What Do You Do…

when you leave for Ethiopia in a matter of hours?

You watch The Bachelor. Because it’s hilarious and because it’s an ounce of normalcy that has not come your way in at least 2 days. (But seriously, they just attempted to play rugby, and it was a sad representation of women in athletics, but whatever).

So we’re packed. Turns out 50lbs is heavier than I thought…meaning you can get A LOT of luggage stuffed into 50lbs. If it weren’t for the immense amount of donations we got, we’d be left with very little luggage. I’m highly impressed with the two of us (but mostly just me, because this is rare for me).

I’m on our computer, which is a great sign. It looks different and doesn’t remember my favorite websites which is sad. At least it’s something.

I just had to say good bye to my puppy. I probably won’t see him for 2 weeks as we’ll give Tariku a few days before we sic the 115lb lab on him. Makes me miss him already.

It’s happening isn’t it? Commercial is over. I’m out. πŸ™‚

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That’s the sound a computer makes when the hard drive crashes. I know this, because it happend to our laptop just a few short hours ago. Which laptop you ask? Oh that’d be our laptop we were planning on taking to Ethiopia. Are you staying calm Tesi, you may ask? Hells to the no, is what I would answer, should anyone ask me this.

So yeah computer is down. Zach went to Best Buy and they were “nice” enough to install a new hard drive for us (they were nice, but it was EXPENSIVE). Good news is we’ll have something for Ethiopia. Bad news is, nothing is backed up because we are not good computer users. So we’re praying there is a computer genius out there who can fix it for us.

And my hair appointment was rescheduled.

Could it get any worse? πŸ™‚

Other than that, we’re hanging in over here. I’m packed, Tariku is packed. Trysten and Dailah are packed. Zach is still holding out for clean clothes. πŸ™‚

My mom’s friends sure do know how to rally around a good cause. We’ve got donations raining around us like it’s our business. There are no words for how much we appreciate the support!

And we have one and half days. And I must get to Wal Mart soon, I was told just today that Tariku likes sunglasses…a lot. So I need to go buy all they have apparently. He must like me, and everyone knows a mom without sunglasses to give to her new son is no mom at all.

2 Days

So yesterday we went to church, to small group and then met my parents at an outlet mall to do a little retail therapy. Church was great. It solidified the fact that Zach and I are the perfect couple, ahem, which is always nice. Small group was wonderful as we were met with many well wishers and people promising to pray for us, which is always comforting. Not to mention Cassie brought heaping bags of donations for the care center, which is much appreciated as well. Shopping with my parents felt wonderful. You should be proud of me to hear I only cried a few minutes once I left them. It makes me wonder if there’s a 12 step program for adoption? I think I’ve been at the “cry it out” stage for awhile. Or perhaps I’m at the second “cry it out” stage. Who knows. Either way, whew! Last night I “encouraged” Zach to start packing. We’re getting there, we’re getting there.

So 2 more days. I mean, I don’t even know what to say about it except it’s becoming quite real now. I’ll do a final cleaning tomorrow and then we’ll move Tariku’s bed up by ours so we’re right there for him in case he has nightmares. I’m doing laundry for the final time. I’ll go get groceries that will surely cost a small fortune tonight so I won’t have to do it for at least a week after we get home.

When you start a journey like this you can never really imagine what it will feel like in the next part of the process. You daydream about the referral call, and the court date call and the travel call. You have it built up in your mind a certain way. All of the realities have been different than my daydreams on each one of these. So has the waiting to travel period. I cannot believe how quickly these 2 weeks have gone by. I cannot believe on Wednesday we’ll leave this house and when we come back so much will have changed.

This is just awesome. I am honestly loving every minute of this. To think we’ll be bringing this boy I’ve been praying about home, is just beyond words. The excitement is growing in this house. This morning Trysten pledged to share even his underwear with his little brother. Dailah has mastered the art of saying Tariku, though it sounds more like “TQ” which is kinda cute. I’ve only had moments of “madwoman” status, like last night when I “encouraged” Zach to pack even though none of his undies, socks, shirts or pants were clean. He “obliged” and laid aside a pair of shoes and a hat. How sweet!

So today is all about relaxing with the kids in the morning, getting my hair did this afternoon (that doubles as a chance to see a friend before we leave, that’s my excuse, I’m sticking to it) stopping by another friends’ house to say “see you later” and then hitting up Wal Mart where I’ll make even Sam Walton himself shudder with how big the bill will surely be. That will hopefully give me at least another hour of QT with the kids before they hit the pillow and I soon follow.

How Are You Feeling?

That’s what someone asked me today. And since I like talking about my feelings so much…

I think I’ve literally felt everything these last 24 hours. Physically, I’m still not over my sinus crap and it seems to have gotten worse again today? Emotionally I’m crying again. I thought we were done here, but apparently not. I made the mistake of opening the mail and seeing a very nice card and money from one of my parents’ good friends. They have been such great people and I was just so humbled by it.

Then it was this, and that. And it all leads to me crying. I think the main emotion I’ve been feeling today is sadness. It was the first time really that it’s hit me that I’ll be leaving Trysten and Dailah for so long. And in case that video didn’t show you I’ve got some really sweet kids on my hands (I mean, how cute is Trysten, seriously? That was all him too by the way). Wednesday-Friday is a long time. Zach took Tman to daddy/tman night tonight. Dailah and I got some quality time as well. Dailah cried whenever she thought of Zach and Trysten being gone. It could be a long week for her.

