Today I am filled with thoughts of Esther.
You see, today is her birthday.
She would be turning two.
As y’all know, we were so blessed to receive a package from Esther’s orphanage after her death. We had requested to receive any of her things and were completely amazed when, one month later, we received a box containing many of her precious belongings.
Enclosed also were her Half the Sky reports… filled with pictures of Esther we had never seen before.
And stories of her daily life at the orphanage. Through these, we fell in love with our girl even more.
I thought today was a good day to share some with y’all.
In memory of Esther.
October 5, 2009
When I tickle her, she watches me attentively. At times, she responds with very slight sounds from her throat. When she is hungry, she can drink 110-120ml. When feeding her milk, I can’t feed her too fast. I have to stop and have her rest several times. Otherwise, it’s hard for her to breathe. She still sleeps most of the time over the day. Due to this special disease, she doesn’t like to move a lot when she wakes up. It looks like she’s in low spirits the whole day.
November 5, 2009
When I called her “Yichen”, her eyes would look at me brightly, and her eyes would follow me as I moved. When I touched her little chin with my finger, she giggled. When she lays down on her back underneath the toy set, her eyes would look carefully at the bells hanging above her. Sometimes, she reached out her tiny hand to catch the bells. When excited, her feet would kick forward with strength. Sometimes she “talked” to herself.
June 5, 2010
Yichen can now understand many words. When I ask her how old she is, she shows me one finger. When asked “who is Yichen?”, she raises up her hand very high, as if a student is raising his hand to answer the teacher’s question. When asked about each part of her face, she can point out exactly where they are. She can imitate me to blow a kiss.
September 8, 2010
While playing, she would look for the toy telephone next to her whenever she hears me saying “Yichen, the phone call.” Once she finds it, she would put it next to her ear and “call” me. Sometimes if the toy telephone is not around, she would use her little hand to cover her ear, and shout out loud “ahah” towards me, which looks as if she were really calling me. That looks really cute.
When she’s sleepy, I put her in her little bed, and she would pull the blanket to cover her head. Her little hands would tap on the edge of the bed with rhythm, and she would make sounds like “en, en.” Then she falls asleep very soon. Whenever she sees my eyes, she would call me “mama” dearly. She wouldn’t stop calling me until I answer her. When held by her hands, she can walk a little. She can even stand alone for awhile.
April 20, 2011
I put her in pigtails, and put the headpins that her parents sent to her on top of them. I asked her to stand in front of the mirror and look at herself in the mirror. She was so happy. Whenever she saw someone, she pointed to her pigtails with her little hands, trying to ask others “Am I pretty?” I told her that Papa and Mama bought those for Yichen. She would then speak out “Papa, Mama” sweetly.
I miss her every. day.
It brings me great joy that So Loved is now available at Wild Olive.
100% of the proceeds from the sale of each So Loved tee will go to fund a future heart surgery for an orphan in China.
Happy Birthday, Esther Adaline YiChen.
You are, and always will be, So Loved.