I’m sitting on a sofa in Yerevan, Armenia sipping what I assume is mint tea and I’m beginning to doubt weather or not this Russian throat losenge will ease the pain of swallowing. But the apartment is quiet. Only the sounds of taxis honking outside and the muffled dispute happening in the apartment next door interrupt the peaceful Sabbath rest that my body needs. Daddy took Joy and Grace to church with friends that we’ve made since arriving and I know they’ll come back with enthusiastic stories of “…and then the lady kissed both my cheeks!” or “…he gave me a candy and picked me up way over his head!” What Armenians lack in public infrastructure they make up for with physical affection.
Its been a whirlwind in our lives, these last couple of months, not to mention the tornado-like aftermath our apartment was left in. We were matched with a child on a Tuesday morning, then packed-up and left for Armenia 2 weeks later. We’ve been here for 7 weeks now.
The typical adoption process here in Armenia would be that parents come to meet the child, commit on paper, and then return to their home country to wait for a court date. They would then return a 2nd time to retrieve their child. We got a little crazy (and checked out some local prices of furnished apartments) and realized it is actually cheaper for us to come and stay here, rather than go back and forth 2 times. Not to mention the fact that we’d get to go to the orphanage every week-day to visit our daughter. So we decided to come and wait-it-out.
My husband’s boss (and dear family friend) was generous in allowing him to work from Armenia for the entire time that we are here. He works each day at a community work space while the girls and I go out learning about Armenian libraries, grocery stores, parks, and the 1 dollar ice rink!
My father, my husband’s father, and 3 of our best friends have all come to visit since we arrived, so the weeks have passed quickly. It is only now in the final days of our visit that a longing to return home is beginning to settle on all of us like dust. Salvation is still living at the orphanage, which has been bitter sweet. We hunger to have her with us, but in our daily orphanage visits we’ve gotten to know each worker by name and their work schedule. They ask us “why” often because they cannot fathom why on earth we would adopt a child with “problems.” But they also cry and hug us when we explain that God has so loved us and so we love in crazy ways. “Byoo-tee-ful,” they say.