I made it back! (Saturday actually.) I did go to court on Friday as planned, only to find out that none of the judges were there that day! However, they allowed me to go home. They rescheduled court for Tuesday (yesterday), and allowed the wonderful lady who owns the orphanage to represent me. She called yesterday to say that we passed court and she has the adoption decree!!!
I am SO glad that part is finished! As soon as she gets the attestation from Accra, we can file the I600! I can't wait for the day when I can finally bring our kids home!
Well, tomorrow is my court date! I can't wait. I hope it will go smoothly and quickly. After court, I am taking the kids, their bio mother, their Auntie, and the orphanage director out to eat (if you can go "out to eat" in Ghana)! Then, I will head to Accra for my flight which leaves a little after midnight. I think it will be strange for the kids and I to spend our last hour together with the whole family. I mean, what right would I have to act sad because I'm leaving the kids, when the bio family will probably never see them again after tomorrow. I'd much rather have a quiet goodbye time with them. But- it is what it is. By this time tomorrow, I'll be on my way to Accra as the proud mother of 3 children.
Wow. Where do I begin? Well, I'm in Ghana. I've been here for 14 days now I think. First night I got in VERY late, so I stayed in Accra at Hotel Obama. It was ok. Just a place to sleep. In the morning I got a flight to Kumasi. (Shoulda taken the bus, but don't know how it works.) Ms Mary (who runs the orphanage) picked me up at the Kumasi airport & took me to the hotel near the orphanage. It was about $13/nt USD. It wasn't bad. There was no a/c or hot water, no towels are provided, no internet, and it was so dim I couldn't see anything. But, I'm pretty durable, so it was alright for the 10 days I was there.
Anyways- Friday afternoon I was taken to the orphanage. I had this awful fear that I wouldn't recognize my own children when I got there! But they actually took me inside, then brought the kids in. They are beautiful! Just like the picture! They were SO quiet & shy! But by the end of they day they were a little more comfortable. They are really great kids!
Let me sidetrack for a minute & tell the hard details. The first few days were devastating for me. Everything I knew about the kids was false. I know our agency switched representatives in Ghana. So I guess the old rep was the bad guy who lied. Anyways- the hardest thing was their ages. I started to wonder Friday if they were really 8 & 6. So I asked Serwaa her age. "I am 10 years old." Shocked. She is older than my bio daughter. Hard. Because our first priority with the ages was to keep her the oldest. Then Kontoh. He says 8. You know he was going to be my baby. I'd been picturing this boy who just turned 6 two months ago. It's like I lost 2 years of my baby's life in that one second. We didn't even know his official birthday. He will actually be 8 in March. It honestly took a few days for me to accept it. But I'm ok now.
That's enough of that. Over the past 10 days, I've met with social welfare twice, and the lawyer 3 times. By the way- at the lawyer, I got to meet my children's mother (who I thought was deceased). She was a sweet, quiet lady. I liked her.
Yesterday I got to my new hotel in Kumasi. (I'd been advised to stay near the orphanage so we could run all the legal errands. But I really needed some time with just my kids.) We've been having a great time- swimming, eating on the balcony, reading Christmas stories online.... What's strange is that it feels different than I thought. I don't feel like I'm with brand new kids. I just feel like I'm with my kids. I'm sure it won't be this easy when we get home. But so far- everything is normal.
In just 2 days, they will officially be my children!