chapter 24 {6 months home}

for years she was an exquisite beauty on a flat page. i couldn't even guess her personality or assume characteristics. now here in the flesh, my daughter, is a gift to unwrap every single day.

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and to be quite honest, she didn't know she had a personality deep inside. she didn't have permission to dream or explore or create or imagine outside the four walls she lived inside.

 but that has changed now!

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photographer one day. doctor the next.

always a princess and sometimes a girl at the office.

typically a store clerk and occasionally a college student.

because of her brothers, a 'knock out' basketball player.

because of her moves, a dancer.

because of our church community, a singer and toe tapper.

because of her father, a giggler and tickler.

because of her the woman behind these words, a journalist and planner.

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we have celebrated her roots and will do so always.

sparklers for diwali and mounds of sweets from our friend.

lots of text messages and face time chats and pictures and letters sent to her ashram friends now in the States.

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even though there's a dozen years of parenting in us, which includes lots of 'fly by the seat of our pants' moments and a heaping amount of intentional moments, this is a whole new world!

to see her with a dual lens. to see her with the past that has shaped her and to see the potential to be unlocked as she grasps how loved and valued and safe she is.

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in order to get her caught up to 4th grade for next school year, i've pressed her hard at learning to read English. so much so that she frequently says, "us, pilgreens, do hard things!"

we're tackling together kindergarten through 3rd grade in one calendar year and it's everything you could possibly imagine! we're joining brothers on their school field trips and figuring out how to apply what was learned in the "classroom" to grocery shopping, serving, playing, and every day living.

she's reading. really reading!

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she's holding and releasing a butterfly!

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she's out on the water for the very first time. and under the golden gate bridge no doubt. and this is just a regular ole field trip!

i still sit stunned that she is with us. to hold her hand at the dining table and think that for years elijah and i just held our hands open to the one who would eventually sit between us.

and then to hear these exchanges:

kavita: "i'm sorry."

asher: "but you didn't do anything."

kavita: "but you're hurt."

asher: "but it wasn't your fault."

kavita: "but you're my brother."

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we've covered dozens of parks.

she loves going to the library.

she's growing her hair out and wishes i had a closet of high heels.

she knows where i keep my lip gloss and thinks we're all so cool to have phones that do everything.

she can be anywhere and turn anything into an office for play.

she is now having quite lengthy confident conversations with folks at church.

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