Two nights ago we received a long awaited update from our daughter’s orphanage. We had sent a request asking for an update on her height, weight, and foot size so that we could start packing for our trip to bring her home. =) We got all the requested information, and more!!
They sent us 12 photos and two VIDEOS!!!!! One video is really short, and consists of 22 seconds of her “nanny”, at least that’s who we assumed this woman to be at the time (more on that in a moment) wiping the boogers from her nose, because our poor baby has a cold =(
The second video is 1 minute and 44 seconds long, and I have already watched it about 53 times, over analyzing every single second of it. 😉 Ive watched it with sound, without sound, in slow-mo, regular speed, and even google translated some of the chinese words I could pick out. (You should have seen me mimicking the Chinese into my phone for google translate, LOL)
In the second video, she is being held by the “Nanny” when another chinese woman comes into the picture and takes her from the “Nanny’s” arms to try to get her to take a few steps for the camera. It is very apparent that our daughter does not know this other woman, nor does she seem to like her, or like the fact that she wants her to walk.
She cries immediately when taken from her “nanny”. She seems to be attached to her, which is good. There’s always concern when adopting from an orphanage about how well can they attach and bond. It is also good for us to see the way in which this “Nanny” interacts with her. When she is handed back to her after crying while taking the 5 or so steps with the help of the other chinese woman, her nanny comforts her, and then immediately goes back to wiping her nose.
Our daughter is dressed like it is snowing although it is prob in the 60’s at the time the video was taken in the middle of the day. She is completely bundled up (think the kid in the christmas story) and the snowsuit she has on is made for a small infant. The bottom leg snaps are left undone so that she can wear it like a jacket.
The chinese are known to over bundle their babies this way. It is rare that an orphanage or a home would have any significant source of heat.
Our daughter tries to lean her head onto the “nanny’s” shoulder twice when being comforted, but she is unsuccessful because of her bulky layers. This is the part of the video I was affected by the most. Her desire to be comforted, and my desire to be the one to give her comfort. It was so sweet and sad at the same time, to hear our daughter’s cry. Oh, how we love her so much already.
The pictures were, ok. In most of them she was crying, or you could tell she had been crying. We were grateful for them anyway. Poor thing, she just wanted the strange lady to leave her alone. Oh my….she will prob think the same about me at first. =(
Now onto the next morning. It was Valentine’s day. For our family, it is a day we remember my Dad. He passed away on Valentines day 6 years ago.
My dad in 1979, its one of my favorite pictures of him
I was pregnant with our second daughter at the time of his passing. We were scheduled for our sonogram to find out the gender of our baby just a few days after he died. We struggled with the decision of postponing the sonogram until after the funeral, or keeping the appointment. We decided to keep the appointment, and invited our immediate family to come to the sonogram with us. In the end it was a breath of fresh air, a blessing in the midst of the sadness.
So yesterday, Valentines day, we awoke, to another update. This time with great pictures that were taken less than 12 hours before we viewed them!!!! This update came from a sweet woman we have never met. Ya’ll ready for this? It so amazing. You cant make this stuff up!!
After being matched with our daughter in November, I contacted this woman through her blog. I had been following her blog along with a few others because she was also adopting from China. Its so informative to read others stories and experiences, kind of like when you are pregnant. I liked to read or talk to others about their experience, just to kind of know what to expect.
Anyway, I remembered reading that her daughter was from the same city, as our daughter so I emailed her asking her a favor. Since she would be traveling before me, I asked if she would check in on our little one at the orphanage, and take a photo or two, if the opportunity were to arise. I felt bad asking a complete stranger to do me this favor, especially during the exciting time of being with her new daughter, but I had read about families who had done this for other adopting families, and thought I’d just throw it out there.
She was so sweet in her response. She said her daughter was now in foster care and she wasnt sure if they would even get the chance to visit the orphanage… but she would certainly try if they were able to get the opportunity.
She and her family traveled to China last week, and everyday I look forward to reading her updates and blog posts, to hear how their day is going, and to share in their joy! “Gotcha day” came, their daughter is so beautiful and seems to be adjusting well. She posted that she had gotten the “ok” to visit the orphanage, and I knew there would be a chance she could see our baby. I also knew, there was a chance she wouldn’t be allowed to see her, or she could miss her for some reason… So I tried not to get my hopes up. I woke up yesterday morning, on Valentines day, and there it was, pictures of our little one, a breath of fresh air, a blessing in the midst of the sadness.
She had the opportunity to meet, hold, and spend time with our little one. Her pictures were way better than the ones we received the night before. Our daughter even seems to have a slight smile in some of the photos! Not only that, but she had surprising information about our daughter that we were unaware of.
Here’s what happened, without going into too many details for protection of our little one and the families involved. The family who took the pictures for us had the very rare opportunity to visit with their daughters foster family, and while they were still there they asked about our little one, PRIOR to leaving for the orphanage. I guess just kinda giving a heads up of “hey, when we get there, we want to ask about this little one”. The timing of this is so God. A phone call was made, and they found out our daughter lived just blocks away from where they were. Not in the orphanage! Not only that, but they found out our daughters played together often because their daughter’s foster mom, and our daughter’s FOSTER MOM, are related! OUR DAUGHTER’S FOSTER MOM?!?!…. um, what?!
Yes, the chinese lady in the video that had an apparent bond with our daughter, is her foster mom. We don’t know, at this point, how long she has been living with her, because according to all the info the orphanage has given to our agency, she still resides at the orphanage. We cannot inquire about it or reveal that we know this, to protect the people involved, but, we are so glad we know! Had they waited to inquire about our little one until they got to the orphanage, they wouldnt have been able to see her and get photos, and we still wouldnt know that she is in a foster home, such a blessing! This gives her the opportunity for quality, one on one time to grow both physically and emotionally. She’s gained 6 pounds since the last update, so she must be well taken care of!
So, this family whom I randomly contacted months ago, who lives on the other side of the USA, agreed to try to check in on our little one whom we believed lived in the orphanage, and it turns out our daughters had been playing together halfway across the world because their foster families are related!! How crazy is that!?!
GOD is so good. you can’t make this stuff up.
Chinese New year is over and China is now up and running again. Our “article 5” was dropped off this past week and we are waiting for it to be picked up. THEN we will wait for Travel Approval. (TA) My agency’s best estimated guess for us to travel is April 4th or 11th, IF everything stays on track. Please be praying with us for a travel date of April 4th, that works best with Caleb’s work schedule, and we can barely wait a moment longer!!!