Thursday, September 5, 2013


A year ago today I wrote my first blog post.  So, today is my "blogiversary".  In honor of this milestone the blog now has a new and updated header picture (thank you to Courtney at for helping me with this) 

Today I look back and all I can think is ....  little did I know.

All I had a year ago was a belief that there was a little girl somewhere in China that was meant for our family.  I had a belief that God had called us to this path and would lead us to her. 

A year ago today we were close to completing our dossier.  I was gathering documents, obsessively checking the mail and racing as fast as I could to be "DTC" (Dossier to China).

A year ago today I was wondering who our child would be.  What would she look like? Where would she be from? How old would she be?  I wondered what she was doing as I was notarizing and certifying and mailing.   And dreaming and hoping and praying.

I had images in my head of what I thought she might look like.  I tried to imagine her hair, her face, her eyes.

Little did I know.

A year ago today my daughter was in a very different place.  She wasn't dreaming or hoping, she was simply surviving.  She was unaware of life outside her orphanage.


Little did she know.

What neither of us knew was that in a few months, we would find each other.  For all that I thought I could imagine, never in a million years could I have dreamt up a face this beautiful or a child this wonderful. 

I think back to all the little roadblocks and set backs and realize what so many tried to tell me along the way ..... it would all happen when it was supposed to happen. 

In a strange way today I wish I could go back to where I was a year ago and re-live this entire journey.  I miss the journey.  But then I remember that sleeping upstairs is the daughter I dreamt about all those months.  Sleeping upstairs is the daughter I truly wasn't sure I would come home with until the day the wheels of our plane landed.  No, actually, I don't want to go back.   I just want to go forward.

So here we are a year after I started this blog and the blog itself has turned into something wonderful.  It is one of my favorite things to do to sit down and make myself reflect on what is going on and write my blog posts. I love slowing down to marvel at the progress my girl has made as I upload pictures and see that progress unfolding right before my eyes.  When I started this blog, about 10 people read it.  As of today there have been 164,469 views.  A testament to how much Vivian's story has touched people.  I am thankful to our family and friends who are following along.  I am thankful to my adoptive friends who offer me so much wonderful support and advice and to strangers who have reached out to me to tell me how Vivian's story has touched them.  Thank you all for your love and support of our family.

Vivian continues to make incredible progress every day.  She is so brave.  I look at the pictures above of her before we met and hardly recognize the child I see in front of me now. 

She just needed love. 

She needed to belong.

She needed a family.

Thankfully, she got one.  And we got another daughter and the missing piece to our family.

I can't help but wonder, what if she was still there?  She would still be eating congee every day....barely walking, and not talking and  not really living and oh my word, the world would be missing out because this amazing child would be hidden away.  What about the others?  They need someone to chase after them, to seek them and find them and bring them home and love them and give them a place to belong.  They need someone to believe in them. 

Last week we celebrated our 2 month Gotcha anniversary. Hard to believe it has only been 2 months.  If you would have told me when I was in China the things Vivian would be doing in 2 short months, I never would have believed it.  Getting her to take a few steps or smile seemed almost impossible then.  Now she is walking, running, swimming, climbing, laughing, loving and trusting. 

Little did I know. 

“We do not believe in ourselves until someone reveals that deep inside us something is valuable, worth listening to, worthy of our trust, sacred to our touch. Once we believe in ourselves we can risk curiosity, wonder, spontaneous delight or any experience that reveals the human spirit.” 
-E.E. Cummings

I came across this article last week written by a father about his son he adopted from China.  I thought it was worth sharing. 

Linking up with Lisa this week here:

the long road


  1. I really appreciate your blog. My wife and I have only just begun our journey into adopting from China and I was very happy to see a blog being so recently written about the program we are entering. Your blog has given us a great idea of the timeline we may see (once we get through the mountain of paperwork!).

    I visit often just to look at the beautiful pictures of Vivian. Even the ones of her "sad" with her little lip sticking out are so adorable.

    Thank you for sharing.

  2. She is so beautiful! Love your photos! Have a great weekend.

  3. Thank you SO much for sharing this! We are in the "1 year ago" stage - waiting to hopefully be DTC in the next week. This was SO encouraging to read. :)

  4. What a beautiful post and congratulations on one year anniversary of this blog and your new addtion. She is beautiful. A couple of post back, your mom's friends send some dolls. One was from Poterybarn, but where was the other one for. It is such a beautiful doll, but I can't seem to find it anywhere on the internet when I do a google search. Would you please mind sharing with me where it came from? Thanks, Kelleyn

  5. I noticed on my blog that you linked to my story "Because You Never Know." I am blessed to read about your story of adoption. Vivian is beautiful. Words cannot describe how I feel learning about her story and yours. Thank you for choosing adoption for your story and for sharing it with the rest of us.

  6. Happy belated Blogiversary! I'm continually surprised by the life the blog has taken. It has amazing power to unite and make the world a bit smaller. SO glad I stumbled on yours way back when!
    and ps-that pic of her in the air... LUV!

  7. I enjoy your blog so much, Maureen. I found it via Katie Cox Peterman and her blog & Facebook page. Watching Vivian blossom is wonderful and the change in her in two months is nothing short of amazing! Thank you for sharing your journey and Vivian with us.