I cannot believe it is already December 12! On the 16th Vanessa will have been home for 4 months. Time is flying by! She is doing so wonderfully! We are seeing her adjust so much now as the homesickness is fading. She has made a sweet friend with a girl in our neighborhood. I am so thrilled about this and can see a definite change in her since this has happened. School is going well, although pre-algebra is certainly a challenge. She is working so hard and we know that she will be successful.
She is enjoying the Christmas season. ABC Family plays 24 hour Christmas movies and on the weekends she is watching them almost around the clock! She has enjoyed the baking and the decorating. Yesterday she got to experience her first parade in our sweet little town! Her friend and she painted their nails to look like candy canes. I have to admit…she is seeming more and more like an American teenager. SHOCKING I know! The other thing she has loved is surprising Samuel every morning by having his “magical” elf, Rebecca, do mischievous things around the house. The heartbreaking part…one night after designing an elaborate hoax she said, “I wish I was still little enough to believe in this.” It slayed me. I too wish she had been with me since she was a little girl. I wish I had been able to protect her from so much heartbreak! There is so much struggle in my mind as to why her life had to be so hard and have so much abandonment and loss and change.
On the flip side…one recent success we have had is that after hearing that there were some changes at the children’s home where she lived, the girls are living in a new place, she said, “I am glad I am not there.” I know this may not seem like much to you all, but it took all I had not to jump up and down with pure joy! I am really waiting to hear her say that she is glad she is here. Time will provide for that, I am sure.
We are looking forward to having her experience Christmas with us. God has blessed us with an amazing year and when I think about how much I was missing her last year and that this year the “unadoptable” girl is LIVING IN MY HOUSE…AND SHE IS MY DAUGHTER NOW!!!! Two verses have now combined in my mind…the first I have shared before from Deuteronomy 10:20-21 20 Fear the LORD your God and serve him. Hold fast to him and take your oaths in his name. 21 He is the one you praise; he is your God, who performed for you those great and awesome wonders you saw with your own eyes. I am certain I never want to forget all the great and awesome wonders I have seen with my own eyes, (and continue to see). The second that has come to me during the Christmas season is from the story of Jesus’ birth from Mary’s point of view. Let’s remember, Mary rode on a donkey to Bethlehem, full term and possibly in the early stages of labor, had a baby in a cave or barn of some sort with stinky animals all around, without the benefit of a dr, epidural, hospital bed, or even electricity (and her approximate age is 14, the same as Lizzie)….and then shepherds started showing up. REALLY????? I think that must have been what she was thinking! But in the book of Luke it says…But Mary treasured up all these things and pondered them in her heart. I want to be like Mary. When my situation seems stressful or crazy or just plain out of control…instead of saying “REALLY?????” I want to treasure up all these “great and awesome wonders” I have seen with MY own eyes and ponder how awesome my God is. That he would allow us to be witness to this adoption and to his true story of redemption in the most beautiful of stories. Wow.