Thursday, December 5, 2013

Five Years Ago Today

Can it really be five years that we started out on our travels to Viet Nam to be united with our daughter? Holy cow. I feel so damn old now! Just look at those photos below! Not a grey hair on my head. Packed bags full of goodies and clothes for a little girl that we only knew through pictures, but loved her with all of our hearts since the second we saw her referral picture in June of 2008. Four planes, 27 hours of air travel and we had landed in beautiful Viet Nam. Jet-lagged, nervous, scared. Every emotion in the book, I can tell you that for sure. As a family formed by adoption, we have many cherished memories that we hold dear to our hearts. Lucky, we feel that it is something were able to experience. Two weeks went by like a day. I am glad though that we took so many pictures and videos of our trip. Looking back at them brings back some of the happiest moments of our lives. I wish that we could turn the clock back and do this again, the same way, with the same people, Thomas and Cathy, you would be there too :-) ! Sadly, we can’t but we look forward to the day that we return to Sophie’s homeland and experience a totally different reunion, with her foster family and visiting her caretakers at the Holt Child Wellness Center in Binh Duong. They are part of our family too and we always talk about these ‘angels’ with Sophie. She knows she is adopted. She knows that she has a ‘birth mother’. She understands as much as a kid who is about to turn seven can, but she gets it that SHE is special and that God had a plan for her as well as Tricia and myself. We look forward to our celebration of becoming a family on the 9th, or as many adoptive families call it, Gotcha’ Day.
Bags at the front door ready for Libby to take us to the hotel the night before we left!

Dinner at the hotel. A celebration for sure!

Getting ready to leave St. Louis 12/5/08

After landing in Denver. One Down!

After landing in San Francisco.  Two down! The smiling lady in red, also was on her way to China to adopt their daughter. We still chat with her on FB.

One of my favorite videos of Tricia. She almost lost it :-) on the SFO-ICN leg.

After the long 14 hour Trans-Pac haul we arrive in Seoul. 3 flights down!

Finally. 12:01 am on 12/7/08 the final leg, number 4 is complete. We arrive in Saigon.

Our Saigon home for a few days before Hanoi.

We will be adding some updates throughout the week including our Gotcha' Day celebration. Happy travel-versary to us!

Friday, January 11, 2013

9 years ago today-CHEERS!

Nine years ago today my life changed. At that time I thought it was a death sentence, but I now know it was for a greater purpose. Jan. 5th I went to the hospital with severe abdominal pain. I knew exactly, before any doctor could tell me, what it was. I sat in the hospital for days and finally I had the 5 pound mass removed from my body. Wow! Five pounds, I knew for sure I was in trouble! Jan. 7th, I had the surgery, by the looks of it all was good, just a fibroid tumor nothing to worry about. But on Jan. 9th I was told the most horrific news, I had cancer. I had a rare cancer. I had a cancer the would kill me in 5 years. I sat listening to the news. I looked at my brand new husband, my sister in law and my Mom in hopes for some reassurance, but none came. I was told I would have to have a hysterectomy. A what? What is that, I thought. Never mind what it was I wanted it and I wanted the cancer out of me. Scared, very scared as it sunk into my mind, I had cancer. What was I going to do? What about my family? My friends? I couldn't think of leaving them. As days, weeks and months went by I finished treatment. What a relief, but an emptiness. Now what do I do? Will it come back and when? Will I be a Mom? Wait a second... will I? I didn't know what to think of this. I always thought I would be, but how now? What would I do? Give up? Years went by and after a lot, I mean a lot of tear, I would soon face the fact I would never carry a child. I had no ovaries and no uterus, it was out of the question. Soon we began the adoption process and it was not easy. More and more days went by with more and more tears. This stupid disease caused me to let go of the hope of being a Mom. Flash forward years to 2008, June 13th, a daughter would be ours. She was born on Jan. 15,2007 and she was going to be ours. In a few days we will celebrate her 6th birthday. My dream of being a Mom has came true . I now know why this happened to me. I do not feel sorry for myself and for what happened 9 years ago, I celebrate it! If it wasn't for January 11, 2004 I wouldn't have my best friend. I wouldn't have Sophie. God gives us things to overcome and at that time we see it as punishment, but if we wait we see that the greatest outcome will come from our sadness. So today, I thank you God for what happened all those years ago. I thank you for giving Sophie to me. I couldn't imagine life without her. I often wonder if this cancer will come back, but with the faith and support of my friends and family I am able to fight off those fears. So today I toast a cheers to my daughter, Sophie you are my hero. Thank you Lord for my life! PS : CANCER SUCKS