We had our 3 year Gotcha Day ceremony this weekend. I say ceremony, well anyone who has tried a ceremony with a 3 year old probably already knows you'd better be flexible and quick.
We lighted our 3 candles that Ava picked out when she was 20months old. Yes, she did infact pick the candles at the Yankee Candle store. Brian and I let her choose 3 colors. Then we light the candles only on her Gotcha Day anniversary each year. She chose Red to remember her wonderful birth country, China. (Even a 20 month old knows that Red goes with China, right?) Purple for her birth family, incidently my favorite color, maybe at 20 months old she was looking for a connection between her birthmother and me? (Perhaps a stretch...but we are going with it.) And, blue for our forever family. Why blue I don't know, remember I said she got to choose the colors and she said "ocean" when she picked it up. So we went with it because we all know that taking a 20 month old to a candle shop is well...risky at best. And we got sidetracked that a 20 month old knew to correlate blue with ocean. Genius if you ask me.
So, back to the ceremony. I though Brian was going to pick up the chinese food on the way home from the gym and he thought that some fairy was going to do it. No, I'm kidding we just did not communicate all that well. Ava and I popped in the car and picked up Sichuan, yummy. Back at home we quickly lit the candles, asked her if she remembered being in China and scarfed down some spicy tofu and shrimp lo mein. She loves shrimp lo mein more than life itself. Her answer to the remembering all about China was the typical Ava answer. "Yeah". Ok, What do you remember? "I really don't remember Mom." Ahhh honesty, she was only 8 months old when she left her birth country after all. So, over beef and broccoli, spicy tofu and shrimp lo mein and little colorful candles we notched another line in the creating a tradition for our little family. We remembered what it was like becoming a family a million miles away from anything normal and comfortable for us.
Next year at Ava's Gotcha Day meal and ceremony we will have Olivia with us. We will probably be trying to pull a toddler away from the candle fire and eating sichuan with the other hand. We'll be expecting another short ceremony. Can't wait.