we awoke in the darkness again and laid together silently in our bed.
the alarm kept going off and i kept hitting snooze.
john didn't want to move and neither did i--i think, subconsciously, neither of us wanted this morning to come.
we dressed and got ready in silence.
i packed my bag to take to the orphanage with our picture book, tissues, my cell phone and the quilt i brought to give to davis.
i sat on the end of the bed and ate a cliff bar and drank some bottled water.
we moved slowly around the chilly room waiting for 9:00 to come.
the drive to the orphanage was bitter cold.
we shivered in the car and my hands were freezing even in my gloves.
john leaned over and whispered to me "i wonder if the orphanage gets cold at night. davis' hands are always so cold."
i just shrugged and tried not to let the sadness consume me right then and there.
we turned down the snowy lane and i tried to memorize each twist and turn on the path to the orphanage.
i don't know, maybe i was thinking that one day i might have to find him myself so i need to remember the way.
silly, isn't it?
we stood outside of the orphanage waiting for the workers to let us in.
after a minute or two we rang the bell and a lady finally came to the door.
we went inside and stomped the snow off of our boots, then we walked the long dark hall to the stairs.
we passed by a big bulletin board with some of the children's photographs on it.
i saw so many children that i recognized and i smiled knowing that families are working their way to them.
the children don't know it yet, but their lives are going to be turned upside down in the best way in this new year.
i smiled just thinking about the good times to come for them...
up the stairs and into our little visiting room again.
we took off our coats and waited.
by now, davis knows exactly what to expect and he was full of smiles for us!
praise Jesus he was feeling well and no fever!
he was dressed in the same outfit as yesterday afternoon and looked so handsome.
the psychiatrist joined us for a little while and we asked both her and the director about davis' eating habits.
he eats good. he eats everything. khah-rah-shoh (that means 'good, fine' but i have no idea how to spell it but this is how you say it.)
that's great news.
we will definitely be bringing him some drinks and snacks on the next trip then.
we couldn't think of any more questions so we just started to play.
davis went to the rocking horse again, to the puzzles, to the blocks, to the beads...
he was busy busy.
he wanted to touch everything and pick it up and hand it to us but honestly he had no idea how to play with anything.
john showed him how to stack the blocks or bang them together with both hands.
davis just wasn't interested, instead he'd rather take them all out and put them away.
we were feeling kind of stuffy in the room and honestly rather bored, so we switched to the big play room across the hall.
the temperature was much cooler in there and there was lots of room to run around and act silly.
the psychiatrist checked on us and took off davis' hot sweater and he seemed so much more comfortable!
we kicked a big ball around for a bit, looked in the mirror at ourselves, played hide and seek around the christmas tree, and sang songs.
john and i were both exhausted! :)
at one point, one of the caregivers walked through the room to get something.
she came back a few minutes later and asked us if we wanted to listen to music.
da! yes! (remember how we were told how much davis loves music?)
oh man, you should have seen his face!
he was soooo excited and started dancing all over.
they must practice a special dance to the song she played because he did all kinds of hand movements and moved his head back and forth to the beat.
then she got a small bouncy exercise ball and he sat right down on it, held john's hands, and bounced and bounced!
that caregiver gave us such a gift today--i captured some of his dancing and bouncing with my video camera so we can watch it over and over again when we are home and show the other children.
i think they are going to love it as much as we do.
i tried not to look at the clock while we were with him but i couldn't help myself.
the morning had just evaporated and we only had about 15 minutes left with him.
i heard our facilitator's voice in the hall way and i looked wide-eyed at john and started to cry.
davis was in my arms and at that very moment, he squeezed my neck so tight and held me so close.
i whispered all of my hopes and prayers for him into his little ears and squeezed him tight.
john walked over and wrapped his arms around us both.
davis reached for john and john pulled him close to his chest.
that sweet baby boy buried his little face into john and hugged his neck like never before.
i promise you, he knew what was happening.
quickly, he turned back to me and reached out.
i grabbed him and kissed him over and over again.
the door opened and the psychiatrist was coming over to us.
it was time to say goodbye.
my eyes were pouring out tears and i literally was shaking, and davis reached for john again.
he nuzzled his face into his neck and john closed his eyes, hugging him close again.
back and forth, back and forth...davis wanted us both to hold him and kiss him and he held us tighter than ever.
the psychiatrist reached out for him and he pushed her hands away.
for the first time, he showed them that he wanted only us.
he chose us.
and i lost it.
the tears were pouring out of me and rolling down my face.
i held him as long as i could and kissed him as many times as i could before finally the psychiatrist took him out of the room.
paka (bye bye)! paka! paka momma, paka papa!
the facilitator was in the door way talking with the director and he walked over to me.
he saw that i was crying, hugged me and said
they want you to know that they've never seen him smile and laugh so much. they say he's always so serious and now he laugh. and it is because of you...both (motioning to john too). that make them very happy. he smile, maybe for the first time, with you.
i closed my eyes and thanked God for this, another gift.
and then i sobbed into john's chest and we stood there hugging for a good long while.
somehow we managed to find our things and pack them up.
we put on our coats and gloves and zipped up tight.
we thanked the director and the psychiatrist and made our way out of the building.
i walked but couldn't see a thing, the tears just coming and coming.
we waited for the driver and got in the car.
john snapped a few pictures of the outside of the orphanage and we drove away.
back to the hotel, back to the city, back to the life we had before we held our boy.
we will drive back to the city tonight and meet with the judge tomorrow.
please, i beg for your prayers that she will be kind and easy on us.
we still have so far to go to satisfy her and we pray she will have mercy on us.
and of course, we ask that you add davis and his friends to your prayer lists as well.
we pray that he will know and understand that we will return for him, and in the meantime, remember how much we love and adore him.
a few months ago, i prayed to God and told him that i was ready for my world to be turned upside down.
we were waiting and waiting for travel dates, well, for lots of things, and i just felt like God wasn't listening.
ha, even writing that out on the screen makes me feel so foolish, like, of course i should have known better, but i felt like we needed God to move more quickly for us, for davis.
so i prayed (ok so maybe it was more like begging), but i told the Lord that i was ready, my heart was finally ready.
and He did what i asked...he wrecked me.
totally destroyed my heart.
and honestly, i've never been happier in my whole life.
For God, who said, "Let light shine out of darkness, " made his light shine in our hearts to give us the light of the knowledge of the glory of God in the face of Christ. 2 Corinthians 4:6
Let everything that has breath praise the Lord. Praise the Lord. Psalm 150:6
we will see davis again soon and all the glory will be in His name.
we are forever grateful for these few days in russia and for a little boy with down syndrome that no one wanted.