Addis Ababa, October 1, 2011: It is a warm, gorgeous day in Addis Ababa. The moment we stepped out of the Bole Airport and into the sunshine this morning, we felt the joyful anticipation of spring. Change was in the air! Our first trip to Ethiopia was at the start of winter and the afternoons were chilly and filled with rain. Those rains have ended, as a new season begins not only in Ethiopia, but in our lives!
The 13.5 hour flight from Washington, D.C. to Addis Ababa went smoothly and despite the intense jet lag we both felt, there was one overwhelming thought on our minds, "We Must See Bereket!" Our first visit to see her wasn't scheduled until Monday, but the kind staff at her care center allowed us to make a short visit this afternoon. It was very special and I am so thankful for that hour together! Ironically, the sweetest moment came when it was time to give her back to her nannies. As much as she adores those nannies, Bereket didn't want to leave my arms. She reached out for me to take her back. Tears filled my eyes and it affirmed in my mind and in my heart that we are meant to be a family. In just a few short days we will be together forever.
When we were first in Ethiopia in June, we were surrounded by families. There were seven families on their first trip to meet their children and go to court, four other families were on their second trip to take their children home. Every bedroom in the guest house was full and we had to take turns sitting down at the massive dining room table for meals. Things are very different this time. Court is in a 2 month recess so there are no families on a first trip and we are the only couple with our agency bringing a child home this week. So the massive guest house is home to just Jason and me. While I loved the crazy energy of this place in June with all the happy families finally coming together, there is something very special about having this time alone with Jason and Bereket as we learn to become a family. Bereket will spend an afternoon at the guest house with us on Monday. Then Tuesday, she will move in with us here until it is time for the long trip home. We are so joyful for this change of season in our lives.