A day of beginnings and endings

Image It is almost 3 am. I am sitting in the corner of the room on the floor, in the dark, half under a blanket,  trying to catch up. Trying to process the last few days. I have found this is the only time I can do much- when the girls are up, they both consume my attention and energies. 

I don’t have to say much about the trauma Zoe has experienced. Yes, that is her name- Zoe Xiaotong Chausse- (quite the story for another day). It is written on her face in many of the pictures. I am glad many of you prepared me for this. It wasn’t as bad or as a good as expected. Maggie has done her best with her eight year old emotional resources to comfort Zoe. But she is 8, and sometimes Angry Birds is the better choice for her. She was very moody at the orphanage. I don’t know if it stirred distant memories (she was one when we adopted her) or she was weary of sharing the attention.

The day started really horribly- my computer, my sole link to the rest of my world, would not turn on. Thank God I can still text, and my niece Christine came to the rescue. The only alleviation to the profound sense of loneliness has been glimpses of my La La through FaceTime, brief conversations with NaiNai and Joe, and Facebook friends and family. The thought of facing these next few days without this support was absolutely overwhelming. As I mentioned, last evening was very rough. The story of today is told by the album on Facebook. Tonight was marginally better. As Georgiana, our incredible guide said, time will be the best remedy. 

The limits of our ability to communicate in the face of such grief has been really distressing. The translation apps are worthless without wifi. I have been able to say a few phrases like “It’s ok”. Not too adequate. Not too true. It isn’t going to be ok for awhile. It is difficult to know when touching her is comforting or more distressing to her. But in the face of her hurting and tears, I find reassurance. I am glad she is expressing loss. Grief contained only spreads throughout your entire being and consumes you to the point of being a shadow. Through expression, healing begins. Even more important, Zoe’s grief is evidence of her ability to form attachments. She has formed deep bonds with these women and children. In time, she will form the same bonds with us. 


Thank you for your prayers and thoughts and words of support. I am truly sustained by it. 

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