Friday, September 21, 2012

The lighter moments

Yep, still here trying to play catch up from the summer!  After our camp season ended I spent 2 weeks in Kiev playing hostess to a super-wondeful-family that was here to adopt some super-cute-boys!  There are some families that stay with me that I hit it off with...and then there are some families I really hit it off with.  Kim and Adam fall into the 'really hit it off with' category!

Adam is a photographer (a really really talented photographer might I add), so naturally he and I found some common things to talk about.  AND Adam is so wonderful that he even agreed to give me a few lessons and let me try out his array of so many lenses.  It was oh so much fun getting to click away and have him give me pointers as I went.  I even had my own photo-session thrown in at the end of my lesson. We got gutsy and Adam had me sit on the tram tracks...quickly before any tram hit me!

One thing I love about meeting so many adoptive couples is getting to see many different reactions to stress and difficult circumstances.  Now, some people might think of this as a bad thing.  However, I find it truly educational and eye-opening.

Here you take a married couple out of their normal routine, out of their culture and comfort zone, to a land where they don't understand the language, don't know the customs, and then add to that the stress of adoption and you have the recipe for the perfect nightmare....or some really humorous situations.  And believe me...I've seen both! (Like I said...very educational!)

What I loved about Adam and Kim was their ability to see the lighter side of just about everything.  I know their stay in Ukraine was anything but easy, and they had more waiting around to do then is typical-- but they chose to wake up every day with a smile, keep going, and find the lighter moments of this city and the adoption process.

Case in point--their adoption of the street cat that lives outside of my building.  Kim and Adam are animal lovers (this is an understatement)...and so naturally as they were awaiting the adoption of their 3 boys, they adopted a street cat, who they affectionately named 'Steven-Jeffery' (In actuality, I take full credit for the combination of the two names, as there was a disagreement over which name to call the cat.)
photo taken by Adam Pendleton

'Steven-Jeffery' thus became the amusing topic of each evening conversation. They'd fill me in on what the cat was up to, what they'd fed him, how he responded, and how there was now a babushka trying to move in on our him better food and a collar to boot!

One night we had fun throwing food from my 5th floor balcony to the ground below--seeing if he would go bounding towards it.  Quite a show for the neighbors I'll say.  No doubt that a foreigner lives here now.  2 smiling blonde girls laughing loudly as they throw bits of chicken to the pavement below.

Funny how a cat I had never noticed before, suddenly had so much personality.  I laughed till I had tears when I came home this summer to find that a picture of Steven Jeffery and a note had ended up in my guest book...a love letter to ME about our special summer!

Adam and Kim are now back in the US, settling into their new normal with their three energetic boys, yet they have left a lasting imprint in my home here in Kiev. It's a reminder to look for the lighter things in life.  The things that allow us to forget the chaos and difficulties for a moment....and laugh!    Finding joy amidst the pain and laughter amidst the heart-ache....that truly is a gift.

I can't help but slow down now as I see a little white cat dart in front of me as I leave my building in the morning.
A smile crosses my face and I have my own little that onlookers wouldn't quite understand. Just a little moment...and then I move along my way....back to the day that awaits.

Ahhh Steven Jeffery...and the summer of love.

Praying YOU are finding something to laugh matter what challenge is before you.


klee101 said...

You are so one of my top 10 favorite people. Next year maybe we'll come fetch 3 girls and a baboshka (sp?) and become the Brady bunch...

Tara G. said...

Well, a tramvai in the background would have looked cool, too! :) Love this- miss you!!!!!!!!!