We didn't take quite as many pictures of Vincent this last trip, probably because we were just so focused on spending time with him. We did take a few cute ones, though, and Andy will upload them to the blog this weekend. We didn't take a camera with us to our court date, though in retrospect it would have been nice to have taken a picture of the group. After the experience, though, I just wanted to get the heck out of there.
After court, we got back to the car and we dropped Reds off at a local Metro stop. Andy and I were sure we were headed back to our hotel. Imagine our surprise when we looked out the window and realized we were just down the street from Vincent's orphanage! They decided to let us have one last visit with him before we returned home the next day.
Vincent was with the other kids in their playroom. He ran up to us and his eyes were as big as saucers. He grabbed our hand and we headed outside to the play area. We played catch with a ball and rolled it back and forth to him. He really seemed to enjoy it! Next we took turns throwing balls into an improvised hoop (it was really a basket duct taped to two short metal poles in the ground with a stuffed animal duct taped to the top portion...a little bizarre.)
Then, it happened. Are you ready, folks? For the first time he smiled at us! Then he giggled. Soon he was laughing and squealing as he ran around the yard with us. I picked him up, hugged and kissed him and he was still smiling (after the car incident I wasn't so sure what his reaction would be) I don't think I've been happier than I was at that moment. To see him so happy...it made all of the waiting, the travel, the paperwork, and the expense of this adoption worth it. Andy, Vincent, and I.... together. I wish I could have bottled that moment. I couldn't even take a picture of him, since we were sans camera.
It was time for Vincent to go back inside. We led him up to the playroom, gave him a kiss and a hug, and waved goodbye. Once he realized we were leaving, he started to cry. Oh boy, I didn't want to see him upset but part of me was relieved that he was sad to see us go.
We'll return to Moscow 8/3 . The next day we'll visit his orphanage for the last time. After that visit he'll be walking out the door with us, his new parents.