This reflection is in honor of all of our wonderful family & friends.  For all of you who embraced Sasha and welcomed him into our lives, I am forever grateful. 

It was one thing to bring him into our family, I knew we would be loving and accepting of him… but I was left wondering how others would handle it.  Would they look down on him knowing he is an orphan?  Would they not interact with him because they are intimidated by the language barrier?  Would they think of him as “damaged goods” being a teenager in his situation?  Would they keep their distance and watch him with a cautious eye?  These were some of my honest fears. I trusted God with them, and Sasha was accepted more beautifully than I ever imagined.

Our extended family – aunts, uncles, and cousins – were just great with him.  They all welcomed him into our favorite Christmas traditions.  I was also especially blessed by the way our church family embraced him.  Sasha was a little Games with new friends on New Years Eveoverwhelmed by the dozens of people who were overjoyed to meet him, but they quickly became friends.  He was blessed by their friendship and the gifts they shared. 

So, thank you to all of you who accepted Sasha and welcomed into an unforgettable experience of being surrounded with loving friends and family.  I imagine that he has never known what it is like to be embraced by so many special families.  You have been a blessing to him and to my family as well!