It’s been a wonderful and emotional two days! It began Monday morning when we left our hotel at 5am to head to the airport for our 2 1/2 hour flight south to Nanchang city in Jiangxi Province. After exiting the airport we met our second guide, Meggy (I’m sure that’s her “American” name! I doubt I could pronounce her real name:) )
Shortly after we got on the bus she told us (our family and another family traveling with us) that we were going to meet our daughters at 11:30 at our hotel. After our arrival we would have about 20 minutes to get checked into our room and then our babies would arrive! Imagine the excitement! We thought it would be in the late afternoon!
We hurriedly checked into our room and got our cameras ready for the big moment! The plan was for Stephen to take pictures, Matthew to take video, Christine to hold RaeAn and I would interview the Orphanage Director with our list of 26 questions about RaeAn before he left!
Although we’ve been planning and waiting for this day for over five years, nothing could truly prepare us for the emotions of this wonderful moment as they put RaeAn into our arms for the first time! It’s real! We are finally together!
After the Director left, we jumped right into filling out paperwork and signing all kinds of documents (while we ate Papa John’s Pepperoni Pizza!). An hour after we had RaeAn we were off to the Center for Adoptions in Nanchang to finalize her adoption certificate, take her passport photo and be interviewed by their Director. Then we headed to the notary office to have our statements taken and signatures notarized. Then to the police station where they took a picture of RaeAn for a police report. Finally back to our hotel for a delicious meal before heading to bed. (RaeAn went to sleep at 8pm and didn’t wake up until 7am! I on the other hand, I went to sleep at 9pm and woke up at 11:30pm and didn’t go back to sleep until 4am! Just too wound up with emotion!)
One of our prayers for the past five years was that RaeAn would be put in foster care and not have to stay in the orphanage. We found out from the Orphanage Director that after she was found she spent a total of three days in the orphanage and was then given to her foster mother. She was with her foster mother until the very morning they gave her to us. In fact, Monday morning they picked her up from her foster mother and drove 3 and 1/2 hours straight to Nanchang to meet us.
We are so thankful for the wonderful and loving care that she was given until we could care for her ourselves. Leaving her foster mother though was and still is very difficult. The Director said she cried the entire three hours it took to bring her to us. Even now (yesterday and today) she will suddenly get a panic look on her face and begin crying… calling ‘mama, mama, mama’ while looking around the room. Whenever the door to our hotel room opens, she’ll look as if she’s hoping her foster mother will come in and rescue her from this strange family! Tears fill our eyes as we see her grieving for the loss of her foster mother. We are so thankful for her tender love and care for RaeAn! Knowing that RaeAn is missing her so also breaks our hearts…
Today was a great day though and she is taking to us more and more. She’s going through cycles of emotion… playing happily with the boys, crying for her ‘mama, mama’ then smiling and reaching for Christine, then crying because she’s hungry, enjoying milk, formula and apple juice, then sleeping because she’s exhausted, then crying for her ‘mama, mama’, then sleeping, then playing. That’s pretty much been our last two days.
Today (Tuesday) we went to Wal-Mart to buy what one of our guides called, “The Baby Stuff”. We just love that phrase and can’t stop saying it! Meggy had to help us shop because even with pictures, we couldn’t figure out what some of the things are that we needed!
Following Wal-Mart we enjoyed a nice time at a beautiful park. It was fun to walk around and just enjoy being together as a family. The boys got to run, jump and get some pent up energy out too!
We will be here in Nanchang until Friday while we wait for RaeAn’s Chinese passport to be processed. Friday night we’ll head to Guangzhou where next week we will process her US IR3 Visa.
I’ve posted over 40 pictures from the last two days for you to enjoy. I have some great video too but haven’t edited it or compressed it enough to upload to the net yet. Enjoy the photos while you wait!
Many thanks for all of your prayers… God is blessing us so much… I have more to tell you about RaeAn, her background and other answered prayers about her life, but those will have to come another day… Know that every single prayer we have prayed for her care, etc. has been answered… So thankful, even as we all go through the emotions of bonding as a family.