This past week, I had a conference with Mattix’s teacher. We talked about how well he’s doing socially – how kind and outgoing he is. We talked about how intelligent he is. And we talked about how he’s struggling in a few areas because of his vision.
She said what I’ve known for a long, long time. No matter what challenge he’s faced with, he tackles it head on. He doesn’t quit. When most kids would become frustrated, tired and cranky, Mattix pushes through it all. He does so with an overly positive attitude and will of steel.
Five years ago today, in a small province in Vietnam, I held Mattix for the first time.
I could see the determination in his eyes then and I can still see it now. I can also see all of the love, the patience, the thoughtfulness and the trust.
For five years, I’ve had the privilege of watching him grow into the incredible person he is today.
He’ll be six years old in two months. During that first year, this was the period of time I’d really wonder about. I’d wonder what our lives would look like when Mattix was in kindergarten. Maybe it’s because in my new-mom mind, kindergarten was the year when kids weren’t “babies” anymore – they weren’t toddlers or preschoolers. They were in elementary school. They were big.
And what would it be like for us when Mattix was big?
I’m almost glad I didn’t have a clue it would be this good. If I’d known, maybe I wouldn’t appreciate it the way that I do. Or perhaps I would. I have no idea. But I do appreciate it and I love him so much it literally hurts sometimes.
And what I also know is that for reasons I will never understand, I’m the lucky one who gets to be on this journey with him.
I wrote this last year and I’m just going to copy and paste it because nothing about my feelings has changed: Love does not conquer all in adoption. Love cannot erase my children’s losses, it cannot remedy all of the pain they may feel one day, it cannot answer every question for which no answer exists. But one thing is for sure: Love, along with absolute commitment, goes a long, long way.
I’m looking forward to every single year of my life because of my kids. December 9th is the day we met Mattix and December 10th is the day we officially adopted him. I can’t wait to see what the time between now and December 9, 2013 brings.