Wednesday, March 17, 2010

The Big Day!

What you've all been waiting for!!! Today was the best day of my life! I will post the pictures first because I know that is what you are all wanting to see! Try to look past the bad orphanage haircut (hehe). Zoya is absolutely GOREGEOUS! In some of the pictures her hair looks reddish but it really isn’t at all. It is more of a dark blonde color. She has the biggest, bluest eyes with the longest eyelashes I’ve ever seen! She has chubby cheeks and chubby little fingers and a tiny nose.

Now remember, this is like my "in labor all night" photo bc this is right after we rode the train all night and couldn't even change our clothes before meeting here haha! Sweet hugs from a sweet girl!

She did not want to let go!!

First Family Photo (for you Bub!...had it just didn't post it before)
After the 8 hour train ride and dropping our bags off at our new place (a whole other story for a whole other post! Really…it is umm interesting….all I will say is that God went to far worse places to save us, so we will suck it up!) We were taken to meet the inspector who asked a bunch of questions. She asked why we wanted a sick child and some other questions. She gave us a pass to visit the orphanage and accompanied us along with Marina. Once there we met with the director, who is also the orphanage doctor. She gave us a lot of health history on Zoya. She had heart surgery in October and they basically said it saved her life and she is a different child now than she was before the surgery. They said they were very worried about her and she was not gaining weight or eating or really doing much of anything. After her surgery she began gaining weight (as you can tell in the pictures with her chubby cheeks!). She will be 2 on June 3 and she weighs 20 pounds. They told us that her mother abandoned her at the hospital and never had any desire to see her. Zoya has never had any family visit her in her time at the orphanage. There was no father listed on any of the paperwork. After lots of questions from the director, she said to us, “I know why you have love for these children, we see how loving they are and the groupas fight over which one gets the new babies with Down Syndrome.” The director seems to have a huge heart and loves these kids. We are so happy to know this, as we know that is not the case in all orphanages. She was very kind. Then…the moment…they told us they were going to bring Zoya in…..

I can’t explain to you how I felt at that moment. So many thoughts racing through my head. So many hours of tears and joy to get to this place. So many worries, struggles, hopes to get to this day. The door opened and a caretaker came in carrying Zoya….our Zoya! I think Shawn and I were both holding our breath. The caretaker sat down with Zoya across from us. We marveled at her beauty and were almost speechless at first. What do you say when you meet your child for the first time? I worried that I would not feel a connection immediately with Zoya. We prayed and prayed that our hearts and her heart would be prepared….AND…….THEY…….WERE! I took Zoya into my arms and she immediately put her arm around my neck giving me a hug. She snuggled in close as if to say, “I’ve been waiting for you.” I know many people don’t feel an immediate connection, but I did and I am so thankful for that. She stared at my face, studying it, just staring into my eyes. I held back tears as I realized this was my child. The sun came pouring through the windows while I was holding her and I couldn’t help but feel God’s presence in that room with us. Shawn took pictures and then it was his turn. Seeing him hold Zoya was a moment that will be forever with me as vividly as it happened today. She put her arm around him with her chubby little fingers grasping his neck, the same as she did with me and hugged him. He smiled at her and she studied his face as well. She waved goodbye to the director and the caretaker and they laughed and said, “Paka” (bye). She was ready to leave with us right then and there! What trust and faith this child showed us in seconds….a trust and faith we have been fighting to find and maintain throughout this entire process! We passed Zoya back and forth and took pictures and videos of our first moments with her.

I am amazed at how smart she is. She waved hello to us and goodbye to the others in the room. She made kissy faces back to us when we made them at her, and she understands cause and effect with some of the toys we brought. We only managed to get a half smile out of her today one time, but I have no doubt those smiles will soon be coming. She was very serious during our time with her. She was snuggly, loving, and very curious. She was intrigued by Shawn’s hair and kept trying to touch it. She is a gift from God! Glory be to Him!

After meeting Zoya we ran all around with Marina getting things signed and notarized and grocery shopping, and more signing and notarizing and a trip to the hospital to get Zoya's doctors to sign something...lots of papers!  We got to our place around 2:00 and updated the blog, changed clothes, ate for the first time since dinner yesterday, and out the door we go again! Whoever it was at Reece's Rainbow that said bring books....what kind of adoption were you on? Haha, kidding, but seriously we have been sooooo busy!

I will post more later, but now we get to go back and visit with her from 4 until 6! We only got to see her about 25 minutes this morning, so we are excited.  We are exhausted as we have only slept about 3 hours in the past day, but this is too exciting to be tired for!

Thank you sooooo much for all of your prayers and support!

I tried to upload a video but with this modem connection we have it takes way too long...I will try to do some short videos so they dont' take so long to upload!


  1. Zoya is so beautiful!!! :) How wonderful that she felt so comfortable and you felt so comfortable and you all look so at ease!!! (a first-time meeting hug is something I long for!) Your delivery pictures are lovely! :) What a wonderful blessing, too, to know that the director loves the children in her care!!!

    We'll continue to pray! Thank you so much for sharing these happy pictures! And thank you, God, for Shawn, Sarah, and Zoya and for the perfect family that you've created!


  2. Hi,Sarah and Shawn, I,ve been thinking of you two. I know God and Nanny will see you thru this trip and to bring Zoya home safely. Just keep the faith. Love Aunt Marianne

  3. She is gorgeous, congratulations!


  5. What a day! GOD is GOOD!!! We thank you and honour you, dear LORD, for this moment, this day!!
    A new family is born - what beautiful pictures!
    Zoya is so darling! How she hugs you, already by the very first meeting together, is just wonderful!
    Love Christina

  6. How joyful!! She is just so beautiful! Praise the Lord for your instant connection and her immediate love towards you!! We are so excited for you!!

  7. YEAH!!!!!! So happy for you guys! She is absolutely BEAUTIFUL!!! What a gift from God that she was comfortable enough to give hugs at your first meeting. I can only imagine the love you have stored up for this sweet girl.

    Congratulations Mommy and Daddy!!!

  8. She's gotten SO BIG! She looks fantastic, especially clinging to her momma like that! I hope you're prepared to wear her like a necklace. haha. She is gorgeous! as my mommy would say "what a little squeeze toy!"

  9. she is soooo cute! what a great smile! cant wait to meet her!
    Heather, Brian, Cj and Nico

  10. Your daughter is GORGEOUS!!!!!!! You and your husband look fantastic too. What a beautiful moment and story. I am so very happy for you. Be blessed!!!!

  11. Oh, she is just the most adorable little girl! I am so happy for all of you! You have an absolutely beautiful daughter!!:)

  12. YAY!!!! She is BEAUTIFUL! Congratulations! I am so happy for you guys and precious zoya, she is truly adorable! how precious!

  13. Oh My Gosh! I can't stop crying happy tears for you two. She is gorgeous and such a happy girl. She has such a bright future with you two as Mommy and Daddy. Angels were watching over her waiting for God to find the perfect parents for her. God bless you all. So glad you are enjoying every moment of your experience. Love and prayers, Kris

  14. First of all, OMG!!!! I had no idea you were posting all this time. I kept looking on blogger for a new post and never saw one so I assumed you didn't have internet access....OMG!!! I didn't realize that once you go private, the updates don't show up!!!

    Second, I am CRYING tears of joy and hope right now. Zoya is GORGEOUS and I am just in so much awe of your first moment together. I am THRILLED the director loves our babies at that orphanage. OMG!!!!!!!!!!

    You both are such amazing people. I am so happy for you. God is SOOOOOO good.