I tried my best to go in to the first days of bonding with no expectations, but I asked Charlie about 3 million times, "Do you think she is gonna love her mother and father?" And each time I asked, tears would well up in my eyes.
After the crazy day of trying to get to Addis from Gondar, we didn't know if we would meet Zadie Cakes on Monday night after the trip or if we'd have to wait until Tuesday morning. After our driver picked us up at the airport, we used his phone to call Travis who would tell us when we'd meet her.
Travis asked about our trip, chit-chatted a bit, THEN, he told us that he was waiting at the Bejoe house with our daughter!!! So, after all the months of waiting we had about 3 minutes to get ready. The emotions we big! But I can't describe them. Joy? Yes. Fear? Yep. Nervousness? Heck yeah. But there was no time to formulate.
We pulled up to to house, jumped out. I can't remember the walk into the house. I just remember opening the door and seeing the smallest little person sitting on the knee of a smiling man.
Somehow she ended up in my arms. Travis was snapping photos. Charlie and I had talked about not crying and being too emotional so that she wouldn't be scared. That conversation kept running through my mind. I had tears, but I kept laughing and laughing. I must have been bouncing her, because at one point Travis said, "Now remember, she just ate. I wouldn't bounce her too much."
Then somehow she ended up in Charlie's arms. The sight of the two of them together made me cry. But I kept thinking - I want her to think that we are sane people. So I held it together.
All of this happened in about 4 minutes. 4 minutes that changed our lives forever.
(the photos were taken over the next 2-3 days - and, by the way, she does love her mother and father!!!!!)