April 28, 2012
Hello from Russia Everyone!
This has been the journey of our lives to date. We are both exhausted in every way imaginable, and thrilled at the same time. After not sleeping for three days we finally arrived in Russia where we were met by our terrific driver Roman. It`s amazing how much one can communicate with hand signals…course it`s more likely that we only thought we were having a conversation but none the less it`s been entertaining. ;) Today is day three with our Son but I only know that for sure since Jérôme and I just took out a calendar to be sure. It feels like weeks- we are so exhausted and confused.
We remember thinking that we`d have so much time between visits to the orphanage, and that I would blog about it and we`d play tourist – ha! The truth is we are run ragged. We have been poked and prodded by doctors all over town, we are constantly running to appointments with lawyers, officials of some sort, and then driving like mad to get to the orphanage to the scheduled time to see out son before we continue with the never ending appointments…
Now the good part – our Son.
OMG we are so smitten it is ridiculous.
They told us he was not speaking, just making sounds - which we knew by his medical report. And judging by the proposal photo which you`ve all seen we were expecting a fat little (silent) boy. Firstly he is tiny- much smaller than we imagined from his photo and more beautiful. He is very, very shy and very brave. We had an incredible first meeting though. I picked him up and hugged him and we played and cuddled, and a little while into our first visit he whispered "Momma" to me and then to "Pappa" to Jérôme! We nearly died! This from the child who didn`t speak! I don`t have the words – but we do have the video…(Thanks to Laura).
We see him twice a day for 2 hours a time and each time he trusts us more and relaxs a little more. We have him smiling and laughing now the most beautiful shy little smile and we realized from day one that we were going to have to earn those smiles as he doesn`t give them away often.
On day 2 one of the caregivers pulled us aside and said she was amazed and touched by how we are bonding. She said he seldom smiles, and yet he does each time he sees us and that he really likes us.
Let`s just say the feeling is mutual.
He is so incredibly present and we really weren`t prepared for that. He understands EVERYTHING that is said or asked of him and our biggest challenge is that we don`t speak his language. We are desperately trying to cram in as much Russian as possible but we will need a lot more.
The workers in the orphanage are so wonderful and truly very caring. We are so lucky to have him in their care as we all know what some orphanages are like. They are poor but they have a lot of love.
We had a great and encouraging meeting with the doctor assigned by the Canadian Govt today. Based on the medical report, He was expecting a very different child than the one he saw today ( in the best way imaginable) He talked about how a person who has been abused or institutionalized and lacking love has a shorter life span and that their DNA actually changes- but that it can also be reversible if they can become a happy and loved person. And he should know as his first child was adopted from one of the orphanages in the region.
I`m not worried though as this little boy is already loved and will soon be able to profit from all of the love you all will be sending his way. Just you wait he is delicious!!
Please forgive the horrible baggy, swollen eyes of ours inthe attached photos as we are so bloddy exhausted we can hardly stand!
A very happy Momma and Pappa xxx