My sweet girl,
You celebrated your second birthday last month.  And in a couple of weeks, we will celebrate two years of having you in our home.  This is HUGE.  This is extremely emotional.  This is a post I NEVER thought I’d be able to write.  You see, you were only supposed to stay in our home a short time, weeks at most.  We were okay with that because that was the norm for us.  Babies would come, stay awhile, we’d spoil and love on them like crazy, then they’d leave.  It was the rhythm of our house.  It worked well.
But you were different.  Almost instantly, our entire family fell in love with your crazy rockstar hair, your deep brown eyes, and your sweet disposition.  We felt this need to wrap you in our arms and protect you.  We claimed you as ours, although you were weren’t.
The next few months turned into a battle.  A battle to keep you safe.  A battle to keep you in our home.  A battle to have your voice heard and to have those that would be making decisions about your future look out for your very best interests.
Those months turned into more months, then a year, then a year and half.  We were weary.  Tired of repeating ourselves.  Tired of mourning your impending departure.  Tired of getting a pit in our stomach every time the phone would ring.  We were scared.  We were so scared that you would leave.  Scared for our sadness and the pain we would feel, but even more scared for you.  We were so worried for you.  The worry made a pit in our stomach that made it almost impossible to look at you without getting scared and panicky all at once.
As we approached the almost 2 year mark of your sweet little life, a true miracle happened.  We saw hope.  We heard a judge’s voice speak up for you.  We heard a room full of people in agreement.  They all confirmed that you were safest and best off to stay where you were at.  We were in shock.  We let out a breath of air that we didn’t even realize we had been holding for the past 22 months.  You were going to be ours! Our second daughter and fifth child.  Ours!
We went from being to scared to think of your next birthday for fear you wouldn’t be with us, to dreaming about your future.  We pictured what you would be like as an adult.  We finally inserted ourselves into those dreams.  Your future had us in it.
I’m not sure if you will ever understand how very much we love you.  All of us.  Your brothers and sister love you so fiercely.  You are protected and cherished and safe.  We will not forget the fear we had.  The pit in our stomachs.  The sleepless nights.  The begging, pleading, and bargaining with God to keep you safe and in our home.  We will not forget that moment we realized that you would be ours forever.
We love you so much sweet girl.  We are forever thankful that you are in our family.
 You are ours.