Friday, October 12, 2018

Mwen Gason

It's been so long since I've sen my boy. I miss him terribly. Not an hour goes by that I don't think of him. His wrinkly nose when he smiles, his lips tucked in when he's feeling shy, his eyes when he's excited, they way he puts his arms around my neck and don't get me started on his cute little toes! I just love him so much!

We've recently found out that we received our I800 provisional approval, which is great news, but now we wait for out Article V. There are still a few more steps to complete and we are just hanging on to our trust in the Lords timing.

What needs to happen is:

  1. Article V
  2. Exit IBESR
  3. Courts
  4. Homecoming!!
Praying we move through these steps quickly! 

Day 12 HAITI

Day 12 July 28, 2018 – No more pineapples 
I’m sure you’re wondering why it’s titled “No more pineapples”…Let me start from the beginning. I woke up with great anticipation about today. Our son finally gets to get out of the crèche and we will get to face time with my family, swim have a picnic and make lots of memories. At 10 am our son arrives and I ran out to the car to greet him. He looked exceptionally serious and a bit sad. I knew to expect that, as the world outside his crèche is big and new; add in the fact that he is already a bit timid. I picked him up and noticed he’s not using his left arm and there’s a big bump on his forehead. I was told that he fell last night playing at the crèche. The floors are either concrete or tile so I’d imagine it was a hard fall. We took him back to our room to show him his new swim stuff; trunks, towel, sunglasses and flip-flops. He perked up a bit and seemed more excited. We took it slow and went to the pool. Wouldn’t you know God provided a nurse and a pharmacist (who basically serves as the doctor in his town) staying at our hotel! Thank you Jesus! We asked them look at our son and see what they thought. They couldn’t be sure, but they guessed a hairline fracture in his arm.  Oh my goodness, this is not good and since I am not legally his mom there is nothing I can do about it. Our in country coordinator said she’d talk to the director, but due to it being a Saturday he probably won’t be taken to a hospital until Monday! The doctor said he should be ok to wait until then. Oh my heart hurts for him. We tried to make the most of our time. So we offered him food. To our surprise he was not hungry. Red flag duly noted. He did want to swim, but he was not a fan of the life jacket. He has never been swimming before and he loved putting his face in! I was surprised at how brave he was. He didn’t last long however, but that’s ok. We came inside and called my family. That was so fun! He was really shy, but at least everybody got to say hi and see him. The funniest part was when my sister came on the screen; he looked at me then looked at her and said “mom??” I think he thinks I have a twin!! Lol! My sister was being silly and now he calls her Aunt Crazy! HAHA! It was so cute. Although he was shy on the phone, when we hung up he got a sudden burst of energy and was ready to go back to the pool and eat lunch. We filled his little belly and played in the pool for just a few minutes and then he started to not feel so well. I could tell he was in pain. HE tried really hard to not let it slow him down, but it just became too much. We helped him get dressed and I took him back to our coordinator. Nick and I did our best to tell her that he really needs to go to the hospital. Unfortunately, it’s not her call. She told me that she’d talk to his director and have a therapist come see him today and then take him to the hospital on Monday.
Oh, it gets worse, she also told us that this would be our last day to see him as there are going to be more riots on Monday. (We are supposed to leave Tuesday.) It came as such a shock to me and I was not prepared to say goodbye today. The circumstances were awful! It was not at all what I had planned. I tried not to cry in front of him, but the tears came anyway. Nick used our translator to tell him how much we love him and that WE WILL BE BACK! I carried him to the car and kissed his sweet face. I whispered that I loved him more than he could ever imagine in Kreyole and shut the door. Oh my arms ache for him already. This is definitely one of my hardest days. There goes my son. He is physically hurting and emotionally hurting. All I could do was cry.
The next few hours were really tough, as we had to make some difficult decisions fast. We are supposed to be in country for 15 days, but because they cannot predict how bad the riots would be and there is no guarantee that we’d make it out on Tuesday. So we are left with no choice but to go home early. Our agency said it’d be fine due to the circumstances and we are planning to come back again soon and because we already had our interview. So praise the Lord for that! But our hearts are so broken.
Here’s how the Lord blessed us in the midst of our trials. I called up our dear friends Marjory in Leny. They are missionaries from the Philippines and they lived in Haiti for 26 years. They came and picked us up from the hotel, took us to the airport to swich our flights, then they took us back to their house. I haven’t been there in a few years and it was so good to see all the kids (orphans) I have know since 2014. They have gotten SO BIG! I was surprised they remember me, but I was so glad they did. So much JOY here! We walked all through the compound and I got to see all the progress that had been made here at Pastor Leny’s church/school/orphanage. We ate Knaps and I got some great photos of all the new additions to the building. After that they treated us to a nice dinner at a real restaurant! I got Haitian BBQ chicken, with pikliz, rice and my favorite…plantains! YUM!! What a beautiful distraction. They encouraged us more that they’ll ever know.
I sit here tonight writing this blog with a heavy, but joyful heart. I can’t explain how I can feel both feelings at the same time other than I know that God is fulfilling His promise in Prov. 3:5-6. I trust God has got this. I know He loves my son more than I do. I can say with confidence that He will see this through. He has begun a great work and my God does not leave His children in the mess. He will take this situation to remind me that I am not in control and I need to leave it in His very capable hands. And even though I am writing this with tears in my eyes it’s not because I’m ungrateful or upset. It’s because this world is broken and in desperate need of a Savior. One day the Lord will make all things right again and until then…we journey one day at a time.
Tonight I will praise God for such a great bonding trip! I have so many wonderful memories that I will cherish forever. And even though my son my have a broken arm he will go to bed tonight knowing that he his loved and he has found his forever family.
Tale` Tale` (quote from our son that means Soon, Soon.) Yes, son. Soon….

