I'm beginning to feel more human today. Our first night, Melanie was up for about an hour and a half around 2 a.m., but slept in until about 7. I had gone to bed at 8 or so, and was out like the proverbial light the moment my head hit the pillow. Monday morning I took Melanie to Lisa & Christian's school to take each of their classmates a little pen in the shape of a Kazakh matrioshka doll. Both of the classes had prayed daily for our family, and we appreciated it so much. Melanie was her charming self, waving bye-bye to the kids and smiling like a movie star! Took Mom to the airport, and we came home for lunch and a nap ... we both slept hard! This jet lag is brutal. Last night we both slept all night (yay!) We got the kids off to school, then Melanie and I went to vote. There was a really long line; it took nearly an hour to get inside. Quite the social hour too .. I saw lots of friends and was able to introduce them to Melanie. Home for lunch and another nap! David called and woke me up, and in my confusion I thought we were still in Almaty! It's so funny what your brain does to you when you're that tired.
One of the major casualties of the trip was our digital camera. Somewhere in the confusion of the embassy appointment, and taking pictures at the Sisters' office, it was lost. I'm pretty sure it was left on the main counter in the office, but Gulnara sent someone to look for it, and they couldn't find it. Luckily I had donwloaded most of the pictures onto the laptop, but won't have the group shot after the embassy. I'm still optimistic that it will turn up at the office, and a traveling family will bring it home with them. St. Anthony, where are you??
Melanie and the dog seemed to have made friends .. I was a little worried when he started lunging at her, but she didn't seem too afraid. Now he lets her pet him and squeeze his nose. He's a good dog ... I know he'll come to learn love her like he does all the other kids ...
And so, we seem to have come to the end of our story. I have really enjoyed keeping this journal; it's been a lot of fun exercising my creative side. I will probably start a new journal about the ins and outs of being a mom of five children ... a new chapter in my life. I appreciate all the support we have gotten from friends and family; there's no way to get through a journey like this without that. For those of you poised to set out on an adoption journey of your own, I wish you luck, happiness and good fortune. May the road always rise up to meet you (and may lots of other Irish proverbs come to your mind!) There will be lots of road blocks, bumps and flat tires, but you just have to learn to "build a bridge and get over it!"