Do you have any tips / advice / suggestions for your “Gotcha Day” for people preparing to travel to pick up their little one. . .This could include things that made your day special, an easier transition at home, etc. Tell us what worked (and what didn’t) for you.
This is such an emotional day. With international adoption, I think the entire time you spend in your child's country is important. We have two other children that we were leaving at home due to their ages (4 and 2 at the time). We did our entire trip in 6 days - not a good idea. All I could think about was getting Max Rup and getting home to my babies. Because of the travel and the times our flights arrived in the different cities, we got very little sleep the entire trip. we did very little sightseeing in either city - this was our huge mistake. My advice to anyone would be to see as much of your child's country as you can! This is especially important if you won't get a chance to return. When we got home, I felt like we had only seen the poverty and the filth. We had missed all of the wonderful history and culture.
Before we left, someone told us to buy, buy, buy. We thought we were going to do more shopping later in our trip, and new that Kolkata was much more affordable, but we never got out to do any shopping. Those tangible things that were able to bring home with us are so special and important to us.
Pictures are like this too. They are tangible views that you can show your child throughout his/her life. We took many pictures of the staff and babies at the children's home, but very little of the surroundings. Again, I feel like I didn't capture his culture, and the people of his hometown on film for him.
The actual Gotcha Day is very powerful, but don't limit your focus to this one day. Enjoy the whole experience - it's amazing.
Gotcha Day - Nov. 27, 2007