Wednesday, May 20, 2009

Last letters before signing off...

Dear Family and Friends,

As we prepare for the arrival of Emerson Grace, we have learned that while decorating her room
and stocking up on baby essentials is important, even more important is the emotional health of our girl. In Eme’s short life, she will have gone through more changes and life altering experiences than most adults could handle. Imagine how much harder the changes will be for her. While she may not consciously remember the events, she will still experience immense loss, including feelings of grief and trauma. She's already experienced the loss of a birth mother, care takers in her orphanage that she may have grown attached to and will soon experience the loss of her foster family that has cared for her for some time now as well as the sights, smells, and language of her birth country. Her world will turn upside down. She will struggle with feeling safe and secure and she may lack the ability to trust that we will meet her needs.

We have prepared to meet her emotional needs so that she does learn that we will always take care of her and we will always keep her safe. We need your support. In order to form a strong and healthy attachment we will allow Emerson Grace to regress so that she has the opportunity to go through all of the emotional stages with us despite her chronological age. Although it may appear that we are spoiling her, we have been advised that it is best that we meet every need quickly and consistently. Until she has learned that we are her parents, we will need to be her primary caretakers at all times. It is essential that we always hold her, feed her, and do all of the nurturing. You may wonder how long this will take, but the timeline is different for every child. We will follow Eme’s lead and trust our instincts as her parents rather than worry about what society expects.

We have all been waiting anxiously for Emerson Grace to arrive but she has not been waiting for us. She may show her grief and confusion in many ways and we are prepared to help her through it and prove that we are a forever family and this truly is her last stop. We trust that as our family and friends you will help us to do what is best for our daughter, and we thank you in advance for your support and understanding.

Sincerely,
j&t


______________________________________________________
To our daughter,
We have been anxiously preparing our hearts, our minds, your brothers and the friends and family that will be in your life as well with what is to come. We are ready to bring you home. We do know that you are not sitting in China right now wondering where we are. We know that your world will be or already has been rocked once again with the loss of your foster parents & we are prepared to wait for you to let us into your heart. We will move slow, we will be gentle with your spirit and we will seek to know who you are. We promise that we will fill the empty spots in your heart and allow you time to grieve and adjust to this bright new world. We want you to know that though we will look different, smell different and talk different, we will also love you like nobody has ever loved you before. I can also promise you that once the walls around your guarded heart come down and you allow the love that we have for you to wash over you, you will never look back on the past and all those differences will disappear. We will always be here for you.
Tomorrow we leave the USA to fly to the other side of the world, where in 5 short days, you will be handed to us and we will begin this next journey of our lives together. We will keep our promises to you and we will love you for the rest of our lives.
your mommy & daddy
________________________________________________________
The time has come for us to bring our girl home.

airplane taking off
See ya on the flip side!

46 comments:

lora said...

YOU are a fabulous mom! Emerson really is blessed to have you and I well know, you are blessed to have her too....
I can't believe the time is finally here!! I am so excited for you, and ready to cry tears of joy when I see her in your arms. Thanks for letting me come along for the ride :)

3D said...

What wonderful letters! I may use the one for family and friends when our time comes.

Enjoy your time in your daughters birthland and take in every moment.

I am so happy for you and can not wait to see the rest of your journey.

Keep smilin!

Zbird said...

Beautiful! I am so excited for you and can't wait to follow your trip as you meet your daughter. Will pray for your safety.

Zova

~ Alison n' Mali~ said...

Love the letter to family & friends. The concept is so difficult for others to understand, especially when a beautiful little soul is involved. People tend to think 'how could loving on a child do any harm?!' Having been there, done that - I wholeheartedly agree with you. & wish you luck =)

Hugs to U & J, knuckles to Emerson.

Colleen said...

Many, many, many blessings as you travel to bring Emerson home. Embrace every moment of your daughters country...it will always be a part of her. Your words are so very touching and so full of knowledge that she will need time to heal and gain your trust. I can not wait to see you together!!!!
Safe and happy travels!!!!
~Colleen
oh, in case this might be helpful. We purchased a stroller where our daughter faced me at all times. You could flip the handles around. (it was a european brand) I tried to carry her as much as possible but when she was in a stroller I wanted her facing me. It was one of the best purchases we made. I loved it! That way when we were walking she was always looking at me and knew I was right there.
We also had her crib set up in our room for the first year. She would have been fine not having it that way, but I wanted her to always know we were right there.
You are wonderful parents and you will know as her Mom what her needs are. Blessings!!!

thegreybullet said...

What heartfelt letters! You and J are going to be awesome with Emerson just the way you arewith your three boys. You will be in my thoughts and prayers as the days drawnear to that very special first meeting. Ihope that Emerson will feel your love and begin to trustyou very soon. What ablessing that the red thread has finally shorten so that you now may begin your forever life together. Savor all that you can while in China, when you look back it goes so quickly. Safe travels!!
Ellen

Suzie said...

Beautiful letters! Wishing you safe travels and lots of fun!

Can't wait to see Emerson in your arms!!!

Doreen said...

