Who is this child who only a few years ago refused to look us in the eyes…
and battled fiercely when we tried to hold her in our arms.
and battled fiercely when we tried to hold her in our arms.
Yesterday, she leaned over to me and said, “I need a hug, momma!” and after getting a big ol’ squeeze from me added, “And a kiss!”
Who is this child, who until recently never had much concern for where we were or when we’d be back… and never seemed to have anything truly near or dear to her heart.
Last week, after Wednesday night at church, she told me she had been sad. When I asked her why she replied, “I cried and I said, ‘I want momma!’… I missed you, momma!” Oh, how my heart swelled with those words I’d waited so long to hear.
And last night she actually tried to replace the toilet paper. Instead of using up all the toilet paper to clog the toilet. She even threw away the empty roll.
It is true joy that this child brings to my life. And a love I didn’t even know I was capable of. Even during her most difficult days, 2 years ago, when we were feared she might be autistic, she still filled our home with laughter. And yes, some tears.
I have come to realize that there is nothing I wouldn’t do for this girl, this daughter of mine. She has come so far from the little shell of a girl we met 3 1/2 years ago. Yet she is still so very much the same.
She has the courage of a war hero, the tenacity of a telemarketer and the mischievousness of Dennis the Menace. And I wouldn’t change a thing.
I took these pictures yesterday and was blown away by how far she has come… I can see it in her face. And there is no way to stop the tears that come, my heart is spilling over with pride and admiration for her.
These pictures are absolutely adorable. She is a beautiful child.
She has grown BECAUSE you are such a wonderful mother. You can see it in all of your beautiful children’s faces.
Wonderful pictures of a happy little girl!!
Karrie in IN
I have watched her since you brought her home and she has blossomed – just like the flower she holds. I know your heart is full of joy.
Mike & Ramona says
Okay, I’m crying now! I have always known Isabella would come through. Just look at the joy and intelligence in those eyes! What a beautiful child!
Chris and Deb says
So awesome how far Isabelle has come….and what a beautiful little girl she is too!
what a beautiful post about a beautiful girl. i have so enjoyed “watching” isabelle grow up and thank you for “sharing” her with us!
Precious, absolutely precious… What a beautiful child with a beautiful heart. You are an amazing Mama! It is tough when our kids go through things, we want to fix it all.. And it is not easy for us sometimes either.. But photos like this, stories like this, inspire even me with my crew… You must really feel proud of her. (Be proud of yourself to, You done good Mom!!)
The pictures are amazing & my heart just overflows reading the words that describe your Isabelle's progress! Amen!
These pictures are so beautiful!!! What a beautiful and happy little girl! : ) I want to thank you for all your kind words concerning my Livi….you have a lot of wisdom and I value it.
She is absolutely beautiful!! And it is so wonderful to see how far she has come. HE has done great things for her!!
a Tonggu Momma says
Stefanie ~ This brought tears to my eyes, as it so illustrates our journey with our little Tongginator (including the fears of autism). We’ve also been home about three-and-a-half years. It’s amazing how far they’ve both come!
You have a absolutely beautiful little girl. The progress that she has made touches my heart. It is a testiment of a loving family.
Gosh- next time post a kleenex warning :). Praise God for what He has done. What an absolute blessing it must be to be her mom!!!
Mom To Six says
Thank you for sharing your beautiful sweetheart with us.
This has given me much hope that our own sweetie who has now been home for over a year, will someday be able to love unconditionally without any reservations.
What a simply breathtaking post, and photos to match! It brings happy tears to my eyes. Love is an amazing thing… it makes all things grow at the perfect time.
Thank you for this inspiration and encouragement this Friday morning!! And for making me smile, sharing your sweet Isabelle’s face. I love you!
Much love is evident.
Stefanie, it has been such a blessing to see how much Isabella has grown and blossomed over the last few years. I wanted to say Thank You for sharing all your joys and tears and struggles with us. It has helped me to know that I am not alone! It is so wonderful to experence the joy that comes when you see your child become all that they can be. 🙂
Just precious! Brought tears to my eyes.
What an amazing thing you wrote about sweet Isabelle. She is beautiful with a warrior’s heart!!! What a blessing that you have each other!
Jen, aka ChinaMom2005 says
She is stunning in these photographs. Beautiful post and amazing progress.
She Is a Beautiful Child. I remember your post about her & I prayed for her. God is Awesome..isn't He?!!
You are most definitely the mother she deserved and the mother she needed – God Knew, Stefanie, He knew.
She is gorgeous, simply gorgeous and what a testimony, how far she has come…I remember the frantic email you sent after that dreaded diagnosis – I remember being drawn to you…Oh God is so good!
