Our baby girl is coming home TOMORROW!!! We have waited nearly 3 years for this day. It is completely surreal! I have gone to bed every night praying that God would protect, comfort, love and sustain our baby. We have spent each night thousands of miles apart but tonight is the last night and I'm sure there will be very little sleeping on this end! Praise be to Jesus!!!
Although we are so very excited to begin this new chapter of our lives, we are not naive. We understand that our daughter is not only coming to a place that is completely foreign to her but she is also going to be living with people that are unfamiliar to her. We don't speak the same language, we don't eat the same food, we don't have the same smells, sounds and comforts of her former life. We understand that living in a family vs. living in an orphanage will be best for Esther. The only thing she will understand is that all of a sudden she will be taken away from everything and everyone that she has ever known. She will grieve. She will miss her caretakers and friends. She will miss all the comforts of home. We pray that she will eventually bond and attach to us as her new family and that one day she will call our home her home as well. That being said, we know this will be a process that will likely take a great deal of time.
Speaking of attachment and bonding... I wanted to get this message out to our family and friends w/o having to explain it to each individual person. We are going to keep Esther's world small for the first month that she is home. We will only introduce her to a small handful of people during this time. Other than appointments we will be sticking close to home. She will need this time to begin the attachment process with her immediate family and also to get used to her new surroundings and a brand new culture. She does not understand what a Mommy and Daddy are or what a family is. We will have to model that for her as she begins to bond with us and eventually learns to trust us. We will need to start from the beginning as if she were an infant in many instances.
Since we will be working diligently on bonding and attachment there are things that will be helpful to ensure that we will still be able to work on this once Esther does start meeting more people and going more places. We do ask that Dana and I be the only ones to provide for Esther's needs such as feeding, comforting, holding, etc. Please do not offer her food, pick her up, give her a hug, etc. We understand that this may be hard but do know that we have Esther's best interest at heart. It won't be like this forever. We will certainly reassess the situtaion once we feel that she is in a good place to do so. That being said, we would absolutely LOVE for our family and friends to play with our darling when the time comes - we look forward to each of you getting to know this sweet, precious child whom you have lifted up in prayer for several years! We are excited that Esther is already loved by many whom she has not yet met!
Thank you so much for all the prayers, kind words, donations, support and everything else in between that we have received over these last 3 years. Each time we began to feel discouraged it seemed as though someone would come alongside us and lift our spirits. For that we will be forever thankful! We look forward to sharing this next chapter of our lives with y'all... stay tuned for Homecoming pictures!!! I can hardly believe that my two babies will be falling asleep under the same roof tomorrow night - God is faithful!!! Thank you Jesus!!!!