Today we went to court in Kampala. At 5 am, our driver picked up Hope and Henry and one of the nannies at the babies home and then us at the guest house. We then drove 3 hours to Kampala from Jinja for court. I didn’t realize it took so long, but there are multiple places where there are big holes in the roads and traffic was nuts. Seriously. About 75% of the time, cars just move around in what most closely resembles herds rather than lanes. I had to just quit watching the road because we kept almost hitting other cars, motorcycles, bicycles or even just people walking. It’s so bizarre because people do not have the right of way here. Cars don’t stop when a person is in the road, and people just walk right out in front of cars. We only had to cross the street twice while in Kampala, and I’m hoping we don’t have to much more than that. 🙂 It’s really beautiful in Jinja, but Kampala is smoggy and crowded.
Court was at 10:30 am and nothing like what I had expected. We went over to the court building with the babies home’s administrator, the home’s manager and our lawyer. We waited in a waiting room and then were called into the judge’s office for court. He sat behind his desk, our lawyers sat at a table facing him, and then the rest of us sat on chairs against the wall. He never addressed us, but only spoke to the lawyer. He asked a lot of questions about the babies’ mothers and how the children ended up in the home. Our lawyer had all of the necessary documents, but the police do not make very detailed reports here, so the documents didn’t have great info on them. Our lawyer is going to try to get another document from the police on each child, but I think everything went fine. I was nervous during all of the judge’s questions, but in the end, the lawyer said it went great. The children were awesome and slept in both of our arms the whole time. By the way, have I mentioned it is SUPER humid and warm here? And there isn’t AC anywhere. When you have a sleeping baby on you, it is suffocatingly hot. I kept hoping the judge didn’t think we looked suspicious because Jeff and I were both sitting there sweating bullets. 🙂
The only disappointing thing so far is that our Judge set our ruling date for April 28th, which is 2 weeks from today. That’s the day that we will get our written ruling, and we can’t start anything else in the process until we have that. I’m going to see if we can start anything over at the embassy early, but I’m not hopeful that we’ll be able to. One to two weeks is a normal time frame, I just had been hoping we would land on the short end.
So far, the trip has been really trying. Leaving our kids was almost unbearable for me. The longest I have ever been away from any of them is 3 days, so 4 weeks was just so hard to fathom. Traveling was super tiring because we got a total of 4 hours of sleep over 2 1/2 days and then didn’t sleep well last night either. Then meeting the kids, we realized that just like their bonding to us will be a process, our bonding to them will be as well. I knew this would be the case, but experiencing it is another thing. We love them and are so glad to be here with them, but I think it will just take awhile until we feel like they’ve been with us all along. Through it all I have spent a ton of time in prayer asking the Lord to comfort my bio children, Hope and Henry and myself. Jeff and I know without a doubt that this is what the Lord has called us to do. Knowing that provides great comfort at times when we are emotionally week and things seem too hard.
By this afternoon, the children have made a lot of progress with us. Henry was really smiley and giggly and cuddled up on both of us to sleep. He even cried at the end of the day when Jeff set him down at the babies home. That’s a really good sign. Hope became much more comfortable and allowed me to console her, rather than trying to get to the nanny. On the ride back to Jinja, she slept on my chest the entire way.. I still haven’t gotten a smile from her, but I have gotten cuddles, so I trust the smiles will come.
Well, if you’re still reading this far, I want to thank you so much for all of your prayers. This process has required a great deal of faith in the Lord, and your prayers have helped immensely. Thank you for traveling this journey with us. We love you and thank the Lord for your everyday!