THE SEVENTH DIAMOND

Monday, July 13, 2009

How Do I Feel?


I have had a lot of people ask me about how I feel and how does it feel to adopt and how does it feel to adopt verses to have a bio child. I am sure that everyone's experiences are different, but I will tell you mine.

When I was pregnant with my sons, I knew a child was on the way. I had 9 months to prepare myself, but it was always a surprise when I saw their faces for the first time. There was a sense of anticipation with each one and a voice inside each time that said, "Well, there you are are and this is what you look like." I loved them because they were mine. They grew in my body and they were my babies. I cared for them instinctively and I grew to love them more and more each day as I gazed into their eyes and cared for them and watched them grow.

I wondered how I would feel when they put Sophia in my arms. I wondered if it would feel the same. I view her as the child of my soul. My daughter in every way, except God chose for her to be born in China.


It was very emotional for me when I saw the nanny carrying her down the sidewalk towards us in the guard shack. I had to hold back my tears because I didn't want to scare her anymore than she would be already. I kept thinking of Eli and how terrified he would be if I gave him to a Chinese family and left. I kept thinking of my little boy and what this would do to him if the tables were turned. I knew that day would impact her forever and the weight of what was about to happen weighed heavy on me.
It was truly gutwrenching when they placed Sophia in my arms. She is a smart girl and she had a pretty good idea of what was happening. She screamed to go back and tried everything to get away from me. It completely broke my heart.

There was also this underlying sadness. Here was this beautiful little girl with no one in the world. How could no one come forward for her? No Aunts or Uncles, no Grandparents. This little child all alone. It is a life changing experience to hold an orphan in your arms and look them in the face. To see a child truly alone. I claimed her then and there. With my heart and my soul I claimed her and I took her as my daughter and the voice inside of me said "Well, there you are and this is what you look like." And I knew that she was mine and that she would never be alone again.

I loved her then because I made the decision to love her and I am falling in love more and more each day as I gaze into her eyes and care for her.


I have been asked if I wonder sometimes if I did the right thing. I really don't. With each of my children, there was always a time (usually gazing at them through the plastic tub in my hospital room) when I felt a little overwhelmed and thought..wow, here we go, it's you and me kid.
I know Sophia is meant to be here with us and more than anything I wonder about how to be the best mother I can to her. I wonder about the right things to do. I wonder about what I need to do differently with her to meet the special needs she is going to have. Right now I want to do everything right so that she knows she is loved and she is not alone and she will never be left again.

My daughter has scars, scars on her body from 2nd degree burns and open heart surgery, scars on her heart from being abandoned over and over. I know that some people wonder why we chose her. But she is my girl and I could not love her more. I claim every hair on her head and every tear and every scar. I will live my life trying to heal them and not add more. She is a child filled with joy and laughter and smiles. Somehow she has found the strength to find the happiness of childhood despite her circumstances so I need to at least be as strong as she is and be the mother she needs me to be. And that is how I'm feeling right now.

42 comments:

Debz said...

I'm a puddle on the floor...that is so beautifully articulated...I love the picture of her little smile. Let the healing rains pour down. It starts with a smile...

Isabella's Mommy and Daddy said...

BEAUTIFUL.. as I am drying my tears...
I sooo cannot wait to have these amazing feelings..
Hugs..
Love ya girly..
Sophia is one blessed little girl..

Dawn said...

Kimberly I love this...I know exactly how you feel...Lucy is embedded so deeply in my heart it is as if she has always been there~

Michelle said...

This post is as beautiful as your daughter. And since I have had the great pleasure to see her in person, this is a great, great compliment. Truly beautiful!

Dita said...

That was just truly beautiful!

I have had all of those emotions when dealing with my two children...one I gave birth to biologically and one who was placed in my arms as a young infant. They both stole my heart at first sight.

I also know the scars, the health issues and the strength of a mother's promise to first do no harm....I try to live it every day because I know my child was meant to be here with me and that I was meant to live up to the task of being the mother he (they both!) need me to be.

You are a very wise and honest woman......your journey has just begun and every day your heart will just grow and grow more in love with your daughter.

Cindy M said...

It is no coincidence she is in your arms and your heart! I loved reading your words. I had three bio children before adopting Caroline, and sometimes, I think I love her more profoundly than any of the others. It's the same love and, yet, very different. I feel so blessed to know this kind of love.

And she is DARLING! What a beautiful sweet face! She looks so happy, already!

Janet said...

