After the meeting I was taken to Vanessa's room so they could show us how they applied medicine to her "backside". She has perpetual inflammation in that area and they wanted to show us what they used on it. It looked pretty bad, but they said it was not painful to her. Evidently it's been that way since birth and she has never been able to where diapers. We will take her to a doctor as soon as we get home to see what they say. When we left the orphanage we went to the pharmacy to buy the ingredients for the medicine. Yes.... I said ingredients. The medicine they use has to be mixed at home which our facilitator will do for us tonight.
Later in the day we went to the bank to withdraw the money the children had in their bank account. These accounts are created by the government for all orphans and it is customary for adoptive parents to donate this back to the orphanage. It was a much larger sum of money than I expected. We were actually given the option to designate the money to the care of a specific child and we chose to do so for a small boy who has lung cancer. We must have been at the bank where all of the "welfare" accounts are held, because there was a long line of elderly people all the way out the door.
As we waited and watched the people come and go, I was overcome with both sadness and gratitude. These people were so old and worn down. They had clearly lived hard lives and were continuing to do so..... many of them shivering due to the cold. I helped several ladies down the steps as they were too fragile to get down on their own. Several things occurred to me as we stood there for about 30 minutes. First, my grandmother is from this region and was fortunate enough to get married to my grandfather and come to America as a teenager. I saw her face as each of the elderly women walked by and I was so grateful that she was living comfortably in America now. I also thought of Elisa, Vanessa and Elijah and how blessed they would be to come home with us. Not only are we taking them away from the orphanage, but we are taking them away from a very hard and difficult life. Oh how blessed we are........
So today we are getting ready to pick our kids up. Tomorrow (Sunday) is our "Gotcha" day and we are so excited. We're picking out their clothes (actually, the girls are picking out clothes) and setting them aside for the big day tomorrow. It's taken so long to get to this point... where we will finally have them in our care. Tonight we will go buy diapers and formula and all of the other things we will need to care for them at the apartment. We finally feel as if we're nearing the end of this very long road. At this time tomorrow, we will be together.... FINALLY TOGETHER!!!!!