Friday, August 14, 2009

A few final things

So here we sit, at our gate at LAX, waiting to board (ya gotta love the iPhone). Here are my favorite moments so far:

-The Esquire pacing around the house waiting for the cab while giving me a constant update on the time "10 mins!" "5 mins!"

-the cab driver taking us to LAX asked if we had family in Ethiopia...and it hit me- Yes! We do!

-seeing The Esquire show the baggage claim lady a picture of the twins

-realizing as we push our 76 bags through security that we are THOSE travelers now

-reaching into my carry on for something and pulling out the little hoodies I'm bringing for the twins

I can't believe it's time.

And by the way, NOW I'm giddy :-)

xoxo- Kat

Thursday, August 13, 2009

Where I am right now.

A year after we were married, The Esquire and I wandered around the world for 14 months. The backpack below carried everything I needed for that whole trip. Note: the rocking Elephant is just in the picture for scale...we didn't carry him around with us.

Tomorrow we are leaving for Ethiopia for 10 days...and are taking 9 bags, 5 of which weigh over 50 lbs. Note: we might as well be taking the rocking elephant with us...we're taking everything else!

And yes, we will come home with less luggage but more baggage if you know what I mean. We'll leave behind the diapers and formula and wipes and bottles and crayons that we are taking to the orphanages but we'll be bringing home two humans. And that, my friends, is just plain craziness.

People have been asking me all week how I'm holding up? Am I emotional? And every time I've replied, "who has time for emotions? I have too much to pack and do and buy before I get on that plane Friday!" These past few days have been all about one thing: GET ON THE PLANE. I can honestly say I am looking forward to that 16 hour flight to Dubai where I can't do a single thing except sit and sleep and read and think and sleep some more.

But this afternoon, when I put the last luggage tag on the last steamer trunk sized suitcase, I did start to realize what was happening. And I should be honest here, because that's what blogs are about right? Honesty. (those pants don't make you look fat at all...) The strongest emotions hitting me today weren't about what we are going to do/get/, the strongest feeling running through my heart and mind today was about all that we are losing.

Now don't get me wrong, I am so ready to get my hands on those babies I can barely type right now. I am more in love with these two little people that I have yet to met than I can even say. But that doesn't change the fact that our lives are about to change and that makes me a bit sad.

I am madly, crazily in love with The Esquire and I adore our life together. I love spending time with him. People always ask what it was like to travel with him for 14 months...just the two of us, and I always jump to say just how perfect it was. I would happily spend 24/7 with him for the rest of my life if I could. I am selfish with his time and his a nutshell, I want it all.

So as ready as I am for this next chapter in our lives to begin, I'm also a bit sad that this last chapter is ending. Never again will it be just the two of us. Never again will we sit around and wonder about who will make up our family. Never again will I have The Esquire all to myself.

Again, please don't misunderstand me, I can't wait to see The Esquire as a father. I daydream about the Wonder Twins with their noses pressed to the window waiting to see his car coming down the street at the end of the day. I can't wait till we go traveling as a foursome and we get to see the world through their little eyes. I can't wait to see who we will all become once we all have one another. But none of that changes the fact that I'm in mourning for the life we are leaving behind.

And I think that's ok. I mean, isn't there some quote about in order to move forward you have to look backwards? Something like that? Well, there should be.

Anyway... that's where I am tonight. I can be jittery and giddy and excited tomorrow about our future, tonight is all about where we are right now. And that's why I'm going to stop writing now so I can go enjoy my last evening alone with my man.

Talk to you in a few weeks... ciao!

PS... ok, because the blog posts with pictures of nurseries are always my favorites, I can't sign off without showing you ours...and a few comments about some of my favorite things...

The blue and white quilt was made by my mom for my older brother when he was a baby. The mobile is from Dharmsala, India (home of the Dalai Lama) and is made up of the eight auspicious symbols of Buddhism. We've had it in storage for 3 years, just waiting for the nursery.

The woodblock print on the wall was made by Jana Funderburks and the HOPE print was made by Robert Indiana for the Obama campaign. Most of the toys are from the 70's and were purchased by The Esq on ebay.

The fabulous world map was a gift from my godsister (after I pretty much asked her for it every day since we went on the wait list). The brown thing on the edge of the crib is actually a cool toy bag my mom made for my brother and me when we were babies. Fret not, it won't stay there, we just haven't figured out where to hang it yet. And hanging on the door is Amitabh, the nursery's Indian Ambassador. What? Your nursery doesn't have an Ambassador? You really should get one!