Adam is scarred too. Mostly emotionally. He has had a rather hard life. Which sometimes makes him hard to deal with. But you are SO right. Love is a CHOICE. I love him simply because he is my son, not because he doesn't act perfectly. And I shudder to think what caused some of the reactions he gives to things.

Number 6 and no more counting! said...

xo Kimberley!


Lea

Kim K. said...

Beautiful post, Kimberely. I couldn't agree more with every statement and every feeling you've expressed.

Love ya!!

Jewels of My Heart said...

OH, Kimberley, I just love you....
I am trying to find the words to say... you have already written them....
In so much of what you said I find my heart....
Oh, my friend.... we are blessed among the blessed!
Thank You Jesus for the most precious gift of our children.
Welcome home sweet Sophia Jane.... Your Mommy has had a place prepared for you since she was a small girl..... her heart...

Shirlee McCoy said...

That was beautiful, Kimberley. Thank you for sharing such deep and true parts of your heart.

Elisa...life as we know it. said...

So beautifully written from your heart!

LaLa said...

What a sweet post. She is beautiful and you are going to be an awesome Mommy to her! I know what you mean ...with Annslee she was in a foster family and grieved the loss of the only family she knew and it broke my heart..with Coby he had no one who truly cared for him and so he didn't grieve as much but that broke my heart too.

Linda said...

Beautiful post.. Sitting with tears in my eyes, I look at my granddaughter Lauren and I see in her deep brown eyes such a beautiful spirit. It has carried her through things most people never experience, but she has come thru them and still has a wonderful giggle and smile. Your Sohia will show what love and trust can do for a child. I can already see the happiness in her.
I'm so thankful that you are her Mom.... Prayers and Hugs to your family. Linda

day by day said...

Hi Kimberley! This is a beautiful post and it descrribes what many of us feel when we adopt a child that is a bit older. It is a tug at your heart in many ways!

I am so glad your Sophia is home!!!! She is just precious!

BTW.....LOVE our bows!!!!

love,
Michelle

Truly Blessed said...

Sophia is blessed to have you as her Mom, Kimberley. I could see it in her eyes yesterday, and in her smile, too -- she is learning to love you as much as you love her.

Thank you for taking time to play with us yesterday - we had such a fun time (the audio book didn't do it for the kids on the way home, though!).

And, FWIW, those who have to ask if the love is the same -- from a Mom to her children (bio or adopted) have never adopted or been around those who have. There is absolutely no difference.

Hope to see your family next Sunday!

Rachael said...

My feelings when we adopted our daughter were very similar to yours: I could have written this post myself! I understand you completely. You made a decision to adopt and to love this child, and from there, the maternal feelings just flowed. For me too, it felt just the same as when I gave birth. Knowing that you are all this little person has in this world: it's a powerful emotion! (And gets you through a lot of the bumps too!)

Linda said...

Oh, Kim, you put a smile in my heart. You are first and foremost a mother and one of the strongest, most kind-hearted persons I know of. Sophia is lucky to have been given to such a wonderful person. Your love will continue to blossom and grow with each day. I would like to see some pictures of you two together. She is beautiful. Just like our Mya.....
I will continue to pray for your family. I know Cole and Carter( Carter much slower) have grown to love Mya and she is dependent on them for so much. This fall both boys will go to public school for the first time. She will have an adjustment then. Sara wants to devote some time to just the two of them. Does Sophia speak any Chinese? Mya is all English and very adamant about it. She shies away from Chinese people. I think she may be anxious because she doesn't want to moved to another family. She is very happy where she is. She goes to Sunday school now with no problems. So many adjustments to make......It all takes time.

Holly said...

Thanks for sharing. I am thrilled each time I visit your blog and see your daughter HOME. It's still just so awesome to me!!

Jodee Leader said...

What a beautiful post! Thanks for sharing your BIG heart with us! You are sooo blessed!

Dawn said...

You, RMJ are a warrior and an amazing woman and mother. Your post has bought me to tears because inside I strive to do the same for my girls. I loved them from the minute I sent in their dossiers but I always wonder if I will do it well enough.

Juliette said...

How blessed you are dear Kimberley!

You have so much love to give and I am glad Sophia will have it to help her heal her scars.

Beautiful post from a beautiful Mommy on her beautiful girl.

Alyson & Ford said...

Beautiful words! A child is a child and needs love no matter how they came to us... as step-children or adopted; they need all the family love we an give them.
Your post is beautiful!

Alyzabeth's Mommy for Almost Ten Months

kerri said...

Meant to be, forever in your heart and in your arms.
I am just so happy for you all, it has been so touching and wonderful to be able to follow your amazing journey..

