Tuesday, September 2, 2008

On second thought....

I thought I had things sorta figured out, but on second thought....

I have many people ask me on a regular basis "how's Sophie doing??" with hopeful anticipation. I happily reply to nearly everyone "Wow! I can't believe how well she's doing! You'd never even know she's new to the family or to America!"
Just when we're settling in really well (we've been home for 2 weeks now) then something weird happens to remind you that you've only been home for two weeks now. :-)
I was in Kroger Grocery store and all was going fine. It was our second trip to a grocery store in two weeks' time. I had my 3 year old bio daughter in the little car in the front, my daughter Sophie, 2, in the cart by the handle. The nicest "old guy", probably around 75 or so (no offense to anyone nearing that age!) gently pulled the cart closer to him to load the bagged groceries. It was only about 1 foot or so, and backwards she goes, away from me! Only by a foot or so. She freaked out. She screamed, everyone in the store looked at us. I remember thinking "this is an event I will remember for a long time". I scanned each face gawking at us; each had a combination look of horror and annoyance. Her small body trembled as I tried to console her and comfort her. Her tears made my shoulders damp. This went on for about 2 minutes, although it seemed like an eternity. The "old guy" felt terrible. He apologized at least a dozen times; I felt like at this point, I must tell him. I put my hand on his shoulder and looked at him in the eyes; he looked tearful himself. I said "Sir, please don't worry about it. You did nothing wrong. She's adopted and we've only been home with her for a couple of weeks, and when you pulled the cart toward you and away from me, she thought someone was taking her away from me. It's nothing you could have predicted." He seemed to understand, but apologized again.

As we left the store, I could instinctively feel the eyes laying on my family. They had witnessed something terribly significant in our lives, although to them, it was likely a fleeting moment of a toddler disrupting their shopping experience.