I have to look back to realize how much they have changed. Physically.....Emotionally....Spiritually..... They were very weak little girls. 12 & 13 years old that looked like they were 7 & 10 years old. I remember taking them to the doctor for the first time and the doctor saying there is no way they are 12 & 13 years old. Well, after going to the dentist, and doing a hand x-ray on Hope (orthodontist wanted this done), we did confirm that they are in fact the age we were told they were.
Last night, I have to admit, was one of the best nights we've had in a very long time. School has been back in for a week. So we've been adjusting to that. Well we just decided to have a game night. We sat around, playing a game and laughing so hard. Hope was being SO silly. Saying things and making the craziest faces. W could not stop laughing. It's so amazing to see that when she puts her guard down, that she truly is a fun, crazy girl. She has learned to put her guard up to guard her from pain, hurt, people etc. After 2 years, we are seeing that guard leave occasionally. This is progress.
Pray for us, because Maggie is blossoming into a beautiful teenage girl. She has grown a lot, she is maturing physically fast. And she LOVES to dress pretty. We had a "fight"with her the other morning because she was dressed too nice for school and it concerned me. We already know the boys are looking at her. I need to protect her for as long as I can. She is naive and has not had 14 years of a mom telling her about boys etc. She has seen and heard so much more than she should have while living in the orphanage. So pray that she will be protected from anything that could be negative. Even though she is boy crazy, she still thinks they are yucky (at least that is what she's telling us).
There are days where I still feel like they are not my daughters. There are days when I don't feel bonded to them at all. Then there are days when I want to do everything in my power to protect them, to love them, to be their mom. It's definitely been a lot harder for me to bond with them. Even though I have loved them from the day we decided to adopt them, it has been hard for me to bond with them. Adopting an older child (let alone 2 older children) is very hard. Especially when you adopt kids who put up this huge barrier and would have been happy staying where they were (so they thought). Thankfully now, after 2 years, they have admitted they are happy here and they do NOT want to go back.
I'm praying that this 3rd year will be even better. That life will feel more natural. This year they are in 8th grade. And they are riding the bus. The only thing they don't like about it is that they have to walk to the bus stop (a 5 minute walk). On the 3rd day of school, Hope begged that I not walk with them. She said "we're big kids, we know how to do this". And she was right. I have to remind myself that they are 14 & 15 years old and they can and they need to do things without me. Bill reminded me that they did a heck of a lot more stuff on their own when they were living in China. We need to let them learn and grow up.
Thank you for following our journey and praying. If I can be of any help to anyone reading this please contact me. I would love to talk about our adoptions and help you if I can.
|Our first family photo|
|Our family. Easter 2014|
|Pirate night on the Disney Dream. June 2014|
|1st day of 8th grade|
|1st day of 8th grade|