Tonight, Mother's Day evening, we received a very timely email. Lori, one of Conleigh's main caretakers in Haiti, who is now in Canada, had returned to Haiti recently. Unbeknownst to us, she had plans to meet up with the familes of the kids who left after the earthquake, including Conleigh's. So imagine my surprise to receive an email from her explaining that she had sent a motorbike for them and that when they arrived, she shared photos from our blog with them. And she updated us on Conleigh's mom and half siblings. And she offered to find them again when she returns to Haiti. And she sent us photos from their meeting. Oh what a sweet gift! I can see Conleigh in their faces which is just a delight.
Yet it is also full of sorrow.
Conleigh's half sister has thin, orangish hair which is a sign of inadequate nutrition. Which just breaks my heart. To know that she (and probably others) are hungry. To know that that could have been my Conleigh.
And it is full of anticipation.
Conleigh will be so excited to know that Lori found Mama Bernadette. I think she will revel in the new pictures.
But my heart is also full of trepidation.
These are the first photos she has had that will communicate that her Mama Bernadette chose to place Conleigh for adoption while she continues to parent two other children. And these are the first photos that will probably make Mama Bernadette seem very real since Lori just talked with her. (As compared to the old photos we have from when Conleigh was a baby.)
And all of this on a Mother's Day.
What a poignant reminder of how adoption changes your view of motherhood forever.