Wednesday, October 30, 2013

She's still real

It seems like a lifetime ago already that she was in our home, sitting on the very same couch we sat on while talking with her while she is back "home" at her orphanage.  By the way, the words home and orphanage do not deserve to be in the same sentence.

Home is here.  With her Mommy and Daddy.  With her two sisters.  With the love of her family.

Squealing with delight as she plays like the child she was created to be...

But for now, this will have to do...

Technology is pretty much simply amazing.

We got to see her!  Our little girl.  Halfway around the world.  We got to talk to her this morning.

We got to see her beautiful face light up our computer screen.  And light up our hearts.

I almost hate to admit this, but I think I was starting to forget just how sweet Kate is.  Until this morning, it had been over a month since we lasted talked to her, but we haven't seen her since she walked up the escalator at LAX back in July.

She is still real.  A real, little, beautiful, precious, funny, sometimes shy girl who stole our hearts when we first laid eyes on her picture in back in April.

For the first few moments the 5 of us simply stare at one another...smiles exchanged from hundreds and hundreds of miles away while we wait for a translator to get on the call to help us communicate with her.

And nothing about this staring seems awkward or strange at all.  Tears fill my eyes as I see her pretty face.  It literally sends shivers down my spine as butterflies fill my stomach.  The confirmation returns that yes, this is my daughter.  Not that I've questioned it for a moment since I first laid eyes on her, but I'm not going to lie, there are times (more than I would care to admit) that doubt creeps in.

At times I wonder if she's forgotten us.  Moved on with her life now that she's home with friends.  Not forgotten that we exist, but forgotten our love.  Forgotten that we are on a mission, a rescue mission of sorts, to come get her.  That not for a moment have we changed our minds.  I wonder sometimes if she really believes that we still have a bed for her, that her bike is still on the patio, that her clothes are still hanging in the closet, that her notebook is stashed away in a safe place so that one day she can fill it with more beautiful pictures.

And then the translator gets on the call and one of Kate's first statements is...

"I can't wait for you to come get me."

And that's the moment that the doubts disappears and joy returns.

The moments when you're reminded that no, she has not forgotten us.  She wants a family.  She knows she needs a family.  She doesn't even know what family is, but she knows she deserves one.

She thanked us for the packages we've sent, telling us she keeps the things we sent close to her.  The pictures of our family together.  The blanket she left behind.

Then I ask, "Is there anything you'd like us to send you?"

Her reply...

"I just want you to come get me."

Floored.  Overjoyed.  Torn.  Elated.

What do you say to that?  Besides the obvious...telling her we are working as fast as we can to be able to get there.

So we told her just that, that we are working so hard because we miss her so much and life isn't the same without her here.  But that hardly seems adequate.  Heartache.

We showed her the poster we made for the garage sale fundraiser we did a few weeks back.

And she thanks us...again.  Gratitude.  She is so grateful.

And she gets it.  Even if only on some small level.  She gets that we mean it when we say we will come to her.

And we will.

I will not leave you as orphans;
I will come to you.
John 14:18

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