mood for a video!" (note: I'm slow sometimes!)

I followed Avery to a little socializing area in the very back and as I turned, I noticed that lots of my friends were there....and there were pictures of my kids all over the place....and there was a huge cake! :) It was an adoption shower!!!! And a surprise one at that!!!!

No wonder my friends haven't been calling lately! They were all purposely avoiding me! And I've been too busy to call them.

They made it all so nice. Two girls put it together. They had a cake and a huge container of coffee (Avery insisted that I take my Ethiopian spices for bunna which I thought was extremely inappropriate to do and I just wasn't in the mood anyway!). There were balloons, aranguade, bicha, kaiy (Green, Yellow, Red for the Ethiopian flag), pictures everywhere, a really cool Konjo Kids flyer, and gifts! That's right- gifts. Lots of gift cards! That's so great seeing as how I don't know what the kids actually need because I don't know what size they are....or how fast they're going to grow once they start eating a little bit of protein and fruits and veggies on a regular basis! And there were also non-gift card gifts too. We got thank you cards (oh yea...I have to add stopping by the post office to my to-do list today to mail them!), a flash drive so that we can store our millions of pictures that we're going to take in Ethiopia, a cool family photo frame, and the four kids got the most creative gift that I never would have thought of. They each got a disposable camera, a photo album decorated as a "travel album" and a giftcard to Walmart to get their film developed. Lucas was so excited that he wanted to take his pictures right then and there. But they're all four safely packed in their respective backpacks. I thought of how Mihret would always hold her hands up to her eyes and make a photo-taking motion with her hands when she wanted to use our digital camera. This kid is so cute! Oh yea, they even went to the trouble of playing all my favorite music at the coffee shop. Again, I was feeling slow that day. As I sat there talking I heard a song that has really been a huge encouragement to me these past two years. Then I heard another one. Then another one. They have all really been God's voice to a broken mother's heart....duh...Avery had burned a CD of all my favorite songs and given it to the coffee shop! :)

And to think that I was mad at Avery!

We are so rich in friends here. As I think back over these past two years of waiting, I can't imagine having done it without these people. They have faithfully prayed for us, cried with us, rejoiced with us, and just been there. I have had so many personal cheerleaders. Whenever I've felt completely spent of emotional energy, they've cheered me onward in this race. And now the finish line is just in sight. I'm almost there. And the joy in my heart is indescribable because the God who had made this happen is also indescribable.

To all my friends, thank you so much for Saturday. It really meant so much to me to see that my kids being added to my family really is a big deal. Just as important as a cute little baby. And people outside of my immediate family understand that. That really means so much to me. Thank you!


cathy said...

Heather: Have a fantastic trip. I am so happy and excited for you, and what a blessing to have a shower for your kiddos. Blessings and post when you get back! Cathy

chou-chou said...

Heather, you are indeed blessed! I was so happy to read this post.

I think sometimes adoptive parents are celebrated in the same way as biological parents are. And I'm so glad you had such a wonderful shower!

Best wishes and Godspeed to you!!

jen said...

Oh, Heather! What a great post. I am so happy that you have such a good support system & that they were so thoughful to give you a great send-off! You are indeed blessed.

God speed!

S. said...

What thoughtful friends you have to celebrate your newest blessings with you! Can you share some of the songs that were encouraging to you through this process?

Elizabeth F. said...

I'm so happy that you were surprised and that it meant so much to you! I wanted to be at the shower soooo much, but I had to go to my GF's funeral. I was thinking of you though! Glad you liked the photo albums and cameras. I was trying to think of something other than toys that the kids could enjoy. My kids LOVE taking pics, so I thought they could make their own little books to show off to people, take to school to show friends, etc...We will be praying for you while you are gone. Hope you have a safe and wonderful trip!!

etyopian said...

Be safe and have a great trip. I pray to God for your every wish to come true, you are indeed a Blessed family and an inspiration to all of us.
God Bless you all, egzihabheri yetebekachu