Why is it whenever you go away it takes at least twice that amount of time to recover? Yikes, I feel like life runs me over some days but in a good way…if that makes any sense? Just a lot happening here but wanted to share a bit about our time on the mainland. We were in Dar for 5 days. The day we left Jason took the early morning boat so he could go get the car in town and try to wait it out at one of the offices he needed to go to get curriculum and testing information for our vocational school. And we thought better for him and us if the girls and I came later in the day…you know as opposed to try to amuse 2 kids without them impaling themselves on the ever present hazards sitting around in office building. Us girlies took the mid day ferry and at the start all looked great.
You can tell where this is going…about an hour in (one hour after this pic was taken) on the puke boat Anni did just that. All over……me, her sister’s head, our stuff. It was fun fruit snack and rice from lunch puke too…very colorful. So I was trying to help her while holding a sleeping Evy (who I really wanted to remain asleep since she would not get any other naps that day) when a man about 20-ish came to our rescue and held Anni’s plastic sick bag for her. He was amazingly sweet and helpful and even sacrificed his shirt to help Anni get cleaned up. Again, I am just amazed at how kind people here are when they see someone who needs help. He was willing to help clean up another persons kid’s spew: ROCKstar award!! Evy managed to stay asleep even while I wiped chunks of her sister’s vomit off her head (pole!) and we made it there after another hour of stomach lurching waves. We got off the boat thanks to another kind stranger carrying a sick and wave-battered Anni to the dock. Poor kid. She really had a great attitude the whole time even though she felt wicked sick. She told me “Mama, I pray to Jesus and he helps me feel better.” Once Jason picked us up and we were on dry land for about 20 minutes Anni was completely fine and demanding something to eat (fair enough everything that she had eaten that day was in a little baggie on the boat) so we quickly made it to a South African chain restaurant that is fast and pretty cheap in town. She ate her fried chicken and fries with gusto and within a half hour we were all heading back to the hostel.
Jason got some more work done for the vocational training school, I got some resources for teaching, and we tried to hit up some of our favorite Dar treats as well throughout the week.
We also took Miss Evy to her 6 month appointment. She weighs about 17 pounds and is in the 75%tile for both weight and height! The doctor said she looks great and was happy to see the happy, smiley, healthy baby that had caused so much havoc in utero. Since we had to skip her nap that morning the exam and shots were a bit more traumatic since she was exhausted and had just fallen asleep when we stripped her down and poked her (pole!). But even though she got 4 immunizations (2 oral ones and 1 in her arm and one in her lil butt) she only cried for a minute and as soon as I snuggled her she stopped. This is so different than certain first daughters who would holler as if being murdered for at least a half hour anytime any doctor touched her. Evy is definitely is a laid back little girl.
check out the muscle shirt and headband!!
After a clean bill of health we took two very tired and crabby girls for lunch at our fav spot in Dar.
The bummer was I started to feel really sick and could not really enjoy my food. After another hour I was doubled over in the back of the car whimpering like a baby. No idea what caused it but that is par for the course here. Stomach bugs here are incredibly heinous and I knew the next 12 hours was going to be rough (since I could not take the strong kill everything in your system drugs because of nursing). One of the hardest things about being a Mama is that you cannot take a sick day especially if one little girl who got her shots is particularly whinny and wants to nurse for sport. Without going into bathroom details it was a nasty bug and I was miserable until the next day and so was Jason who had to try to manage both kids in a small hostel room while I tried to rest. The next day I was feeling a bit better and we decided we had to make good on our promise that if Anni sat through all the “to-do’s” of the week we would have a special family time at the water park. The place is pretty cheap, semi-clean, has ice cream and Mountain Dew (and sometimes even diet coke), and thus we love it.
After having to request they turn on the slides we had a blast alternating between jumping in, sliding with the tubes, and eating ice cream (Anni favorite part since she had a record breaking three ice cream treats in one day (Jason shared with her and I could not eat mine). She was hyped! Some local school groups arrived after we had been there about an hour and the place was packed!! Evy and I mostly relaxed and watched the chaos while Anni and Jason run from one safety hazard to the next. It was a fabulous family day. Just what we needed.
The most exciting news of our time there was we formally started the adoption process! I say formally because it has been our our hearts for years (since even before Miss A) but now we really are moving forward here. We feel like the time is right and at the advise of our lawyer decided to start now since it may take 1-2 years to actually see a child placed with our family if everything goes well. This meant lots of paperwork and talking with folks at social services while on the mainland (with more to come for sure). We actually were able to meet with them, give our documents, references, etc and pick up a letter to take to the high court here the next day (which we later heard is somewhat miraculous as this usually takes at least a week or more). So we have our letter in hand and will take it to the island high court this week. The next step is requesting a home study and waiting for the social workers to interview our neighbors, etc (which I am actually a bit nervous they will say we never make our kids wear coats and socks and thus are unfit parents…hopefully not). We really have no idea what we are getting into and have some fears about a long arduous road (as some stories we have heard) but at the same time we know that God has placed this within our hearts and He will see us through it. I am full of expectation, hope, a bit of trembling, and nerves. But in a good way. Like in the way that I have no idea what will happen but confident that I do not need to know to move forward in the space I occupy right now. God has already blessed our family, marriage (we celebrated 9 years yesterday!), lives, work, and home so much and I know that while living chasing after Him is never easy it is always worthwhile. We have certainly learned that following Him thus far and know that there is more ahead for our family. And we are jumping in….