Enough with the serious stuff. What everyone really wants to know is what he’s like!
:: He’s very shy at first, and he’s mastered the scowl perfected by his sister when he meets someone new for the first time. 🙂
:: He loves making people laugh. Whether it’s imitating someones facial expressions or pantomiming something funny that happened during the day, he loves nothing more to laugh and to make people around him laugh.
:: He wants to please and seeks out ways to help around the house. He is extremely obedient and wants to know the correct way to do things and the appropriate way to behave.
:: He loves to tell stories and has told many a tale about his life in Ethiopia. I think some of them may be a stretch from the truth (the one about he and his buddy, Mesfin, driving a car in Awassa and crashing it into a tree stands out in my mind!) but they sure are fun to listen to!
:: He is a snuggle bug. While he doesn’t quite know how to express himself in words yet, he’s got the body language down pat and is eager to show affection when he’s happy. Running up to me and jumping on my leg while hugging me is a common occurrence each day.
:: He is extremely inquisitive and wants to know how things work and how to speak in English. His English is coming along nicely. He is now able to convey just about any point or message if he tries hard enough, usually with a mix of pantomiming, Amharic, and English. And he understands just about anything we say to him as long as it’s something he’s heard once before.
:: He is tough as a nail. When he had blood drawn and immunizations given, he merely flinched without a single tear. When he had teeth extracted at the dentist, he wasn’t crazy about the experience but was elated with the fact that he got to pick out a red balloon at the end of the visit.
:: He loves America. He has told us repeatedly that he wants to be here and wants to be part of a family. I’m not sure he truly loves us yet but I do believe he is falling in love and that’s good enough for all of us right now.
Mama would have loved him. She would have loved his resiliency and his determination to assimilate into a completely new culture and life with a smile on his face most days. She would have taken on the tragedy of his life as her own and embraced it with him. She would have proudly welcomed him into our family. I miss her terribly during this time with him, yet if she were here his life wouldn’t be a part of ours.
I mentioned his mother above and how I imagine her watching over all this, hoping I’ll do the best job I know how with her child. Well, I also imagine my own Mama doing the same, her beautiful spirit intertwined with that of his first mothers, helping guide me down the right path. She gave me a candle holder before she died that was inscribed with the famous words of Julian of Norwich, “All shall be well, and all shall be well, and all manner of things shall be well.” I wasn’t sure I understood it’s meaning then, but I do in fact I think I get it now, Mama.