Friday, June 29, 2012

Day # 2

Both my bags came just before bed, so that was comforting.  Was able to deliver some of the things I had brought to Nikki and had all my stuff of course.  Had a good night sleep.  Was very warm, but had the ceiling fan on and it didn't stop me from sleeping.  I didn't use the mosquito net since it blocks the air.  Only woke up with 3 mosquito bites - so I considered it a success.  I'll trade 3 bites for being a little cooler.  Took a cold shower before going to bed and then a quick one when I woke up.  Oh - the Internet is free between 2am and 7am so I did wake up at 5am or so and sync up my computer and stuff before going back to sleep - then woke up at 7:30am or so.  I went up to see what was going on with Nikki and the kids.  The kids were still sleeping though just a few minutes after that Wedly woke up.  He was pretty subdued as he woke up - could tell he was still waking up for a while.  We came out on the porch and played for a bit.  Wedly rode his Red Flyer tricycle back and forth quite a bit.  Then road this Cozy Coup car a bit as well (one where you move it by walking your feet - has a door that opens to get in and a steering wheel).  Then I pushed him back and forth some on it - going quite a bit faster than he goes by himself - he really like it. 

Then we got the basketball and shot some at the little basketball hoop.  After he would do it he would say "Daddy's turn" - then I would shoot - then we'd say Wedly's turn.  We also played catch with the little basketball for a bit.  Not sure Wedly ever caught it, but he did corral it pretty quickly and throw it back (two handed over head throw).  At some point Eventz woke up and Nikki had finished getting Oatmeal ready.  Wedly had his with bananas,  I had raisins and bananas and brown sugar.  And Nikki gave me a locally made strawberry yogurt drink - was good as well.  Part of the boy's typical meal time is taking their clothes off - came out of being much easier to keep them clean.  Now Wedly is a pretty clean eater so it isn't as much out of necessity as just the usual.  Though for lunch today I forgot and he ate fine with them, till Nikki reminded me and we took them off.  So he doesn't seem to care.

After breakfast Wedly brushed his teeth (he sits in their sink for doing this) - he brushes for a little while and then I finish making sure to hit everything (this will still take some practice to get better at working together on it). 

We spent the next hour or so hanging out inside and out - played with the nerf dart gun (they like this) and also building the Thomas the train stuff.  About 9:15, Mateja (Mah tay yah) came by as it was time for PreSchool.  Wedly was pretty insistent to grab her hand to walk down the stairs, but also then asked for mine.  Since there wasn't room for all 3 of us though he walked down with her.  We went to the baby house where the Nannies were singing to all the kids for singing and prayer time.  Wedly was with Mateja (she later said that is typical, that he feels comfortable sitting with her) - but as soon as I sat down he left her and came to sit on my lap!  We sat for the time of singing and prayer - was a neat experience as the Nanny leading was passionately singing and sharing in Creole.  After that was over we went outside the building with all the kids heading to pre-school.  Mateja sits them down and has shoes for them to put on (none of them usually wear shoes, but the preschoolers get to learn to put on shoes and head to school) - seems like a nice visual of transition for them.  Then they each grab a ring in a rope and Mateja starts heading to school.  Right then however Nikki came up and said that Wedly's dad had showed up - so we decided we'd skip school today! 

Having Wedly's dad show up unexpectedly brought a bunch of emotions, not something I was quite ready for, but it's all good.  Wedly's dad has his fiancé with him as well.  When Wedly realized his "papa" was there he jumped off the pre-school line and ran to him - he was excited to see him.  Of course this raised a stir of emotions.  The 5 of us (and Eventz for part of the time) sat down in the room off the main building and chatted.  Wedly sat on his Papa's lap (plan is to refer to him as Papa as I am "Daddy") while we chatted and then later sat on the floor and watched a movie with Eventz on Nikki's I pad.  His Dad again asked to confirm that we were Christians and were planning on raising him in the faith.  Nikki shared again our involvement in our church and he was reassured.  He asked if Sarah was here, we explained why she wasn't (Gabriel) and I showed them a picture of her and Gabriel on my phone.  Wedly is very reserved most of the time - and as all this was going on he did in fact seem even more so - I'm sure it’s a confusing for him trying to understand how everything all fits together.  And I'm sitting there wondering how this is all going to turn out, if it is going to be hard / confusing / and possibly end difficultly.  When we came last year, when Wedly's dad visited - his Papa leaving would cause him to cry pretty bad (Nikki later told me that he hasn't been that way as much recently, she thinks that he's starting to figure out the situation better).  I went and grabbed the scrapbook that Sarah had made (pictures of Wedly), some standalone pictures, and also a couple of T-shirts as souvenirs from Washington for him.  We spent some time looking through the book.  Wedly's dad said he was excited to give some of the standalone pictures to his 2 kids to remember Wedly by.  Nikki explained each of the titles that Sarah had put on the various pages of events of Wedly's life (birth days, etc).  At some point in this Eventz broke down a bit so Nikki ran him off for a Nanny to watch - Wedly came and sat on my lap.  This was comforting probably mostly to me - he still wanted to be with me!  But still tough to comprehend all the emotions each of us were feeling.  I can't imagine being in his Dad's position either.

