This time last year, we were in China, eagerly anticipating our first meeting with the girl who would be forever after our daughter. Hard is it may seem to believe, in the flurry of the past year with the Q, I have forgotten the exact dates. The 26th of July sticks in my mind, so maybe that was the day of our meeting. I have the dates somewhere, of course, but life is too full and busy right now for me to search for the details. This photo is from a day or two after our initial adoption day. Though it looks outdoors, this photo was actually in the picture window of our hotel room at the White Swan, overlooking the Pearl River. I have read some bad reviews of the rooms at the White Swan, but the room we were given was quite spectacular (and may have been more bearable for us since we are accustomed to and enjoy beds with hard matresses). We felt in the lap of luxury. I have always loved this image, for its tenderness and intimacy, and for the emotional frailty of both father and daughter at this moment. He is concerned, trying to give her comfort and solace. She is pushing against him just slightly, exerting her independence while still enjoying the safety of his embrace and support.
Oh, that tiny girl, so brave and resilient and, even then, willing to dive into new experiences wholeheartedly, eager to give us a chance, and to laugh and smile at every opportunity.