Monday, July 19, 2010

Gotcha Day... Whose Baby Didn't Cry?

Gotcha Day is the day that changes an orphan's life. Often times, with little or no preparation by the orphanage, the child is dropped off or handed over to a family and the caregiver turns and walks away... without ever saying anything.

Gabriella was the last of the four children to enter the room. The other three children were hysterical... the crying could have been heard way down the hall. It's a scary day because the children don't know who those foreigners are... they are just handed to them with generally no explanation.

Gabriella's caregiver walked in, handed her to me and walked out. I had to have David, our guide, get her and have her come back for a picture. Geez! As David said, this process is full of many types of tears, tears of joy and tears of sadness.

Gabriella never cried. She sat with us and looked at both Jason and I. The video camera was going... we also had a chance to get a few photos as well. Gabriella looked at both devices and smiled.

I will admit, that in those first few moments with us, she seemed to be looking at us and wanting to say,"Who the heck are you?" We just kept pointing to ourselves and saying, "Baba aiy ne" or "Mama aiy ne." Which translates into Daddy (Mommy) loves you.

Within maybe 5 minutes or so of getting Gabriella, David whisked us all out of the room and back to the van... off to the Wharton Hotel. That part was a little frustrating. I was trying to document this moment... and, he was dragging me out of the room. Argh!

We did manage to stop at the bottom of the elevator to take a couple more photos. Still no tears from our little princess. It began to worry the new baba... but, I reminded him, that I never expected tears from our baby. I always thought she would just sit in our arms and smile. That's just what she did. Thank you Jesus for such a perfect start!