Thursday, October 20, 2011

Mei Li Continues to Blossom. . . and a very sweet moment

I keep pinching myself to be sure I am not dreaming. But, amazingly, I am completely awake. And, Mei Li is not a dream. She is as real and as warm and as loving and as silly and as mischievous and as comical as any little girl could ever be. She is absolutely making herself "at home" in our family. The last 2 1/2 weeks since she has been with us in the U.S. have held almost "all" brand new experiences for her, and she is living life and loving every moment of every new experience she encounters. She has such a hunger for living!! And, after spending the last 4 years inside an orphanage, Mei Li expects to go in the car out into the world to explore every single day. I get the "steering wheel" gesture each morning no later than 10 o'clock. And, if I don't respond to her request in a timely fashion, she makes it quite clear that she is not pleased. The difficulty lies in the fact that I am also homeschooling Anna Grace this year. So, I have to tell Mei Li that we cannot "go" until I help AG with her school work. It is a 3-ring circus around here most days before noon. Mei Li is very action-packed. She doesn't sit still for very long. She is the busiest little person I've met in a while. She is not a tv-watcher. . . definitely not a couch potato. She will sit and listen to music for a long time. . . however, not quietly. No. . . not Mei Li. If there is music, then there shall be singing! And, speaking of music, this little girl LOVES to sit at the piano and play and sing her heart out! I caught one of her performances on video, and you can see it in the upper right corner of the blog. I have a strong suspicion that a musical future is in store for our Mei Li. She has an unusual love for music---it is almost like she "needs" it. It calms her and thrills her and she never tires of listening to it or of sitting at the piano and giving impromptu concerts. I am very excited to see what happens with our Mei Li and her love of music! We have already been blessed with Anna Grace who also loves music and is doing wonderfully with her piano lessons. Her piano teacher, Mama B, has already told us that Anna Grace holds great talent at the keys. And, for those of you who know me and my love for music. . . you know that makes mama very happy!!

In other news, Mei Li's foot is responding very well to the cast. Dr. Khourey was surprised when he removed the cast to see how much her wound had healed and equally surprised to see how much the position of her foot had improved in only 1 week in the cast!! He did say that we should expect to have an achilles tendon lengthening procedure done, but he said it is not a big deal and is an out-patient procedure. But, he also said that given how well her foot had responded with only 1 week in the cast, there is a chance that we may not have to do that procedure at all. She already had the lengthening done once while she was in China. So, we are hopeful and thankful that it is working so well. And, Mei Li handles wearing the cast just like she does everything else that comes her way. . . like a champ!! She doesn't let it hold her back at all. That's my girl!!
Finally, a very sweet moment tonight at bedtime. I always lie with her until she falls asleep. I sing to her and pat her back. Usually, she rolls over and passes out after a long stint of being silly and flipping and flopping. But, tonight, she rolled toward me and she reached over and took my hand and pulled it up to her cheek. . . and then she kissed it. And, then she crawled over to me and gave me a kiss on my face. And, then she crawled back to her spot and put her head down on her pillow, took both of my hands and held them against her chest. Then, she fell asleep. Have I mentioned that I am in love with this precious girl? Well, I am. :)
I'm about to be very honest about some questions that spun around inside my head in the months leading up to meeting our daughter. Before we met our Mei Li, I often wondered if she would feel like my daughter right away? Or, would it take time for her to feel like she is my daughter? I knew I would love her, because I already loved her. But, loving someone you have never seen before. . . who you dream about. . . who you spend years imagining what they will be like and creating that person in your heart and mind. Would I love her like I dreamed about right away? Or, would that take time to build? Would she love me like I dreamed about? Or, would she have to grow to see me and love me as her mommy? Would it feel like we were family? Or, would it feel like I was babysitting someone for a time. . . until we weren't strangers anymore and developed a connection? I knew that there was a chance all of these questions could be answered with either a yes or a no. And, for many adoptive families, these questions have varied answers. I prayed that God would give my heart the ability to love her "as my daughter" from the moment she was placed in our arms. That she would feel "like my daughter" from the first moment, and that the love that I would feel for her and that would flow from me would be a pure "mother's love". I wanted Mei Li to feel that pure love from me from the start, and know that her new mommy loved her with a mother's love. I also prayed that Mei Li's heart would be prepared to love us as her family from the beginning. I am overwhelmed and incredibly thankful to share with you that my prayers have been answered. I look into the eyes of our Mei Li, and I see my daughter whom I love completely. She doesn't feel like a stranger that I am getting to know. It doesn't feel like I am babysitting. Mei Li is my baby girl, and she feels like nothing less than my daughter. What a gift that is! Thank you, Lord, for that gift!