I have so many different emotions right now as I am packing up to return home. On the one hand leaving Ali Rose behind is going to be one of the hardest things I’ve had to do thus far. On the other hand, I can’t WAIT to see my family when I step off that plane in Nashville. I am thankful for the last three weeks with Ali Rose; I feel like I’ve really gotten to know her. She’s learning to trust me and depend on me. She gives me sweet smiles when she wakes up from a nap and turns towards me for comfort when she’s frightened or overtired or just taking a break from being so “busy” interacting with her world. She is VERY mobile now- crawling all over the place and pulling up on anything she can reach and then trying to cruise. What was I thinking encouraging her to crawl?!?!
Leaving her is made easier because I’ve gotten to spend the last few weeks watching Mandie Joy care for her and the love that she has for my daughter is stunning. I am beyond grateful for Mandie Joy and Rachel and the sacrifice they’ve made on our behalf. I will never be able to repay them for what they’ve done- loving Ali Rose (and Eden Hannah) and our families unconditionally. So I’ll get on that plane tonight and cry tears of sorrow that will be mixed with tears of joy- joy to see my family on the other side, joy that Ali Rose will be loved on until I hold her again.