I’d say we’re in a joyful, foggy state of shock. Such is the case when you welcome a new biological baby to your home as well. Feels similar. Except add in jet lag, third world probs, and strong cravings for iced tap water.
When we arrived on Monday, we first visited Farahol, the child we sponsor through Compassion International. The experience was incredible. More to come on that later. For now, I’ll just say, if you’ve been considering sponsoring a compassion child, do it. Oh my word, please do it. Orphan prevention at its finest. Here are some pics from our visit to Farahol’s village.
This is Farahol’s awesome mom and his house. One room for five people. Stop complaining people.
After a quick visit with Farahol, we went to the orphanage, and Malachi’s caregivers and friends threw him a going away party. So bittersweet to see him hug the people who have cared for him for so long. Yet, he seems happy to go to “Omerica” and regularly pretends to fly his toy plane there.
We began the 2-hour trek back to Addis where he will stay with us in the hotel until we depart. Nap time.
Malachi Yadesa is happy and energetic and full of life, and we love him to pieces. He never wants us to leave his sight. The sounds from the other side of the bathroom door…. “Mom?… Mom?”
We’re dealing with all of the typical orphanage baggage and medical needs we anticipated, plus things we never even considered, like excessive gagging when we brush his teeth. It had clearly never happened before. His eating habits are, well, primitive (think… digging into a bowl of rice with his hands), and he’s still figuring out the function of a straw (so much for the spaceship water bottle I packed for him). He’s also completely fascinated with running water. The language barrier is HUGE so we use lots of made up sign language and try out some survival Amharic we’ve learned. He usually just looks at us funny and babbles something back in Amharic. Nod and smile.
We celebrate lots of victories and answered prayers. Malachi is a great sleeper, a great eater, doesn’t show any visible symptoms of grief or abuse or food hoarding, and already shows some really healthy signs of attachment. Mom!? Dad!?
When in Africa, you become willing to show the world pictures of yourself like this one. Unfiltered, real life. You’re welcome.
Yesterday, we went to the US Embassy to finalize immigration paperwork. His visa will be ready earlier than we expected, so we changed our travel plans to leave earlier as well.
We need prayers for the 18 hour plane ride to Washington DC. I mean on-your-knees, hands-to-the-heavens battle prayers, please.
We’re both full of joy and incredibly overwhelmed. Orphan care’s weight is heavier than we could ever bear alone. Jesus, the burden is yours. You’re gonna have to handle the heavy lifting.