being a mommy {my first moments}

February 5, 2007.

Guangzhou, Guangdong Province, People's Republic of China

3:07 pm.

After years of desire, mountains of paperwork, waiting for two governments to finish processing our information and a flight halfway across the world...there she was in my arms.

It was in that instant I realized my heart would never again be completely my own...

3:09 pm.

It was slightly unnerving to be studied so carefully by this calm, yet intense, beautiful baby...almost as if she were sizing me up.  It was this moment that I felt completely ready and at the same time totally unprepared for what I would summarize today as both the most challenging and most rewarding role of my life.


little did we know then that this would become a trademark expression for our girl...carefully watching and studying a situation before she joins in.  it also must be noted that 'special hippo' and 'douglas' the lamb to this day have a reserved spot on her bed...i suspect they always will.

3:52 pm.

Still in disbelief they were actually going to let me walk out of that building with a child in my arms, wondering if we'd know how meet her needs, yet totally, absolutely smitten with this precious child.

4:20 pm.

Photo evidence says there are people all around us...but in that moment it was only she and I.

February 5, 2014.

Our home, North Carolina, United States of America.

8:56 am.

on our way out the door to school...i was lucky to get her to agree to this shot, so i took it, even with one sleeve of the jacket on.  she's not quite the fan of photos that she used to be.

It's both exhilarating and terrifying how quickly these seven years have passed.  How she's gone from needing me always by her side to being an independent girl.  (I'm rapidly realizing that 'little girl' doesn't quite fit anymore).

She's grown and changed so much in these years.  I miss the crawling baby, the topsy toddler, and the inquisitive pre-schooler, but I fiercely love the tenderhearted girl she's become.  There have been so many times I've made mistakes and learned on the fly how this motherhood thing works, yet she's been forgiving of my inadequacies.  For about 18 months she was the only and then over the course of the next five years her world was rocked with the addition of four younger siblings, yet she's rolled with the punches.  And even though she occasionally bemoans having to share her parents with brothers and sisters, the other night after praying for Lucy (at New Day) to have a forever family, she asked if we could start paperwork so we could adopt her.  When I asked her motive she replied, "Well, adding a new kid to the family is really tough at first, but I think we have enough love and everyone deserves the love of a family."

Oh that heart...she challenges me to be a better person.  Happy forever family day to the first child to call me mommy.  May I be deserving of the role of calling you mine...


Andrea Perry said...

Wow! It's hard to believe it's been 7 years. I've enjoyed seeing and reading your journey together. So I must ask, will there be a Lucy Miller soon?

Ashley said...

What a wonderful seven years and what an amazing journey since then!! Happy forever family day!!

Blessings and Hugs, Ashley

Julie said...

In that first photo--do you note that Darby is looking over her shoulder as if to say....."do you like yours, too, Kylie?" So glad this group of girls (and especially these two) are able to stay in contact. Their friendship holds a unique bond.

Kristi said...

Andrea, I think it is safe to say that we are maxed out emotionally right now. No new kiddos on the horizon for our family...we can't rule the possibility out for one day, but God hasn't started whispering yet. :)

Kristi said...

Julie, there are no words to fully express how grateful I am that we have close contact with so many of our friends and that Ky and Darby have the chance to grow up together. It is indeed a unique bond...both among the girls and the parents.

likeschocolate said...

So sweet! Avery didn't want anything to do with me, but I know it was all in God's plan to confirm to my husband that this was his child. She likes me know, but she adores her papa.

Traci said...

It is hard to believe that was 7 years ago! She has grown into such a beautiful girl inside and out! Happy Gotcha Day Kylie. I am so glad to have been there to see you join this crazy family! ;)

Grandma Shultz said...

I remember that first moment - it is embedded in my mind forever. What a blessing We were all smitten with her from that first afternoon in that VERY hot room. Our hearts all became fuller. Happy Gotcha Day, Kylie.

Kathy said...

My heart is still full with the memories of that day. What a beautiful child, then and now. There was so much love in the room that day. We were forever changed.

Kathy said...

My heart is still full with the memories of that day. What a beautiful child, then and now. There was so much love in the room that day. We were forever changed.

Glenda said...

Isn't wonderful how God orchestrates the love of mother and child. It doesn't matter whether genetic or not, the bond is petrifying, wonderful and totally inexplicable.