Meeting Milo – Day 3


March 20th, 2010

Friday, March 20th.

We woke up and walked over to the main guest house for breakfast. (When we traveled CHSFS had two guest houses. 1 main house that hold about 8 families and 1 smaller house around the corner that holds 3 families, we were in the smaller one.)
small guest house

So we ate breakfast around 8 and waited for the van to bring us over to the offices around 9. We were getting a basic orientation on Ethiopia in the morning and then meeting our kids in the afternoon. When we arrived at the offices we were told that the offices had no power so they were running on generators and would have to cut the orientation short. It was a bit of a disappointment until we realized that meant we would leave for the care center that moring, spend time with the kids and come back in the afternoon for more time with the kids. Really can’t complain about that.

We took the time to learn a few basic things about Ethiopia. How to say “thank you” (amesegnalehu) in Amharic, because when you are picking up your child, you have about 4028 people you want to thank while in Ethiopia. We learned that Ethiopians will pretty much drop what they are doing to welcome a guest. We learned a few things about the region our kids came from. We learned how to greet people (selam). We met the social workers. Then we got back in the van and headed to the care center.

Before we went to the care center we made a quick stop to drop off two families at the school to meet their children.

Finally, we were on our way to the care center.

The care center was an embassy building.care center

Milo’s room was on the top floor.

The picture is of our group turning in cameras at the guard shack. Once inside the care center, we couldn’t take any pictures. It wasn’t too big of a deal because they had their video crew there filming the entire thing. So we have our first moments with Milo on video.

Before we went inside we had to switch our shoes to crocs that were only worn indoors to help keep the floors and carpets clean. They were very stylish and way too big for me. I opted to go barefoot. Although, I almost always opt to go barefoot.

We waited in the living room area to be called one by one to meet our kids. I wasn’t nervous just anxious. The 10 minutes or whatever it was we had to wait felt like forever. He was up four fligths of stairs and I couldn’t just go up and see him. We were the last or second to last family to get called. The camera guy and socail worker walked us up the stairs…it was funny because the camera guy tapes the entire walk up the steps. And pretty much all I could think was “don’t trip in these giant shoes, on camera.”

So we walked all the way up to the fourth floor, to Milo’s room. And walked into a room of babies that I recognized. I saw my friend’s daughter. I saw another families twin boys. And then the social worker pointed to a bed and said, “here he is.” We stood there holding this tiny little baby who in turn just sucked his thumb and stared at us. I don’t actually have words to describe it. We flew half way around the world. We were standing on an entirely different continent and a complete stranger was saying, “here he is”. He was ours.

After a few minutes in the baby room, we took him down stairs and hung out for a while. Milo barely made a sound. He just stared at us, sucking his thumb. And then fell asleep while we were holding him. The worst part was walking him back up the stairs and handing him back to his nanny. That’s when I got all teary eyed. I’d waited 12 months to see his picture and then 4 more months to buy tickets. I’m finally in the same room as him and I have to leave him.

We went home, ate lunch, discussed how tiny and cute he was and then got back on the bus for an afternoon of hanging out with the kids. This time around, I got smart and brought the sling with. And true to form, he sucked his thumb, stared at us for a while and then fell asleep, this time in his sling.


2 Responses to “Meeting Milo – Day 3”

  1. Kevin D. Hendricks on March 20, 2010 8:14 am

    And let me tell you how horrified I was that I’d trip and fall while carrying Milo down four flights of stairs in those goofy crocs, all while the cameras rolled.

  2. Cathy on March 20, 2010 12:16 pm

    Seriously tears are streaming down my face. I remember those stairs and just how sweet you were to think about Miss Kiya while you were there and to check on her for me. What a special special moment and oh those shoes. They had some flip flops while we were there so I tried to get those. Enjoy your week of remembering and your family day. I still can’t believe it has been a whole year.

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