The Day We Met Her

A year ago today, we got to meet Nina for the first time.

Nina's tired orphanage house greeted us with it's salmon colored walls and tall wooden door. As we walked through inside, we were immediately escorted to right into the doctor's office. Andy and I sat on the newspaper print couch, listening to our translator, worker and doctors speak to each other in Russian. A few minutes later a spunky little girl with Down syndrome walked into the room, ready to own the world and visit her daddy. A worker walked inside the room holding a little girl awkwardly on her hip, grabbed the little girl with Down syndrome and took her to the room across the hall where her daddy was waiting for her. The worker came back and was speaking to the doctor, laughing. I could tell she was saying that the little girl had been confused and in her excitement had gotten away and ran into the wrong room. Then I noticed the little girl the woman was carrying. She was scared, she was shy, she was holding on tight to the worker. Her head was misshapen, and her haircut was bad. Her eyes looked so lost. Then I felt the "thump" of realization. That little girl was Nina. That was the little girl we had been dreaming of.

Our first meeting with her was a lot to process. Although I did blog about it back then, we were still processing our doubts, concerns, and feelings. The little girl we met that day seemed to have many significant challenges.

So here it is, that small clip of the first day we met Nina.

A year, a year has gone by since that day in the stale doctor's room at the orphanage. Nina has changed, she is not the same little girl. The last 2 days we have tried to get a video of her, and right now she has decided she does not like her videos taken, so this is the best we could do.

In this video you can see she is doing pretty well with her pretzel legs (when she is not wearing her braces) and she knew we were taking the video because it has been a year since we met her. She is so aware of that! She even brings up the orphanage and I admit, I did not know how to respond to her question!
And this was tonight, when the other 2 sisters were watching a video. Except Nichole joined us after a while and was about to steal the camera.