Every day the wonderful happens…

and I'm here to blog about it.

Umma Give to Me February 8, 2011

Filed under: adoption thoughts,Matthew — Elizabeth @ 3:17 PM

Last night while I was making dinner, Matthew walked into the kitchen carrying two toys and looking very proud.  It wasn’t the fact that he was clutching a few toys that got my attention–it was the particular toys he was carrying.  They were a small bus and a green toy cell phone.  Those toys have something in common–Jason and I took them to Korea and gave them to Matthew as a bribe to make him like us small gift the first time we met him .

He has never assigned any special meaning to these toys.  Shortly after coming home, they were tossed into a toy bin and are used intermittently and without any sign of attachment to them.

Last night, while he walked around with the toys he was also babbling.  Not talking–babbling.  This is something I haven’t written about here, but sometimes I think he is trying to speak Korean, or make sounds that resemble Korean.  He was saying “go-gee-goo, go-gee-goo”.  I firmly believe that when he does this, he is trying to mimic some of the sounds he has heard on a video that his foster family made for him.

So I’m connecting the dots between the toys he is carrying around and the “Korean” he is speaking, and I decide to ask him, “Matthew, when did you get those toys?”.

I fully expected him to ignore me or to make something up.  He’s not the most open and communicative child.  But he said, “I got them…..Umma’s house”.

You could have knocked me over with a feather.  He remembered, and he remembered correctly.  We gave those to him 15 months ago at his Umma’s house.

Then I asked, “who gave those to you?”.

“uh……uh……Umma gave to me”.

Matthew lived with his foster family for 2 years.  During that time he was doted on, hugged, cuddled, kissed, bathed, fed, loved, and sung to an innumerable amount of times.  The entire family poured themselves into him–his happiness and well-being were their main concern.  While he may not remember everything that his Umma did for him and gave to him, those acts and her love for him are imprinted on his very soul.  However, aside from pictures, he doesn’t have a lot of tangible things that he can identify as being his, from that time in his life.

So, as he looked at me proudly and told me that those items were a gift from his Umma, I did what any mother would have done.

I said, “you’re right!  Wasn’t that nice of her?”.

I can at least give him that.

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11 Responses to “Umma Give to Me”

  1. Anne Williams Says:

    WOW! This leaves me speechless. What a wonderful feeling when you know your child has always known love, and in his own way can express it. It is a beautiful thing what foster families can do to love the children so completely, even knowing those children will someday leave to their forever families. It takes my breath away.

  2. Lori Says:

    He’s so smart – that memory!! I pray he will always have that connection and I’m think it’s so wonderful that you cherish those feelings he has as well!

  3. Christy Says:

    Wow! Playing catch up here and read this post and the one before it. Tears in my eyes! How amazing! Both posts made me teary-eyed for such completely different reasons, but both left me feeling like Matthew is doing so well!!! Praise God! That’s fantastic. Thinking of you!

  4. Sue Says:

    both his umma and his mama have given him…and will continue to give him…so much – tangible & not – for a lifetime. blessings all around!

  5. Grace Says:

    oh, elizabeth, what a wonderful momma you are to such a wonderful little one (well, two wonderful little ones, really!) matthew is so remarkable and i am just in awe of his incredible memory — what a smarty!

  6. Jenny Says:

    I truly believe that the foster parents are the real heros in adoption, the way they love our children like they’ll always be there all along knowing that someday they’ll have to say goodbye.

  7. Christine m tomberlin Says:

    Maybe your Korean new years feast triggered his memory and pride in who he “is”. He will be so proud of you later that you fostered these memories and celebrations of his beginnings…that is a real gift!

  8. Christine m tomberlin Says:

    Your biggest gift is celebrating his beginnings and allowing….fostering…his memories. Maybe your Korean new year renewed his memories and pride in who he “is.”

  9. Christine m tomberlin Says:

    Sorry..thought 1st message didn’t make. I’m on my new iPad at beach.

  10. Joanna Says:

    Love this story. I’m impressed you had a minute to think about it and think about the consequence of your answer. Brava, mama!

  11. Kelly Says:

    Oh boy, this one really got me. Love this story so much.


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