23 hours ago
Saturday, March 5, 2011
In Which Connor Has A Much Better Day And I Make A Purse For Ellen
I started on the little purse for Ellen's care package today. The little elephant I drew is a pretty simple design, so it only took me an hour or so to trace the pattern pieces, cut them out and put it all together. Tomorrow I'll go down to the fabric store and pick out a lining material, and I should have the whole thing done by the end of the day without any trouble.
I hope she likes it.
Because of issues with luggage space we're limited to sending what will fit in a quart sized bag. The travel chess set we bought for her is too big, so it'll have to wait for another day. So far for this care package-- in addition to the little purse I'm sewing on-- we've got a very simple little silver elephant charm necklace, some scented colored pencils (who knew such a thing existed?), a nice pen and a small cloth bound sketch pad. We're still thinking about other things to put in it; our agency's trip was moved to March 17th so we have until the 14th to continue shopping for her.
We're also working on our list of questions to send over. Some of the questions will probably be for the orphanage workers, but we'll also probably be getting some answers directly from her, so we want to choose our questions carefully. This could potentially be the only new information we get about her for a year.
Ellen won't be told about us for quite some time yet, but she's a smart kid and she's probably seen a whole lot of children come and go. I have to think she'll realize there's a possible family in the works when the agency begins asking her specific questions and giving her special gifts, even if she doesn't know any of the details yet. A few years ago she was "open to the idea of adoption" according to her caregivers, but we don't know if that's changed or not.
I'm sure she'll probably have mixed feelings about the idea; after all she's spent practically her entire life in the orphanage complex and no doubt considers it to be home. She'll be required to adjust to some very big, very scary changes in her life and no one is giving her a choice about it. I hope that she'll be able to receive information about us well before we actually go over, and that we'll be given the chance to correspond with her because I think it will make the transition less scary if we're not quite so unknown. We've been told that sometimes this happens with Thailand and sometimes it doesn't; it depends on the timeline and the orphanage policy. Over the next few months we'll be making a scrapbook for her about our family and sometime in the next year it will be sent over, but the orphanage chooses when to share it with her. Really our wait has just begun, and we've got a long, long way to go before the exciting day when we board a plane and travel over to come face to face with our daughter for the first time.
In the meantime I'll take every opportunity I can get to send her little things made just for her. I don't expect her to assign any special meaning to them or even to keep them for herself (children in orphanages often aren't used to having possessions and will assume that gifts are for communal use), but I'll be happy because-- whether or not she knows it-- we're sending her little packages of love.
I can't wait to meet her.