No matter how many times I return to Guatemala, I´m never prepared for how strong my reaction is. Excitement mixed with anxiety, as if I´m about to relive our adoption experience from seven years ago. For my daughter, Olivia, the reaction is much more straightforward. When we landed at Aurora International Airport, she looked out the window and said, “This is my country.” Olivia is American now, but Guatemala will always be home.
I´m so grateful we have the opportunity to visit. It´s ¨Ski week¨ in California, so schools are closed. We´ll be in Guatemala City, Panajachel and the Lake Atitlan region, then a few days in Antigua, where I lived with Olivia for six months during 2003 when she was a baby and our adoption was taking what felt like forever. I wrote a book about the experience, MAMALITA: AN ADOPTION MEMOIR, which will be published by Seal Press this November.
Guatemala´s weather is nearly always perfect in February, just as it is today. A glorious beginning to a week in my favorite country.