09 February, 2008

Heritage Day

D and our Casemanager, Irina

Last weekend we attended the Heritage Day event at our agency, Buckner International Adoptions in Dallas. You can click here to read an article and see a pic of D!

It was a really neat day. This is the first year they've combined all the countries together, we usually have our Russian Culture Day event and the other countries and domestic adoption do their own thing. It was at our Russian Culture Day on February 4, 2006 that we learned Viktoria's referral was on its way. We didn't attend last year, we just didn't have the heart.
D in "Ethiopia" making a bracelet and coloring a picture of the Ethiopian flag.

We had a little "passport" and we visited Russia, Ethiopia, Guatemala, the US and China. In each "country" we had a snack of that country's food and did a craft.

I was surprised how much emotion (aka tears) I would shed on this day. It started while we were visiting "Russia" when they turned on the Russian music, it just brought me right back to that playroom in Ulyanovsk. The tears threatened, but they didn't come. But during the last segment of the day, a Christian recording artist named Susan Gray gave a little mini-concert. She herself was a foster child and she grew up to adopt a daughter domestically only to have the birth-mother decide she wanted her child back after 4 months of the baby living with them. Finally about a year later everything was signed, sealed and the daughter was fully theirs. But they had a lot of emotional turmoil before it was finished. {I understand this was a private adoption about 12 years ago, so I'm sure this probably wouldn't happen today} Anyhow, during her second song my tears just began to pour. The next song too. While I had been taking D to the bathroom before the concert, Hubby had spoken to her a bit and told her a little of our story. When she saw me with my fountain of tears during the concert, I'm sure she could see more of what we'd been through. Afterward, she pulled me aside and gave me so much encouragement. The main point was that "God does not make a promise He does not intend to keep! The baby that did not come home was not your child. But that doesn't mean that your child is not ready now or soon." The child we will bring home to be our daughter was most likely not even born yet when we received Vika's referral in February of 2006.

The song that made me tear up so much is Hold On. The first half of the song I could picture our child waiting in the orphanage for us. The second half of the song was speaking to me as a waiting mommy.

Here are the lyrics:

"I've seen the way you cry at night
in the silence of your room. Seen you hold your pillow tight
when no one's watching you.
Heard you cry out for protection
like an orphan left alone.
Well your cries have reached heaven
and I want you to

Hold on
I can hear you
You're not alone, no, no, no,
And through the storm
I'll be with you
Keep the faith and hold on.

You've heard me called the great defender
to those who feel afraid
You've heard that I will never leave you
But you feel I'm far away
You've been waiting for your answer
And believing in my name
Well I've spoken to the Father
And your answer's on its way
But until that day . . .

Hold on
I can hear you
You're not alone, no, no, no,
And through the storm
I'll be with you
Keep the faith and hold on.

I was with you through the fire
I'll be with you in the rain
And I know that you are tired
But you've come so far so please
Don't turn away

Hold on
I can hear you
You're not alone, no, no, no,
And through the storm
I'll be with you
Keep the faith and hold on.

It wasn't all tears and emotions. There was lots of fun too. I was so excited to see my friend KK from Kansas who has been waiting for a referral from St. Pete for as long as we've been waiting for Vika's court date and now this new adoption. It was awesome to see all the little ones who came home from China this past summer. LiLi's mom was also very encouraging to me, so if you're reading this, M - thanks for your words as we were leaving.

One of the really neat things was the Chinese dragon dance. D also had her picture made with Mr. President in the US adoption zone.


MMrussianadoption said...

wow, i would have been a puddle of tears too

Michael and Carrie said...

Just reading the lyrics of that song made me tear up! I'm glad you made it through the event and that you all were able to have some fun times, too! Have you all received any word on your agency's reaccreditation?

U.N. Mama said...

My! I'm crying now. Thanks for sharing. Beautiful daughter you have :o)

Chelley said...

ok please next time warn that you need tissues to read your post

Debbie B said...

Well now I'm really bummed I didn't make it. Looks like it was a lot of fun.

Your post and the song... I'm in tears. I'm so glad that she was able to give you some encouraging words.

Lauri said...

Your little girl is growing up fast

kate said...

that song is perfect. it sounds like it was a wonderful day.

i bet your baby's home before mine,suz. ;> just a feeling...