Happy Endings & New Beginnings

Yesterday I spent the day at a baby shower, but this wasn’t your typical pregnant-woman baby shower. The baby was 10 months old, and the parents looked nothing like her.

My cousin and his wife were unable to have children biologically, so they adopted a baby girl from China. I had mentioned that they were matched with her two months ago. Since then, they flew to China, went through the entire adoption process, and returned home with Mia. Yesterday they came to town so the entire family could meet the new addition and offer up some gifts to help the new parents out.

First off, I’m so happy for them. My cousin and his wife are two of the nicest people I know. They deserve to be parents, and I know they’re going to be wonderful parents. At the same time, this little girl, who spent the first 9 months of her life in an orphanage as one of many mouths to feed and one of many in need of comfort, will now have as much love and cuddles as she can handle.

She’s an adorable little girl, and quite the social butterfly. She happily let anyone hold her, and smiled at everyone, although she still knew her parents. Whenever my cousin walked in the room, she’d spy him right away and start babbling “Dadadadada!” while bouncing up and down. She still has trouble sitting up, but now that she doesn’t have to contend with many other children for attention she will probably advance in her physical development quickly.

Her parents are clearly smitten as well. Still trying to figure out the ropes of parenting, they jump at the slightest protest from her and happily offer her anything her heart desires. My cousin’s wife has quit her job to stay home with Mia. (My cousin’s job requires that he travels often, so it worked out well for them.) They are all slowly figuring each other out, and the parents are already discussing wanting a brother for Mia someday.

It was a wonderful party, and I got to spend time with many relatives that I don’t get to see nearly enough. Cordelia was there as well, and I wish I could say she charmed everyone. Instead, she chose yesterday to be one of her cranky days. She clung to me the first 15 minutes, then slowly warmed up to the crowd, although she wouldn’t let anyone touch her or pick her up. Typical.

I also noticed that my daughter really is a loner. I have a gazillion cousins, and (now) all of them have children, so there were a lot of babies there. While the other babies and toddlers played together, Cordy was content to hide in the dining room, away from everyone, taking Jordan almonds out of the bowl and lining them up along the edge of the table.

After I stopped that game and brought her back into the family room with everyone, she quickly disappeared again and I found her in another room, pushing an empty stroller back and forth. Every five minutes, I found myself looking around the room, wondering Where’s my child?

No matter how much I tried to get her to stay in the family room and play with the toys and kids there, she would jump on the first opportunity to slip away to a quieter area of the house. Do I have an anti-social child? Or is she just too cool for that crowd?

We left after Cordy had a gigantic meltdown due to missing her nap. As I tried to make my rounds and hug everyone, Cordy screamed in each person’s face if they attempted to touch her or even so much as make eye contact. My grandmother was a little upset that her great-granddaughter wouldn’t even look at her. Although, to be honest, she has somewhere around 20 great-grandchildren at the moment, so really, what’s one unfriendly one, right?

But overall it was a good day, and I’m so, so, so happy for my cousin, his wife, and their new daughter, Mia.

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  1. Just found your blog…congrats to your cousins! That is really cool.

  2. Huge congratulations to your cousins – how wonderful! Mia is ADORABLE! hee hee!

    Sweet Pea is often a loner too – she will have enough of the other kids and seek a quieter area – at our play group’s Halloween play date last fall, she spent quite a while at the top of the stairs at our friends’ house. I notice that other people think it’s weird, but I’m not too worried. She loves people, but knows when she’s had enough, or when she’s overwhelmed. I imagine Cordy’s got the same kind of awareness of her limits.

    I don’t know how you and Aaron are, either, but Slipshod has been somewhat of a loner all his life – which is to say, he can be plenty social, but is totally fine being alone as well, and spent a lot of time that way growing up – mostly by choice. I wonder how much of this stuff is genetic.

  3. The Flip Flop Mamma! says:

    Hey, there was just an article in BabyTalk magazine about adopting babies from other countries. They might want to check it out via the web babytalk.com
    it talks about issues such as sleep:they may be afraid of sleeping alone since they were probably around several other babies in the orphanige, or if in foster care they probably slept in the adult bed, eating: some babies go on an eating strike from the anxiety (she seems fine and smiley) and the other thing is that often people who have been waiting to have a child through adoption sometimes get depression. Just a note! Ps, did you check out my girls blog?

  4. Mommy off the Record says:

    I love to hear about adoptions. They just warm my heart. Your cousins look really happy in that photo. Congrats to them!

  5. They look like a beautiful family. Adoption is such a wonderful thing for both the couple and the child who needs love…I’m sure the rewards are priceless.
    I say your daughter may enjoy playing alone because she is confident enough to do so. Comfortable in her own skin. Hope she was better after her nap!

  6. Aw. So totally cute! Congrats to them. And Q, for the most part, likes the play alone. Interactive play comes later… some kids are more interested in playing with other kids than others.

  7. Anonymous says:

    How awesome! They look so happy and what a gorgeous little girl!

    Jerri Ann

  8. Oh, the joys of having an anti-social child! You could have been describing my Bub – he too likes to find a quiet space where he can play on his own rather than joining the general hubbub. I can get really down about it, because I worry about him, and because it’s so much fun for me on the occasions when he does join in with the other kids, running around and laughing, working out all the complicated dynamics of inter-child relations.

    Last weekend I came home from a gathering feeling really sad because Bub seemed so unlike the other children – and then last night I got together with the same group of parents, but we were outdoors, and this time he gravitated to the group, flinging sand with the best of them. Large indoor gatherings can be so noisy and intimidating – once he was outside in a more peaceful environment, he opened right up.

    I bet Cordelia will turn out to be sensitive, introspective, and her own person – not one to conform to the crowd.

  9. Congrats to the new parents! She’s so very beautiful.

  10. Congrats to your cousin and his wife. They look so happy. What an adorable family!

    I SO get the anti-social child thing. But my son’s mood can change on a dime.

  11. Your cousin’s family is beautiful! Congratulations on the new addition to your family!

  12. Oooooo Mia is so beautiful!! Congradulations to your cousins!!!!!

    Becca was a loner for a long time and still takes a while to warm up to people if there is a lot of them around. I have found she excels when she is with one other kid and mom. She is happy friendly and outgoing! I am hoping she is going out of the loner kid thing!

  13. Your cousins look so happy! Congratulations to them and Mia for finding each other.

  14. Congratulations to your cousins, they look so happy.
    My kids often play by themselves if they are feeling overwhelmed. In another year Cordy will be leading the pack with all her cousins, don’t worry!

  15. We are adoptive parents to Rachel (5) and Nicholas (3) and they are the joys of our life. Congrats to your cousin! They are in for the ride of their lives.

  16. CONGRATS TO THEM!!!! She is adorable and your family looks so happy!

    Both of my Uncles went to Russia ans adopted children and it was the most wonderful experience I have ever been through!

    God bless your Cousins & Baby Mia

  17. How lucky this family found each other!

  18. What a beautiful family. Congrats to them, I hope Mia brings them limitless happiness. She is lucky to be so loved.

  19. How sweet! What a precious little girl-really both girls-yours and theirs. It has to be so amazing to adopt. DH and I are considerering adopting one day after we are done having children of our own. I was watching a Baby Story yesterday and these parents adopted their 2nd Asian child and I teared up the first time watching this. How special it is to bring a child into your home in this manner. The life of this child is so dramatically changed. God bless them!

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