Wednesday, July 1, 2009

To Addis and back (Part 5) Donations

Happy 10 month Birthday, Charlie!

Before I start his post I'd just like to thank the AP community (and others) who posted comments on the last thread regarding Charlie's *separation anxiety*. I found them truly helpful. And the fact that EVERY SINGLE comment gave the same suggestions made for a powerful and persuasive lobby. I had, of course, read all about attachment parenting, and knew in theory what to do... but in real life, with Charlie here in front of me and the theories not... plus being swayed by parental advice (even though they are great parents they have never parented an adoptive child as many of you pointed out)... Well I needed you readers and forum members to remind me of the months of studying I had done previously to bringing Charlie home. So I went back to 100% being there for her and not trying to sneak out the room for a bathroom break or whatnot. Although my back is killing me (spasms), she had a much more pleasant afternoon and evening and I did too. She didn't cry AT ALL (because I never left her side) and laughed and played a lot more than she had been. So thank you all for taking the time to respond. Back to the trip journal:



We brought 4 suitcases of donations for various orphanages. My belief was that my agency care center most likely did not need all 4 suitcases, as every few weeks a new influx of American parents arrive with donations, and I was right. The day we visited her care center, there was a whole courtyard full of suitcases filled to the brim. They are well supplied with diapers, formula, clothing, shoes, medications, etc.

So instead of leaving all 4 with the IAG care center, I did some research ahead of time and my mom asked her Ethiopian friend to do some research as well. We came up with AHOPE

and Mary Joy Aid Through Development as needy organizations that do awesome work.

Each place got a suitcase full of kid's clothes, medications, and jewelry (the edible candy type!) Even the boys enjoyed the candy bracelets! Here are some pictures.

I was not able to go to the orphanages, and deeply regret that. I needed to stay with Charlie, as this was the day she was dropped off at the Guest House. There was no way I was leaving her after waiting all these months to meet her, and she was traumatized and needed to stay put. I know in a general sense what these orphanages are like, having been to several in the past, and worked at one in Bolivia for a summer. Still, I felt sorry I could not go to these, but we can't always go to everything we want to in life. Luckily my mother could go in my stead., She was especially impressed with MJATD, which is not an orphanage, but does outreach in the community regarding HIV/AIDS education and does aid HIV positive kids (just doesn't adopt them out) through community programs. It was started by a Sister named Zebider Zewdie. My mother was very impressed with that program. The website is or


Angela said...

The stage of object permance can be quite challenging for all parents. Adoption just adds another dimension. Stay Strong.

Your short experience just proves evidence based theories are quite accurate. A classic text book example. Thanks for sharing.

I'm also sure your donations were very appreciated in Addis. What kid doesn't like a candy bracelet? lol.

Joyce said...

Mika, to answer your question when I posted earlier, I will be at work on Monday, Tuesday, and most of Wednesday next week. We are having a planned power outage beginning at Noon on Wednesday so I hope to leave on my vacation a couple of hours early that day. Everyone would LOVE to see Charlie. Just let us know when you can come by. Kristen goes on leave beginning on Wednesday so hopefully you can come by before she leaves.

I am really enjoy and look forward to your posts.

Adopting1Soon said...

Great! I'll try to come by on Monday. Around 12ish or 2:30 ish, does either time work better for you guys?

Kristine said...

Congratulations!!! I have been off the blogs for a while and am so happy to hear about your trip. Charlie is too cute. I loved reading all your posts. Gives me an idea of what I am in for (hopefully!) You are doing a great job! Hold her all you can, you are not spoiling her! once she starts walking and exploring, she will be running away from you- trust me! :)