Matthew's wife Sheila was good enough to call yesterday and confirm that Robert & Kristina are alive and well in Ukraine. Although I stalked their flights online, it was good to hear another person confirm what the monitor was telling me. I breathed a little easier knowing they were okay, but I still would like to hear their voices.
Just before midnight last night, my cell phone chimed to let me know a comment had been posted on the last blog entry. I was tickled to see that it was from Kristina who was wide awake and apparently looking for an nontraditional breakfast by both Ukrainian and American standards:
Mom we travelled safe and we have Internet access - I might write on the family blog soon. We are going to the orphanage today and I am so excited!
We are going to see Alyona today! It is 6:30AM here and Karina and I might go eat some ice cream!!! Karina is hungry and won't let me sleep!! Karina had to take a freezing cold shower because I used all the hot water up. I cut my finger and it bled for a while but it is fine now. Karina and I talked to one of our supervisors and we hope to see them.
Bye, Mom! I love you!
This is the first time she and I have been separated since she came home two years ago and it's strange. We're so much alike that some days I long for a little distance, but after only 2 days apart I am really missing her.
You know what struck me about the comment she left? The part where she says how excited she is to go to the orphanage. Understandably the orphanage holds a lifetime of memories for her, many bad. The fact that she is excited about returning confirms that she has claimed her place in our family and can face her past with new strength and even hope. Now for all I know, she may have had a meltdown when she got there today! I haven't received an update as of yet. But I think she will be fine. She knows that this trip wasn't really about her. It was about the orphans left behind. It was about bringing hope to those left behind.
Robert was able to send me an email early this morning, and in a fashion matching his daughter's short and sweet update he wrote:
When we found out that Matthew and Karina were delayed in Jackson due to weather, Kristina got worried and asked me if the planes would fly in the rain. On our fourth flight from Paris to Kiev we began to get a little excited. On our approach to Kiev we could see that the landscape was snow covered. When we landed we put on our coats and headed for the stairs. In an instant our faces were pelted by the snow flurries and our breath was as visible as smoke. It was freezing! The contrast was that we went from literally sweating in the Atlanta airport to stinging hands and faces. We love Odessa! Today we're go to the orphanage to visit the children.
Hopefully the two of them can manage to scratch together more than a few sentences on the next update. And hopefully they'll be able to access the blog and post some pics. Some of you have asked how short we were on having the funds for the trip. We were about $500 short of having what we needed and the team is helping to cover some of their costs, but some of the costs are a bit higher than they anticipated. So please pray that we can still find the funds to cover the deficit. And keep praying for all of them!