Wednesday, December 22, 2010

8 Months Home!

This post is going to be harder than most because I'm going to talk about ME instead of Zoya. In the last eight months, I have changed just as much as Zoya. Although you can't see my changes outwardly like you can see with Zoya, if you could see the inter-workings of my heart you'd wonder if I'd had a transplant. Zoya has breathed new life into my soul. Like most, I experienced hurt and pain from life circumstances. I've mentioned before I know a sliver of what it feels like to be abandoned....not left out on the street or in an orphanage as a baby, but abandoned none the less.  I learned to protect myself from ever being hurt like that again.  I was pretty good about putting up walls to protect myself from any further pain caused by others. Because, let's face it, it's not fun to be hurt. There were few people in my life that I let closer than an arm's length. I hesitated to let others in. I had lots of friends, but only a couple that I genuinely learned to care about. That sounds awful, but if I cared too much that could lead to opening myself up to be hurt and that just wasn't an option. My heart was ugly.

Stage left, Zoya enters my show. A child who'd been abandoned, left to live a life of confinement to a crib. A child nobody cared about. A child who, if left in that orphanage, would learn the sad untruth that she was worthless. A child who'd NEVER been shown love. A child who never had a reason to trust another soul because she'd only ever been let down and hurt by others. A child who, despite all this, has a heart that is still beautiful and pure, and not ugly like mine.

From the moment she met us, complete strangers to her, she came to us with open arms, trusting and opening her heart to us completely and fully, without hesitation or reservation. She was ready to leave right then and there, waving goodbye to the caretakers.  After all she'd been through and her heart was unchanged by her terrible situation.  Astounding. Miraculous. How could I be more like her? So forgiving and content and ready to love everyone regardless of how they treat me. It's so easy for me to hold a grudge against others, to write people off when I feel I've been easy. But for Zoya, it is so natural to love and accept and forgive.  I still have a long ways to go on this "learning to love and trust journey" but I've come so far in eight months.  My heart has changed and learned unconditional love, starting with Zoya.  She is helping me to become more Christ-like every day. She is the closest thing to heaven and perfection I've ever known. I'd love to spend a day in her heart because it's the most beautiful frekin' place that exists this side of heaven.

Happy Eight Months Home Zoya Angel!


  1. You have a wonderful heart. Zoya was born it, how could it not be beautiful?

    Love wins,
    Renee Tam

  2. A HUGE Thankyou for sharing your HEART so honest and open!
    "...a little CHILD shall lead them!"
    comes to my mind when I read your thoughts....
    Already 8 months united with your precious ZOYA-GIRL, how wonderful!!
    Blessed christmas-days to all of you!
    Love, Christina

  3. I've stalked your blog pretty regularly since I read your article in Jamestown's Post Journal. Through glimpses of your family at church and reading your blog, God softened our hearts toward adoption. Thank you for sharing so openly and making a difference in so many lives!

  4. Wow...that was beautiful and very touching!!!
    The question is who rescued who....huh?? Sounds like a mutual rescue to me!!!
    You two are both very lucky indeed!!!
    Sunnie in NC

  5. Sarah,

    I honestly have no doubt that your heart was always truly that big to begin with. Trust is always something that I have issues with and have been very guarded over who I trust in the past.

    I wanted to thank you for allowing me to reach out to you recently knowing that I could "trust" you to do for me what I couldn't at that time, praying for us was a great gift that you gave me. I thank you from the bottom of my heart.

    The innocence of a child with their giving and receiving of love so freely without reservations, freely and without hesitation is always amazing to me.

    I thank God for bringing Zoya into your life as well as you allowing all of us to be a part of her life both near and far away. It is a gift that you have given all of us each and every day.

    Happy Eight Months home Ms. Zoya!

  6. What a beautiful post. God has certainly blessed (and continues to bless) your beautiful family. What a wonderful Christmas story.

    Wishing you, Shawn and Zoya a Very Merry Christmas and a truly Happy New Year. God has blessed us all with Zoya. She is truly an angel sent by God.
    Love you guys, Aunt Debbie & family

  7. Absolutely beautiful Sarah! I wish you, Shawn and Zoya a wonderful Christmas.
    It's so humbling to have both our children home this first Christmas.
    Wish you a Very Merry!
    Kim, Tom, and Bryce

  8. Dear Sarah,
    The Sarah I have come to know has a heart as wide as the world! I agree with what "the Mac's" said...your heart was always big, it just needed uncovered I guess...Zoya has made a big impact on so many lives, just like another little baby from a faraway land:-) Merry Christmas Basile Family! Love, Liz

  9. ZoyaBug is one blessed girl! I always cry when I read your posts - oh girl, you have one lovely, amazing, PERFECT little daughter there. :) Keep her reaching for the stars, because with an attitude like hers, she can do anything she sets her mind to!

    Merry Christmas and lots of love from North Carolina. :)

  10. Merry Christmas! Hope you all had a wonderful day!