life on the funny farm

Sunday, October 2, 2011

Sunday Social - Julie

Next one down on my siggy line...

Wife of Fred for 23 years
Mom of:
Patrick (16)
James (16)
Rosie (1)
Julie (13)
Daniel (12)
My children around the world:
Milly in Taiwan
Felice in Hong Kong
Eun Hae in South Korea
Nadya in Germany
Obrin in New York
And our critters Annabelle, Fiona, Sunny, Sophie, Cindy-Lou and Blue; Mamfy, Mali and Punkin; Nick; Frog 1 and Horny Toad; Charlie and Dizzy; Minnie and Alice; Elfie, Frex, Crope, Tibbit and Ozzy; Genevieve, Pippin and Finnegan; and a dozen or so chooks.

I'd like to ask God why He allows
hunger, poverty, and injustice
in the world,but I'd be afraid
He'd ask me the same thing ...

Is Julie.

5th in birth order of my kids.
6th in order of when she came into my family.

She is funny.
She is vivacious.
She is beautiful.
She is helpful and kind and loving.

I cannot imagine my life without her.

And yet, I resisted the idea of becoming her mother.

If you are not familiar with the story, I will tell you that eight years ago, my husband and I decided to bring a little girl into our lives through adoption. That was Bella, I wrote about her last week. While we were in Kazakhstan doing our two week visitation with Bella, we met a little boy, named Borya (wrote about him a few weeks ago). We fell in love with him and learned years later that we could adopt him, too. Only catch was, if we were to adopt him, we must also adopt his younger sister. On this the authorities would not budge. Although we weren't sure if we had grit enough to parent "virtual triplet" preteen girls, we decided to go for it.

But I wasn't happy about it; it was not something I chose to do. I felt my hand was being forced.

And so we travelled to Kazakhstan once again, thrilled at the prospect of being reunited with our long-lost son, yet trepidatious about meeting our new daughter, whom we knew next to nothing about.

And then she walked into the room. And my heart melted. And I was her Mama.

She told me, years later, that on that day that we met, a messenger child came into her classroom and asked her to follow him. Dutifully, she got up, walked down the stairs and through the hall and into a room where she was introduced to two Amerikanzas that were to be her new Mama and Papa.

I thought I had taken a leap of faith agreeing to parent her. But this child? This ten year old little girl? She agreed to join our family when she had never met us, never heard anything about us, and had probably never given more than a moment's thought to the whole concept of adoption her entire life. Got courage?

She folded into our family seamlessly. Within two hours of being home, still fresh off the plane, she had a teeny-bopper poster hanging on her bedroom wall.

The rate at which she learned English was nothing short of staggering.

When she first joined our family, she was my shadow. My velcro child. I could not turn around without accidentally elbowing her or stepping on her foot. When I came out of the bathroom, she would be right there outside the door waiting for me.

Now? She's gained a bit of confidence. She no longer has a look of terror on her face if she turns around and I'm not where she thought I was. She's starting to get that she is with us for keeps. Hard concept to learn when you were placed in an orphanage at the age of three, and your brother was transferred to another orphanage two years later without warning, without a goodbye.

To look at her now you would never know she had any insecurities. She is a typical 13 year old girl. She texts, she chats with her friends on Facebook. She has sleepovers and does her nails and rides her bike and listens to her favorite music on her ipod. She dances, she gets silly, she's loud. She gets obnoxious, she gets grounded, she pouts.

She loves school, loves her teachers, loves her friends. She loves horses, but is afraid of them. She has a hamster and a cat. She eats non stop and is growing like a weed and is all angles and knees, and yet all grace and beauty at the same time. She will probably be taller than me by the new year.

She is younger sister to her two big brothers and two big sisters. She is big sister to her little brother. She is a niece and a cousin and a granddaughter.

She is my daughter. And at one time, I did not choose her.

Shame on me....

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Thank you.....

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