Our adoption took us down many roads we never expected to travel. One of those roads, introduced us to new friends. Most of these friends, we’ve never met face to face, but we share a connection through our children and experiences. Recently we had the privilege of meeting two of these families in person.
Four girls were like sisters. They lived in the same orphanage, slept side by side, ate, and played together. Two were adopted into one family in the states, Hanissa came home with us, and the last one went to Italy. Hanissa talks about these girls, by name, daily. She wonders what they are doing. We have their “homes” marked on our map. We look at pictures of them together. In the beginning, these discussions were emotional followed by crying and sullen moments. Now, we’ve made the shift and these conversations tend to be more excited and less sad.
Upon arriving in the states, we knew we wanted to visit and meet Hanissa’s friends, E and J. The plans were made but we didn’t tell H until the day of the meet-up. We knew it would be emotional for her, but we weren’t sure when the emotions would show up or how.
It was perfect. The girls giggled and played and we adults got to talk and enjoy the reunion. It was full of beautiful moments and of course a sad goodbye. But, the joy outweighed the sorrow. Just look at the happy faces. (And, thanks to the Praters for taking these.)
When we first visited H at the orphanage, we met a cute, energy-filled little boy. He was all smiles and never stayed in one place for long. His older brother, A, had some health issues that kept him from walking, but he had that same beautiful smile. It was great to visit with them and their family. A, who not only walks but now runs full throttle, seemed happy to see Hanissa. She was thrilled to see them both and didn’t mind a bit the attention A gave her. And their smiles are just as wonderful as I remembered.
We enjoyed hearing about their adoption and life while the kids played together outside. They played ball, rode bikes, and just had a great time. It was a wonderful visit.
These families are amazing. They loved on H at the orphanage before we even met her. They give of themselves on a regular basis to their children and to others (like us) around them. We learned a lot just from watching them and listening to their joys and struggles. My only regret about these reunions is that our families live so far away making meet-ups a little difficult.
Thank you, sweet friends, for the ways you’ve encouraged me and my household.