So, the other day when we got our referral, I was talking with our agency contact and she said that she was traveling to Ethiopia in July and that she would be able to get us some recent pictures of our Sara Joy. She was also willing to take a care package with her to our little girl. I was thrilled with the opportunity to not only see my little girl as she is today, but to be able to send her something personal from her new family. So, I spent some time trying to think of what to send her. Maybe a soft blanket or a cute little stuffed animal? Maybe a doll? Definitely some pictures of her new family. Maybe a book or two - one that she could leave there for the other children after she was brought home? I guess I had some time to think about it and really plan something that she would like.
Then I got to thinking - which can sometimes be a dangerous thing for me. Since our agency contact is going over there in July... maybe I could take a trip over there as well. Maybe I could meet her over there. Maybe then I would get to see our Sara Joy up close and personal. I could take her a package and give it to her personally. I could do the proverbial counting of thet fingers and toes that happens when a child is born to you. I could kiss her sweet little face, tell her that I love her, and leave her with something from me - leave her with the warmth of my hug, the feeling of my arms wrapped tightly around her, the sight of a huge smile indicating how precious she is in my eyes, the sound of me telling her that I love her dearly - and in return, I'd get to take so much of her with me.. the feeling of her in my arms, the feeling of her hair against my lips as I kiss the top of her head, the feeling of her tiny hand in mine, the sound of her breathing as she rests in my arms, the sound of her voice (hopefully not screaming to get away from me, but even that would be precious to me). Wouldn't that be great! And the best part of it would be (ok, maybe the second best because the #1 best would be seeing Sara Joy) that I could love on all the other kids that are there with Sara. I could take a million pictures for the families still waiting to bring their children home. I could take care packages with me for them. I got excited at just the possibility of being able to go. I hadn't talked to the agency about it yet, so I was WAY ahead of myself. I hadn't even talked to TIM about it yet!
So, Tim and I chatted. He agreed that if I did not have to be there alone, that it would be a great opportunity for me to go over there. I couldn't believe that he agreed to it. Not that he agreed that I could go, but that he agreed that I could go alone. I would have a hard time if Tim went over there and got to see our daughter without me there. I would be so jealous of him for being able to hold her and love on her if I could not as well. But, I guess that is the way Tim is. He would love for me to be able to go and hold her and tell her that we love her. He just wants her to know that she is loved.
So, I sent a message to our agency and asked when in July they would be going. I also asked our coordinator if she needed a travel companion. I said I would hate for her to have to lug around a ziplock sized package for Sara all the way to Ethiopia :) I offered a free set of hands at the orphanage (or transition home) as well. In the meantime, I would get to see my SARA JOY!!! She said travel with her is definitely a possiblity. SERIOUSLY??? So, Tim and I talked about it some more and depending on how things work out with a court date, whether we will have to travel for both court and to finally bring her home - I may just go.
Here's my concern (besides the expense)... as much as I want to go, do I really think I will be able to pick up my baby girl, get to know her, love on her, see her sweet smile and those dark brown eyes - and then just give her one last hug and come home? I may already have to do that once if we have to appear in court. I'm DREADING having to have to do that. Am I really that strong? Uuggghhh. I know when I got Anna, you would not have been able to pry that little girl away from me with a crowbar. She was mine and no one was taking her from me. It would break my heart to have to give her back. Do I really think I can do it twice? Or should I live like I am now, never having laid eyes on her physically. It seems less difficult. But then again, what is best for our Sara Joy? Not sure at this point in time.
I would however also have the opportunity to impact the lives of other orphans while I am there, and that should weigh into the equation as well. I would be able to relieve some of the burden of the nannies if only for a week, or maybe even only for a day or two. I would be able to use my arms to hold children that otherwise would have less time being held. And I would be able to take photos for families who are still waiting to get their children.
Not sure what will end up happening, if I will end up going or not, but the possibility, to me, was extremely exciting. We will continue to pray that God places the answer on our hearts (my guess is God would never say no to someone loving on an orphan though.... )
I found one more picture of Sara Joy. She was being held by a nanny. She is so sweet-looking!