But overall, I’m feeling fairly calm still. 4 days. 4 days sounds remarkably shorter than 5 days (I realize it’s shorter, but it just sounds A LOT shorter). So I commenced to packing some of Trysten and Dailah’s things. Once Dailah goes down I’ll start trying on long skirts of mine that I haven’t worn since I quit work in August. Should be interesting. Then I’ll throw a few things of mine in as well.

I’m at the point today where I want to hold on to every moment like these because it’s our last time as a family of 4. I just keep thinking to myself, “Remember this, Tesi, remember this.”

So that’s why I blogged, so that I’d remember (or at least try to) what I was thinking and feeling one of the last times we were a family of 4.

Also

I just had to do the whole, “Don’t ‘mom’ me” thing. Wow. I think that was one of those things I swore I’d never say to my kids. I also used to tell myself I would never make them do any chores, but I can hear Trysten making his bed as we speak (hear, because I encourage my kids to sing and dance as they clean up).

Also, they are presently chasing each other around in their respective undies. I’m tired just looking at them. Next thing you know I’ll have the “mom” cut and jeans and people will know I’m a mom when I walk by them in the street.

Support

I mean really. I was talking to my dear friend, Rene, about all the support through this adoption. It’s overwhelming when I sit and think about it. In the last week alone people have been sending money, donations, prayers, emails and much, much more. It is very humbling to think so many people are thinking of us when there is so much other stuff going on in their lives. We thank you so very much for this. There are absolutely no words.

So God is still showing off through this thing. He has recently hooked me up (through various routes) with this woman who was originally from the QC. Her daughter and brother-in-law are presently in Addis Ababa at the AHOPE center volunteering. We’re going to take a package to them from their mom. How interesting, we’ll go all the way across the world to meet people from our area!

I also just “randomly” got an email from someone who is linked to the Campus Crusade for Christ in Addis. I am hopeful we’ll get to go meet the missionaries while we’re there and check out the organization.

So this has been great. 5 days. I mean, really. In less than one week (Addis is 8 hours ahead of CST, so it’s less than a week) from now I’ll have Tariku in my arms. Can you even believe it? I got up at 5am today thinking of nothing else. It seems so close and yet….you know the rest. Ahh, it’s driving me crazy. I’m so excited.

On another note, my dearest Aristotle (our 110 lb chocolate lab) got injured somehow yesterday. Poor guy is limping like crazy. I had to baby him a bit yesterday. Took him to the vet and they put him on some sort of miracle pill that knocks him out. It’s cute but dangerous. He has no idea how heavy he is so he just lays down on the closest person to him. Poor thing.

Anyway, 5 days. That’s the moral to this story.

6 Days

I got so much paperwork done yesterday it’s not even funny. We really just need our dearest notarizer, Nathan, to notarize the two documents and we are done. Finished. Smooth sailing from here on our, right?

It’s crazy weird how I vacillitate between numb with excitement and numb with fear. I was like this with the other two as well. With T, he was my first, so there’s always those feelings of losing the life you’ve come to know, etc, etc. With your second, you’re always wondering how in the world you could love this one as much as the first or if you had enough love for the two of them. With the third, it’s a combination of those two and realizing we’re outnumbered. No longer can it be a “you take one, I’ll take the other” conversation. It’s a little intimidating to think about.

Though as my last two experiences have taught me, no matter how hesitant I am to believe this child will be loved as much as it deserves and as much as I can possibly have, I know it will be true. I know I’ll continue to love them all equally regardless. I know Zach and I will get used to working in a zone defense and continue to give each one some one-on-one time.

All that said, it still just about gave me a coronary when I was RSVPing to a wedding in May and wrote “5” as the number we would be bringing. Isn’t “5” only reserved for my parents and their kids? Oh how quickly I’ve become my mother. πŸ™‚

Did You Know?

That we’re going to be leaving for Ethiopia in less than a week (it’s past 11am, so now it’s less than a week)? That’s AMAZING. I’m super excited and *starting* to get a little crazed. I’m going through all the paperwork we need (more paperwork, you ask? Yes, there’s always more in adoption). I’m getting uuber nervous that we’ll forget something and be screwed. But what can you do? I must trust the 8 lists I have (honestly) to get all things under control.

So how can you help? Well, any number of ways. One of them is donate stuff! We are going to have at least 1, but probably 2, bags that will be able to contain donations for both our care center (the one Tariku is in) and AHOPE (houses children infected with HIV). We have 1/2 a bag filled with stuff we’ve bought thus far. I’m adding a list of some of the stuff our care center has mentioned they need. Let me know if you have any questions or need a way to get it to us.

–Digital Scale
–Measurement Meter
–Length Board
–Disposable gloves
–Cotton applicator
–NG tube No 5., No. 6, No.8
–Vitamin D injection
–Soy formula
–Ibuprofren syrup
–Ibuprofen drop
–Iron drops
–Pampers
–Wipes
–Masks
–Antibiotic cream
–Clotrimazol Cream
–Foban cream
–anti-pain tablet
–anti-acid tablet

Thanks in advance. πŸ™‚