Sunday, December 18, 2011

Trip 1 - Day 4: Court Day

On our Court Day, Danny picked us up early so that we could make it to court on time. The traffic was horrible! We had to stop to pick up Haile (our court processor/advocate) to go with us. Court is not at all what you would imagine. It isn't some nice court house with revolving doors. We did go through a security check to go in, and then trekked up the 4 flights of stairs to the court waiting room (not so easy to do in that altitude). We walked into a tiny little room where most of the chairs were broken and it was packed with people. We had been warned ahead of time to be quiet and respectful as the judge has closed court before due to people being too loud. There were tons of people - adoptive families, birth parents there to relinquish their rights, and other people there for various reasons. Though feeling a bit better, Matthew was still pretty sick so he was propped up against a wall in a corner dozing in and out of awareness. There is no order to how people are called so you have to be there when court starts and wait until you get called. We got there at about 9:15 and we were finally called into the judges chambers at around 11. It was very simple and very quick. She asked us such questions as: Have we educated ourselves and prepared ourselves for adopting a child, how did our other children feel about another child, had we started learning some about Ethiopian culture so that we could teach our child about her country, had we connected with other families with adopted children, did we know that once this was over that she was officially ours. Once we answered all her questions, the words we had been waiting for, "She is all yours!" What a strange mixture of feelings! Excitement, fear, what have we done!!!! and wonder, just plain wonder! We officially have 4 kids!
After court, we went to the market to shop a bit. It was crazy - so many things and so many people. We had a list of things that we wanted to look for - some things for our family, some things to have for her as she grows, special little gifts we can give her at different times in her life. It isn't like you can just go back to Ethiopia and pick up something you forgot so we tried to make the most of our time.
After a short rest at the hotel, it was back to Hannah's Hope and "officially" our daughter. Even though I knew she didn't know the difference, I whispered over and over to her that she was "officially" ours. It did feel different somehow.
It was bath time so I got to give her a bath - been a while since I have bathed a slippery little baby! She really loves the water and smiled and "talked" through the whole thing. I lotioned her all up, then one of the special mothers put a big glob of baby oil in my hand to rub in her hair - a little different from my little white babies :-)
Tomorrow is our last day...dreading it already.

1 comment:

  1. why is bathtime so sweet??? what a great day!!! yeah! I can't imagine what day 5 was like! You all are so strong!