Five years ago, my husband & I set out on a journey that we didn't think was possible.
We played mommy and daddy to a brother and sister for approximately three weeks.
They came from another land and traveled many time zones.
We started our journey towards adoption; and in our sights were a brother and sister age 8 and 6 years old.
We wanted these two:
They arrived at the end of June, not speaking a word of English, and for three weeks through mime, pointing, smiling, and laughing; we became acquainted with one another.
Look at her smile feeding stingrays
At Friendly’s after having a cheeseburger and ice cream
The three weeks flew by and before we knew it they had to go back home; armed with a photo album each, tons of hugs…and a hope that the past three weeks actually happened, they left us. It was a sad day.
After a long grueling 9 months, we became their parents- it was official, we were now parents to two children that were practically 3000 days old…not easy; yet not hard either.
We spent 30 days in their native country – knowing that soon like so many other months these 30 days will be behind us, and before we know it we will be back home as a family.
They did not want to sight-see with us.
Nevertheless, they did their best to look happy.
Lunch at the Hard Rock Cafe
Finally, happy swimming guppies in the pool at the hotel
Boy oh boy is that all it took to make them smile.
A warm pool; who knew?
We've been home as an official family for four years- It was hard, it was easy – they are great kids; socially well behaved, and popular among their peers , and learning more and more each day.
Today my husband and I are parents to a 13 year old boy – who is handsome, a gentleman, and good to all of his friends, he amazes us, he has achieved so much in the last 4 years. He does well in school, tries real hard with every subjects, and was on the honor roll for about five minutes, which is incredible for someone that had no idea how to speak the English language, let alone read it and write it. He will do good things; we know it.
We were home for a week when we enrolled them in school. On their first day of school, as we were walking in with our son and daughter, a little boy went over to my son shook his hand and said “Hi do you remember me, we went to camp together last year when you visited.” At that moment my son smiled and nodded yes – I knew he was going to be OK.
This was their first day of school
Our daughter is now 11 going on 19 – in the four short years with us she grew 8, 9, 10, inches – she is beautiful, makes friends wherever we go with her, tells us all the time that her and friends are the popular girls (oh boy!) yet she is kind, caring, sensitive and sometimes sassy. Academically she struggles a bit, however, with every challenge that she faces, she overcomes it without any fuss, – she perseveres. Her artwork is phenomenal with detail and precision.
Our kids will be okay, we remind each other always.
Five years ago, when we signed up to do this – we had no idea what we were getting into…we didn't know them and they didn't know us, yet within those three weeks we saw all those great qualities that our children have now. It was there and we knew it.