Back in Saigon

We made it back to Saigon today from Vung Tau. And although Vung Tau is absolutely gorgeous, we are glad to be back due to the fact that we shared our hotel room last night with LOTS of roaches. Big ones. Big Fast ones. And I hate roaches. A Lot.

Anyhow, when we got back, we went directly to the VN passport office to apply for Emmett’s passport. Supposedly it’ll be ready tomorrow. Then Hunky leaves on Saturday while I fly with our agency rep to Hanoi. And I can’t say that I’ll really be sorry to leave Saigon either. I’m sure there are nice parts of the city – but we are not in one of them. Our hotel is perfectly nice, and only $35 per night, but the section of town is kinda shady. Oh, and what everyone says about the traffic in VN is true. Trying to cross a street today literally made me cry. Umm, part of the crying may be due to the stress of this situation, the jet lag, the fact that I didn’t sleep last night, and because I’m a big cryer anyway, but still: crossing the street here seems like asking to die a horrible death. I will say that the people all seem perfectly nice – even more so now that we have Emmett. Moving on…

So, the stress…everyone and their mother knows that I am a worrier by nature. I struggle with worry every day. And I would say that this situation falls into one of the top 5 most stressful situations I’ve ever been in. I feel pretty blindsided by the condition that Emmett is in – both the additional problems he has that we were never informed about, how thin he is (I can feel every bone on his body perfectly), and just how developmentally delayed he appears. Apparently he was hospitalized for a while before we got here – for what we have no idea. And I would put him developmentally on par with a 1 or 2 month old. The scary part to me is that he appeared to be getting good care in the orphanage – they were apparently feeding him every 1 1/2 hours, with one nanny dedicated to just him.

Needless to say, I am just scared out of my mind. I guess I pretty much thought we would arrive here, pick up a little boy who would be tiny for his age, who needed heart surgery, and my biggest worry would be getting him back to England so that his medical treatment could commence. Now I’m worried about that stuff (given that he’s only eating about half of what we’re giving him, which is what the orphanage told us he was getting there), but more so about what the future holds for our family – will he be mentally handicapped? What other physical problems could be going on? How on earth am I going to do this by myself while Hunky is deployed?

I don’t worry that we’ve made the wrong decision – Hunky and I both believe that God chose this child for us – but I do worry about how this will all affect O and Y? There is a reason that we were only approved to adopt a child with correctible special needs – we have 2 young boys at home, along with a husband who is gone over half the year. I just feel so naive – that we totally trusted the orphanage director when she told us all he needed was minor heart surgery – that he was otherwise fine. What would we have done if we had all the facts ahead of time – we’ll never know, and I’m sure that was part of God’s plan.

Ugh, I’m totally rambling, as well as bawling my eyes out while I write this. And I know that I sound like such a jerk – so many people that we know don’t have the opportunity to add to their family by adopting a child from Vietnam, and so many people that we know have children with sprecial needs, and every one of those children is a blessing. And Emmett is a blessing. I think I’m just grieving the loss of the child that I thought we would be bringing home, and right now having a hard time feeling the joy of this situation, because I’m so freaked out about being able to hold everything together after Hunky leaves. And its really starting to hit me that Saturday will be the last time I’ll see him before December.

Please pray – please pray that Emmett would be healed in every way, please pray for peace, wisdom, and strength for me. Please pray for patience for O and Y. Please pray for safety for Hunky. Oh, and please pray that everything else in VN and the States will go smoothly, so that Emmett and I can leave as soon as possible to get home to O and Y.



Filed under adoption, While in Vietnam

10 responses to “Back in Saigon

  1. wow, you have so much going on right now…no wonder you are so stressed. i completely hear what you are saying and i think it is great that you are being so honest about the situation.

    you are right, God has placed this child with you for a reason. He created him for your family and this was all part of His plan (as hard as that might be).

    i will be praying all of the prayers above. i pray that God will just wrap His arms around you so that feel comfort and peace during this hard time.

  2. Hugs to Riggie. I am sure this is all part of God’s plan to find Emmett the perfect home…your home, and the perfect family…your family. You will never be given more than you can handle. Take it one day at a time.

    The only thing you can really control (to some degree) is the feedings, so work on that to have something measurable to focus on. Years ago, my god-daughter was diagnosed failure to thrive. Her dr. told them to add a little Ovaltine to her formula to change the taste and increase interest. That did the trick. Obviously you will ask your own doctor what to do, but I just thought I would tell you what worked for them. They also only let her have a paci after her feedings, not before so that she was not tired of sucking. 🙂

    I am sure all of these things will improve in your care. And he’ll have the surgeries and be better day by day. We’ll be thinking of you. If you think of anything you need that we can send you for when you get home, please let us know. (And no, I can’t send Valium through the mail!)

  3. Hang in there – you are on emotional overload right now with all of these huge changes in location, culture, adding a baby, worry for your hubby. Anyone would be totally stressed in your shoes. You may see big changes in your baby in a short amount of time – for the better. If the orphanage didn’t tell you of his true health, who’s to say the care he received was really what they said also. I doubt they would tell you if his care was sub-par. A little love goes a long way to healing babies. Combine that with great medical care, and you will be amazed. You have my prayers.

  4. Beth

    Everything will work out. I know you’re worried and overwhelmed…that’s how all moms are after having a baby! You’re in the “postpartum” phase right now. 🙂

    You’re going to get the best care for Emmett, and that will make a HUGE difference. Plus, you’ll feel better once you’re home safe and sound.

  5. Beth

    If you can, check your email…i wanted to ask you something….

  6. It’s so okay that you are overwhelmed and need to cry… this is hard. It’s good-hard, but it’s still hard. Emmett is a blessing and God will walk with you every step of the way on this journey, but I don’t think He expects you to be all calm and collected and in control. As the Bible says – where we are weak, He is strong. I’m praying for God to be your strength today, and for His perfect will for you and Emmett and your whole family.
    My favorite verse for overwhelming times:
    Isaiah 42:16
    “I will lead the blind by ways they have not known,
    along unfamiliar paths I will guide them;
    I will turn the darkness into light before them
    and make the rough places smooth.
    These are the things I will do;
    I will not forsake them.”

  7. Scott Miller


    Sounds like you are having a understandably tough go with things. Try and stay strong. Should you need any help from a medical standpoint, I can do my best from my deployed location. I have been involved in pediatric heart surgeries during residency and also have friends who are pediatric cardiologists. Also, my wife can help answer the general pediatric questions. Take care and we will keep all of you in our thoughts.

  8. Jessica

    Try not to worry. You can expect a delay given the institutional care and his heart defect- heart babies are often very tiny before repair. Emmett is also under stress right now and it’s common for the babies to shut down and not show all that they can do. Now your little guy has what he most needs- you.
    Hang in there!

  9. Ok I know this is super-late but I just wanted to say that I think many APs grieve the loss of their expectations. To me, its all a part of the process. I think it is one that isn’t talked about enough. But it is sadly not uncommon to show up and find conditions radically different than expected and to find that our new baby doesn’t meet the picture we painted for ourselves in our head. I think going through the gammut of emotions – anger, frustration, sadness, disappointment, etc is all part of the process so that you can get to the good stuff 🙂 I’m a worrier too -I remember exactly what that was like. I tend to “worst case scenario” and I did a WHOLE lot of that in Vietnam. Just hang in there and trust that whatever your feelings are are ok and appropriate and part of the process and that no one is judging you and we ALL know you love your baby and know he’s a blessing. (((hugs)))

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