Chunks of Time

November 14, 2008


I am in the process of preparing a letter and photos for Camille's birthfamily. We do this twice a year (around her birthday and Chinese New Year). It always makes me feel sad and sentimental. Especially sad that her family isn't able to experience Camille in the same way we do. I sort through all of the recent photographs trying to evaluate each one in hopes of giving them a taste for her personality, her growth, her current interests, etc. And as I look at those images I am flooded with all sorts of emotions. And I am also struck by that crazy phenomena of "time flying by"...that warning you hear from everyone when you are expecting your first child, the one that really doesn't hit home until your sweet baby turns into a pre-schooler overnight.

This time as I was sorting through the photos I realized that Camille is now the exact same age as Noah was when she was first placed into our arms. Noah had just turned three and something happened between our taxi ride to the orphanage and the return trip later in the day. There was a shift. It wasn't just that we had a new ba
by, but we suddenly had a big boy, a big brother in the family. Suddenly he seemed so much older. And now Camille is the exact same age but I can't really wrap my mind around that. Just doesn't seem possible. And so I can only imagine how her family must feel when they get our letters/photos twice a year. The last time they held her was during our second trip to Taiwan. Camille was six months old. Will she always be six months old in their minds, their arms, and their hearts? Do these photos of a big, grinning three year old even seem real? We had hoped to hear from them occasionally, but so far that hasn't happened so I am just left wondering and sorting and packing another chunk of time to be sent to Taiwan.
plumm said...

We just sent our most recent "chunk of time" to Taiwan a few weeks ago...You capture the feelings surrounding this unique marking of time beautifully...

Corinne said...

What a beautiful post. It's stilling for me to think about having to condense the life of my child into a "chunk" and pass it on, how do you capture the essence of a child? I love that you do it and I think when I make my little posts about the kids when they have their birthdays, it's my own way of doing the same thing - taking the time to just think about THEM as people. I love it.

craftymama said...

i hear you- after Asa (#2) was born, i experienced a real sense of loss for the baby Lee (#1) that was suddenly GONE. now, i am hoping Max (#3) will stay a baby for as long as possible, since she's most likely the last one. it is so bittersweet to see our kids growing up! i comfort myself with the fact that i don't see a lot of parents of teens and young adults walking around in tears all the time.

Jessica said...

My youngest, Sarah, has just started wearing the hand-me-downs that her sister Hannah was wearing when Sarah was born. It is unbelievable- on the one hand, how did Sarah get so big? And on the other, was Hannah really still such a little one when her sister was born? Oh time and love, they mess with our minds and hearts...

holly said...

it is so so fast. I linger while cuddling my "little" 14mo to sleep and marvel at how less like a baby and more like a toddler she is everyday. and my eyes tear up if I think about it too long.

I think of your family too when we play with our friend Daxi at our local playgroup. She will be 3 in January and is adopted from mainland China, (so far the only child in her family but they are hoping to bring home a sister for her sooner than later.)

There are moments when I'm watching the kids play together and I think about how different her life is here and how much love and attention and opportunities she has. So likewise, how lucky your Camille is to have you and you her! I read back to the link of when you first met her. What a special day indeed. I remember oh so clearly how much my older child "grew" the day we brought the baby home!

Weasel said...

Hello friend. Your post made me miss you even more.

How difficult it must be to try and wrap the essence of Camille up in a box to send off in the everpresent hope it connects her with her past and possible future. You continue to amaze me.

I am loving that you all are headed to Italy. What a nice beacon for you to look towards! You are going to have such an incredible tour. Are you up for visitors?

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