Photo Story: One step closer to Daniel

In April 2007, my parents called my siblings and I to a family meeting. Sitting around our dining room table, they told the five of us that they were planning on adopting a little boy from Colombia. Excitedly talking, we headed back upstairs to our bedrooms. Adopting isn’t unfamiliar territory for my parents- in 1999, they adopted my brother, Josh, and prior to that they had done foster care for a couple of years. So my siblings and I were taken aback when my parents called us all back downstairs ten minutes later, smiled, and said, “April Fools’!” We all expressed our disappointment, laughing and pretending as if we knew that was coming.

A couple of months later, however, my parents came to my siblings and I once again, telling us that since that April Fools’ they had thought about it and reached the decision that they would in fact, be adopting that little boy from Colombia.  The following two years my family and I waited with baited breath, holding onto his name and a photograph; Daniel, fully deaf in both ears, seven years old. In September 2009 my family and I traveled to Cali, Colombia, to complete the adoption of Daniel, and to see him for the first time. These photos are the documentation of our meeting, and interacting with him for the first time.

8427630184_7f758c81e4_bChasing pigeons in a courtyard, Daniel Harrington laughs in Bogota, Colombia , October 2009, shortly before he was officially adopted.

8426407618_57801a858c_bDaniel climbs a tree at Hotel Pension-Stein in Cali, Colombia, displaying his energy in September 2009.

8427629652_3602ee3e16_zDaniel signs his United States certificate of citizenship in November 2009, with the assistance of his mother, Tiffiny Harrington.

8427630734_a64b9319e7_bAt an outdoor water park, just outside of Cali, Colombia, Daniel laughs with the interpreter of the Harrington family, Magnolia in October 2009.

8427629462_4009a77b38_bJumping on a trampoline together, brothers Charlie and Daniel Harrington bond after knowing each other for just two days, in September 2009, Cali, Colombia.

8427631666_b7bd862a6a_bAt an outdoor water park an hour outside of Cali, Colombia, Edward and Daniel Harrington embrace a slight rock pathway alongside a river, Sept. 27, 2009.

8426542337_361575f6f6_bWalking down an avenue in Cali, Colombia, Daniel and Edward Harrington hold hands, Sept. 18, 2009- the day after they met.