I don’t know exactly where to start, but let’s just say the past several weeks have been a roller coaster. We were planning on going to Colombia at the beginning of May, but due to a mega-glitch in Samuel’s abandonment decree, we were unable to go to our son to bring him home. We were devastated, heart broken, stressed, and left wondering if we would even be able to bring him home. We were taught lessons in patience, and were given the most precious gift of prayer. Cliché as it sounds, we truly felt surrounded by prayer. [Must read until end to see how this works out.]
Luckily, we have two munchkins that keep us super busy and are an absolute blast. On top of that, Brent is getting his masters degree and has elections going on. Needless to say, we have been busy and haven’t been able to dwell constantly on the delay of the adoption. We did know that we needed a major family distraction. Our timing had us in Colombia for Brent’s 30th birthday, and since that was impossible we planned a fun trip instead.
On May 8th, the last day Brent had in his 20s, we drove to Atlanta and hopped on a flight to Mazatlan, Mexico. Traveling with a 2 year old and a 3 year old, we expected the normal hiccups, but did not expect Delta to have Lilly Grace’s name incorrect. Because half of the flight was Delta and the other half was AeroMexico, they refused to change it. We had two choices… leave Lilly Grace behind or buy her a new round trip ticket. An extra ticket later, we were on board our flight, and we had been bumped to first class! We were some of the only folks in first class, had precious flight attendants, wonderful service, and delicious food.
We flew from Atlanta to Mexico City. Mexico City is the epitome of what you picture in your head. A bazillion tiny houses everywhere. Most of it looks rural, but there are several different areas of skyscrapers and modern looking buildings. All I could think in the Mexico City airport was about the movie “Man on Fire” and that I was going to be holding on to my children every single second.
One more flight and we were in Mazatlan, whose airport is not much bigger than the Montgomery airport. Mazatlan is on the Pacific Coast of Mexico. We hopped on a bus shortly after landing, and after 20 minutes were at our humongous, gorgeous resort!
Our trip was fantastic. Not only did we make some incredible family memories, and loved celebrating Brent’s 30th birthday, but we fell in love with the Mexican people. We were basically the only Americans and the only white people at the resort. There may have been a couple of others, but we never saw them. We were stared at a bunch, because we were definitely the minority. They weren’t being rude - we just stood out. That said, the people of Mexico are the kindest people we have ever encountered. They put “southern hospitality” to shame, and we could move down there in a heartbeat! Their rich brown skin is gorgeous, their smiles are contagious, their fun-loving spirits are energizing, and their kindness is remarkable. We became close friends with Javier, our taxi driver. He and Brent even texted a bit a couple of days ago.
Lilly Grace was a hit. She loves meeting new people, and would hug the sweet older men. She danced every chance she got and really embraced the culture. She is going to do outrageously well in Colombia. Brent became pretty popular as well. He was an American that would speak Spanish. He claims he doesn’t speak much, but he is not far from fluent. What he doesn’t know, he picks up on so easily. I was amazed and insanely proud of my husband (who is now in his 30s, WOW)!
After nearly a week, lots of fun and sun, we got back to sweet home Alabama and the real world, and boocoodles of laundry. Brent has been working in overdrive and having super late nights as the primaries draw near. I worked the first weekend back, and had to take a class for work. The girls and I have been having a phenomenal last summer as just us girls, but every day we wonder about our Samuel. We want our son home. The girls want their brother home. Our families are ready for their nephew, grandson, and great-grandson.
Along the way, we received word that it was very likely the adoption would go through, but that it would take a lot longer than expected. We were thinking late fall for our travel date.
[Now for the prayer tie-in.] And then today we received a call that sent our hearts racing and drove us to our knees praising Jesus!!!! Things in Colombia are ticking along quite quickly, and we will likely be headed to Colombia in several weeks!!! Praise the Lord! How incredible. The process of securing his abandonment has to be completed, which will take about two weeks, and then the abandonment decree has to be either written or amended. Then, we will finish up the immigration process here in the states, get the new paperwork translated and submitted, and make travel plans. Be praying that we travel the first of August!
We are elated. We can’t wait to meet our son and bring him home. Samuel Timothy Buchanan, we are coming soon!