Day 11 HAITI

Day 11 – July 27, 2018 – Ti gason mwen
I’m not one to keep you in suspense…interview was a success and our in country coordinator said it went great! All glory to God! We are so grateful to have so many of you praying for our time here.
It went down like this. We arrived at 10 am expecting the interview to happen right away. We felt like we were prepared with extra food and toys so I could keep him occupied while we all met. Well, they didn’t arrive until 12:30! His food was long gone and we played with all his toys. I was a little worried about how this was going to go down, but we wore him out I guess because as soon as we sat down to talk he fell asleep in my arms! Another answer to prayer! Lol! I had to wake him up when it was over. They also interviewed his nanny to see if there have been any changes in him since he’s met us. The report on that was also a positive one! The only sad part was that he thought that we could bring him home next week. I guess that is what he was telling his friends this morning before we got there. His nanny had to tell him that he was not going to the U.S for a long time. Oh, my heart sank when they told me that. It did explain the sadness he expressed when we had first arrived.
All in all, today was great. We taught him how to play hide and seek, but he didn’t understand to find a new spot each time. So every time he hid it was ALWAYS under a pillow on the couch. He still loved it though. We must have “found “ him 10 times! He also loves it when his papa flips him upside down. I can still hear his little giggle now as I type this out. When he’s ready for us to 'start' something he counts to 5 in English. That’s our cue to begin. OH, also he while he was eating his mamba sandwich he looked right at me and said, “Mwen renmen ou!” (I love you) AHH!! This boy of ours is so sweet. I even caught it on video!!
Tomorrow is going to be the greatest day yet as we finally get to get him out of the crèche for a while. Our son will be hand delivered to us tomorrow morning to spend the day with us poolside! He’s never been swimming and to my knowledge, he hasn’t left his crèche, which is about the size small ranch home in over a year. We are planning on face timing with my kids and family members so they can say hello and introduce them selves!! I’m so excited! We know our son well enough now that I don’t think he’ll have much to say as he can be quite shy, but at least the family will get to see him (kinda)
Thank you again for taking the time to share in our journey and pray for us during all this. Please remember our 3 kids at home as this has been the longest we’ve ever been away from each other. I am so happy that they are doing well and having a GREAT time with my family in Colorado. 
Until then….

