Surgery Day

Registering with Snoopy
When Liam had surgery for his cleft lip in November 2011, I wrote him a letter that I posted on my blog, sharing my feelings at that time. I wanted to do the same for Tucker last night, but I just couldn't figure out what I wanted to say. Now that his surgery is behind us, my mind and heart are full, and I'm ready to write. Here it goes.

Snuggles with Daddy
Dear Tuck,
Today marks 15 weeks that we have been together as a family. You sure got a raw deal having to celebrate the occasion by having surgery this morning - not a very fun party indeed! We woke you up bright and early just before 7:00 a.m. to load you into your car seat. You were a great sport and greeted all of us with a cheerful "Good morning!" When we dropped off your brothers at Christy's house, you immediately became sad. Those crazy boys just bring you so much joy. God certainly knew what He was doing when He chose us for one another. You are definitely a kid who needs siblings, and you know what, Noah and Liam need you. Noah has been praying for you, and as soon as we picked up Liam, he immediately wanted to kiss your boo-boos. :) I love the way you all love each other.

Snuggles in his hospital gear
While we were at Riley Hospital, we once again experienced the most compassionate, organized, and competent professionals. We had the same experience two years ago with Liam, and I found myself thinking about how lucky we are that you can have the best care by the best doctors and nurses. It was no coincidence that the lady who registered us adopted from Korea 23 years ago. It was no coincidence that the nurse who prepared us for surgery adopted from Guatemala in 2003. It was no coincidence that the nurse who discharged us was adopted herself. Whether purposely scheduled at the hospital or organized by the Lord, I know that it was no coincidence. When you meet other women who have been touched by this beautiful gift, you are instantly connected to one another. It is beautiful.

Loopy Juice

Sack of potatoes in my arms
Because of the trauma you've experienced being taken from all that you know in China and having received almost no care from anyone other than your daddy and me since we met you, I prayed that God would make the transition from our arms to the operating room a smooth one for you. I am so thankful that the Versed (loopy juice) made you silly, then calm, and then completely relaxed. I sang our song - One Step Closer - to you as you laid limp in my arms, eyes focused intently on mine. You didn't bat an eye when I laid you in that bed, and the nurse wheeled you away. God surely answered our prayers! We also had asked that once you woke up that we could quickly be with you. The nurse called us back immediately so that you saw us just after you woke up. You were crying a little bit and seemed disoriented, but you saw our faces and soon calmed down. The nurses and doctors took such great care of you and made sure to accommodate for your needs as being new to our family.

After surgery - in the arms of his daddy
After your procedure was over, and your daddy held you in his arms, I found myself crying - not because I was scared or relieved but because I was so thankful that you have a family to make sure you receive the best medical treatment. I thought of all the orphans in China and around the world who need surgeries and medical care, yet most of them do not receive the help they need. I thought about a little girl in an orphanage from your same province who had a broken leg. Her femur was protruding out of her leg for months, and yet, there was no money to help her. This poor girl lived for months in chronic pain, unable to walk or play. She stopped smiling and slowly became more and more sick. Her leg became badly infected, and although Love Without Boundaries secured the money to pay for her surgery, the poor sweet girl died before they could get her treatment. She died an orphan, with a correctable issue - something that we in America would fix without any difficulty - all because she was an orphan. Today I cried for her and all the kids just like her.

Every child deserves a family to care for them.

Because you and Liam are the same age, we were asked several times if we started the adoption process and then became pregnant with Liam, giving us two children the same age. It is a good question, but it also made me think even more about how our culture views adoption. When will our mainstream culture begin considering adoption NOT ONLY in the context of ...

"What will adoption do for me and my family?"

but rather/additionally...

"What will adoption do for these children?"

Tuck, sometimes I worry that I write too much, that I share too many intimate details about your life. We try to protect pieces of your story, like why you had surgery today, but at the same time, we know God is using your life to soften the hearts of people around us. We have had confirmation of that time and time again, and I hope as you grow up, you will understand the impact your life has had on not only our family but also the world around you. You were created for a purpose, and we are blessed to be your family. I thank God that you are home with us, that you had access to incredible care, and that we can make sure your recovery is as smooth as possible. Your bravery and ability to trust us after only 15 weeks together inspires me. I can't wait to take advantage of the extra cuddles we share while you heal. Love you, buddy!


Snuggled under a blanket on the way home #polarvortexproblems

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