On Friday, we went to pick him up at the children’s home, another hour or so drive.
He ran to greet us, and we did a tour of goodbyes. So many of his caregivers had bought personal gifts for him, little outfits and stuffed animals and toys. It was so sweet to see how loved he was.
And then we signed papers, and took him back to our apartment-for-a-week in Bangkok!
We slept for quite a while that first afternoon. We were all pretty tired.
The first week went surprisingly smoothly. We had a blast playing, reading, swimming. He was happy and playful and loving; he adjusted almost perfectly to us and a new place.
We did a little shopping, too, because it turns out our little guy is small: our size two clothes were falling off, and we went back to buy 12-month clothes and a couple pairs of 4-6 month shorts.
And we had to clean out the air conditioners because we found mold that was giving him a runny nose. Thankfully, he’s a great and adorable little helper who already wants to be just like his dad. 😍
It was a beautiful week, and the time with just the three of us was a great start.
The following Wednesday was our meeting with the board. We were nervous, to say the least, but it went quite smoothly. We were there with nineteen other families, all matched that week! We were first, as believe the only family living in Thailand. Most were European families that had flown in just to pick up their children.
The board asked basic questions, and seemed to like that we’ve lived here quite a while. They loved how well he was adjusted to us, his charm helped: he’s great at hellos, goodbyes, and sawadee-khaps, so he wins hearts quickly.
And they said yes! We have a beautiful piece of paper that says he’s ours, pending home visits over the coming six months!
And with that, meet our son: Oak Allen.
His official Thai name on his passport is different, but Oak is a nickname given to him by his mother. He was also called this in the home, so that’s the only name he knows. We love it, the strength of Oak and beauty of trees. We love that Psalm 144:12 in The Message reads, “Make our sons in their prime like sturdy oak trees, our daughters as shapely and bright as fields of wildflowers.” We also love that his room is woodland creatures, with bunnies and foxes and deer, and our little Oak fits right in.