Surprise! Before we left the office with Ethan’s social worker, we learned that we will get Ethan tomorrow at 4:00pm (2:00am EST)!
Based on what we were told, we expected to get him at the end of our stay, on the way to the airport. The only thing we can figure is that we have already been here the minimum requirement of three to four days so we can get him already!
However, before the social worker informed us, she verified what day we arrived and asked what we did since we’ve been here. I think she was making sure that we experienced some of the Korean culture, which is the real reason for the required number of days and also why they encourage parents to visit rather than send an escort.
Adoptive parents can sent an escort instead of traveling to Korea to pick up the child, but it is believed to be easier on the child if he or she doesn’t have to pass through a stranger’s hands on the way from the foster family to the adoptive family.
We certainly experienced a mix of emotions as we prepared to meet Ethan this morning. Once we got there, we relaxed and took our time to get to know each other during our one-hour visit. At first, he wondered who these strange people were.
Shortly after we arrived, his foster mother went to the kitchen to bring out a small table of fruit and cappuccinos. Ethan wasn’t too interested in being with us and the social worker; he wanted to follow her. There was a bit of concern written on his little face.
After we were together awhile, he seemed to gradually warm up to us. He ate a strawberry, did high-fives, played the piano. When he’s happy, he claps his feet together and/or shakes his head from side to side.
We learned his sleep schedule and eating habits from his foster mother. The foster family presented Ethan with a going away present, traditional clothing for a baby’s first birthday celebration.
We also had small gifts for the family. They seemed most impressed with the stained glass star we got at Vintage Art Glass because it was inscribed with Ethan’s given name in Korean.
We wonder how difficult it will be for the foster family to say good-bye to Ethan. We are grateful to the foster mom who has taken great care of Ethan for the last several months. One can tell they are attached. I’m sure it will be difficult.
We pray that the transition will be as easy as possible for Ethan!