I am a little late in getting this up (a week to be exact), but as they say, better late than never, right?
On Friday, October 18th, we celebrated 3 years with sweet Reags!
It was on this day that I walked into the civil affairs office in Changsha and saw her sitting on the bench with her Nanny.
She was sucking those two fingers and the other hand was looped around her Nanny's purse.
I will never forget that moment. Marla and I were told that she had not arrived and since the room was empty, we were searching for the best bench to sit on in order to get the best light for photos. All of a sudden we saw this cute baby with super short hair, dressed in pink, and then the two fingers gave her away. We tried to talk to the Nanny, but she did not understand us. Moments later our guide Susan walked back in and confirmed it was Chen Wen Yi, our Reagan!
Reagan although somewhat relaxed and mild mannered compared to the other children in the room, was definitely in a state of shock.
She had no idea what was taking place, but she knew that it was all different and nothing was familiar, including the two blonde ladies that were holding her and constantly in her face.
The first few days with her were so incredibly emotional that it makes me cry to this day when I think about it. Reagan completely shutdown. Would not eat, would not drink, would not play, and did not show emotion. All she wanted to do is sleep. It was completely heartbreaking to witness.
By day 4, she gave us a glimmer of her personality, she squeezed my finger through the crib rails as she fell asleep that night, and even flashed a smile once or twice. She was starting to come around and all the worry I had been carrying around with me started to fade away. I knew we were going to be okay. My girl just needed time to grieve and time to adjust to what would be her new life beyond the gates of the orphanage in Chenzhou.
In 3 years, she has made amazingly huge strides.
Through the love of a family, she has learned to trust and show love in return.
She now knows what it is like to have a sister and a brother, and a mother and father who love her unconditionally.
Reagan is a ray of light that has blessed us immensely and I just can't imagine our lives without her.
There were many times throughout the 5 years of waiting, I did not know if we were ever going to make it to China and back.
By the grace of God, we did and I am forever grateful. Because of Reags, I am a better Mother and a better person.
Her life has opened my eyes and my heart to a country a half a world a way.
It is difficult to sit here feeling helpless when you know so many are waiting without families.
I would love to go back and every time I see the face of a child who is waiting, by heart gets the best of me.
At this time, going back to China to bring home another child is just not in the cards for our family, but what I can do and what I will continue to do, is share how much adoption has meant to us and how it has changed our lives for the better, in the hopes that others that are considering adoption, will take the leap of faith, just like we did.
Happy Forever Family Day Chen Wen Yi!
~We Love You~