Friday, April 11, 2008

First Day as Mom and Dad

Boy, Oh Boy…we need a van! We don’t even have Alex with us yet and we are already hauling so much stuff. We were up early and were happy to get and read so many encouraging and supportive emails from home. Our visit to the baby house yesterday was our best one yet. To start things off we had to stop at a separate building to get our pass for the baby house that allows us to get by the grouchy guard. There were a few different couples also visiting that day, plus two from our hotel and us. We counted that a total of at least seven kids will be leaving this baby house in the next couple of weeks to become part of loving families! We arrived at the soon-to-be former casa de Alex around 11:00 and visited for about 3 hours. The work is still going on so it was loud all over the place but I thought it was great because it made it feel pretty lively. They brought Alex to us in no time at all. He looked rested and was happy to see us. We have been visiting with him in the same room every day so he is now pretty used to the toys in there and knows what to grab where.
A few minutes later my favorite caretaker came in with a tray full of warm food…a hamburger patty, rice and chicken noodle soup with lots of bread in it. We put him in the high chair and let him have a music toy he likes and started to feed him. I was told by the doctor back in Phoenix that he should have more protein that carbs right now so I made sure he ate all the meat and the chicken in the soup, but I also fed him quite a bit of the rice plus all the carrots from his soup. Today for the first time he ate most of his food and that was so great to see. A caretaker had told us a day or so ago that he wasn’t a good eater but I highly doubt they are able to sit with the kids for an hour to make sure they eat everything. They just don’t have the time.

After dinner we played for a couple of hours or so, and then it was time for a nap again. Darn! I didn’t have to ask for an additional ten minutes this time. Anastasia came by and told us we had ten more minutes before she came to pick him up, so my trick of asking for those additional ten minutes with him no longer works. Time with Alex at the baby house flies, and we can’t wait to take him home and spend more quality time with him. Yesterday he was all about Chris; he was sitting on his lap touching and feeling his face a lot. He was also imitating everything that Chris did, including putting one of the toys on top of his head; it was so cute! The difference is so obvious already and everyone at the orphanage, including the resident doctor who comes by during every one of our visits, mentioned the difference in Alex’s attitude and demeanor.

Although we want to take him home right now, this ten day waiting period will actually be a blessing. Bonding with him while the only people he has ever known are around, is going to be a lot easier on him than if we had shown-up the day after court and had taken him from the only people he knows and loves. Plus, now I get to introduce him to a few new meals while he is still eating his regular meals from the baby house.

After the baby house we went to the Central Market and bought baby Alex a pair of Russian leather boots to wear when he leaves the orphanage. We stopped at a sports stand to look for a hockey jersey and the first thing we saw was a Phoenix Sun’s Steve Nash jersey number 13. Good thing we are not superstitious! Roma drove us around Perm and stopped at a couple of malls. We bought a DVD player and some children’s CDs for the baby house then later in the evening we went out to S36 for dinner. The place was packed and the food was great. We even got to meet two players from the US who play here for the Perm Region basketball team. It was a great day and we were so thankful to God for all the blessings we have received on this trip.

We will miss Alex today and tomorrow. The baby house is closed to visitors Saturdays and Sundays. Chris and I will take it easy today; he leaves for Phoenix tomorrow at 4:00 AM which means Roma and I will be dropping him off at the airport at 2:00 in the morning. Yikes!
I hate to see him leave now that baby Alex was getting closer to him plus I won’t feel as safe here alone. I will continue to visit Alex every day and Roma already told me that his girlfriend Marina will have a couple of days off next week and is already planning to spend some time here at the hotel and running around with Roma and me. Perm is a great city and the weather now is really nice. This whole week they have had record temperatures and we love it! Yesterday it was a whooping 66 degrees! I just looked outside and it looks like another warm sunny day to be out and about.


Chris said...

The ten day waiting period will be a blessing for you, as you will get a chance to bond even more with Alex, and that will make the travel and the trip home that much easier for all of you. His world is getting ready to dramatically change, and it can be scary.

It sounds like you are having a great time in Perm and getting to see the sights. Very nice!

I'm so glad to hear that so many kids are being adopted. What a blessing for so many, parents and children.

Congrats again. We are so happy for you!