6 months! 6 months? 6! MONTHS! It's hard to believe we met Emily almost 6 months ago. Our Gotcha Day was March 31st. At times it feels like yesterday. But more often it feels like Emily has always been with us.
China requires several post-placement reports after adoption is complete. This is when our social worker comes to our home to observe and interview us about Emily's progress. She then composes a report and sends to China with updated pictures and other documents. Our first visit was one month after Gotcha Day. Our 2nd visit is required at 6 months and took place this past Friday. We have grown to love our social worker and we look forward to her visits. Friday was no different. It was a joy to visit with her and reflect on the tremendous progress we've all made over the past 6 months.
Emily is a permanent part of our family. And it really feels that way now. We forget she was adopted. The stares and comments in public do remind us (we love the comments, by the way, because it's an opportunity to minister to others as well as demonstrate grace in front of our children). I no longer see a little girl from China. I see a Loman. She's beautiful, just like her sister. She is one of our 4 kids and I barely remember life before her.
She brings so much joy to our home. When I think about the first year and a half of her life, I often get sad that we couldn't be there for her sooner. We all missed a lot but the only evidence of that is conscious reflection. She has completely adjusted in every way. We don't see signs of grief anymore. It's clear she understands that we are hers and she is ours, forever.
Her brothers and sister adore her. It's beautiful to see how they have embraced her and accept her unconditionally as their sister. Blood is irrelevant. The bond that we share within our family is greater than blood. Emily has helped us realize that being a family has nothing to do with biology. She reminds us daily that family should be a reflection of the love of our heavenly Father. There is no greater love than that of our Father, who we are related to only through adoption (Ephesians 1:5).
Thank you, Emily Hope, for the blessing you have been in our lives. The past 6 months have been joy-filled and meaningful beyond my ability to express. I'm already looking forward to our 1 year post-placement visit in March and the thanksgiving we will be giving then!