Summers and summers ago (eight to be exact) Rob and I decided to start pursuing adoption. From the time we were dating we had always said that we knew adoption was in our future. So when we had trouble getting pregnant on our own it was a no-brainer. We did not try any fertility methods, we just took it as a signal from God that adoption would be the channel for growing our family.
Fast forward six months (and many viewings of An Adoption Story on TLC) to a cool mid-January day in the desert. I write in my journal the following:
“I wish I could articulate all of my feelings right now, but I have so many. I am full of hope and excitement for my baby boy to come home. I am scared to death about being a parent. I am terrified…”
I wrote this while we were waiting for our adoption agency to call us any day now to tell us that we had been matched with a child. Little did I know that the day before I wrote this entry my tiny little five pound baby boy had been born in the Land of Eternal Spring. It wasn’t until a few days later that we actually received the call for which almost every adoptive family hurries up to wait. “Congratulations! You have a son! He’s one week old. We will have a picture of him for you tomorrow!”
Fast forward four more months to May. I (nervously, excitedly, crying-my-eyes-out) walked down a long airport corridor, Rob by my side, and my sweet baby in the sling on my chest. We were greeted by a loud and happy crowd of our family and friends holding “Welcome Home” signs, bouquets of balloons, and cheering wildly at the sight of our new wide-eyed, black-haired tiny bundle. What a magnificent rush of joy, gratitude, and pure love. Wow. Just remembering that day again conjures up a swell of adoration in my chest, not only for my precious new baby, but also for the outpouring of love, forward-spilling onto Rob and I from so many loved ones.
This week we are celebrating in my house. We are remembering that day seven years ago when our plane touched down on American soil, instantly making my beautiful brown-skinned son a citizen of the United States of America, and forever member of our family.
This small human changed me. When he arrived in my life he altered the fabric of my being. As many parents might say, I never expected to be transformed so much by the tiny life strapped to me in a Mayan sling. Never in my wildest dreams could I imagine how this little man could make me melt, make me smile, and make me laugh like I never had before.
Last night he dictated dinner: chocolate chip ice cream; then dessert: crispy chicken legs, mashed potatoes, and asparagus. This weekend the celebrating continues as he chooses the family activities (including a visit to our favorite amusement park).
Happy Gotcha Day, my sweet boy (the goofball on the right).
Note: I will have another Gotcha Day story for you at the end of summer as we celebrate our younger son (the comedian on the left).
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