Tuesday, October 2, 2012

The best worst year of my life.

A year ago today, I stepped off a plane with my third child in my arms, finally home forever. It was almost two years after starting the adoption process. Two years of waiting, paperwork, praying, waiting, praying. I thought those years were hard. I had no idea.

I will never forget coming down the escalator at the Charlotte airport with Amani in my sling after over 30 hours of traveling and seeing my husband, seeing my two older kids running to me, seeing so many of our friends there to greet us. It was amazing. My only regret is that we didn't get a picture with everyone there.

Allyn's first Big Sister kiss

Our first family picture (remember, 30+ hours of traveling - I am looking rough!)

And then we drove home from Charlotte to find this in our driveway:

That day was crazy. Amani and I were exhausted and dirty. He was so sick (we had no idea he'd be having surgery 8 days later).  And our friends and family surrounded us with so much love and support. I get teary thinking about that day and how much we love the folks who shared it with us.

And that was a year ago today. Three hundred and sixty five days.

Those have been the hardest three hundred and sixty five days of my life. And the best. And the most stressful. And the most amazing.

Adoption is not for wimps.

Looking back on this past year, I am so glad to be moving forward.  And I cannot get over how different our family is from a year ago.

If you haven't seen it yet, there's a blog post from Jen Hatmaker (have I ever mentioned how much I love her? oh, I have? a million times? right, sorry) and it sums up the first year home with adopted kiddos:

In the past year I have cried tears of joy and tears of despair. I have wanted to shout from the rooftops and praise God and I have wanted to throw myself down a flight of stairs.  Seriously.

But today I look at my little brown boy who runs to me when I walk in the door yelling "Mommy Hoooome!" and I want to cry tears of pure joy. I know what his life would have looked like if he weren't here. I know the struggles he's been through over the past year. He's my fighter, my survivor, and he is, quite possibly, the sweetest of my three children.

And as hard as it has been, I'd do it again. I'd do it all again to have him be my son; I hope to get to do it again for another child someday.

But for now, I am really looking forward to year two with our amazing Ethiopian son. He is truly a blessing to our family, temper tantrums and all! :)

1 comment:

  1. Kirstin, your family story makes me feel full of the spirit, and of hope. Each one of your children are the sweetest; how could they not be with you and Rob for parents? I enjoyed the picture of everyone in your driveway. That would be an overwhelming, emotional experience!


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