Almost

Today was court. We passed...almost! The Ministry of Women's Affairs [MoWA] had to explain some of their comments to the judge, so we are hoping for some good news tomorrow that Lil' A and Baby T are officially ours! We fly out for Frankfurt in just a few hours, so maybe we'll celebrate tomorrow in Germany.

Today was incredibly emotional. Sweaty palms all day [no brainer if you know me well]. Anxious spirit - not in the worrysome way, just in the "I'm ready for this to be over with!" way! Lots of waiting. But once we were before the judge, she asked us 5 "yes or no" questions and we were finished. Court lasted all of 90 seconds!

After court we got to go back to the orphanage and see our kiddos. We were able to spend about 3 hours holding, kissing, and playing with them. It was really bittersweet knowing that we'd have to say goodbye today for a few weeks. We took a bunch of family pictures. Hopefully we'll be able to post pics once we get back home. We also hope to have a family-of-four Christmas card this year! :)

We also had an unexpected opportunity today that brought out lots of tears. We had the amazing grace of meeting our children's birth mothers after court. We were able to spend 15-20 minutes with them - asking them questions, giving our deepest thanks, ensuring their comfort that we would love their children forever, and asking their blessing for their children. I don't want to share much about our encounter because of it's intense intimacy for our children's stories, but needless to say it was beyond priceless. Pictures and video were taken in full. Heartfelt and strong hugs were given. Tears were shed. It was powerful beyond words. I'm crying as I write this. What deep love is required to give up your child when you know you cannot provide for them? That kind of mother's love levels me...

When we laid Baby T into her bed, kissed her pudgy cheeks then took Lil' A into his playroom and kissed the top of his head, we nearly lost it. We lingered with our hands on his chest and faces on his head. We walked into the hallway together and just held each other for a few moments. I cried. A lot. Brian said some comforting words. We'll be back soon. But leaving them was brutal. I cried all the way home.

As we leave Ethiopia tonight, it has been a powerful reality that after over 3 years of desiring a family, a family was formed this week. This incredibly painful season is almost over when our kids will join us and we'll be a forever family. God is oh-so good.