Sweet Elizabeth,

Today, you turn two years old, and we could not be more excited to celebrate you!  I’m sure March fourth of last year came and went without any fanfare.  But this year?  This year, you are ours.  And girl, we will celebrate.  We will sing and eat Funfetti cake and open presents because you, my girl, are an Allison, and that’s how we do things.

My emotions are mixed today with some sobering thoughts surrounding your entrance into the world.  You will one day ask about your birth, and this is what we will tell you.  We will tell you that in a horrible, likely preventable, tragedy that is entirely too common in Congo, your birth mommy left this world shortly after she delivered you.  This makes me angry and so sad, Elizabeth.  We live in a broken world; this is not the way things are supposed to be.  We will cry with you and dream with you about your birth mom, imagining what she might have been like.  And we will also tell you about redemption.  How our God’s plans might not always make sense to us, but that He is good and can be trusted.  That we dreamed about you for so long, and our hearts overflow with thankfulness that God placed you in our family.  How even in the sadness of the loss of your birth mom, I know you were birthed in love.  How someone loved you so very much that they made the trek through a war-torn, remote region of eastern Congo to bring you to an orphanage where you would be fed.  So you could have a chance at life.

And what a life you live, Elizabeth!  Your smiles light up a room, and you exude joy.  Countless changes have been thrown at you over the past few months, and you have handled them so beautifully.  I can hardly believe how quickly you have adjusted.  Developmentally, you are blowing everyone’s expectations out of the water.  When we first met you in November, you didn’t crawl, and you certainly didn’t walk.  Today, you are running, climbing, saying many words, and getting into things that I never thought could even be gotten into.

You have gained six pounds since we brought you home and who-knows-how-many inches.  You are a great eater and no longer feel the need to gorge yourself at every meal.  Your favorites are chicken, rice, potatoes, beans, oatmeal, eggs, and applesauce.  You don’t like most fruits and veggies.  But in true Allison fashion, you have developed quite a sweet tooth.  Atta girl.

Attachment has been easier than expected, despite our failure to cocoon “by the books”.  You definitely prefer your mama, but daddy is a close second.  When I re-enter the house after being gone for even a quick errand, your face lights up, you shriek “mama!mama!mama!” and you throw your body into mine in a tight embrace.  Ugh, I love it.  Your relationships with Carson and Mary Grace are so unbelievably sweet as well.  You are precious with Carson and very quick to hug him.  When he’s gone, you will often wander around the house asking about “Carcar?  Carcar?”  And Mary Grace.  Only 17 months apart, I have a sneaking suspicion that you two will concurrently be the best of friends and worst of enemies.  You play together (mostly) incident-free.  And my heart melts when I catch a glimpse of you two, side by side, holding hands in the car without any prompting.

After a rough start, you have become a great little sleeper at night. Once you’re down, you’ll sleep a solid 12 hours.  Naps are slowly improving as well, thankyouJesus.  You have your bedtime routine down pat and are quick to set me straight if I forget to pray before putting you down. And you always fall asleep with one arm over your face, as if to shield your eyes from light, the other arm clutching a baby doll.  Sweet goodness, you are cute- awake and asleep.

You love baby dolls, Elmo, and pushing strollers and grocery carts.  You dislike blankets (you will immediately kick them off and push them away… clearly you were never tucked in with blankets in DRC), most animals, elevators, the dark, and being told “no”.    You are probably ready to potty train (i.e. you ask to go potty and you consistently perform.  I wouldn’t be surprised if you were partially potty trained in Congo.), but this mom of yours is SO not ready.  We’ll get there.

Elizabeth, my eyes are brimming with tears as I type this because I am just so overwhelmed with the love I have for you and God’s faithfulness in orchestrating our adoption of you.  You are so precious, baby girl.  We are beyond blessed to call you our daughter.  Happy second birthday, sweet little girl.  We love you so very much.


4 Comments on two.

  1. Happy Birthday Elizabeth!!! I must say I am partial to March birthdays and the name Elizabeth! Hoping we will get to meet you this weekend if time allows – and yes, it looks like you have been growing by leaps and bounds.

  2. Such a precious account of this day. So glad you are celebrating her birthday this year with her in your lives!

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