Seung Joo’s Umma

10 Apr

Cora has been living in her orphanage since she was 9 months old.  That entire time, she has had one constant care taker.  We have had some time to meet with this amazing woman these past 2 days and the love that I have for her just can’t be described in words.  She knows my daughter so much more than I will for years.  She’s watched her learn to crawl, walk, talk. She’s wiped her tears, did her hair, mothered her when she was sick.  She’s cheered her on, lifted her up and given her life.  I LOVE this woman. She holds a place in my heart that no one can take over.  I will forever and ever give her love and she will never ever be forgotten in this house. (I’m crying right now thinking about what I think of her.)

She has prepared Seung Joo so very much for our upcoming, and though I am so glad about that, I do think about her heart and my heart breaks for her heart.  She’s Umma. I’m not, yet.  Not in all of the ways she is.

And her love for Seung Joo is so evident. As is Seung Joo’s love for her.

No matter what we did today, no matter the space this woman gave us, Seung Joo knew where she was at all times. And if she didn’t, she stopped everything to find her.

She sat and let us learn.  I know she probably wanted to tell us that she likes it this way or does it that way, but she didn’t.  She loved by letting us learn.

She let me feed SJ with a spoon, stick a chicken piece in her mouth and even hold her cup for her, even though I’m sure she wanted to say, “She can do it!”

And when I think of the love she has and the love SJ has for her, my heart ACHES at them saying goodbye.  For her to watch me take the place of Umma.

But she will always get that honor of knowing that she was SJ’s Umma for such a long, long time.  And, if we have our way, we’ll never say goodbye forever to this umma.  Our hearts hold too special of a bond to let that break.  The love of our little girl.

And so we welcome her as a permanent part of our family, Cora’s Korean family. And family is forever.

And with a heavy, heavy heart, I told her all of that in one long, very tight hug.

We may not speak the same language by mouth, but our hearts definitely do.


7 Responses to “Seung Joo’s Umma”

  1. Wendi April 10, 2012 at 12:26 pm #

    Sobbing…. What a sweet, sweet, lady. I pray I meet her when we travel to Avah.

  2. Karen April 10, 2012 at 1:12 pm #


  3. Karen R April 10, 2012 at 2:12 pm #

    I’m so happy that SJ has been so WELL loved!

  4. stephanie April 10, 2012 at 2:43 pm #

    So beautiful I am speechless.

  5. Yvonne April 10, 2012 at 5:24 pm #

    How wonderful that she had a consistent caregiver for so very long! It sounds like she is a wonderful lady and I hope that you will be able to remain in contact with her since she is such an important part of your daughter’s life.

    And on a side note, was this Lotte World?

  6. Kimberly Berg April 10, 2012 at 6:21 pm #

    Your daughter is so fortunate to have had such a wonderful caretaker for all her years at the orphanage. My heart breaks for her too. I don’t know how the foster parents in Korea do it….give these children SO much love and care and then have to say “good-bye.” Our good-bye with our daughters’ foster parents was very tearful and emotional. We still keep in touch with them and plan to return with the girls to visit their Omah and Appa when they are 10. How wonderful for Cora’s Omah to be able to celebrate her 5th birthday with her! That’s such a special milestone and I’m sure it will mean a lot to her and to all of you that she will be a part of it.
    God Bless!

  7. Carrie Craft April 10, 2012 at 8:45 pm #


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