Real Life. Real News. Real Voices.
Help us tell more of the stories that matter from voices that too often remain unheard.
Join HuffPost Plus
THE BLOG

Entry 26 Welcome To The United States

The red stroller. What would we have done without the red stroller? It was the last thing we left as we boarded our planes, and the first thing we saw as we disembarked. Hats off to baggage guys. I don't know how they did it.
This post was published on the now-closed HuffPost Contributor platform. Contributors control their own work and posted freely to our site. If you need to flag this entry as abusive, send us an email.

Continued from >>> Entry 25

WELCOME TO THE UNITED STATES

The red stroller. What would we have done without the red stroller? It was the last thing we left as we boarded our planes, and the first thing we saw as we disembarked. Hats off to baggage guys. I don't know how they did it.

We loaded Christian into the red stroller and collected all our belongings as now we were about to go through Customs in the US. Line after line until we got to the Customs Inspector. Out came the passports and the manila envelope with all the papers back in order for showing. I had Christian, Rick was just behind me, when the inspector asked if we were all together. I responded yes, and handed him all 3 passports. He took a look at mine, then Ricks, then Christians.

"Is he with you?" " Yes, he is my grandson, his father died in Phuket and we are bringing him home to raise him in the United States, I have all the paperwork right here, would you like to see it?" I gushed. The Customs Officer looked down at Christian and then back at his passport. "Welcome to the United States, little fella." Bap! Passport stamped!

How many times can one say I DON'T BELIEVE IT? Is this incredible journey coming to an end?
We made it through Customs and now were waiting for our flight to San Diego. I only remember that I thought the San Diego airport was very small and would we be taking a small 8 seater plane into San Diego? It wasn't until we landed that I realized I had been to the airport countless times to visit Mia and Luca and Micaela. Such a jumbled mess was my mind. The flight was short, 90 minutes, and Christian was an angel. Through this 35 plus hour odyssey he was so amazingly good. He did not cry once, other than the nightmare at the Phuket Airport. What a little trooper! And now we were in San Diego. I expected to see Mia the minute we got off the plane. Then I expected to see her at baggage claim, and then I wondered where she was. We had gotten our bags and were about to enter the elevator to take us curbside, when the doors to the elevator opened and there she was, with Trey all of 7 weeks sleeping soundly on her chest wrapped in a Snuggly. We made it. We were home. We brought Christian home.
There are no words to describe our profound happiness to all the people and all the parts that came into play to give this story the happy ending we prayed for, but also feared would never come about.
Mia, my daughter who even though pregnant and going through difficulties with her business persevered in making this happen.'

Nat, her partner in all things, who went with us the first time to Phuket in the wake of Josh's death and handled our travel arrangements.

Tarn, who without her help and immense generosity, none of this would have ever come about.
Ant, Tarns best friend and assistant, who did the lion's share of organizing in Bangkok, and making it to the passport office with minutes to spare.

A, Christian's birth mother, who in her heart knew we could provide her child with a good life, a better life than she could.

Rick, who was my rock and partner in every sense of the word, who took out a line of credit on our home so this and other trips to Thailand would be possible to complete this journey.

Sumeet and her family who loved and cared for Christian when his mama could not.

Noppapok, who gave us a place to stay while we waited to take a 2AM plane from Phuket to Seoul
And all Josh's friends: Peter, Sharon, Julie, Eka, Pierre, Add, Adria, Adam, Emanuelle, my son was lucky and deserving of having you in his life.

And Josh, who I honestly believe was watching over us from above.