Wednesday, August 5, 2009

Packing under a full moon.

I have so much I want to write many bloger-sations run through my head all day long but I never find time to sit and write them all down. Since the moment we passed court and were told we would travel in 2 weeks I have been constantly running. Here it is, 11pm, and at this moment I am doing a load of laundry, hard boiling eggs, sterilize-boiling bottle nipples, and downloading podcasts, all while trying to jot down a few things here. Those of you who have been given 2 weeks to travel understand where I am at mentally, emotionally and physically... must multi-task at all times!

And it's not that I have such incredibly important things to write about but still, it's nice to jot it down, to have it here so we can look back later and remember this crazy time unlike any other.

I want to write about how, at my very core, I Am A Traveler. I love to go, see, move, do, sit in new places were I don't understand the language. I like to take long trips with very few possessions. I have a habit of quitting my job and taking off for 6 months to continents I've never been to before. And when you are a Traveler, that means you are a very good packer. I know how much contact solution I use in a month down to the ounce. I actually like only having 3 outfits to choose from for months and months at a time. I know which adapters to use in which countries. I routinely suck the air out of ziplock bags in order to flatten my clothes even more so I can use a smaller suitcase. I designed and had my mom sew my own special hidden money pockets that I use in place of those stupid money belts that everyone can see a mile away. I am good at selecting and packing essentials for long trips. It's what I do, it's who I am.

I am now in over my head.

All day my head runs in circles....How many cans of formula do I need for 8 feedings x 8 days x two kids? How many diapers for two kids who may or may not get sick? Wait, I need bottle liners? Do I want more short sleeve onesies or more long sleeve onesies? How many pairs of socks do non-walking 4 month olds really need? Do I need lice medication and scabies medication? What are scabies? Wait--my kids don't have hair--cancel the lice meds! How many wipes... two for each diaper change, 8 changes a day x two kids for 8 days, that's 256 wipes! If Twin A weighs 12lbs and eats 4-5 oz every 3-4 hours and Twin B weighs 9.5lbs and eats 3-4 oz every 2-3 hours than how many bottle nipples do I need to bring?

Did I mention I know how much contact solution to take on a 4 month trek through SE Asia?

I want to write about the nursery. Which is a lovely hodge podge of old and new and borrowed and bought and even a few things bartered. We have lots of trinkets from our travels and even a few things from when we were both babies. Because the first thing we got for the nursery was the Robert Indiana HOPE print (created for Obama's campaign) the nursery has somehow become a red, white and blue theme. Sometimes I find The Esquire just sitting in the nursery, looking at all the little things, dreaming of what's to come.

I want to write about how simultaneously overjoyed and terrified I am. I was a nanny for a few years, so I know what it's like to spend all day with two kids. But those kids were different ages and more importantly, they weren't MINE. I went home at 6pm. Don't get me wrong, I still love those kids with all my might but they weren't mine. On Monday Aug 17th someone will hand us two humans... and they WILL be mine. Forever. For EVER. That is the happiest and scariest word I know these days.

I want to write about how fabulous all our friends and family have been since we passed court. My mom went out and instantly bought a pack and play so the twins have a place to sleep at her house. My father-in-law tracked down an old friend in Addis Ababa so we will have a friend to show us around. Our neighbors have been popping by offering to run little errands. My best girlfriends have been sending us hand-me-downs. This lovely lady put up with me for 5 hours as I hemmed and hawed over changing pad covers and debated the ethics of all little girls clothes having "Princess" stitched on them. She took me by the hand and said "this lotion, this diaper cream, this bathtub." She is the only reason I am not still standing in Target right now trying to decide between the blue blanket and the green one.

I want to write about the amazing full moon that is out tonight. There was a time when I could tell you exactly where I had been for every full moon for almost a 3 yr span. I always look at the full moon and wonder where I'll be the next time it comes around. Tonight it hit me, with a jolt, that the next time the Man in the Moon is at his fullest I'll be home, with my husband. And children. You would think after a year of waiting and 6 days of non-stop shopping that that thought wouldn't have surprised me as much as it did. At what point will this be old hat?

I want to write about so much more but the washer is done and the eggs are over boiled (I did pause to rescue the nipples). It's almost midnight...almost Thursday Aug 6th...almost one day closer to meeting our kids....