Monday, October 8, 2007

Happy Gotcha Day!

Today is the day we celebrate Rina joining our family forever. It was on October 8th, two years ago, that a young orphanage worker placed Rina in our arms and completed a journey that had begun in the heart of God at the beginning of time. We have been so abundantly blessed, and we thank God every day for the miracles He wrought in our two beautiful, unique, spirited and Spirit-filled children.

This was taken about half an hour after Rina joined us. She was one day shy of 9 months old, and she weighed a very solid 19.5 lbs. Her clothes were too small, she smelled icky, she had open sores on her neck and she was nearly bald at the back of her head (from pulling her hair when she cried). But she was the most beautiful thing we had ever seen!

This was taken yesterday.

Life has changed so much in two years. Things are very different with a nearly-three-year-old in the house! Rina is independent and smart and oh-so-fearless. She loves to read stories and play outside and make beautiful things with play-doh and crayons. She is good at pretending, not so good at sharing. She is quite familiar with the time-out step. She worships her big sister. She knows all of her colors, most of her shapes and many of her letters and numbers, and delights in pointing them out. She has an amazing smile, gorgeous eyes and the cutest little round Buddha belly. She has her mama's hands-on-hips stubborn pout, her daddy's goofy sense of humor, and her sister's love of all things sparkly and pink.

To those who tell us "what a wonderful thing [we] did," (adopting, that is) -- as if building our family was some humanitarian effort on our part -- I tell them about all the purely selfish joy I get out of the little drama queen that joined our lives two years ago. I'm thankful that Rina was spared a life of hardship and loneliness, but I am confident that she would have thrived in whatever situation she would have faced. She is strong and brave and resilient. But our family would have been smaller in every sense of the word without this child. We are the ones who are blessed!

1 comment:

Matt said...

Congratulations on Rina's Gotcha Day! What a total blessing from God, it seems like it was only a few weeks ago that we were following you (via your blog) on your journey to China. We're so glad that Rina is a healthy and happy little girl! It is amazing that God had her ready for you even at the beginning of time. I like what you said when I saw you last, that God put your personality and genes into a woman thousands of miles away and gave you your daughter! Only God can work those kinds of miracles.
The Weigle Family