Tuesday, November 29, 2011

Hair no more

It has happened! Hugo's head has been shaved.

I know it seems like I am a little crazy about his hair and I am. It is not so much that have a weird obsession with his hair, it just was so cute and there is something about the first haircut that takes away a little of the baby factor in kids. It seems to make them more grown up all the sudden. Too fast for me. And this is all a part of my crazy attempt to keep him a baby....forever. I tried to do the same thing with Adriana and it didn't work. I am sadly expecting the same outcome with Hugo.

Hair or no hair, he is my beautiful boy. His eyes are so incredible and from the pictures I can tell you, I am in trouble. Those eyes are going to rule me.

Tuesday, November 22, 2011

Giving Thanks, Part 2

How could I possibly talk about all I am thankful for in this process without mentioning the most important part of all of this, Huguenson!

I am not sure how to do this without writing it directly to him. I hope that one day, when he is older, I can show him this blog so he may have an understanding of how our family came to be. And not so he can read of the struggles of adoption but the road that brought us to be our unique, amazing, kooky family. So here we go.

To my sweet Hugo,

As we get ready to celebrate Thanksgiving, a time to give thanks and gratitude for what we have and what has happened over the past year, I can't help but put you at the top of my list. The decision your dad and I made to start this adoption path was one of the best we ever made. The minute we saw your picture, we knew that you were meant to be our child and so thankful that our path led us to you. You were the missing piece to our family and finding us has made our hearts complete.

As you read this blog, you will read of the many trials that are international adoption. But not for one minute should you ever feel the burden of that pain. The pain is only the longing we have to get your home with us and part of our everyday life so we can love you in person instead of from afar. And please always know the joy and happiness we feel EVERY DAY that you are our son and coming home to us is far greater than anything else. Thinking of you and loving you brings me so much joy that I can never thank you enough already for being my son.

I thank God for you every single moment of every day. I want you to know that you are so loved by your mommy, daddy and sister here that we spend our days planning and excited for the day we can bring you home. There is not a minute you are not on our mind and in our hearts. Until then, I hope you can feel our love and security with each visit that we get to be with you. That time is so magical and precious.

We love you so much sweet boy and cannot wait to bring you home. You have made my heart complete.

Love Mommy

Thursday, November 17, 2011

Gratitude, Support, Love, Our Cup Runneth Over

So I spend a lot of time on here fretting about adoption woes. I spend a lot of time concentrating on the hardness of it all and the discouraging news and delays. And while I still feel that on a daily basis and since it is the season to feel thankful and gratitude for what we do have, I thought I would give it a whirl in the adoption realm.

When we first started this process I focused so much on the people that were not supportive, said mean things and were downright horrible about it. With every turn I learn to tune these people out more and more and hope that they never have to feel the feelings and heartbreak I felt by their words and actions. But as we have gone along in this process, not only has our life been changed by a little boy that has filled a hole in our hearts, but we have been uplifted and transformed by the amazing people that have come into our lives, or become stronger influences in our lives through their love, support and friendship.

I have to start with family. Family can mean good and bad things to people. To me, it brings out good. We have always had a great family and amazing support, but I never knew how much they would embrace us and help us through this process. We haven't even gotten Hugo home and they are just as excited and in love with him as we are. They have taken on caring for Adriana when we travel to visit him and do it with a smile and are so happy to have her. We could not ask for better people to have in our family. Whether they are a Smith, an Etchepare, living near or far, they have all been so fantastic. We are truly lucky and blessed with an amazing family.

After we visited Haiti the first time, I was invited by the wonderful people we met their to be a part of a private group on Facebook called Team Haiti. I was really excited to stay connected with all the families we had met and have a group to talk to about this process to that were feeling and going through the same things we were. And as excited as I was, I never knew the impact this group would have on my life. They have literally become a lifeline of support, friendship and sanity that I could have never imagined finding. It is such a diverse group of people in different stages of life and parenthood, but we are all connected with a common bond of adopting from Haiti and knowing the happiness, pain, and anguish that comes with this process. And we are all going through it together. We may be in different stages of the adoption game but we all know the feeling of waiting and hoping that everyday good news will come our way. And being there for each other when that day doesn't turn out the good news we had hoped for. What is so remarkable is the friendships I have created and that these people are people I would want to be friends with even without this life circumstance. To say I am thankful for this group is an understatement. I am thankful to the 1,000th degree.

We are also blessed with such an amazing group of friends and nothing has made us more thankful for that then the love and support we have felt from them over the past year and a half. To our old friends that have stepped up and loved us, to the new friends we have made through this process, to the people that have just surprised us and supported us, we are forever grateful.

And lastly, to the random strangers that we have run into, met and have given us encouragement from the most strange places. I am thankful for the lady that gave me a hug at Olive Garden when I started crying because I was so overwhelmed by the crapiness of my day I could no longer hold it in. I am thankful for the checker at Wal Mart that asked about the 30 rattles I was buying for the orphanage and gave me so much encouragement for what we are doing in our 5 minute interaction. I am thankful for the blog comment of encouraging words I received from a lady in Arkansas that got my son's information from her church to send him a present this Christmas at the orphanage. We have found hope and encouragement in the most unlikely of places and I am so thankful.

And for the caretakers, the workers, the people in Haiti. They are such an amazing group of people with a faith that inspires and amazes me. To Angie, the missionary that loves and takes care of our children. I have met her once and she is such a blessing. She is faced with things each day that would break me down. And she faces it with grace and courage. She inspires me to do better and be better. I am so thankful for them and sending prayers to them for strength in the face of sadness and tragedy they have endured this week.

And last, but certainly not least, our daughter. She is 3, but sometimes I feel her wisdom and kindness are that of an adult. She has been so amazing and excited to have a brother. She has prayed for him to be safe and happy until he comes home to us. She talks about him every day with such excitement, it is catching. She does not understand this process and I would never expect her to, but I feel that she gets the bigger picture. She has endured me and my mood swings that have been created by this process, and she has hugged me and given me words of encouragement at the very right moments. Every day she tells me something new she wants to do to help her brother feel ok when he comes home. She gives me hope, strength and the power to just be ok on days that I feel nothing but ok. She while this is all foreign to her, she somehow finds a way to comprehend and understand in her way. She keeps me laughing and focused on what is important in life. Every single day.

Our cup runneth over.