We arrived home yesterday from our court trip. It was a long trip, but the non-stop flights from Houston to Moscow made such a difference, it cut out at least one extra day of travel. We started our week in Moscow getting our medicals done. Then we flew to Kaliningrad and spent five days with our sweet baby. It was so wonderful to hold her again. She grew taller and got heavier. She's still not walking, but I think she's almost there. And as for her hair, it is definitely not longer, in fact they cut it right off. Her little bangs are so short, but she's still the most beautiful little girl I have ever seen.
I can't say enough about how wonderful her caregivers and baby home director were. Everyday we went to visit she was clean, smelled like a doll, and dressed as cute as can be. They hugged her and gave her kisses on the forehead many times. She looked at them with trust and security. She's definitely felt love as much as she can in a baby home. They made us feel so welcome. One day we spent our visit in the director's office and she offered us hot tea and cookies, she was so kind. A few times, during that visit, she would come over and run her fingers through her hair as she talked about her. I'm so thankful she's been in such loving care.
We loved every visit and every minute we got to spend with our little angel. On the first day, I don't think she remembered us because she cried again, but she warmed up quickly. Eddie had such a way of making her smile and laugh. She was fascinated with him and his facial prickleys the day he didn't shave. With each day she became more and more comfortable. By day three, there were no more tears. When they brought her in the very last day, she gave us the sweetest smile when she saw is. It was a happy smile, but at the same time it looked like a smile of relief, like she was saying in her little mind, "oh yeah, it's you, you're here again, you came back." It melted my heart and is an image I will never forget, a sweet innocent smile of hope. I just pray she really has no concept of time and isn't sad that we're not there now. When we were leaving that last day Eddie said, "This is the last time we'll ever have to leave this place without her." She was also fascinated with the dresses they put her in. I think this is the first time she has ever been in dresses, she kept lifting up the hems and looking at them, it was so cute. One of her caregivers told us she knew she liked us because each day they dressed her she would smile, it's like she knew we were coming because they were dressing her up. The baby home director said that our visits were having a positive affect on her. She said she was smiling and lauging more than they had ever seen. I even think she gained weight during the five days we were there.
Monday we went to court. Eddie got most of the questions, then the social worker spoke and the baby home director. Then I got a few questions and then the judge went out to make her ruling. At 12:30pm the judge came in and granted us our application to adopt our sweet baby girl and officially named us her parens. I thought for sure I would cry, but I didn't. I was so overjoyed and thrilled, but no tears. Eddie welled up a bit, he's become a big marshmellow for this little one, I love it! And then it was hugs all around. After court we took our translator, driver and coordinator for a celebration lunch. Almost 2 years after starting this journey we finally have our baby girl, our miracle baby, in so many ways. After all this, I totally forgot to take a picture of us in front of the court building after the hearing. I'm kicking myself.
Yesterday we flew home to wait out the ten day wait. We'll head back a week from Sunday to pick her up. I'm pretty ready, but I know these next few days will fly by with last minute to do's. I wish I could post pictures and as soon as we're home for good I will.