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From my journal July 20…

Flying with Taye was really a decent experience all things considered… all things considered being the whole “I only want to be with mommy and will scream if she leaves my presence” thing. But who can blame him, after all Jenna is a rock-star.

Taye for the most part traveled as one seasoned in the art of adventure. He basked in the modern technology of people movers, escalators, monorails, and 96” flat screen TVs. He sat back and watched personal on-demand movies and chilled on Jenna’s lap without an anxious care in the world. In sort, he did great!

On the flight from Khartoum to Amsterdam, the flight attendant gave us a huge bonus: four seats for the price of two!The flight wasn’t too crowded and the flight attendants asked solo-travelers to changes seats to accommodate the new families. We got a whole row to ourselves, which allowed Taye a makeshift bed in which he could stretch out and get some much needed sleep.

The flight was basically the Adoption Express with ten or twelve couples bringing their new children home. I’ve found it amazing the bond that adoptive parents share. As we made eye contact with each other, we’d smile and offer our congratulations. We’d share our stories, compare orphanages, and wish each other blessing for our new lives ahead of us.

The flight from Amsterdam to Detroit was a bit different. Flying with “awake Taye” was a little more difficult. He didn’t want me, wouldn’t even sit on my lap with Jenna being right next to me. I understand why, but this was hard on Jenna. Literally, he would scream when she left to use the rest room. (Not fun in case you were wondering.) However, Monsters and Aliens was a huge hit with him, and he relaxed comatose from exhaustion.

Customs and Immigration was a breeze. The officers in Detroit couldn’t have been nicer. They welcomed Taye into the US with hearty (yes, I just used the word hearty but that’s the right word for it!) congratulations and beaming smiles on their faces.

He slept all of the way from Detroit to Grand Rapids. We actually needed to wake him up so he wouldn’t miss out other kids waiting with balloons in the common area. The kids just looked at him and hugged him and then completely overwhelmed him. But Taye took the whole ordeal in stride as a new member of the family.

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In spite of some of the “all things considered” moments, we were comforted knowing that we would return to an adoption rich culture. We have already received such great care from others who have gone before us and understand the new complexities we face as a blended family. We have a community of people who are willing to be on-call in case there is anything we need. We’re so blessed for the life we’re allowed to live. God is so so good to us.

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