Catie Come Home

Our adoption journey to Guatemala

April 11, 2005

A Bittersweet Introduction

We arrived safely in Guatemala on time today and met Catie at about 4 p.m. Papaw got the honor of meeting her in the lobby of our hotel and directing the foster mother and Catie to us. He said he talked to Catie in the elevator, and she smiled.

As always, our introduction to Catie was bittersweet. We loved that little girl unconditionally from the day she was born, and even before that in theory, but it is so painful to take a child from her foster mother, the only family she has known. That is especially true with Catie being five months old. The bond between the two was abundantly clear to all of us, and while it cannot possibly be as hard on us as it is on the foster mother when she leaves the room, it is still gut-wrenching. I did not know the woman, but I embraced her tightly and did not want to let go. She raised our baby girl for five months and did a fantastic job of it. We can never repay her the debt of gratitude we feel.

Catie is having a hard time of it now, too. We are struggling to learn what she likes -- how she likes to be held, when she wants to eat, what position she prefers for sleeping, etc. "She just has this look of terror on her little face," Kimberly said just a few minutes ago in our room when Catie awoke from a nap that did not come easy. "It's like she woke up and realized, 'That wasn't just a bad dream, I'm still here in this room.'"

We know she will adjust in time, but we all love Catie so much that we just want to make her momentary pain disappear instantaneously.

UPDATE: Kimberly just walked up to say that we may have figured out how Catie likes to be fed. They put her in the crib, rested her head on a pillow and gave her the bottle that way. Apparently she does not necessarily like to eat while being held.

P.S. to Sarah Matthews: Kimberly says I still have "the touch." I was the only one who managed to get Catie to fall asleep earlier. None of my old techniques worked, though, and my back is killing me already, so while I may still have the touch, I appear to be losing it rapidly as I age.


Post a Comment

<< Home