Yesterday, a conversation with a friend reminded me of our early days as a new adoptive family. Our daughter was 16 months old when we brought her home from China. She was NOT a happy girl. She would wake up screaming in the middle of the night, push us away, hit and even scratch us. I’ve never publicly talked about this because I didn’t want anyone to judge her. But, who would judge a baby? That was MY ego. I was afraid of being judged and even though I knew my daughter was terrified, her lashing out was so hard. I cried many tears and worried for our future. A wonderful therapist reframed it for me at the time. She said, “I’m glad she’s fighting! She’s got spirit and is strong.” The therapist was right. She is strong, and confident and she is also sweet, funny and generous. She has won several character awards including student of the year at her school! Yes, she still has anxiety that we work through almost every day. Adoption isn’t always rosy; it’s so much more than that. It’s transforming.