Day 10 HAITI

Day 10 – July 26, 2018 - Igloo…hat??? It’s all Kreyol to me!
Let me start by saying thank you whomever was praying for today’s weather! It was so good! We had some breezes blow through, as there is a possible thundershower tonight. It was such a blessing to not be so incredibly hot.
Our boy was waiting for us outside as we pulled up. So fun to see him standing there ready to spend the day together. He jumped into our arms and off we went. While he was eating his banana, peanut butter sandwich and eggs Papa told him we had a surprise for him. We had one more Lego set to build! His little eyes got so big! I just love to watch his reactions to the things we get to do together. Also today there was a small 4 wheel toy. It didn’t have any batteries in it so he asked us to push it. This was a big deal because we could understand everything he was asking us! What a great connection we made today. We pushed him on that thing forever all the while strengthening our bond.
After a lot of playtime Nick leaned over to him and said Mwen Renmem ou. (I love you) and guess what…He said it back!! This was a first!! What joy that brought to us. Of course I said it too and he said it back to me! WA-WHOOOO!!! Super awesome to hear that. He also wanted to give lots of hugs and kisses today. Also a big first as we are letting him lead the way with all that mushy stuff parents love so much.
We sat down to practice some English words. He has learned hat. You know, the baseball cap kind, and today he saw an igloo and said big hat! LOL! Hard to explain what an igloo is to a Haitian child.
Tomorrow is the big day, as we will have our interview with IBSER. (Haiti’s children’s social service dept.) We so appreciate all your prayers.
Until then….

Day 9 HAITI

Day 9 July 25, 2018 – My lil Pirate
Today we have officially known our son for one week. Honestly, it feels like it’s been so much longer. I’m not sure why, but I’m sure it’s just another blessing from the Lord. When we arrived today he lifted his hands and as I picked him up he squeezed my neck as tight as he could. My favorite part is when he pulls in his papa for one big family hug.
I’m so thankful for our little routine. We eat, play, walk around, sing, dance, sleep and eat again. Some days fly by, others, like today seem a little slower. It was so HOT today in Haiti. The crèche is in the city so it’s pretty dry and dusty here. Not many breezes blow through so it’s just stale, hot air. We sat mostly on the cool tile floor and rolled the 2 cars and 1 airplane back and forth. He absolutely loves to do that. We noticed he really isn’t much of a colorer, but then again, they do that a lot here at the creche. There was one really huge highlight from today. We brought him a new outfit… shirt, shorts, Lightning McQueen undies and tennis shoes. His face was priceless! The shirt has a cool pirate on it and the undies made him smile so big! He was giggling and couldn’t undress fast enough. He paused briefly to look at me for approval to strip down and change, of course I said “yes!!” After he got dressed and showed off his new outfit to his papa I pulled out the shoes and oh.my.goodness was he excited! It was so fun to see him light up that like over something so many of us take for granted.
We are so grateful for this time to get to know him and we have definitely fallen in love with him. My prayer is that the Lord will continue to move mountains for us so we can bring him home in under a year.
Nick and I want to thank all of you who have been praying for us! We can feel them and I have no doubt that God will see us through this one day at a time.
We look forward to another great day tomorrow! Until then….