The Byrd's Nest said...

I am in tears. You said the most perfect words in the most perfect way Kimberley. I know God chose her just for you....and chose you just for her. Just think....before you were born He KNEW she would be your daughter.

I pray for the scars on her heart. I pray each day for her to fall more and more in love with you.

Kerry said...

Kimberley thank you for your post tonight. My heart is full. Your sweet girl is beautiful and her mama is beautiful.

I know very well your joy and love for your daughter. I felt the very same way. Thank you for expressing it so well.
hugs

Kayce said...

Such an incredible post Kimberley. THANK YOU so much for sharing it. All of you, especially Sophia are in our prayers daily. The healing will come.

mommy24treasures said...

what lovely heartfelt words... She is such a beautiful gift from God...

Love seeing my fav header up at the top:)

Terri Fisher said...

This is such a beautiful post. You nailed it when you said you made a decision to love Sophia then and there...I think that's what makes adoption so special and so much a picture of how God loves us. We have two adopted sons from foster care here in the States, and two bio sons. We are now in the process of adopting a daughter (whom we are also naming Sophia!)from Taiwan. I have enjoyed following your journey! God bless!

Adele said...

Oh my! You have brought me to tears. THis is so beautiful. Thanks for sharing this. It has truly blessed my heart. You are one blessed Mom.
Love,
Adele

Kris said...

i am speechless and in awe of your heart and of her bravery. there is nothing i can add. you said it so perfectly. i am just feeling incredibly blessed to be a witness.

Roy and Lori said...

Wow ...........So well said!
She is very beautiful! So
happy for you!!!

Shay Ankerich said...

Such a precious post and so heartfelt!!! Thank you for putting into words how so many of us moms feel. I still look at EK and think how amazing she is and was picked by God to be my little girl. It takes my breath away. I am so thankful you have Sophia and she has you.
blessings to you sweet friend!!!

Carol said...

I felt many of the same things...we are so alike. Our daughter's even have some of the same sn's....I always second guess myself...am I doing enough?..but that all goes away when she comes running to me as hard as she can yelling "Mommie, mommie!"

Chelley said...

aww tears..

sob sob...

big huz

Lisa said...

Lovely...so glad you have found each other. Can't believe you came back and I missed it. So fun to see her.
We have decided to stay where we are so to speak. It is to scary to switch right now.
xoxo
Lisa

Doug and Terrye said...

Beautifully written!!! It's as if you crawled into my heart and caught a glimpse of what is going on insdie me. Before Grace came home I thought that I would love her, but I had no idea that it would be as overwhelming as it is! Somehow I had forgotten what it was like to be the mother to such a little one that was completely dependent on me (my boys are in their 20's). But it didn't take long to realize that she held my heart in her sweet little hands...and I she can keep it right there! :)

Terrye in FL

Patricia/NYC said...

BEAUTIFUL...absolutely BEAUTIFULLY written from your beautiful heart!!
I am crying here...oh my friend, you are all so, so blessed!!!
HUGS!!!
Patricia/nyc

Kudo said...

What a beautiful post. I can’t seek on what it’s like to have a bio child but I too can't believe that these children are left all alone and know one steps up for them. Why does this happen? I just love my little girl so much I can't imagine the thought of ever leaving her. I do believe on my end that her parents loved her so much they had to let her go to save her life. They told me in a note that it was a money problem. I know they took her to the doctor because they told me in the note how much it would cost to save her life and they did not have it. It is so sad to love your child but not have any means to help them. Our girls are so strong and it is this strength that will make them rise above their scars from what they had to go through before we could come and save them.

God Bless you for being the Mother you are!

Lori said...

Kimberley, I haven't been by here in SO long....since before you brought your beautiful baby girl home! This was so moving. In all that I've read over the years and thought about and tried to prepare myself for....I never once thought of "leaving my Eli". I just can't imagine ever doing so and yet that is exactly how I need to see it. :(
I'm so glad to have read your thoughts and experience, this was incredibly helpful.

Sophie is just darling!!! Congratulations! :)

jennifer said...

This is so beautiful. Thanks for sharing it with us!

Amy said...

Kimberley,
I so wanted to follow your journey in China...and then changes in my own family's life took over. I am catching up today and am so SO happy to see what has transpired within your family!
Oh you waited so long for this little girl...this very one meant for you, alone. Sophia is precious! And we all knew it before, but you are an incredible mommy. God knew just what He was doing when He chose you and Sophia for one another.
With Love and Prayers,
Amy