Wednesday, July 27, 2011

The post you (and we) have been waiting for


 And no, it wasn't laid in our bed; Sidamo just wanted to take it to the softest place he could find so it wouldn't break. It's adorable! About a third the size of a regular egg, and just so sweet and delicate. This weekend when Greg is home from his business trip, and our coparent Rebecca is home from hers, we'll all share the world's tiniest omelet.

Monday, July 11, 2011

Christmas in July

The kids are in full-blown holiday mode, with the Christmas music blaring daily. Even when I hide it and put it out of reach, they manage to find it. If you can't fight 'em …

I made the first Christmas gift of the season: a sleepsack for Filbert (have I already mentioned that that's what the kids call the baby-to-be?). It's super cute, and I'll make matching jammies for the big 'uns. The pattern is from Growing up Sew Liberated, which I love so far.

Apparently the recent muggy weather and monsoon rains are inspiring the Christmas spirit all over this part of the world.

Wednesday, July 6, 2011


Four years ago today, we met Sidamo for the first time. It was a monumental day—a day that changed all our our lives for ever, and, of course, for better. However, it was not the wonderful day filled with unfettered love and adoration that we all imagine first parent-child meetings to be. Sidamo was scared, emotional, and unready for another upheaval in his short life. And who could blame him?

For the first several days after meeting him, Sidamo cried anytime we walked into the room. Reluctantly he'd let me hold him and walk him around the grounds of the care center until eventually he'd crash in my arms. He was so emotionally spent and so out of control of the situation that he used the only self-protective mechanism he had at his disposal: full physical shut-down. He didn't let Greg anywhere near him until after we were all home and I experienced a physical shut-down of my own.

This isn't a part of adoption that most people outside the adoption community often consider, but it's the core of the adoption experience: In order to be adopted, a child must first suffer unimaginable loss. A child's life must be ripped apart before we begin trying to piece it back together again.

And then the child demonstrates the remarkable nature of human resilience. Sidamo has grown from a scared, lonely, and insecure toddler into the most boisterous, confident, connected child you'll ever meet. And he loves to laugh about the fact that he once preferred Mommy over Daddy. This evening I overheard him telling Nora, "Nora, when you get older, you'll like Daddy better than Mommy too." Nora's response: "Oh yeah? Well when you get younger, you'll like Mommy better."

We had a very mellow celebration tonight—Chinese takeout, lots of laughs, and a book we brought home from Ethiopia: animal stories from the Sidamo region. In one of them, a hyena eats a wily mouse, and the mouse runs straight through to the exit. Huge hit with the under-6 crowd.

We told Sidamo how lucky we are to have him in our lives, how happy we are that we met him on that day four years ago, and how much we love him. He and I also talked about how hard our first meeting was for him, and how brave he was to take a chance on us. Sidamo was, and continues to be, such a remarkable and inspirational child, and I still struggle daily to make sense of the odd imbalance of luck that gave us the privilege of parenting him.

Thank you to the lovely Sarah for this beautiful photo—and the many others I'll be poaching when I finally find the words to recap our incredible weekend.