Monday morning, we were to meet our little ones for the very first time. I'm so nervous, I want to throw up. I want everything to go perfectly and I don't even know what "perfectly" would be. The man from CWA who came to take us to meet them was the same young man that helped us three years ago when we brought home our other three little ones. Our oldest daughter, Leah had had a schoolgirl's crush on Mesfin, and we teased her about him on occasion. Unfortunately for her, he was just about to become engaged. So we caught up on the each other's lives. How the children had grown and how they were doing in school etc. He had graduated from college and was working full time for CWA now.
We arrived at the CWA office, when we drove up close to the building beyond the gate, I could see Zoe peeking around a door. She had that angelic smile (the one that's going to keep me in trouble for sure). When we got out of the van all three children came out and the two younger ones had their arms wide open for a hug. I scooped Zoe up in my arms and just held my baby girl. Her little body is so tiny, but her grip was strong. I smelled her hair, kissed her face, squeezed her some more before I finally set her down to meet her new Mamma. Pam was holding both Justin and Davis. We can see and feel the shyness in Justin. Davis is grinning ear to ear when I pick him up. I can tell he is going to be the family comedian/clown. (He's already fitting in at home with silly antics) Justin tries to be the mature young man and offers me a hand to shake - I grab him up! He'll never be to big to hug. We all exchange more hugs, and close inspections. After a few pictures we go in to fill out a little paper work. Zoe is already aware that she's Daddy's Little Girl, because she comes right over and sits in my lap as I'm sitting down.
Afterward we met with the counselor and nurse who go over their lives a little for us. There was nothing new that hadn't already been relayed to us in the updates sent to us over the past six months or so. Then we were given the opportunity to visit the houses that they had been staying in since coming to Addis Ababa almost 2 months ago. They are basically group homes with care takers watching over them. The boys and girls live in separate houses down the road from each other. The girl's house also has all the babies. I guess there were about 20 or so children in each house ranging from infants to about 12-13years old. Each home is protected within a walled compound. We were able to meet the caretakers; Pam and I conveyed our heartfelt appreciation for all that they have done and are doing for these little one's of God. We're not allowed to take pictures (To protect the privacy of the children). We were able to bring 3, 35gallon tubs full of donated items. There is so much still needed at these homes. Please, if you want to help, give financial donations to CWA.
After a short visit, we head back to the guest house with OUR children!