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Adoption from Kazakhstan

A story from Eastern Europe.


Today is January 20... two months since I met my daughter, on November 20 in the orphanage at Karakastek, Kazakhstan, and one month since Alison and I arrived home on December 20.

I am happier than I can ever remember being, and she is an absolutely amazing little girl. She's extremely smart and happy, inquisitive and funny! I can't imagine life without her.

Today we went to our next-door neighbor's 4th birthday party. Alison had a great time. She played with the other kids, watched "Barbie" doing magic tricks and making balloon animals, and generally fit in perfectly. She clung to me when a toy car made a noise that scared her, but struck out on her own, making friends with all the adults there as well. She also took 6 or 7 steps in a row-- a couple of times -- and then smiled her "I'm so proud of myself" smile! I think she realized that there were kids there younger than her who were walking confidently, and she just figured she could do it too!

We've been running lots of tests necessary for kids adopted internationally, and the technicians have had a difficult time drawing her blood. I nearly passed out on Tuesday watching them stick her twice with no luck, and I decided as we went back today that if they couldn't do it today, I wasn't going to put her through it again. Well, they had lollipops, so I gave her her first one as they were drawing her blood, and she was so happy with it that she was calm (though still crying), and they were able to get all the blood they needed.

So, she had her first lollipop today, attended her first birthday party, and ate her first piece of birthday cake. We got home and she took a much-needed nap. When she awoke, she had dinner. I wish I could describe it. We were having so much fun. She was chattering away and cracking herself up....and me too. Then we took a bath, again having a blast. (This is the same child who, two months ago, screamed and held on to me for dear life in the bath!)

After bath, it's time to put on a diaper and pajamas. But she just wanted to kiss me! She grabbed my face and planted kiss after wet, sloppy kiss all over my face. Need I say this was the best feeling in the world?!?! Then I said "I love you" to her, and she kept repeating it (to the best of her ability). Unbelievable.

She went right down to sleep. She cries for about a minute after I leave her these days, but she settles down immediately, and usually sleeps for 12-13 hours! I think back to those sleepless nights in the apartment in Kazakhstan, and am amazed that this is the same child.

During the 18 months of preparation... dossier assembling, waiting for a referral, being switched from region to region, agonizing over whether I should switch agencies to move things along faster, I kept telling myself that things happen for a reason and I'll get the child I'm meant to have.

Well, I was so right. Alison is a part of me.... the best part of me. Things do happen for a reason, and she is absolutely my daughter.

Read more of Nicole's Adoption Journal

Nicole is the owner of "Legacy Video Productions" - A video production company started by an adoptive mom to create adoption story and family videos.

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