His dad multiple times shared that he will be praying for our travels and for us as we raise Wedly - I thanked him.  He shared that he still doesn't have a job, has been considering going to the Dominican Republic for work, but that if he were to get caught they are not treated well (Haitian's who try to sneak across the border).  He shared that Wedly's brother and sister finished their school tests and will be moving to the next grade (3rd and 5th I think).  Not sure if that was leaving or entering into.  They have been living with him, but now that it is summer one of them is away with I think an aunt.  Wedly's papa shared that he's living in the house that belonged to his parents (passed away) but that it needs work.  There were some hints dropped at this need and then various other needs with the costs for putting his children into school.  He shared that he feels it is very important for his children to go to school and get an education.  At some point I offer for Wedly to go back to his Dad and he did.  He has been dating his fiancé for about a year and hopes that they will be able to be married.  We talked about church a bit - sounds like we will go at 10am, supposedly lasts till 12:30 or so - actually starts at 8am, but said it would be ok if we come at 10am.  I'm going to stick out like a sore thumb - they supposedly dress up very much for church and I didn't bring super nice clothes.  Oh well.  One side comment that was interesting - Wedly's dad mentioned that he was getting over being sick - I mentioned that I also was just about through a cold, and we both coughed at the same time.  He however had this strange item which was about the same size as chap stick, but pulled apart and he would inhale through his nose.  I'm guessing a Haitian placebo equivalent of those anti-cold medicines we have!  :-)  Just was a little strange as he would stick these two chapstick looking things into his nose.  Wedly was equally intrigued as he sat on his Papa's lap watching him do this.  Wedly's papa asked if we would be able to stay in contact over the phone or come see him in the future - Nikki astutely mentioned that the language difference would make that tough.

After we finished our conversation we gave Wedly, his papa and papa's fiancé some time to hang out since that is why they had come.  I went over to the pavilion and played with a bunch of the other kids for a while and then came into the volunteer house after that.  They sat with him out under the big tree for probably 2 hours!  When they were ready to go (just before lunch) Wedly's papa was holding him.  Nikki called me over - as I was walking over Wedly asked/worked his way down and came over to me to be picked up!  Though I'm sure there are mixed emotions on his papa's side as well, it was very heartwarming for me to see Wedly choose to come to me on his own - even in the midst of a complicated situation.  He seems to be understanding the situation at least a little, though you could still see some confusion and concern at the whole thing in his eyes.  It has to be hard to internalize. 

Next for lunch the boys had some rice with bean sauce in a bowl.  I gave it a try and I wouldn't guess it would be my favorite - very interesting, but as with I guess just about any food - Wedly was fine with it.   After lunch it was nap time.  We put all 3 of them down, but Wedly never ended up going to sleep.  He quietly laid there for at least an hour and a half - playing quietly with a teddy bear or just sitting there.  Nikki left around 2pm to go with a number of the other staffers to a funeral (husband of one of the Nannies) and I was tasked with babysitting the 3 boys.  Josiah woke first, then Eventz.  Then with Eventz playing with the toys it was hard to leave Wedly in his room longer so I let him get up.  Then we setup the pool (filled with air) and hooked Wedly and Events up with their swim diapers and swim trunks.  Wedly then gladly turned the hose on and began filling the pool.  As it was filling we had a good time splashing and shooting the hose at each other. 

After hitting me with the water from the hose Wedly would say - "Daddy, you're wet!".  Pool games include running in circles in the pool, splashing each other, driving trucks in the pool, and going down the slide into the pool.  Mix in between a ride or two around the porch on the tricycle and you have a fun afternoon of enjoying being a little cooler.  Josiah even joined us in the pool for a while.  Then fed Josiah half of his bottle before he conked and I couldn't get him to stay awake, so put him down for a little more nap.  Next I gave Eventz and Wedly turns riding in the Cozy Car - they both love going very fast in it and doing 180's.  Somewhere in our play time someone had brought a box full of Haitian pastries commemorating some event - so the three of us shared a pastry.  Nikki got home at 5 or so and started on dinner.  Hot dogs and stale cheese puffs (apparently the only way they come in Haiti!). 

 After dinner we again played trains and nerf dart gun, though the gun seems to be working less and less often, we decided that the batteries might be getting weak.  I made a nice long track for the trains and it was very cute when Wedly saw it and said "Good Job Daddy!".  After a bit (6:30) it was time for bath to bedtime ritual.  Wedly typically goes to bed the earliest with Eventz being a night owl.  I said "are you ready for Bath time"?  He said yes and raced toward the bathroom giddily and we went through the bath sequence.  He doesn't like water pouring on his head because it gets in his eyes, so that took a little doing, but I was successful keeping it out so hopefully I built some confidence.  After bath, diaper goes on, and then another race across the room for teeth brushing.  Again he does first pass and then let me finish.  Then to the bed room, tonight the whole procedure is led by me and just us.  We read the three standard books (our picture book, sesame street book, and Pooh bee book).  Afterward I sang the ABC song, then Wedly sang the ABC song, then I sang the first verse of Amazing Grace.  Then I led him through prayer and then prayed for him afterward.  Ritual completed it was hugs and kisses goodnight and Wedly laid down on his favorite (front left) corner - then lights out.  With no nap time, I'm pretty sure it was a quick to sleep night...  Another great day, God you are good.  The rest of the evening was spent relaxing under the Mango tree in what seems to be a much cooler evening (the high was supposed to only be 91 today, so it appears it has cooled down a little).

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