We learned about our little Nate in July 2008, and were over the moon with excitement at the prospect that we could go pick him up in January 2009. We got photos of him every few months, saw him grow and develop, and started dreaming about who this little boy was and will be. As time moved on with no progress on the adoption, we started to feel numb to it all. It was hard to think about him, knowing that we may never get to meet.
We build an idea of who Nate was in our heads. Every photo of him with food on his face made me happy he was eating, and his full cheeks (while other children are thin) made me picture him going around the room to see who'd give up their food to him. I could tell by his expressions that he was a sweet and happy baby.
He is all of that and more, but it was amazing to see how he is the little boy we envisioned. As much as I love holding him, I could watch him interact with the other children, playing by himself and cuddling with the nannies for hours.
When the opportunity to have some volunteers come to the orphanage came up this summer, I was at first hesitant to even think about coming. How could I put myself in a situation where I could bond with my baby and then have to leave him? Would I wonder about him every minute of every day when I'm gone?
This isn't about me, though. This is about the lives of 20 darling children.