Meeting Mekonen For the First Time!

The first time we met our precious baby boy is an experience I will never forget. I have tried a few different times to sit down and express the mo
ment we finally met face to face, skin to skin but I
can't seem to find the words. I wrote this lett
er the night after we me
t our babe.
Dear Mekonen,
Today was the day!!! The day we finally met you face to face! It was everything I thought it would be. We got in about 10:30pm and got a good night's sleep (mommy with the aid of a sleeping pill. haha). We got up and got ourselves ready and waited for Gail (the agency director) to come pick us up. It seemed like a dream! I couldn't believe this was actually happening. We drove the short distance from the Ritmo Guest House where we stayed, to the Layla House where you have been for the past 6 months. The butterflies in my stomach were going crazy!! We couldn't get there fast enough! As we arrived at the Layla House, Gail honked the horn when we arrived at the big blue doors I had seen so often in pictures, and couldn't wait to see in person. The guards opened the door and we piled out of the van. We saw the painting of the Winnie the Pooh on the doorway that led to the baby rooms. We had seen this doorway in so many pictures. We walked through the doorway, across a little courtyard and entered the toddler room where we took off our shoes. Then they told us you were in the next room to the right. We walked in and there you were... sitting in a pink bumbo. You were dressed in a blue one piece outfit with a yellow giraffe on it. The first time I laid eyes on you, you were very wide-eyed, happy, and curious. I am so glad you didn't cry when I picked you up. I had waited so long to hold you. One of the nannies handed you to me. You were all wet and she was going to change you first. But I said no, I didn't care. I just wanted to hold you. It was perfect,. So sweet. Daddy let me hold you first and he videod. I was choking back tears as Gail put you in my arms. I was hugging you and kissing you and just couldn't believe it was you! You were looking up at me with so much curiosity. After snuggles with mommy I handed you to daddy. You were staring up at daddy and patting at his face. It was so cute. After all our first hugs and kisses, one of the nannies changed you. We took turns carrying you around and holding you while we played with the toddlers and took pictures. Gail came back and gave us a very quick tour of some of the other baby rooms. We got a quick glance at Sosina, the little girl of our friends Donovan and Julie. It was pouring rain when we left, so I put daddy's coat over you as I walked out to the van to go back to the Ritmo Guest House. You were fast asleep since I fed you a bottle in the toddler room before we left. As soon as we got you back to the guest house, we got some boiling water from the kitchen and added some cold water from the tub to give you a bath. We sat you in a pink baby bathtub and you seemed confused and curious all at the same time. We scrubbed you all clean and we were cracking up laughing the whole time at how cute you were and how slippery you were. It took two of us to give you a bath! :) We fed you some rice cereal and it was so cute. You were very new to this and it was getting everywhere. You played with us for a bit in the guest house living room and then fell asleep for a nap. At the beginning of the day, you wouldn't put much weight on your legs. But by the end of the day, you were putting weight on your legs and standing up while mommy held your fingers. This made you smile and smile. You didn't make any noises or cry the first day. By the end of the day you were also making better and better eye contact. After dinner and a bottle we put you in the Beco carrier and walked you back to Wanna. Our plan was to have you with us all day and then take you back to Layla to sleep. We wanted as few transitions for you as possible. However, this was harder than I thought it would be. I walked into your baby room at the orphanage and the nannies were feeding other babies so I had to lay you down by all your friends on the floor. You didn't seem to mind one bit, but mommy sure did. I cried and cried as we left. I just knew you were supposed to be with me. I'm not sure I can do that again. After we dropped you off, daddy and I went to the Fatum market to buy bread and fruit and came back to the Guest House and got ready for bed. We cannot wait to see you tomorrow morning!
Mommy(That first night that we brought him back to the orphanage to sleep was the last night we did that. I just couldn't leave him again. We kept him at the guest house with us the whole time and it was the best).

I will continue to post about our trip in-between snuggling and playing with my sweet boy, and changing lots of poopy diapers! Ethiopia was the most incredible experience. I can't wait to share it with you! Stay tuned!

(We have video of the first time we met Mekonen, as well lots of other fun videos, but the file is really big and won't upload to our blog. Does anyone know how to fix it?)


Anonymous said...

Oh, I love it! It made me tear up and smile all at the same time. Looking forward to reading more. :)

Cristy Dunn

Amanda said...

How fun! Thanks for sharing...made me tear up a little too...the part about you leaving him for the night, I can't imagine how hard that was. So happy you all are together now. Reese is almost 8mo. We will have to get together for a play date sometime..especially because they are so close in age! Glad you liked the shoes and I can't wait to photograph him. Take care!

doddyj said...

Wow, you made me tear up - this is SO awesome! I've been checking your blog every single day since you flew home hoping for an update...I think I'm addicted. :)

About your movie problem...do you have Windows Movie Maker? If so, open it in the program, do something to edit it a bit (whether it's cutting out a part of it or adding a transition at the beginning or end) and then save it. For some reason, it always saves as a smaller file than what it originally was...not sure why, but it works for me!!

rccalyn said...

I'm so happy for you guys! He is so adorable, and I can't imagine how excited you must be!

I've used onetruemedia.com to upload big videos. It takes a while sometimes, and I don't know if they have a limit too, but it's worked for me when other sites didn't because of size.

Matt, Sara, Parker and Lleyton Ritzmann said...

Congratulations! We just happened upon your blog at the right time. We noticed you are from Noblesville. My sister and brother-in-law live in Noblesville as well and he is a teach also.

Congrats again. Your little man is very handsome.

Ritzmann Family

Shonah said...

I have been checking your blog for days several times a day waiting to see those pictures!! I am soooo happy for you guys! I can't wait to hear the rest of your story.

Donovan and Julie said...

Yippee! Mekonen is home at last! We miss you guys already!

Lisa and Cory said...

Congrats congrats congrats! I'm so overjoyed for you both!

I've also used One True Media A LOT and You Tube as well...I've never been able to get them to work on blogger.

~ lisa

Megan said...

SO happy you're home and it seems like everything went well. I knew Mekonen would love you guys, he's just such a happy baby!!

I use photobucket to upload pics and videos for my blog. Love it. :) Good luck!