Have a blessed weekend with all of your beautiful children – God has given you many gifts – your children and your innate ability to mother them in His perfection are two of them:)
You know I was thinking the same thing in the last pictures with Sheperd. I was noticing the great eye contact and how she was looking at the camera and in tune with what was going on around her. She has come so far! Way to go girl! You are beautiful inside and out!
A BEAUTIFUL post for a BEAUTIFUL child!! I have chills & tears are in my eyes as I read it…she has blossomed into a beautiful girl…inside & out!! Love IS all we need!
Michelle@Life with Three says
This brought tears to my eyes — because I know it hasn’t been an easy road (and sometimes it’s been a pretty scary one!). But He is faithful! Praise God! She is a beautiful reflection of all the love around her. 🙂
Thank you. I was just asking myself when it will get easier and you made my heart smile reading your post and seeing your beautiful daughter. Love is a wonderful thing.
Global Girl says
My goodness, how she has grown!
You have special, special children!
I am crying along with you Stephanie. You are a big part of why this little girl has come so far, and God had a huge hand in it as well…and as you do, I am thanking Him right now~
A beautiful girl for a beautiful mama! You are amazing to me!
~Home with Sophie Mei and can’t stop smiling 😀
She is a beautiful little girl! She looks happy and full of life and personality!
What beautiful pictures!!! You have the right to have a swelled heart!! God has been good!!
Isabella's Mommy and Daddy says
Isabella.. what a beautiful name.. and what a beautiful little girl..
Her face makes me smile.. she is sooooo pretty..
Great job mommy..
She is this way due to you..
Have a Great Weekend..
It is just so wonderful to see how our children blossom.
Isabella is a beautiful girl. You can see the joy and happiness on her sweet little face.
Doreen in Montreal single Mom to Faith-Jiangxi & Mia-Sichuan
That is one adorable, full-of-life little girl.
The Ferrill's says
What a beautiful picture of the road Isabelle has traveled the past few years…and how far love has brought her. God’s unconditional love that your family showed her…a real picture of our Savior’s unconditional love for us. Praising God tonight, Stefanie! Your Isabelle is a true work of our Abba Father!
Write a book. You just have to.
Steph – Saw that Oh mamas laughing now too picture a couple of days ago and had to call B in to see it. She has changed so much – we both agree there is no question that she is as alive and alert and connected to this world as she can be. She just needed time, love and the right care and environment.
Joe and Jane says
We’ve been on the attachment roller coaster and I know how important those hugs and kisses are! Congrats!
Laura L. says
An absolutely beautiful post, with lovely photos of your beautiful daughter. 🙂
I so understand what you mean. Our daughter has been home for 2.5 years and has come SO far.
When you have been through much difficulty, it makes the good changes so much sweeter.
I have recently been marveling at how much our own daughter has changed.
Thank you for expressing it so beautifully here. May you continue to be blessed abundantly.
Scott and Sharon Ankerich says
What beautiful images of your sweet flower! We still look at EllaKate 2 and a half years later and stand amazed that she is our child and God chose her just for us. He chose your precious girl just for you as well because He knew you were the perfect mom for her. God is so good and I am thankful He has blessed your family in such a mighty way!!!
Team Houston says
This post brought tears to my eyes….I am thinking that of Sophie Wei right now…I hope I am the Mother she Deserves as we go through this difficult time after surgery and especially at night because she will NOT sleep.
Thanks for the positive post.
Take care, Michele
she’s gorgeous, Stefanie. I’m so happy for your family and how well she’s doing.
this posting is awesome!!!!!
together you have done great things
hugs and more hugs
These are good pictures!!! I don’t have any idea of the background behind your adoption story, but that post is beautiful! I teared up!
What a beautiful post about such a lovely young girl. I can feel the pride and love you have for her through your words and pictures.
Sitting here crying catching up with you and a few of my other blog buds… She is so incredibly precious!
Thank you for expressing so perfectly how my heart feels some days!!!
Amy Jo says
What a beautiful post and sweet, sweet photos. Our little girl from China has also experienced some major healing since we brought her home, so your words resonate with me…yes hugs and holding brought out the screams. God is SO good, though. Praying His sweet blessings upon you and your precious family! Amy in OR
what a darling post!!! Made me tear up! What a blessing to be able to witness her “growth” from even afar. GO Mommy. GO GOD!!!
Lost and Found says
Amazing post, stunning photos. It amazed me even after just a few short months that we the parents come just as far as they do.
3 Peanuts says
Oh this is is beautiful. it is amazing what prayer and love can do!
This brought those big fat rolling tears to my eyes- you know how I feel about her, how I’ve always had that special place reserved for her in my heart. What a beautiful post Stef. XO to your little Belle who has grown so much…