Eighteen days from travel and no tickets are purchased, of course. The China Travel Approval arrives suddenly, lighting a fire under us and we spin into fevered mode. It’s finally time. We’re finally leaving. We’re finally about to meet you, hug you, welcome you into our lives and our family. This is really going to happen.
It’s with the strangest mix of disbelief and hesitancy and joy that I try to organize our family of five to become a family of six. And you’re all big people now. People with camps and sports and a whole lot of honors courses. People with a big clothes and big needs and big hearts that are struggling to find a new normal as we add another to our tribe. Across the ocean, I know you are struggling too; your heart torn between both fear and excitement about what lies ahead and grief and loss at what you leave behind. And here, a whole world away, I can’t help you through that. I just send my thoughts moment-by-moment, winging away across the water towards you. Those big-hearted mama thoughts that wish you all the strength you need to weather this transition without me there to hold your hand or meet your heart with hugs and words and feelings-talks. Together we will do this, even though together looks like so far apart right now.
Let’s just be honest. This is hard. We can’t WAIT to make you ours; AND the process of becoming family is stretching and tearing our souls and all the fabric of our daily realities. You can’t wait to become ours, but the loss of your friends, your teachers, your aunties, your culture, your whole world – well it won’t only make you cry, it will literally reshape your brain and alter your personality forever. At some level, all of us must die for you to be born into our family as a skinny, funny, energetic, sweet ten year old. And of course it’s so worth it.
We are in transition now. And some days I feel like I can’t do it. (Maybe you feel that too, big man? ) But those of us who have birthed bio kids know that just means we’re almost ready to push.
You’re coming, baby boy.
Like a strong wind or a mighty wave your spirit reaches towards me. That is the best imagery I have to explain the strength and movement of your personality as it seeks to know and be known by me, even from 7,000 miles away. The strength and power of who you are threatens to knock me free from my moorings but as I find my sea legs for the beautiful storn that is my son, X. J. Yun, I have to smile through the wind that blows my hair wild-crazy. And I want you to know how much I welcome your strength, your heart, your energy, your LIFE. You are perfect. And I am anchored, ready for all you bring.
You are my son. I am coming for you.
Hold tight my wild wave of a boy.
Because I am strong too.