presented by cj:

You are brave.

You are strong.

You are so loved.

You are precious.

You are full of life.

You are full of joy.

You are so stinking smart at times we just don't even know what to do or how to respond.

You are thoughtful, affectionate, and loving. You care so deeply when people are hurt or upset and are quick to comfort them and make sure they are ok.

Watching you grow is a complete joy and a complete grace. Three years ago today, we signed lots of paperwork, took you to a doctor's appointment and had your picture taken for some more legal documents, and you were entrusted to us. This was after many many other things we did in the process to become your forever family, but we became your legal guardians that day and were able to walk away with you strapped into the ergo, big eyes looking up at me as we walked to that busy Ebisu station and your daddy and I told you that you were safe and loved and ours. It was new to all of us. We didn't know each other well and we were all a little nervous that first night. I didn't sleep a wink. I just watched you sleep next to me and studied you and prayed over you and for what I knew was going to be a journey ahead.

I never want to overlook this day, because it's such a big day for all of us. It was the day we became a family. I think every day what would I do without you? What would I do without that sweet voice and laughter and dinosaur roars and "mommy I need you!" and the climbing on all the things, and I mean ALL the things. It's something we will absolutely always celebrate and find deep joy in and praise God for. Right now, we celebrate simply by doing things you love-like playing Star Wars and going to the zoo and getting you special treats.

In reality, I know this day isn't so emotionally simple for you,though. At almost 3.5 years old, you are already asking me difficult questions. The first one I knew I was going to get came in a moment of unexpected simplicity when we were playing trains and legos together on a normal day in your room just a couple of weeks ago.  It didn't catch me off guard as I knew this day would come, so I took a deep breath, asked the Lord for grace, and answered that loaded question in the most simple, age-appropriate way I could. And I knew that was the start of YOU making sense of your own story.

There will be many more difficult conversations ahead, especially around this day as you process in your own ways how we became a family, and I can only hope and pray your dad and I do the very best we can at honoring your story. It is not something we take lightly-we have processed, talked through, pored over, prayed about and fiercely protected. You will never be lied to by us. We will always answer you honestly and give you the pieces you are ready for and one day it will all come together.

But two things you must know-your story doesn't define you, and it is still being written. And oh I can't WAIT to see what all He has for you. There are things we missed but many more things we get to see and be a part of, and that is a true honor to us both.

I'm forever grateful that I get to be a part of your story, sweet boy, because you're my son. You are such a light in my life I can hardly breathe sometimes. And I will never tire of honoring your birth mom because we wouldn't be here without her-she is just as important to me. The Lord put some seriously brave and bold women in your life. I am thankful for every single one of them. And I am so grateful for you.

We love you so much and celebrate each day we have with you. We are "Team Jordan."  We are family.

Love,

Your momma

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