Thursday, July 9, 2009

precious "figs"

On Lucy's 'gotcha day' just over a year ago,
our baby girl came with nothing but
her sweet self and a WM-type plastic
bag filled with little round brown, nut-like things.

We thought that was kind of odd and
asked our guide what they were and she
quickly told us (of course I have forgotten what she
called them) but they have a fig-like center,
with a pit inside and were
apparently something Lucy loved to eat.

Our guide told us that Lucy would know how to
eat them if we just cracked it open.

Sure enough, she ate the fig part...
being careful not to eat the hard pit in the center.

Funny that a 2 year old could have this in our country
we wouldn't dream of give out toddlers something
they could easily choke on.

Anyway, by the end of our trip we still had a
bunch of these silly things left. As I was packing
up for our final flight home, trying to weed out
the stuff we didn't need...
I came to this crumpled up plastic bag,
still loaded with these fruit thingys.

I immediately decided that we could
toss them in the trash because she hadn't eaten
any in a while and they were just taking
up space.

Then my heart sank.

What seemed like trash to me, was all
this little former orphan girl came with.

Her only possession.

I couldn't part with them. I just couldn't.

I stuffed them back in the suitcase and never gave them
another thought...not even what I might eventually do
with them once we were home.

Our flight home many of you know,

Mostly because I just don't sleep well on airplanes.
And with a toddler I was still trying to figure out,
it was even more stressful.

But finally, after about 15 hours of being
on the plane, we were getting ready
to land.

But just before that we had to fill out a form
(as I recall),
declaring what we were bringing back into the

And one of the questions was...
'do you have any produce?'
(or something along those lines)

Innocently I answered, no.

But as I was VERY WEARILY waiting in the
customs line,
I remembered the fig things.

My heart sank, again.

Tears filled my exhausted eyes with just the
thought of
them finding them and making me
throw them away.

I wasn't sure what to do...
do I tell them before they find them and
then they will for sure be gone forever?

Or do I keep my mouth shut?
I kept my mouth shut.

Was that the right thing to do? I don't know.

All I know is that these little figgy things
are so precious to me.
And I believe in my heart that the Lord
kept them hidden that day.

Now they sit on a shelf in our living room
and serve as a reminder
of that day that another orphan found
her forever family.

And once in a while Lucy asked to eat one...
and I usually indulge her.

How can I not?


Mandi said...

WOW! What a heartfelt post. I have tears in my eyes thinking of you trying to decide whether or not to throw the fig things out. In my opinion you did the right thing. Someday Lucy will appreciate that you saved the only "possession" she had at the time. What a great reminder of where she came from and where she is today.

Thanks for sharing

Janet and Kevin said...

That's a tender and touching story. We kept the little shoes (very smelly and a little dirty) and the red shorts and shirt Philip was wearing when we received him. I take those out once in a while and look at them with wonder. These are such treasures to keep for him to have someday.

Janet, Kevin, Ted, Philip, and waiting for Eli

Jen said...

Lori, while reading your post I was also "remembering" Marin's Gotcha Day! WIth tears I may add. We kept the dress and shoes she was wearing...placed them in a zip lock bag immediately. TO this very day, if I open the bag, it STILL smells like she did that very first day!!! And the tears spill over. I am wondering if the fruit you have are "leechies"?(sp) Are the a white-ish transparent inside? We ate these while in China and liked them! Every now and then, I will find fresh ones in one of the Asian Markets.

Chris and Sarah said...

I think I would have done the sme thing.

Jaime said...

i love it. (it's like a memorial box jar..... )

Holly said...

I am emotional today, and your entry made me cry! In an odd way it was just what I needed. :)

Michele said...

I am with Holly - in tears. What a sweet story. I think I will benefit from that greatly. It gave me perspective to always try to look at things with Jessica's eyes.

Thank you for sharing. What an awesome story!

Nancy said...

What a beautiful story, Lori. This is a totally different side of you...nothing funny at all. What a lovely post.

Sally- That Girl! said...

