Saturday, August 3, 2013

pictures in a scrapbook.

you know that feeling you get while on vacation... the realization that you have only days left and then it will all be over?

these feelings arise and i stifle them. i am having too much fun and i don't want to think about the end. i jump head first into the excitement. i come up for air and let reality fill my body from time to time, but for the most part i get lost in the sheer delight.

the end of a vacation hits me like closing time at a thrift store. "i'm not finished! i haven't even had a chance to explore everything, to see everything, to feel everything! did i miss a priceless opportunity? maybe i'll just pretend it's not really over."
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and like that, we're pictures in a scrapbook that's headed to China.
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it wasn't technically our vacation. it was theirs. but they brought a new world with them when they entered our home. new foods, new language, new culture. best of all, new spirits. two completely unique humans from the other side of the world.  my daughters. His daughters.
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"in China many see marriage as 'the end of all love,'" Cinry told me. she marveled at the way our marriage was so happy. our love was so playful. that was something we gave her.
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"in China students are very dedicated." Hu Yixiao told me. i was amazed to learn their schooling hours and their expectation to need to work for anything they want to get from this life. that was something she gave me.
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just like returning from a holiday is a mess of pictures and fleeting memories, so their stay is a blur. some memories i will keep forever; those things that we did together. but mostly i will keep them; who we discovered they are and how it feels to be around them.
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Amanda {Hu Yixiao} is a remarkable girl. she is humble and kind. she comes from a good family with loving, supportive parents. she is studious and smart. she has wisdom and a great grasp of how she fits into the world. she is confident and trustworthy. she is intrinsically motivated and will always make her own path. she likes what she likes. she has her own opinions but maintains an open mind. she overcomes her fears to do what she ultimately feels is right or good. she is a loyal friend. she has a wonderful sense of humor. she has high standards. she is hungry for knowledge. she loves deeply with a quiet love. she is proper and respectful. and i miss her terribly.
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Cinry is like a happy song. she has a good nature and a love for people. she looks at the world with wide eyes, taking in every sight like it's her first. her wonder is contagious. she is searching for her path and seems so open to her many prospects. she is bright and clever. she is impulsive and adventurous. she is perceptive and thoughtful and concerned about the world around her. she is playful and loving. she spent most of her time here with the kids, laughing, laughing, laughing. she wants to do everything, to see everything, to learn all that she can. she is constantly thinking of others. the moment she arrived she produced gifts for everyone, and she kept all of her family and friends at home in her thoughts constantly as she thoughtfully chose things to bring home for them. i miss her terribly, too.
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i don't know that i want to go much in to what it was like to say goodbye to them. i think i will use Cinry's words. she wrote on her own internet forum, in her own language, and with the beauty of google translate i can half-understand what she was thinking as we parted. she speaks of opening a gift from our family: these books. i stole the pictures of the girls opening them and filing through them from the collection they snapped with their phones and put online.

here's {basically} what she said {as far as it's translated correctly}...

"She said, it will be okay.
     I said, yes, byebye.
     The so-called fate, it was then a place that allows you cherished, make you laugh, make you fall, until you erase all of your anxiety, quills down calm down.
     Perhaps happiness is a day and the boys jumping on a trampoline, hold together roll, grab the phone, play games, take care of them, watching them gradually plump wings, obviously terribly happy but pain shed tears.
     Until I went into the church, through the dark green cover up the windows, watching the toyota engine turning, megan waved at me and said loudly, bye! We love you!
     I also waving gesture probably funny, but loudly responded, me, too!
     Students around me and Amanda at the instigation of opening a gift, megan before, she said that I will love. Opened, is two thin albums, she was inspired to write the producers a lot of text, a record of our time together bit by bit ...... Amanda and I broke down in tears, I can not imagine megan what state of mind is in the production of them, the expression of her face and how is it? Anyway, I was moved to death, tears snot crossflow ......
     God knows how much I love them.
     Arrive Portland Airport, two hours later, just so little time, I began to miss the boys can I play game on your phone?
     On the plane, I'm lying on the table, half awake, made a beautiful beautiful dream, I dreamed that the first day arrived home, megan said, this is our home, and your home. Parting megan said, can we keep you forever? there are many, many, all of the scenarios in my brain slowly rendering hair hung open, scattered on the table, stir together, and I hope never to untie the rope."
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so we are pictures in a scrapbook.

and a family separated by an ocean.
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