Tuesday, May 27, 2008

No words

I have no words....
We'll be in Haiti in 12 days to meet the little boy that we hope will be our son.

I have no words in Creole to help him understand. We'll be going to his orphanage to pick him up, and then we take him make to our hotel with us for the next 5 days. The streets aren't safe, we stay in the compound of the hotel behind the walls topped with razor wire and behind the armed guards at the entrance.

There is a pool. and we've guessed on toys and clothes sizes. And hopefully he is well and we can go for walks around the compound.

I have no words to describe what I'm hoping to see as my big teddy bear of a husband gets this little boy out of any shyness he may have. I imagine it's mostly female workers at the orphanage, so a big, tall, strong, bald, white daddy that's all for Malot should be quite exciting for him.

And today a friend said she would take BobbyJones for the week we're gone, and now we just need a place for Divot to stay.

Checking and reprioritizing the donations, and constant rearranging to make sure we don't exceed weight limits.

The adventure begins again.

Monday, May 19, 2008

3 weeks

We meet Malot 21 days from today. 20 days til we get on the plane. I'd better make sure everything is still lined up with all the reservations.

We FINALLY got his official referral today. We've learned that they don't know when his birthday is. He's somewhere in his 3rd year. His parents were very poor and his mother gave him to his father when she could no longer feed him. The father had him for a few months and then when he could no longer feed him he left him at the orphanage. He weighs 26 lbs. We received this little blurb about him:

Malot has a radiant smile. He loved following two of the young women volunteers around. He shared well with the other children but when given a new toy car he refused to put it down and a few days later he was still carrying it around.

And we're told he has a healthy appetite.

You know how sometimes you see someone and then you hear their name and you think, "Yes. They look like a (insert name here)"?

What does Malot look like? The only boy's name we could agree on was Nathan and we've lost him. We need a new name for Malot. We'll probably keep Malot for his middle name. And remember the last name we have to work with is Rosenlof. That's where it gets tricky.

So.... What name does Malot look like?

Wednesday, May 14, 2008

T minus 25 days and counting....to Haiti.

Scott and Michelle, bless them and their family, are still going to go. Though they've lost their beautiful daughter, they feel strongly that there is another child in Haiti that needs them and they're going to move forward. Our thoughts are still with them and sweet Ellie has been in my thoughts so much.

For purely selfish reasons, I'm grateful for that because without them the trip would be canceled. It's just us and them going this trip and there have to be two families to be able to make the trip cost effective.

I am trying to imagine an active 3 year old (we think that's how old Malot is - still don't have the details) who doesn't speak English, doesn't know us from Adam and wondering how this will play out. It was different with Lexi and Nathan - Nathan's an infant and as long as you love him, he doesn't care who you are and didn't have a "stranger" concept yet. Lexi was too sick to care.

So, any suggestions on the answer to this riddle? "What's small enough to fit in a suitcase, easily entertains a 3 year old, and doesn't make noise?" (I'm anti-toy noise.)

I'm worried about our O (that's "adopting mom-speak for 'orphanage'") as it seems there have been a lot of sick kids. We can't get information. Perpetual limbo.

I'm worried about when we'll be able to get Malot home. When will our family start? When will we finally get the paperwork we need? Nothing has happened AT ALL since we lost Lexi and Nathan. We haven't moved forward with any of Malot's paperwork. Time lost that can never be recovered, but that's the nature of the Haitian adoption beast. We can't MAKE these children ours.

My friend, Melissa, is going to Haiti next week to visit her children. She's been waiting over 2 years to get them home. And is still waiting. Governments, and paperwork, and UNICEF - oh my!

This too shall pass....


Tuesday, May 13, 2008

Memorial for Ellie

Our friends held a memorial for their dear baby girl who passed away in Haiti before the governmental process would allow them to carry her home and make her well. I thought thier post, and the poem written by one of their daughters was very touching. I've copied that post here:

We had a memorial today in honor of Ellie. We all wrote her a letter and
planted a fushia tree by our front door in her memory. We sprinkled the dirt with goldfish and we will be making a marker and burying a copy of the letters and the goldfish package soon. Kelsie gave me permission to post her poem that she wrote to Ellie:
Brown, Brown, Brown, Brown
It is not a color
it is a beautiful little girl
It is the color of the precious baby
the sight of her is so shocking
as she is so adorable
her smile is not
one you can forget
because her teeth are oh so white
It is her big brown eyes
that stun you the most
the twinkle that you see
when she is so happy
It is her tiny hands that
grabs the goldfish crackers
off the silver mirror that portrays her golden face
It is the love that you see
when you look at her
at first it was confusion,
now it is love
every color, blue, pink, and green
looks good on her,
her hug is so warming
she sleeps so softly now,
she is happier then ever,
now that she is taken from this world
because she was too perfect.

by Kelsie

Monday, May 12, 2008

You know it's going to be A DAY when you have to change your outfit 3 times before you can finally get out of the driveway because the neighbor's very muddy Lab defiles your clothes by trying to do unspeakable things to your leg.

Tuesday, May 6, 2008


I miss Ellie.

I have to admit that I've had daydreams about Malot and Ellie falling in love some day in the future. They're such beautiful children and I could only imagine what their own children would look like.

I fancied that we'd be able to keep in touch with Ellie's family after we brought both kids home and that, through the years, love would blossom.

Ellie won't be coming home.

Why does this little girl have to be a statistic?

Haiti has the highest child mortality rate in this hemisphere. 1/3 of Haiti's children are severely malnourished.

And it is the politics that prevent these children from escaping the hell that kills them and coming to homes were they can get food, preventative health care, love, families, kisses, playtoys, clean water.

Ironically, for all the good it does to ensure that the world's children get the basics they need, UNICEF is the largest cause of the political delays we experience in international adoption. While they go on the record as supporting international adoption, the first thing they do when they move into a country is "encourage" the local government to keep their children in their country as a means of preparing for a better future. If you aren't familiar with UNICEF, that's the "humanitarian" end of the United Nations. The UN's peacekeepers have occupied Haiti for several years now. You know the old saying, "beggars can't be choosers". If you can't provide for your own it is very easy to be swayed by whomever will try to lead or help you.

One quick place to get information on what's going on in Haiti and a bit of the background on some of the issues that are experienced by international adoptions (particularly in Haiti in the more recent posts) is http://achildsvoiceinternational.blogspot.com/ . The slideshow in the link on her Sunday, May 4 post is particularly chilling. It was compiled by a charity called The Mercy and Sharing Foundation that is trying to help Haiti's children.

Monday, May 5, 2008

We Love You, Ellie!

We just received word that our little Ellie Gordon passed away this morning after getting very ill. Ellie's adoptive parents went to Haiti with us in January and they met Ellie for the first time when we met Lexi and Nathan for the first time.

Ellie had a beautiful smile and the most hauntingly expressive eyes. It was such a blessing to be able to watch her open up with her new adoptive parents in the short week that we spent with them in Haiti.

My heart is breaking for Scott and Michelle.

Our thoughts and prayers are with you.

We love you, Ellie!