Wednesday, August 20, 2008

One Year Ago - August 20, 2007

To our dear sweet Elizabeth,

It is so hard to believe that one year ago, our lives changed forever. Your life changed and mommy and baba's life changed. Some of the changes were painful but they have been well worth it. We play over in our heads the long flight to Hong Kong and then the flight to Hefei only to be told that we had about an hour before we had to meet in the lobby to pick up "our girls". Boy, those words sound so simple but they mean so very much. We remember the bus ride to the civil affairs office. It was a quiet ride. I think everyone was anxious whether they had 3 kids at home or becoming a first time parent. We remember riding that elevator up and walking down the dark hallway. We remember turning the corner, thinking you were not there yet and all of a sudden hearing the sound of babies! I remember being the first at the door and seeing your profile as you were being held with the bright sunlight at your back. I remember your nanny handing you to me as they told you that I was your new mommy. I remember how you sobbed and how you tried to strain your neck so you could get a peak at the one person who had been your caregiver and was now leaving you. Trust me my dear one, if there was anything I could have done to take away that anguish, I would have. I just kept hoping and praying that the wonderful life you were about to embark on would make up for this day which I know was awful for you. Since we first saw your picture, we have loved you unconditionally. We have traveled thousands of miles together and we would do it again without hesitation. We can not imagine our life without you.

My pumpkin, we believe that you were destined to be our daughter and we were destined to be your family. We have watched you bloom from the sullen, scared little girl who would cower to the funny, vibrant, opinionated girl that we have now. We have watched you learn to feed yourself, climb steps, run, play, draw and most recently, learn to us the potty. We have been in awe as your language has taken off. A year ago, you said almost nothing. Today you use more and more english. We are amazed at the thoughts you can now get across to us. We are so proud of you. You have learned that toys are fun (especially when used for their unintended purposes). You have learned that dinner is more than a bottle and that food is always available (even though you can have solid food, you still love soup the best!). You have learned that during stressful moments you can let out a belly laugh and mommy and baba laugh too. You have learned that all things can be forgiven when you stroke mommy's face and say "I sorry mommy". You have learned that memaw is good for hugs, treats and all sorts of fun stuff (even better now that she moved across the street). You have learned that Santa brings toys and the Easter bunny brings candy filled eggs (ok, in your case he brought key filled eggs!). You learned that Grammy and Poppy can appear on the computer screen and talk to you (but can't take the paper you are trying to show them). You have learned to say your bed time prayers and to pray for people who are important to you without prompting. You have learned that saying "I go potty" will get you removed from just about any situation (4-5 times during dinner sometimes!) We had hoped we could write that you had learned that saying "I need help" got you things faster than whining but maybe we can write that next year. You have learned that school buses are yellow and fire trucks are red. Most importantly we have watched as you learn to trust and love us. Nothing brings mommy and daddy closer to happy tears than when you, without prompting, say I love you or place a little kiss on our cheeks.

We will never know the reasons that your birthmother had to make sure that someone else would care for you but we do know that if she had not made the decisions she had, we wouldn't have you and that would be very sad for us. We hope that when she looks at the same stars we do, she has peace in her heart knowing that her daughter could not be loved anymore than we love you.

We cherish each day and thank god he chose us for you and you for us. We love you my sweet Elizabeth. This year has been a blessing beyond all blessings.

Just as a year ago, we welcome your comments to share with Elizabeth as she gets older.

We love you like CRAZY CAKES!!!

Mommy and Baba

Elizabeth in China (August 2007)

Elizabeth in August 2008 - My how she has changed!!!

This video pretty much sums everything up! Elizabeth you are MY sunshine!


Mama Darling said...

Oh Miss Elizabeth, you have come SO far! You are no longer that fragile little sweetie who cried every time Mommy got out of your sight. You've blossomed into a beautiful, healthy little girl with a personality all her own. We can't wait to see you tomorrow! Oh, I LOVE the cowboy hat!!!

Anonymous said...

Happy Gotcha Day!! What a wonderful, happy time! Your letter brought tears to my eyes (happy ones)...


Doug, Gina and Keira

Anonymous said...

That was cute.

Shannon said...

Soooo sweet! I have tears in my eyes. Thank you for sharing!