Safe travels. Can't wait to see Emerson in your arms.

Doreen in Montreal single mom to Faith-Jiangxi&Mia-Sichuan

Special K said...

Both of those letters couldn't be more perfect. Beautiful and eloquent. Brought tears to my eyes.

Wishing you and J all the happiness in the world. I can't believe it's finally time! Enjoy every second of it. Soak in every moment. I can't wait to see that beautiful girl in your arms. Can not wait!!

Safe (and fever free) travel wishes. ;) Now breathe... it's really happening. Love you girl!

Lindsay said...

What beautiful letters - both so filled with love and care for your daughter.

God speed and safe journey.

Shari U said...

The very best to you & the hubby as you travel and finally get to meet your beautiful and precious daughter. I can't wait to see the pictures of you getting to hold her at long last. May God bless your entire family during this transition and may He guard little Emerson's heart and give her the ability to trust and to attach to her forever mommy and daddy. Safe travels.

Julie said...

Can't wait to follow your travels and see you with Emerson... I'm so happy it's finally your time!

Anonymous said...

To My Sweet & Loving Daughter and Mother to my wonderful grandchildren -

My thoughts and prayers are with you every second of this trip. I can't wait for every morning for the next 2 weeks to hop out of bed and see how everything is going. I'll probably turn the computer on before anything else. I've counted the years, the months, the weeks, the days and now the hours down with you on this journey and now i'll count down for your safe return with Emerson. I love you and will worry till your home with her. Tell her she has lots of family and friends waiting for her.

Be safe and stay well. I love you!

T's mom, J'S MIL, and G, C, W, & E's Grana
Grana

Diana said...

I started reading this and stopped as I had big tears!!!
Have a safe, wonderful trip and I can not wait to see a picture of you and your daughter:)
Hugs

Alyson and Ford said...

Thanks for sharing your heart and that of your family all through the Wait and now we get to go with you to share in your Forever Day... Too cool.

You all take care, enjoy the experiences of China and hurry home with that beautiful daughter!
peace
fm

Luna said...

LOVE the letter to your daughter.

Well, I was sure hoping that we would meet up in China, but we all know that your agency rocks and mine sucks the big ole' donkey balls!! I do know we will meet up again with our girls another time.

Have a safe flight. Make sure you pop some motrin about an hour before you land or maybe, I WILL end up seeing you. Sorry, bad joke. ;)

To be serious for a moment....You have been such a HUGE part of my adoption wait that I will treasure always....I don't think anyone has made me laugh so much along the way as you have. I'm going to be crying like a fool when I see the first photos of you holding your girl. FINALLY, it's time for you to fly!!!!! Love ya, Angel!! Be safe.

Dawn and Dale said...

LOVE the letters!! First YOU made me cry and then your MOM made me cry when I read her letter in your comments!! lol *sniff sniff*

Praying for you and the huge upcoming days ahead!!! I'm so very excited for you and can not wait to see Emerson in her mommy and daddies arms!!!

Isabella's Mommy and Daddy said...

I soooo love these letters.. they are sooo true and show all the LOVE that your family has..
I am having a hard time writing due to the fact that I am sooo excited..
It is sooo real to me..
I can't wait to wake up each morning and see the excitement you have done in your daugthers birth country..
Soak it up girly. .it will be a life changing experiance..
Hugs..
Safe travels..
Can't wait to see you on the flip side with your baby girl..
CONGRATULATIONS girly...

Hannah said...

in tears ... so happy for you!!

debbie

laurie said...

So happy and excited for you (I know it's getting redundant but it's true). Your family will be in my thoughts and your blog will be on my computer! Safe travels. Did I mention I cannot wait to see you and J with your baby girl?
Hugs,
Laurie

Island Girl said...

I thought I was crying hard when I read your letters then I read your mom's.....man I am such a girl. Again be Safe and God Bless
Bobbie

Sarah's proud Mama said...

May you have a wonderful trip! I'm so excited for you! She really is beautiful, can't wait to see a photo of her in your arms!
Robin

Jennifer said...

Such beatiful letters. Enjoy every moment of your trip. I can't wait to see pictures of your sweet girl in your arms. Safe travels!

PIPO said...

Beautiful~

Now go get your girl! Safe travels and much love...

Kayce said...

Your letters are just beautiful and so so filled with love! Enjoy all the moments that are about to unfold for you all. You will continue to be in our prayers during your journey. God Bless you all!!

3 Peanuts said...

T,

I am so excited for you...I have tears in my eyes. I am stepping away from the blog world for a little while but I am waiting until AFTER I see Miss Emerson safely tucked into your beautiful family. Kate just told me that she wants to play with Emerson!!! So cute.

Best wishes as you embark on this journey of a lifetime.

K

Daniella said...

Wow - the time has come -your last post without your daughter and yes I'm crying. I know, silly, but not really. we all have a connection that can not be duplicated by anyone else that is not on this journey. We wish you safe travels, good health for all of you throughout your trip, and peace.....
much love from your salt water soul sista...
xoxo
D and Joe, Joseph & Ms. Boo

Joy said...

