Monday, October 5, 2009

The Kiss!!!!

I got a kiss today. Not just a smooch on the hand or arm or leg but a real, wonderful kiss on the lips!!! No, I am not talking about my hubby because, well that would just be odd. I mean I know we have 5 kids and all but we still do mange to kiss on the lips these days!! I am talking about my Lizzie May!! For a long time now, Lizzie has not wanted to kiss me or anyone else on the lips. She really seems to have bonded with us in just about every other way so I have not been pushing this with her. She would give me the biggest bear hugs (as big as those tiny little arms can hug) and she would give me a smooch or two on my arm or leg or hand or sometimes (if I was lucky), I might get one on my cheek. But today, ah today, in the middle of a rain storm, underneath her Hello Kitty umbrella, she gave me a kiss on the lips and not just one, but two!! I admit, I was the one initiating the kiss but she did not pull away and definitely wanted another!! I don't know what has changed. It could be that I was gone for several days last week or it could be that she could sense my sadness at my Dad's passing or it could be that I caught her by surprise or it could just be that as everything with Lizzie's progress, it takes time and patience and understanding and baby steps!! Sometimes it is 2 steps forward and one step backward but it is always rewarding, sometimes challenging and always amazing!! On days like today I am reminded of how worried we were about our Lizzie that first day and the incredible progress she made just in a few days. I think about it every time I read about a family who chooses to disrupt in China. I am not one to judge but it makes me very sad when I know how much Lizzie changed and blossomed while we were still there and the remarkable journey since coming home. I just wish every family would go into this understanding what an intense and scary time this is for their new child and give that child a chance to "recover" before making that kind of devastating decision (for the child and the family). We had been looking at a picture of our daughter for 9 months but Lizzie had no idea who we were and I cannot imagine what must have been going through her mind. I can certainly understand why these kids seem to totally shut down after they are with their families. I just wish that every family that considers adoption would decide before they accept a referral or pursue a waiting child that this is their child no matter what and no matter what they might find in China or wherever their journey leads them. I wanted to post a clip of Lizzie on our first day and one from a few days later. You can just see her transformation and while she still had a long way to go, we knew she was ours, no matter what!!

Our first day with Lizzie

A few days later

This summer

It breaks my heart that we could have made that agonizing decision to leave Lizzie in China with what we saw that first day or two. Not that it ever crossed our minds but I think that this is what must happen with disruptions. I cannot imagine how many beautiful souls get left behind because they are simply scared and overwhelmed. I know what we would have missed out on!!


  1. People often do not consider it a lifetime commitment, like when adopting a pet. It should be "til death do us part"~~~~Do you know what I mean?

  2. Annie, I love reading your posts and knowing about your amazing conviction and patience. Yes, I cannot imagine a family who chooses to disrupt, especially while still in China? Has this happened recently to someone you know? People seem to forget, adoption is not for the parents, it's for the child! If a child is traumatized, unattached or just plain scared and confused, what did they expect going into it? A blank slate? Thanks for talking about your experiences with Lizzie--she's a superstar. Love, Monica

  3. Annie, This is sooo true! In Lizzie's "first day video", she has the same flat affect on her face that Grant did. No expression, just a bit of the deer in the headlight's look. I was so worried about Grant. For three weeks he just stared w/ a flat affect. Never cried, never even made a noise; no words, no babble, no smile. I was worried, but never thought about leaving him behind! It took some time for sure, but look at our kids now! Great post!

  4. Oh yeah! I still remember my first kiss from the Tongginator. I'm so happy for y'all. And yes, I look back at how much the Tongginator has changed in four years. It took us a long time, but you'd never know it now.

  5. Austin had that same look on his face at times on his first day with us. I guess we had it in our heads that we needed to trust God that He would not give us more than we could handle. We went to China to get Austin and bring him home. The thought of not bringing him home was not an option for us. I fell in love with him before we had approval to adopt him. I didn't know I could love a child that I had never seen so much, but I did.

    Austin is getting into kisses now. He gave us big open mouth kisses on the cheek when he first came home. Now he wants to kiss us, not so much of us kissing him all over his face. We still are so nuts about him and just can't get enough of him.

  6. Thankk you everyone!! I really appreciate ALL the comments everyone has left recently!!