Ethiopia Day (Celebrating One Year Home!)

Today we are celebrating Caleb's one year adoption anniversary. The picture above was taken shortly before we held our baby boy for the very first time. When I look at this picture with the wisdom of the past year, I see a terrified baby...a baby who was slowly slipping away - becoming more and more withdrawn with each passing photo.

We still haven't settled on a name for this "holiday"...but it has been an eventful year and it felt worthy of a celebration. I don't love Gotcha Day or Adoption day...seems like those terms 1)remind him of his loss 2)single him out from our other kids 3)are discouraged by many experts...just to name a few of the reasons that leave me perplexed about what to "name" the day. Honestly, I'm not even convinced this is a day we should specifically celebrate. If all of our kids were adopted...maybe so, but with the mix of bio and adopted...it complicates things and I want to be sure of the message we are sending to all of our children. This year, we called it Ethiopia Day and each of the kids received a small gift (Ethiopia t-shirts). We then went to a fabulous Ethiopian restaurant for dinner.

What we will do in the future has yet to be determined. It has been an amazing year though, as I've chronicled on this blog. A year full of both joy and struggle...and we have learned so much. When I remember back to the very first picture I received of Caleb...and compare that to the twinkle in his eye now...it is a different child. I still grieve those nine months that I missed, but I will probably never completely forget that loss. God has grown us through this process. For any who may be considering adoption, it will not be easy...and the journey only begins when you arrive home with your child...but it will be worth it. As I look at my precious son each day, I am reminded of God's love for me and I am given just a glimpse of the beauty of my adoption into His family.

Happy One Year home...Caleb Gebremedin Aleymayehu.

You are cherished my sweet little man. I am blessed that God chose me to be your mama.

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