Wednesday, September 9, 2009

Where Do I Start...Again?

I simply can not go over a week between blog posts! Especially a week in which George started school, all the kids are falling in the groove of going to school, and Joe and I bought a business! I want to share all about all of these things, but when I don't blog for a while, it becomes overwhelming to remember all the details. Tip to any bloggers: make yourself blog so you don't forget!

I do want to share how George has been talking so much about Africa these days. We had a particularly important day on Sunday. I don't know if it was the man in the worship choir, or the man sitting directly behind George...but something triggered a memory and George became very sad. He whimpered a few times toward the end of the service, and when we were walking out, he started truly crying. Joe pulled him aside, got down to George's level and asked him what was wrong.

And for the first time, ever, George said he misses his "Africa Daddy", and then just sobbed. Joe gently led George into the empty chapel and held him as he cried. Together, we told George that we wanted to know more about his "Africa Daddy" and as the afternoon progressed, George told us some pretty fun stories.

George told us how he didn't sleep in his house (which really does look like the mud hut I posted a picture of a long time ago!), but that he would sleep in the growth around the hut. We scoured the Internet for pictures of Soddo, and every time we saw these primitive houses he would squeal and point and yell, "Georgie's house!" But, then he would point to the bushes around the hut and say, "Georgie and H sleep there."

This brings us something interesting...H is his best friend from the orphanage, but we are starting to wonder if they were from the same villiage. Some times George says H is his brother, but after some investigating, I discovered that is not true. George did tell me a story about his mom having a baby. "Baby cry. Baby girl cry. We walk to Soddo and doctor give baby shot. Baby cry a lot." I asked George what happened to his sister and he put his head down and said, "Baby go with Momma. George stay in Soddo." Ugh...I just don't even want to think that he had a baby sister somewhere out there! Later Joe asked him about a sister and he said, "Eleanor and Isabel" but wouldn't say he had an "Africa sister".

Sunday afternoon, after looking at many pictures of life in Wolayta, we went to the front porch to hang out. Out of the blue, George tells us the story about his Daddy having a donkey! He got so excited telling us about this donkey and how George would get to ride the donkey. What smiles he had as he remembered the fun of riding the donkey as his father led it. It made us all laugh.

George has been asking if he can go back to Africa, with us. We are going through a critical point in George's life where he it seems that he is ready to embrace life in America, yet does not want to lose touch with Africa. One other interesting point is that so many other adoptive parents say their children say they are Ethiopian, not African. That is not the case with George. He says, "I don't like Ethiopia. I am Africa." I don't know why...maybe some day he will be able to tell me.

We asked George what animals he used to see and he told us a story about a lion and his "Africa Daddy" shooting the lion. At this point, it could be a tall-tale, but he sure seems convincing! He says there was bad water and good water. The good water was after the rains. The bad water was full of crocodiles and frogs. He said after the rains, he would swim in the good water with his Daddy. Explains how well he swims! He has seen elephants and lions, and of course, lots of crocodiles.

At night, George has become so affectionate toward me. Every night, Lincoln, George and I cuddle on one of their beds and read a few books. I am amazed because only one moth ago was when George began letting me read to him. Now, he is laying on my chest, wanting me to wrap my arms around him as I read. The other day, I was on the phone and he just curled up on my lap and started to fall asleep.

As you can see, we have come so far! But here is where my ugly, sin side will rear it's ugly head. After the months of rejection, it is hard for me to truly wrap my arms around him the way I do with Lincoln. And it is a challenge for me to sit there as he sleeps on my lap. I HATE that I still struggle in this area! George is becoming very loving toward me, and I still have some resentment toward him. I pray that those feelings would be drowned out by an unconditional love that overwhelms him (and me!). I do love George, and I want to meet his needs and make him happy, but that bottom of the heart, adoring kind of love that I have for my bio kids just isn't there yet. Someday...I am confident it will come.

George is doing wonderfully in school! He hopped right onto that bus the very first day and hasn't looked back. He has a fabulous teacher who was "God-chosen" for George. We have received a few emails regarding George's progress in school. We knew he was bright, so I wasn't worried about him picking things up once at school. What I have been worried about is how George would fit in socially. He still does these very African things, that a lot of American children might not just understand. But, his teacher said that George has fallen into a group of boys that play very well together. She also said that George has been part of this group as they have been reprimanded. I gasped when I heard this, but Joe said, "Isn't that great!" His teacher followed with, "I think that is great, too!"

I am not sure what he is learning right now...it's difficult to understand. I do know this, George is happy to get on the bus, and he is happy when he gets off the bus! He doesn't even wait to get into the house to show me his work, as he rips out his paper as we are walking up the driveway. On every paper, he is sure to draw "Georgie", these adorable little stick-figure men.

I'll post the pictures from the first day of all the kids. They are all doing well. All getting involved with school and school things. I am happy at home with Lincoln, but an anxious to lay my plans on God's feet and let him lead where he wants me to go now that I am no longer homeschooling. Ah, homeschooling...that reminds me to write on that topic tomorrow. It has been an interesting transition - not all good and not all bad, just different. I DO miss my kids, though, and part of me wonders if not having George with me all day will hurt our relationship. I do know that I am trying to make the most of the hours we do have together, with lots and lots of talking together. It is cute, because George will say, "I want to talk to you!" That is usually only if the neighbor boys aren't out ready to play - but I am fine with that.

I now see a boy who skips through a wooded trail, a boy who laughs while a puppy chases him, and a boy who holds his head up and says he is happy. That is a long way off from the boy in Africa who slept in the bushes, hid from men with guns and though he would never go to school. God truly loved this boy so much that he placed it on our hearts to bring him home. Now, who's next?