Sweet Post Lori! I kept the 6-9 month layette clothes that my almost 5 year old B was wearing too. I like the idea of putting them in a ziplock unwashed though.

Love the photo the jar. What a testimony of your love to Lucy when she gets old enough to appreciate that you kept her brown figs!

megadog said...

Wonderful post! You did the right thing keeping those little treasures. I love the little jar they are in too. That will be a sweet memory to her.

Tracy said...

When we came home from China a friend of mine had made a special treasure box for our son. We have placed all of his treasures inside of this box, including his clothing, shoes, and precious socks from gotcha day. His chinese outfit we bought. Treasures we sent to him while he was still in china with his foster family. Every few months or so he asks to get down his special box so that he can go through his things. He trys on all of his clothes all the way down to the socks and shoes, and then he prances around the house with a huge smile on his face. Brings tears to my eyes every time. I often wonder while hes going through his box, what he is thinking about, and if it sparks any memories for him. The box holds bits and pieces of his past, a part of his childhood that we can share together.

christy rose said...

What a great story and what a great reminder of her arrival into your family. It looks like you will have them for awhile. :) She can save them to show her own children what she brought with her to her family. How wonderful!

Debby said...

I love this story Lori & the jar that you put them in is beautiful. I would print this story out & put it in an envelope & then tie it to a jar with a beautiful ribbon. What if something happened to you? She might never know THIS story.......

Jami (@ 18 months) came to me screaming. About 10 min later (& still the screaming)..the nanny thought to mention that Jami had a whole date in her mouth........AAACCKKK! Funny, in pictures now, I can see it in those first moments, but I had no idea she screaming & holding that in her mouth at the time.

She won't eat them anymore though....

Thanks for sharing this....

Night Owl Mama said...

CONGRATULATIONS SHe's beautiful what a heart warming story I bet all your dreams have come true. HUGS may she find peace in your arms and enjoy her new life

stopped by on a blog hop visit thought I'd read this post instead

Carla said...

What a beautiful post full of emotion! My eyes filled with tears as I read about the figs and Lucy's lone possession. PTL for him uniting your family together and for your wisdom in packing well that day in China!

Are your boys home? I can't imagine how quiet it must be without them - I hope someday my boys turn out to be so fun and not afraid to love their Mama! And then for us to get a little Lucy...
In God's timing, right?

Elizabeth Koproski said...

Thank you for sharing that story!! We leave 2 weeks from today to pick up our son from China. It makes me really want to soak it all in and to look for the hidden "treasures" God has for us on this trip. Thank you for sharing a precious private memory.

Shonni said...

That is SUCH a precious story!!!

Lacy said...

I am also crying as I read your sweet post. The things my children came to me in are also precious reminders of such a bittersweet day. You did the right thing!

Karen said...

Sweet. I am sure Lucy will appreciate what you did for her. Love the jar too. I am a chicken at heart, I would have probably broken down and fessed up scared a fig sniffing dog would be nearby:-) I too have my kiddo's outfits from gotcha day. My newest still has the snoopy he had so tightly clutched in his hands 7 months ago. I often wonder if he remembers.......

Anonymous said...

Hi, I'm hopping over from the blog hop but wanted to comment on what a beautiful story this is! It brings tears to my eyes and reminds me how we take things for granted.
May your daughters life always be filled with figs.

Jean said...

That is so sweet! What a great post. I think I would have felt exactly the same way- wanting to toss them and them not being able too. They represent you sweet little girls past.
How precious!

Adeye said...

Oh my goodness, what an incredible post. Wow! What an amazing story. I love that you keep them as a reminder...of the day that her life changed forever.

Hezra said...

wow. such and amazing bit of Lucy's story. Thank you for sharing.

quilt'n mama said...

What a beautiful story!!! So precious are those few things that our children come with, we don't have figs but we have a few other small things that the world would consider insignificant that are treasures from our children's early life. What blessings from the Father!

Email me with your number, I'll give you a call and see if we can catch up when we are in KC for Nate's surgery:)


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