Gabriel has blossomed in both the big brother and little brother roles.
Samsel came home to us and quickly went from a baby to a toddler. Having had so many caregivers in his short life, he stays close to mama. Our relationship, his attachment is a slow curve; little by little he trusts us more. With only learning English and being 20 months old, how do I know this? Because, negating the first week home, he is finally routinely falling asleep peacefully in our arms at night, when he gets an 'ouch' he comes and find us and he holds on a little longer, a little stronger when we hold him. We're filling his trust bucket little by little and in return... oh my, the returns are just beautiful. Sammy gives us the most beautiful smiles, the sassiest looks and the cutest little butt shakes you could ever imagine.
Each day is a little different in our house... the routine may be the same but the healing, the love being found and the relationships being forged is always growing. Adoption is beautiful but it comes from tremendous loss. While we were not God's first choice for Thomas' parents I am so glad that He chose us for the job when the need arose. Thomas is amazing. He has this giggle that is equal parts infectious and heart melting. To be 7 years old and have a lifetime of loss under your belt, but still be able to be filled with joy. It's profound. It's humbling. It's of God. For the first few months, Thomas would laugh but it wasn't deep or all encompassing like it is now.
Thomas Uchan, he has that joy. His joy is accompanied by a love for cars, trains, Spider-man, legos and Toy Story. You'd never know English was his third language and he has a penchant for chicken, cheeseburgers and a sweet tooth for chocolate. He also loves fruits and vegetables, yogurt, cheese, crackers, pasta... he's our best eater by far.
Thomas is a great big brother. Not only is he super super sweet with Samsel but he's flourishing in the role of big brother to Gabe. He quickly learned some of Gabe's limitations and is fast to offer a helping hand or encouraging word. Thomas spurs him forward and cheers him on when Gabe is using lefty. I watch Thomas and Gabe together and at times can't believe they've only been brothers for four months.
Life has begun to be a little more smooth; we have a routine, we leave the house, people come visit. We've left the "purely surviving" mode and have entered the living and may I say,even thriving at times. We laugh together, we learn together and slowly, bit by bit God is grafting our hearts together.
I prayed for this child, and the Lord has granted me what I asked of him. 1 Samuel 1:27
For years we prayed for Thomas and Samsel; before they were born, before we knew their names or saw their faces, we were longing for them. And now we have the rest of our lives to make up for the time we missed and the love they lost, to join together and find redemption in the road that brought them home.
And most certainly a privilege to have two more children call me "Mommy." Three boys! Who would have guessed?