Help us bring home Rose

Wednesday, February 3, 2010

Welcome home and adjustment

Thursday we went back to HH to visit. We thought because Wibnesh had done so well with us that it would be safe to take her back with little drama. We were wrong. She does do well with us, but if she was to choose between us, obviously she would choose her special mothers. It was so hard to see how sad she was and obviously confused by the situation. We went back to the hotel as soon as we could. Once we were back, she was fine again, playing and giggling with us. It is wonderful to know how much the special mothers care for the children while they are there. Every child is so loved, hopefully paving the way for the child to then love and accept love from their adoptive parents.
We packed and got our stuff cleaned up to leave for the airport.
We spent a couple hours visiting with another family in their hotel room, which helped pass the afternoon a bit. I want to say how awesome our travel group was. It was so cool to experience this life changing moment with other like-minded people. Every couple was encouraging and uplifting to be around. I am so glad our agency has families go together to help each other out and bring support. It was very comforting to be able to go down to breakfast and see their faces, or know they were just down the hall if we needed them.
It was bittersweet leaving Ethiopia. We were so excited to get home and see our boys, but at the same time, sad knowing we were taking her away from everything she has ever known.
We got so many opposite reactions from others as we were in Ethiopia. Some Ethiopians would be happy and smile, saying "God Bless You", others would just give us not so nice looks and say something under their breath. I guess it was just the start of us developing a thick skin to others remarks. I try to remember what Almaz, the director of HH, said about that. She said, "Never let it bother you, YOU know what you know what you know what you know about the situation and why you are adopting."
The flight went amazingly well. She slept the whole time, except the last couple of hours, which was filled by eating.(she would eat ALL the time if we let her) We missed our connecting flight in DC because Ethiopian Air was late getting in and immigration took over an hour to get through. We were so disappointed to not get home to see the boys when we thought. It was so comforting to eat familiar food at the airport and Addis had her first introduction to Starbucks. She doesn't know how to drink from a straw, so it took her a while to get it.
We got to Bismarck at 10:45pm that night. As soon as I got off the plane, I was soooooo emotional, knowing my family and friends were waiting just around the corner. The people who have gone through this journey with us, encouraged us, prayed for us, shared our excitement and longed to see her as well; were all waiting for us to come through the glass doors.
I saw the boys first when we got to the doors. Immediately, I bent down to hug them. Thatcher was very affectionate, kissing me and smiling. Oliver,did his normal, smile but I am too cool to show anything more. Sebastian, was the oddest. He wouldn't even look at me or come to me. It was heartbreaking but I can imagine how confused he was. I really didn't think this would be his reaction. It took a couple days before he warmed up to me and now it's back to normal.
I had a friend tell me that once you get back from Ethiopia, your children look so "white". Soooo true!! Of course, they had been sick ALL week long, so they were unusually pale.
Family and Friends surrounded us with signs and banners and big hugs and smiles. Oh how nice it was to be home!!!!
We came home to a CLEAN house, which is a big feat considering there were 7 children under the age of 6, and 6 adults living there while we were gone. We had balloons, flowers, signs and care packages waiting our arrival. We could feel the LOVE, so to speak. It's amazing how God puts all the right people in your life.
It didn't take long for Wibnesh to get use to everyone and within a couple of minutes she was playing with her brothers. Remember how at the beginning Oliver was having a hard time with this, he was crazy about her and played with her the rest of the night. She took to him right away and goes around saying "Olala".
She is a good sleeper and I really was anticipating having problems when we got home. Thankfully, sleep is not an issue. Once she is asleep, she is out! Thank you Jesus! I don't do well waking in the night, I need my sleep.
Sebastian and her are interesting together. They just look at each other and touch each other every once in a while. Sebastian is such a roughie though, his interaction is always more of a hit, then she hits him back and then he cries and she cries. He is getting better at being gentle, he loves to restle and she doesn't quite know how to take it yet.He does try to give her kisses and is enthralled with her hair.
She is adjusting well. I imagined having to hold her all the time, or wear her in the moby because she is so scared or unsure about the place. It's like she has always been here, doing the same things like our boys. She eats what the boys eat and sleeps when they sleep. She walks around the house saying "momma" or "papa" and then just smiles. She likes to cuddle with me for a while and then she is off to discover or play with the kids.
I like to keep it real though, I really don't like reading blogs that make life seem so "unattainable".
This has been hard. Not just because of adoption, anytime you change the dynamics of a household, it's HARD. I know everyone only wants to hear the good stuff, but I don't feel it is fair to be one-sided. You have worked, stressed, prayed so hard for something and it is finally here, the feelings you thought you would feel are sometimes hidden under other feelings. Exhaustian, sickness, anxiety, fear, and feelings of inadequacey sneak in and rob you of being in the moment. The moment you have dreamed about and fought for so long.
Getting to know a new little person, who is human, thus a sinner, is HARD. Worth it, Yes. We are choosing to Love this child, just like we do our biological children, because of the Love God shows us. She has many wonderful characteristics and we haven't even seen them all, but she also has some bad ones, like we all do. She has a TEMPER. Supposedly, she was the "queen bee" in her room at the orphanage. When things don't go the way she wants them to, she lets you know, and she isn't quiet about it. I am continuing to pray for wisdom and discernment in my parenting with her, as with all my children.
I will stop for now and get to the pics.....I have more to share about some specific things but will post another time about them.

this is a lady at the hotel, her name is tsion.(say it like zion, in the bible) She was very nice and asked lots of questions about adoption. Daddy and Wibnesh on the long flight home.

First Starbucks.

Playing at the airport.

Trying to get a cousin picture while everyone was here. My children are the ones crying on the ends, you'll also notice them by their extremely pale faces.(sick all week)

Cousin harlie trying to share with Wibnesh.

Welcome home sign from a friend

Having lunch with her"brothers".

She has caught on to the whole camera thing and likes to see the picture after it's taken.

4 kiddos

She likes to color and look at books and color in books :(

Such a blessing-the good and the bad-sent from God

She was looking at a picture of her "nana" and "pop".

This is the best way for us to have her know her grandparents. In a perfect world we could visit more or live near them so they could know eachother.


  1. I appreciate all your honesty. We are getting ready to leave, and I need to be realistic. Plus times 2 with getting 2 boys.

    I will continue to pray for smooth adjustment.



  2. thanks for this post- I loved the detail and I can so clearly remember the same emotions when we came home (hilarious how you mentioned your other kids seeming so "white")... i also remember being surprised how easily she seemed to adjust.

  3. wow, i can't believe Carlee sat on my lap while I read through your last two posts! Wibnesh is adorable. I am so happy she is home and safe and happy! I can only imagine how wonderful and difficult the entire process is. Thank you for being completely honest about your feelings and how adoption isn't always you said we are all human, including little Wibnesh Addis! I will pray for your entire family, as this is quite an ajustment for you all. I know you are a wonderful mother!! You are so special and I am so truely happy for you all! Can't wait to read more. with love, chelsea