What beautiful words! They are filled with such love and care for your sweet girl.
Enjoy every second of your trip! I will be here living vicariously through you as you begin the adventure of a lifetime.
Thank you for allowing us all to be a part, it's so very helpful for those who are still waiting. It gives us hope!!Lots of happy tears will fall when you see her face to face:)
Have a blessed and safe trip. I will be praying for you!

Joy
3/29/06

Noemi said...

your letters are so beautifully written. Safe travels.... Looking forward to seeing you baby girl in your arms....

Susan said...

Enjoy this amazing journey! Soak up everything you can while you are in China. Your letters are beautiful and so perfect. Your daughter is truly blessed, but we parents of Chinese daughters know that we are the lucky ones! Safe travels. Can't wait to see Emerson Grace in your arms.

Susan M.
Mom to Kaitlyn and Grace, 2 amazing daughters from China!

Colleen said...

Where do I begin? What beautiful and deep hearted words, put together just perfectly. Your girl will open up quicker than you probably think because you and J are who you are... and she needs you. She needs your spirit, to add to her own. I am so thankful that I have been able to celebrate such precious moments with you. I can't believe this time has finally arrived. I am so happy for you...and only wish I could come with you...I mean why wouldn't I? LOL... I love you both - and those boys. I can't wait to come and meet sweet Eme. On her terms...when the time is right.

Love and knucks...

Colleen, Jim and Hannah.

Pink Velvet Mommy said...

One month ago today our daughter was handed to us by her foster mother in Taiwan, and let me just say that while I had prepared for this moment for 3 years, it broke my heart to see how upset Hayden was, as well as her foster mother. I felt as though I was committing a crime by taking her away. The next day she did great, but there were some very sad days ahead for her, as well as us while we watched her grieve, and could only hold her and keep telling her how much we loved her and always would.
I think we have all come a long way in a month....we have so far to go, and my heart could not be any more full of love than I have for this amazing little girl that we have been lucky enough to be blessed with.
Enjoy your time, try to take in every minute. You words were so heartfelt, sincere and so true. Go with your gut, and even in the moments that you feel as though you have no idea what you can do to help try and protect her heart know that she will make giant steps some days, and you may take a few steps back some days.

I am so excited for you, and look forward to seeing that first picture of you with your daughter. You will be back home with your boys before you know it, and making tracks each day to healing her little heart.

Have a great trip!! You are going to do great!! Enjoy your trip of a lifetime!!

Glinda said...

The note to Emerson is one of the most touching things I have ever read.

Godspeed, dear friend.

Liene said...

Have safe travels!!! Can't wait to follow the journey. Great letters. The 1st one especially gave me some great pointers for when I'm going to have to write my own.

Daniella said...

Had to come back after reading the other comments - more tears after reading your Moms comment. Congratulations to you too E's grana. Your beautiful grandaughter is coming home - finally.....
congratulations to you as well...

Terri said...

I am sitting here with tears in my eyes reading your post. You wrote each letter so beautiful & they are so true.

What an experience this will be & one that you will ALWAYS remember!!!

Our thoughts & prayers are with you on this most amazing journey!

Buckeyes & Eggrolls said...

Here's to one of the best trips of your lifetime. (of course, you've been on similar trips with the births of your boys)

Hope you have wonderful, safe travels. Can't wait to experience China again but through your eyes this time.

god Speed

Half Gaelic, Half Garlic! said...

Oh my gosh....your day is just about here!!!! I will be following along faithfully to see the day you have been dreaming of for years!!

Safe travels and best wishes,

Lisa

Donna -N- Andrew said...

Beautiful letters. Safe travels.
Donna

2china4S said...

Safe travels to you, J and Emerson. What an amazing letter. You guys are doing the right thing and your beautiful Eme will benefit greatly. Hang tough.

OMG, you will be holding your daughter in days!

stephanie and scott said...

Truly a beautiful letter, Tracy. You are now down to just hours before you land in China and soon see Emerson Grace. God bless your family as your new journey begins!

Liz and Ava said...

Beautiful Letters! So excited for you and can't wait to see Emerson in your arms where she belongs.

Steffie B. said...

Best wishes for your journey of a life time....beautiful letters from a beautiful woman and mother! ;)

Anonymous said...

We love your blog and it is fabulous to watch your journey unfold! I think the original to that letter is at http://www.a4everfamily.org/index.php?option=com_content&task=view&id=92&Itemid=90 but it is a great letter and it is a fantastic idea and tool to help make family and friends better aware of just some of what our adoptive children may experience. Thanks for posting it to your blog so that others can read it and use it for future reference! You guys will have a fantastic trip and can't wait to see you with Emerson Grace!

Kind Regards,
Nancy
LID 13/04/07

Jewels of My Heart said...

God's Speed....
I will be praying for you and your precious daughter.
I think it is wonderful that you educating your friends and family.
Welcome home sweet Emerson Grace.

Catherine said...

Wow!! Your letter to family and friends is probably the best one I have ever read. What a precious gift this will be to Eme when those who love you learn to love her too from a safe distance for now then closer as her heart allows.