We had a really fun day, playing and laughing, drawing and dance class. As she sounded out each word, with so much ease these days, laughing at sections with abandon, delighted at the story, making me interested in what Josh and Zack were doing in the story, I decided to ask her if she ever missed Russia, or missed the orphanage.
|I’m pretty sure she thought she could fly with her new tutu from Bonnie 🙂|
Without breaking gaze with the book, her eyes popped in shock. And then she smiled, and laughed a little bit.
“No, mama. I don’t like it there,” eyes still on the pictures of the kids in the story. She laughed and said, “I don’t like it there. Maria is happy. Maria is home!”
“What was it called in Russian, the orphanage?” I asked.
“Internat. I don’t like it there. Everyone hit us, break my friends glasses, bonking my head,” she explained as she turned the page. “I don’t like it there, I like it home. Maria happy,” she smiled, and kept reading her story, which she really thought was the funniest thing she’s ever read.
“And,” I added, whimsically, “You have a mama and a papa, and a family who loves you so much!”
“Mhmm,” she nodded, like, duh mom, obviously,
Then, with more zest, “Aaaaaaaand,” she added, “Maria dancy!!!”
|Our little ballerina|
Most days, I can’t believe how far this girl has come since that first day we met her in a teeny, tiny, crumbling orphanage in Russia. Those moments? Those are ones I hold in my heart, the first time you meet your child, the one God always meant for you because he is oh so good. The moments that almost feel unreal, are we here? Is this happening? The ones that bond you and your husband, as you fall in love this precious child.
“Were you sad when mama and papa had to leave and come home for a bit before we came and got you?”
She shook her head, “No, because I knew you were coming back. I remember Nikita running, running to me and say, ‘Maria! Maria! Your parents are here!’