Day 8 HAITI

Day 8 July 25, 2018 – Just waiting for my family
We woke up super excited to see our little man! We noticed at the crèche that all the kids were all in a small play area today when we got there. The wall was to high for me to see over; so I peeked my head around the corner and he was right there waiting for us! We were nose to nose! SO FUN! The nanny said, “he’s been waiting for you.” Our son had told the other kids, “I can’t play today, my mama and papa will be here soon.” Be still my heart! What a great start to our day. Once again, we go to our special spot.
Our usual routine kicked right into gear. First things first, grangou mama, (hungry). We fed him and I just stared…I’m enamored by him. He has the best giggle and a smile to die for. We did so many fun things together. He could play with his Lego plane and 2 small cars for hours. We noticed he says the same thing all the time while playing with his Lego guy; so today I recorded it so I could ask someone what he was saying. He was singing a song about the previous Haitian president being bald!! HAHA! He’s a smart one. He was pretending his Lego guy, who happens to be bald, to be the previous president! I love that he has a funny sense of humor. 
Oh, remember today was MANGO day!! I got to help Jasmine (directors wife) peel and cut 30 mangos in the kitchen to help serve all the children. (Thank you Micah Gautier!Jennifer Pierce Gautier) She speaks very good English; which made it even more fun. I learned so much about her and her family. She has 2 beautiful little girls who stay with her at the crèche.
Anyway, when I was finally finished I went back to my boys and our sweet lil guy fell asleep on his papa. We must be exhausting for him.
The rest of our time was great. He ate his lunch super fast so he could eat his mangos for dessert then we played until it was time to leave. He knows the routine well and today he got very sad when we told him it was time to clean up. So I plopped him on my lap and read our special poem, and I think that today he really listened and understood me. He still looked sad, but gave me a big hug when I was done instead of just shutting down on me. HUGE MILESTONE FOR US! Praise the Lord! We walked him back to his friends and gave one last smooch.
Today felt different leaving; I started to cry going back to the car. I couldn’t bring myself to look back. I HATE this process. My prayer is that we will continue to bond and grow our relationship so much that he won’t forget how much we love him while we are gone. Part of the poem reads:
“Even though I’m not there, know that we pray for you every night. We know that God is taking care of you.
Even though I’m not there, know that we love you with all our hearts We will never let you go.”
Written by: Gloria Guignard Board.
Tomorrow we will do it all over again. Until then...


Day 7 HAITI

Day 7 July 23, 2018
OH Ayiti! How beautiful you are! We just had the most amazing experience ever in Haiti! We left at 8 am for a 2 hour trip to Taino beach. I have seen a lot of different places in Port au Prince, but outside of city is where the true natural beauty is! Our driver Rocky has lived in Haiti for 4 years now, he’s fluent in Haitian Creole and very knowledgeable about the people and surroundings. He shared his expertise and took us to places I’ve never been. The drive was pretty typical, dodge other cars and don’t get hit. We were only bumped twice  Once we arrived we walked down a gorgeous, very green path. In Port you don’t see grass so this was a big deal to me. The trees are magnificent too. My favorites are the ones with the red flowers. Not sure what they are called, but man they are beautiful. I was shocked when we walked through the opening at the end of walkway to see a crystal clear ocean with absolutely NO ONE in it. WE had it all to our selves! Someone came out to greet us and asked what we wanted for lunch. Our choices were lobster or fish all fresh right from the ocean in front of us. We both choose the lobster. I’ve never had it, but I thought I’d never have another opportunity like this so I went for it. We got ready to get in the water and a few local vendors saw us there and started setting up their things to sell. Oh my goodness, the talent! So many hand painted beautiful pieces, the jewelry and the décor was just astounding. I wanted to pick some thing up for my kids so I got my girls jewelry and my son a wooden, hand painted machete. For myself I got a pineapple key chain. Those of you who read yesterdays post would know why. 
Well, Rocky continued to educate us and we talked a lot about adoption, Haitian history and Jesus. Rocky is also a follower of the Lord and we had a great conversation about our faith. Such a blessed time! Before we left Nick and a I shared a coconut…not my favorite thing, but I’m glad I tried it.
The ride home was a little crazier; A LOT of traffic! We took a few short cuts to avoid just sitting in the chaos and that was pretty neat as we got to see much more of Haiti. We passed tons of meat, fruit, veggie, trinket and other markets driving through town. There is a place called Mango row; which was exactly what I was looking for. My sweet nephew Micah gave me money to buy all the kids at the crèche a treat so that is what we got them all. I learned quickly that the kids love them! I just love Micah’s heart! When we pulled over to buy the mangos 4 ladies fought to get our business. Rocky was able to use them all and they had to share the money. We bought enough mangos for everyone at the crèche and we’ll pass them out on Tuesday. I’m super excited!
We got home just in time for dinner. I thought this day couldn’t get any better, BUT it was Haitian spaghetti night!! YAY!! Today was awesome and the Lord was in it all. I’m very grateful for His protection and giving us such a special day. The handiwork of the Lord is undeniable, as you will see in the pictures. Tomorrow we see our boy! Until then….