We could hear them before we could see them, the boys came in & went straight to Papi, my oldest daughter came to see me. They brought us pictures they had been working on that morning & began to pass them among us. Where was baby girl you ask…sweet thing came barreling into the room & ran straight to the first American that she found, Lauren! Lauren then very gently directed her to me but she was not interested & backed away slowly…until Mami bribed her with a coloring book & crayons! The kids tore through their back packs with avengence, hugging their pillow pets, putting on their sunglasses, coloring in their books, eating their crackers & showing off their tooth brushes. The room was full of people taking pictures, filming, excited for the children & us, but all I saw was 5 pairs of beautiful brown eyes! I didn´t cry, not because it wasn´t an emotional day but because when these kids walked in they were my children walking in. In my heart they have always been my children & now in God´s timing it is just time to bring them home.
We then proceeded to round up all of their belongings, & change them into their new clothes. Everything we brought is too big but it´s okay, the kids were so excited they didn´t even care, we are headed out sometime this weekend to buy belts & new shoes. As we loaded into the van to head back to the apartment Tyler crawled into the back and was promptly followed by all of the boys one on each side & one in his lap. This scene got me teary eyed, he was meant to be a father. Sweet girls sat in the middle seat with Mami all of us wearing our sunglasses & watching the streeets of Bogota rush by. As we came up to the apartment & got into the elevator to head upstairs only me & the two girls & our middle son fit with all of our backpacks. As soon as the doors closed my sweet son burst into tears in fear of losing his brothers, I held him tight at the top of the stairs & I told him to listen & watch these doors because brothers & Papi are on their way up. As soon as the doors opened the tears subsided. As we entered the apartment it turned into a game of herding cats. They were in & out of every room, drawer, pillow, bed, closet before we had time to put our bags down!
As we all got cleaned up for lunch & changed into comfy clothes our maid Carmen Patricia had prepared a beautiful lunch of rice, sausage, chicken, veggies & platanos. We got everyone to the table & had to do constant reminders about no toys at the table & that we are a family & we eat together. Our oldest son has had a hard day he very much wants to do things his way & laughs when we tell him ¨no¨ & continues to plow through his agenda. We are trying to stop this quickly, after several occasions of disobeying Tyler took him & held him, he got angry, cried & fought the attention but my husband sat there very calmly telling him that he loves him, that he is a good & smart boy who needs to listen to instructions. These moment have ended well, with our oldest complying & listening to Papi y Mami tell him that we love him & that he is a good, smart, handsome boy.
Dinner time went smoother than lunch with a no toys at the table talk again. Three of ours ate all of their food & two were not interested, but we told them that this was it, there would be no more until tomorrow. They also wanted their milk warmed but we had already begun dinner & Mami said no but we will warm up milk tomorrow. Then Papi walked up and they all asked him & handed him their glasses. He looked at me over the table & we had our first ¨no words needed parent look¨, and he said no also. I realize that this seems like a petty thing & it would have taken just a few minutes to warm up the milk but we are trying so hard to be on the same page & be consistent with our kids.
Bath time was a delight, we have walk in showers so the girls went first, washed hair & bodies. As big sister was drying off baby girl giggled & danced in the water, precious! Then came the two youngest boys, they wanted the water a little colder but also enjoyed cleaning up. Our oldest was having another father & son conversation with dad but was soon ready for his shower. They all love brushing their teeth with their new fancy Spiderman & Hello Kitty toothbrushes. Then it was off to bed. After some silliness, prayers & kisses everybody was tucked in. So far I have found 3 of them on the floor & put them back into the bed tucking the sheets in a little tighter. Two have woken up crying but I´ve had the joy of being able to rock them back to sleep.
Papi & Mami, were two sweeter words ever said? Friends this has been a hard & exhausting day, but the I love you Papi y Mami´s at the end of the day were amazing. Having them slowly break down those barriers they have built to protect themselves & each other just reminds me that it is a privilege to be a parent, we have a long but rewarding road ahead of us!
At the dinnermesa,