|Amelia, 2 months old, with a short term|
missionary who graciously loved on our
girl while we could not.
I speak from experience. I first fell in love with Amelia on some level in November 2008 – long before she was even conceived. The love increased as we progressed in the adoption process, and bubbled to boiling as we received our first pictures of her beautiful face. I was determined to know Amelia even before I ever met her. I squeezed snippets of information about her from every short term missionary and adoptive parent who passed through her orphanage. In my mind, I created a paper-mache version of her from photos, facts, and 9 second video clips… dab “snuggly” here, “sweet-natured” there, glue together and wait for her to dry. It was a comfort to imagine that I knew my daughter.
The problem comes when OUR “real” meets TRUE reality. When the imaginary version of our child is shoved to the side by the child herself.
|Amelia's first days in her new home.|
Fast-forward to the early days at home with REAL Amelia, and you can see the mirage begin to melt away. Amelia would not take a sippy cup… she’d rather starve. And while this battle lasted only 24 hours before it’s quick, happy resolution, it made me crazy for that one day. Imaginary-Amelia never had this particular problem. I’d never thought of this! Imaginary-Amelia would have trouble being away from me and I’d have to quit work – THAT would be the big problem!*** I was prepared for that, for no other reason than that I’d thought it through. But Real Amelia throws curve balls. She is so… REAL! Unpredictable! It is as if – gasp – she’s HUMAN!
***(Real Amelia loves our church preschool, although she’d prefer to be with me, and thus I am still employed!)
Okay, can I stop calling her “Real Amelia” now? :-)