Tuesday, April 28, 2015

"The bond that links your true family is not one of blood, but of respect and joy in each other's life". Richard Bach

Hellos are so much fun,  goodbyes are impossible. 

Last September our family grew by one . One remarkable young man. Olivia met Jorge at Festival Ballet Providence during their Summer Intensive Program in July and he was offered a contract as a Trainee in the Company. He was 18 and adorable and needed a place to stay as he is originally from Philadelphia. He and Liv were already inseparable and , well she can usually persuade me into just about anything, so Jorge became our Plus1 (as we affectionately referred to him).

I remember meeting him for the first time after the Summer performance and praying that when he met Emmie he wouldn't back away, or feel uncomfortable. I know that sounds silly for most but if you have a child with Down syndrome or any disability, you know what I mean.

Anyway, he melted my heart when he immediately reached out to her, addressing her as "boo".. Dear God he called her boo! I loved him from that moment on. And so did she!

He blended perfectly and effortlessly into our home and our lives.

Jorge brought so much into our lives. I mean, I thought we were the ones helping him out but in all reality we benefited so much more from having him with us.

Some of the perks of having an amazingly talented dancer/choreographer/all around super person living with you.

1. Your daughter will have an amazing piece choreographed for her for Grand Prix. 

2. Your little one will be taught how to properly twerk. That was a questionable perk at first but after watching the two of them during a "lesson" I was sold. Twerk away!

3. We are all better trained in how to defend ourselves. One quick, clean shot to the throat should give you enough time to run away should you be attacked. Thank you Jorge, Emmie is the best at this but better not take it to school!

4. We were turned on to new "quality " TV shows like Love &and Hip Hop. One day when everyone was out I sneaked a peek. Morbid curiosity got the best of me.

5. When the girls stress me to the point of not being able to breath, Jorge is the one to walk me through the chest pains. "Breathe Mama, breathe" ...he would say.

6. I knew he would watch out for the girls. I always wished they had a big brother.

7.Andrew finally had another boy in the house! Being the only brother with 4 sisters at home is beyond difficult.

8. Bella my "punk" finally had a soul mate. They were the same person, I swear! And he even made Sophie laugh.. no easy feat.

9.His laughter was contagious! Anyone who has heard the boy laugh knows exactly what I mean. What a freaking laugh!

10. You got Happy Birthday sung to you in Spanish. Jorge, Sophia's birthday is next!! You better call her and sing to her!!!

11. He made us happy.

The best times were just hanging out at night on those rare occasions when everyone was under one roof at the same time. No idea why, but it always led to dancing..

Sweet boy, you will always have a family and a home in Rhode Island. I know your talents will take you far. So much awaits you. There is no doubt in my mind you will find success in what you love to do. I can't wait to see where life takes you.

See you soon,
Love , Mama

To read more about Jorge the dancer you can go this blog,Setting the Barre,  Kirsten is also a dancer at Festival and wrote a beautiful post about Jorge from the dancer perspective.   Kirsten also has a link to the piece he choreographed for Olivia.

Friday, April 17, 2015

One Enchanted Evening..

Cinderella didn't dance as much at the ball as Emilia Faith did at her very first Father /Daughter dance.

The night was MAGICAL!!

I found the puffiest dress in the word. A pale blue.  She took my breath away.

Her shoes, unlike Cinderella's, fit her perfectly and were so comfortable that she was able to dance the night away in them and still make it home with both of them.

She was a little reluctant to sit for a photo shoot before the dance,and it showed...

But when her Prince Charming entered the scene her attitude quickly changed

And just like that , they were off.

And it's a good thing there were no spells involved with this fairy tale because Princess Emilia was out waaaay past her curfew. She arrived home sleepy, and still smiling.

 As I put her to bed,the dreams were already forming in that beautiful little head of hers, of  The One Enchanted Evening she had with her Daddy.

Monday, April 13, 2015

19 Years And Counting

19 years ago I married a guy who really had no idea what he was getting into. Thank you Peter for not running away when you realized your Princess was really the Evil Queen. (but with a good heart)

It's been a hell of a ride. We have been through things I never imagined could even happen. Highest of highs and extreme lows.

We've had dreams come true and we've watch dreams shatter.

We've picked up the pieces and moved forward so many times...

Marriage is HARD. It's frustrating and leaves you frazzled!

But, it's worth it. Because I would never want to go through this life flying solo. When good things happen it's you I want to celebrate with,and when the shit  hits the fan it's you I run to. You're my friend, my lover ,my confidant, my punching bag and all around much needed guy in my life.

You tolerate my weirdness with saint like patience.

19 years and counting.. there's no one else I'd rather tuck and roll through life with!

Happy Anniversary Peter! 

Friday, April 3, 2015

A Month of Wondering.. Is Today Her Birthday


What it means to most people is Spring!  April is always a much anticipated month, especially after this Winter. 

It means Easter. And a Holiday, school vacation and new life shooting up from a thawing ground. I was married in April. My anniversary used to be the most significant event the month of April brought with it.

But now, April fills me with a hidden sadness.

My Little Love was born this month.

Carina is in Russia. An orphan. Forgotten by all. Trapped there by a useless ban on Adoptions.

She was born in April. I don't know the day. So everyday, I wish her a Happy Birthday. 

I know no one will celebrate her. There will be no cake, no gifts or even an extra hug. I doubt that whoever cares for her even knows when she was born or cares to know.

But there are two woman in this world who will be thinking about Carina on the same day this month.

Me and her birth mother. 

I cannot imagine that she has forgotten the day her daughter was born. I have no idea the circumstances surrounding Carina's birth. Her mother was probably young and scared. Most likely she was advised by doctors that her child,  born with Down syndrome,  would be better off in an orphanage. Children like this don't "belong" in society as they will amount to nothing. 

Maybe she longed to keep her... maybe she never looked back. 

But she let her go. And I took Carina into my heart.

And there she will stay.. I've claimed her as mine. A spiritual adoption. One Putin has no say over. One I don't need the State to declare me fit for. No one wanted her but me, so I took her and she lives in my heart. 

This Christmas I was gifted with a new photo of my girl.

She turns 7 this month. Four long years of longing for this baby girl. 

April will never be the same for me. To most people, the ban on adoptions is all but a distant memory. Life goes on. New stories take precedence. The children get lost. Even more lost than they already were.  But to those who love them, it's like it happened yesterday. We will never be able to forget. One day Russia will reopen, and they will come home. I believe that with my whole heart. But until then April will be thirty days of wondering..  is today her birthday? 

Happy Birthday Baby Girl

Mama loves you more...