It was so encouraging to receive such a warm welcome home at the airport. I think it helped to sustain me later that first night. After 27 hours of consecutive travel with a toddler, I was exhausted and running on God's grace and strength. Although I love to travel, I am not ready to make an immediate repeat trip to Ethiopia or anywhere else requiring a passport. In fact, I texted a friend, "This is one of my all time, kiss the ground, proud to be in the USA, moments. Soooo glad to be back in Dulles." I was thankful to be home at last. There's just something about traveling internationally with a toddler that you don't really know that will make you glad to be "home".
Naturally, once through my front door, I was ready to get in bed and sleep off the 8 hour time zone delay. However, Joshua was ready to play and love on mommy and daddy. Around 12 midnight, I woke up in Joshua's bed (something I never do), recalling Joshua's resistance to sleep earlier in the evening. I went back to bed, my bed. Around 2 am, Joshua came running into our room, probably to make sure we hadn't left again. I put him back to bed. Around 3 am, Abenezer began to cry which quickly turned into wailing. He was up for good this time. After I conceded to a loss of sleep, I picked up a tearful little boy out of his crib. Tears turned to smiles and laughter as we played downstairs from 3 until 8:30 am. Around 8:30 he finally took a nap. By that time, Joshua was ready for mommy time and Keith had left for work. Amazingly, I didn't cry. I think it was because I had been there before. Ground Zero: Exhausted: Nothing Left: Reminders of being a new mom. Can anyone relate?? The only reason I kept it all in perspective throughout the first day was because God answered prayers and kept me afloat. Abenezer woke up from his nap screaming and crying. He was scared to death of this new place and terrified of our 7 lb yorkies. The first day was long. My mom and dad picked up Joshua around 11 and kept him until late afternoon. I caught an incredible nap when Abenezer took his second nap of the day.
The second night was much better. All the Pattesons slept until after 5 am, the young and younger and youngest. Tonight, I am hoping to sleep through the evening until 6am. The transition has been tough, but I am thankful for the change. I've learned that God has the greatest opportunity to work on me when I step out of my comfort zone. I don't even have my shadow in my comfort zone tonight. :0)
Exciting changes so far:
1) Abenezer switched over from formula (yes, at 16 mos!) to 2% milk without blinking an eye.
2) He flashes his charming smile far more often and we're catching glimpses of his fun personality.
3) He doesn't melt into tears and hysteria when a dog enters the room. MAJOR IMPROVEMENT
4) Joshua loves his new role as Big Brother. He's taking it very seriously.
Looking forward to another night's rest-