|I can't believe it has been 2 years since we first saw this beautiful face:|
|1/22/11: ..."One of the nannies brought in Allie. We were expecting her to cry -- everyone was. She didn't. She stared us down. She went right to me and then she kept looking at Adam and his camera. She reached out to grab the camera. Then she grabbed Adam's hand and held on tight."...|
And two years since we were forever blessed by the strength of this man:
|1/25/11: "...He wants her to know how much he loves her, and that he hopes we love her just as much...."|
And two years since we had to say goodbye:
|1/26/11: ..."When it was time, I gave her back to the nannies and I tried to wave bye and explain to them that I wasn't coming back. The nannies didn't speak English, but they understood when they saw my eyes well up with tears. I just quickly handed her over, waved goodbye, and turned around and walked away. I walked to the balcony where Adam was standing and he went to give me a hug. I said, "Please do not touch me. I will fall apart." He understood and we left the transition home quickly as all I could think about was just putting one foot in front of the other and not falling down on the ground with tears. She was my daughter...."|
And two years since she came home:
|Taken a few days after we became a family.|
|Taken at Alemitu's 1st adoption anniversary|
|Taken at Alemitu's 2nd adoption anniversary|
While at times, January 2011 seems like yesterday. There are other times that I feel as though Alemitu has been with us forever. She is full of love and life, and she brings such happiness to our family. Also such craziness to our family. Such silliness to our family. Such love to our family. Such attitude to our family. And such NOISE to our family. I wouldn't trade a single piece of her personality. She is beautiful, inside and out.
I wouldn't trade a single tear shed over her. A single bit of anxiety felt through the process. A single bit of fear. Or a single dollar spent. Our journey had its ups and down, and it was full of emotion along the way, but that was the journey we needed to take to get to where we are today. And the journey has just begun. I never want to get complacent. I fought hard for her 2 years ago, and I fight hard for her everyday. I fight hard for my family. Adam and I made a vow to that little girl that we will never stop fighting for her. The same vow we made to our boys as we fought for them in the NICU. And we won't stop. We will never let complacency or selfishness get in the way of fighting for her. I never want to have to say that kind of goodbye again. I never want my child to ever know the feeling that comes with parents who have stopped fighting. I never want Alemitu's grandfather to ever feel pain with thoughts or worries that we may stop fighting.
I never want to forget each and every moment, and each and every miracle, and each every prayer said through the journey we took to bring Alemitu Tagese home. She lights up our lives. She is my daughter, and I cannot wait to watch her grow into a beautiful woman. Our journey wasn't to save her. Alemitu saved us.