"Adventures, I used to call them. I used to think that they were things the wonderful folk of the stories went out and looked for, because they wanted them, because they were exciting and life was a bit dull...But that's not the way of it with the tales that really mattered, or the ones that stay in the mind. Folk seem to have just landed in them, usually...I expect they had a lot of chances, like us, of turning back, only they didn't. And if they had, we shouldn't know, because they'd have been forgotten."

-Samwise Gamgee, The Lord of the Rings

Wednesday, October 26, 2011

Gotcha day... 1 year later

One year ago I was standing in the doorway of her group at the orphanage one last time. But instead of asking for Alina to be brought out, I handed over her clothes. Her brand new clothes and shoes, the first things she could call her very own. She was mad when the nanny brought her to the back instead of out to me, but when she seen the clothing she seemed to understand what was happening, and was smiling nervously. Then she appeared before us all ready to go!

She was really excited to see so many people standing around looking at her. :)

She hadn't seen me all day because we were running around doing paperwork. I know she was wondering if I was coming back, and she got up into my arms and gripped the back of my jacket, not wanting to get down.

Look at those spikey pigtails!

Its hard to believe its been an entire year since I carried her out of those doors for the last time. She was nervous because it was dark out and I don't think she every got outside after dark.

The car ride to the train station was awful! Poor girly had a ton of something for dinner just shortly before we got there, and she let us know a few minutes into the car ride by throwing up. It was awful, she felt terrible, it was all over her, all over me, and all over our sweet facilitators car. But of course we all lived and got to the train after stopping to clean up a little bit. It was bittersweet getting on that train... we wanted to get home with our girl, but it was hard to leave the people and places we had come to know and love. It was very emotional for me leaving Nikolaev. I felt like our girl had been jipped out of seeing the beautiful area where she was born. But also knowing that she wouldn't have fully remembered it even if we took a few days to show her. We will go back when the kids are all a bit older, so they can understand and appreciate.

This is Alina today. :) Look at the difference in her pigtails! The dress is shorter, a little tighter on top, and the tights are now too small. And the pink dotty shoes don't fit at all!

Happy Gotcha Day, Alina! We love you and are amazed by you every day!


Allison said...

She's a beauty!!! Congratulations!!! Happy Gotcha Day!!!

Leah S. said...

Her dress is shorter. The legs underneath it have not only filled out significantly, but they now carry the weight of her body in this thing we call walking. Her face is full, healthy looking, and while she's smiling in pictures with you at the orphanage, her more recent pictures show a girl who is RADIANT. This is a young lady who now realizes she has the whole world before her, and the confidence with which to meet it. THOSE are the real differences I see in these pictures. Thank you for following God's call and getting her home.

Corinne said...

What a beautiful girl Alina is !!We are getting close to our special day too. It just brings back so many emotions !

Christy said...

wow!! A year. And just like this day last year, you made me cry happy tears for you. Alina has truly come so far and Im so happy for her and you guys. She is beautiful, happy and most importantly.. LOVED. And you can tell in her face, which is just pure innocence and joy.
Happy Gotcha Day!

rjenks said...

Happy Gotcha Day Anniversay! She is such a blessing. So happy that you were able to find each other.