Tuesday, January 29, 2008

Happy Gotcha Day!

Today is yet another important day to remember in the life of Miss Emily. On January 29, 2007, (which also happens to be Ryan's birthday!) a baby girl named Nadezhda, lovingly called Nadya by her caregivers, became an official member of the Hypes Family.

We spent years praying about adding another child to our family and we spent several months researching agencies and another couple of years filing paperwork and getting poked by doctors and having our backgrounds checked by the FBI. No amount of preparation could get me ready for the joy that coursed through my body as we carried Nadya/Emily out of the babyhouse for the first time and brought her into our home. At the same time, no amount of preparation could prepare me for the fear that I faced once she was "home" in our Kazakh apartment.

As we were preparing to take Emily back to our apartment, we learned that there were respiratory infections spreading around the babyhouse and that Emily was highly susceptible to them. The day we took her home she had a very high fever, was very somber and lethargic and wasn't eating or drinking much. She also had quite a few of the messiest diapers I had ever seen in all my years of babysitting! I brought basic baby medicines from home (the States) but was told by the babyhouse doctor via our translator that I should NOT give any of them but instead we should give a battery of medicines they had prescribed for her. I could not read the labels to know what I was giving, what it was for or how much I should give. I had to solely rely on what these people were telling me and trust that they knew best. Worse yet, I couldn't pick up the phone and call my mom and ask what she would do. I was alone, in a country where I was now illiterate and I was trying to get my baby healthy again so we could travel back to the states in roughly a week. We asked our family and friends to pray for our situation and boy, could we feel those prayers!

Here we are a year later and our daughter is doing great. I had a hard time getting into the celebration of Em's first birthday because we had only known her for 4 mos. but on her first Gotcha Day I feel like putting on a party hat and doing a jig. As another adoptive mom once told me, "I've managed to keep her alive for a WHOLE year!" Yeah, God!

As I frequently try to do, here are some fun pictures to remember the occasion! The picture at the top of the page was taken shortly after we were granted custody of Emily and it was the first time we were permitted to take her outside of the babyhouse. (And, yes, I'm pretty sure I went back after I took the picture and closed the door that Aliya left open!) We were told we needed to by a snowsuit for this occasion and this was the smallest we could find at the market. It cost about $20 and should have only cost about $10 because Emily only filled it up halfway. She was so small inside it but it kept the wind off and kept the old Russian ladies from yelling at us since they couldn't see her skin peeking out. ;-)

This was one sick baby. She had a very high fever and what little hair she had was wet with sweat by the time we made it to our apartment. This is still one of my favorite pictures of her. She was so peaceful when she fell asleep in my arms.

Here we are exactly one year later wearing the same snowsuit and hat and feeling healthy. This is the first time she's worn this since we came home from Kazakhstan and it fits her perfectly! Of course she couldn't move her arms and she walked like a zombie and couldn't get herself back up once she fell down... but it fits and she cracked me up!

Here's our Kazakh Snow Bunny!

Ahhhh, the memories. Happy 1st Gotcha Day, Em and Happy 16th Birthday, Ryan!


Michelle & Laura said...


A 5 time mom said...

I do remember praying for her to get better at that time. Isn't it amazing how quickly one year can pass. I can't believe she still wear that snowsuit. How cute!


mom & dad G said...

That is so precious and I can't believe she did grow into the snowsuit!! She is sooo much fun !!

Amy K said...

*sigh* God does amazing things.

I LOVE the snowsuit. It's a very good look for her.

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