Thursday, December 8, 2016

China Day 7: Orphanage Visit/Finding Spot

Day 7: We wanted to visit Mia's orphanage and finding spot for several reasons. Mainly so she can have something to look back on one day. I've gone back and forth on whether I want to talk about any of this on here. This is her story, not mine. So I hope this encourages someone to think about adoption.

We sandwiched ourselves into a van and headed to the finding spot. We had a guide from our agency taking us there. I quickly realized that we were in a more poverty stricken part of the city. You could just tell these people have a hard life. We finally pulled up to a gate. It was black. We got out and all I could do was cry. I stared at the gate and cried my eyes out and held my baby. The baby that just over a year ago was sat down RIGHT THERE and LEFT FOR GOOD. My heart broke for Mia and her birth mom. How hard that must have been to leave her. We were allowed to go behind the gate and there were apartments back there. People kept walking by and I kept wondering if her birth mom was one of them.(We found out the next day that this was actually not her finding spot. They got it mixed up with the other couple with us. Mia's spot is right outside the orphanage gate, which is what I thought. So, we did go there but didn't really take it all in. We are going to run by there later today!)

Her orphanage was only about a block away so we went there next. It's very iffy if you should take your child back to their orphanage but we felt Mia would be ok. I had her in the Ergo and she seems to be attaching well so we took her. We walked around outside and immediately saw the place where they filmed a video of her that they sent to us! It was crazy to see the spot. We've watched that video hundreds of times and now here we were with her! Her caretakers were so excited to see her! You could tell that they love her SO much! She was happy to see them but she didn't even ask for me to put her down so she could go to them! SCORE! We didn't go inside, which was fine. They are battling hand, foot, mouth right now and we wanted no part of that!

We came back to our hotel and hung out for a while. Mia is starting to open up to Josh! She kisses him and hugs him and drags him around by his finger! :)

Later on in the day the big boys went with Paw Paw for a while. The rest of us went to the mall so Brooks and Reece could play on this playground type of thing and to Walmart for snacks. Mia fell asleep in the Ergo and when she woke up she was not herself. She had this blank stare that was empty. She walked over to the window of our room and just stood there. Blankly staring out. MY HEART BROKE INTO A MILLION PIECES FOR HER. I can't even describe how sad it was. Josh and I just sat there with her and talked to her and told her how much we love her. And I cried my eyes out. She finally went and grabbed her shoes and got me to put them on.
Then she went and pointed at the stroller so I put her in and she pointed to the door. I walked her around and around our floor and came back to the room. She wouldn't get out of the stroller. About that time the boys came back from their adventure with Paw Paw and as soon as she saw them SHE LIT UP!  Y'ALL she had been looking for them!!!!!!!!!!!!!!! She's been fine ever since. I can't believe how fast she has attached to us. I'm SO thankful for that. I prayed and prayed she would fit perfectly and she does! :)

Oh, she also ate in a restaurant for the first time today! Pizza Hut! haha!

This is how you roll in China!

This is Vicky, she works for our agency!

 Orphanage director and foster care director
 One of the gates to the orphanage(not where she was left)

 THE SPOT where that video was shot!!!!

Sweet babies enjoying the sunshine! These ladies were Mia's caretakers when she was a baby too!

 Random but this is inside our hotel, this is how high up we are! Makes me so nervous! haha!
If this doesn't make your heart melt nothing will!

 Pizza Hut! 

 First popcicle!

Wednesday, December 7, 2016

China Day 6: Officially Ours!

We spent about half the day at different government offices completing the China side of Mia's adoption! She's no longer an orphan! I was concerned about having Mia right back in the same office we were in the day before when we got her but she did fine! She seems to be attaching really well and I am so thankful for that!

We spent a good part of the rest of the day at one of the other malls. I needed some short sleeved shirts because it's really hot here. We were in a store and I needed to try some on. Mia was in the stroller and happy as can be so I ran into the fitting room. I was gone about 30 seconds when I heard her start screaming...that's sad, but it's a GREAT sign of attachment!

 Tired, exhausted, blessed.

 The city of Nanning is so beautiful!!!!

Griffin and Peyton having some fun!

 We ended the day with her very first real bath! She LOVED it!
Next up, her finding spot and orphanage!

Tuesday, December 6, 2016

China Day 5: Gotcha Day!

Day 4 was spent traveling to the city where our daughter lives so there was not much to talk about! :) However day 5 was THE DAY!

We woke up early Monday morning so excited and ready for the day! We weren't supposed to pick Mia up until 2:30 pm so we had a lot of time to kill before. We had breakfast and shopped for a little while to kill time. There's a mall connected to our hotel. And when I say mall, I mean huge, gigantic even has a Walmart inside it!

Our guide told us to meet her in our hotel lobby at 2:20 pm. She didn't show up until 2:35 and if you know me then you know I was TICKED. I HATE being late, and on this day?? HELLO! Anyway, as we travelled to the government office the anticipation grew and grew!

Finally, we pulled up to the building. We actually have some friends from Tuscaloosa who are also here adopting! Crazy to think that two normal, everyday families from Tuscaloosa are actually in the same city across the world adopting their daughters together! It's been fun!! They were already in the government office when we arrived. They pointed to a room and said, "they are right there in that room!!" We glanced over and there was a lady with a sleeping baby in her lap. Josh said that he thought that was her. Let's note that as soon as we walked in I started shaking and trying to fight tears. Soon they started to wake the little girl up and I could see the back of her head and knew it was her! We were told not to mess with her until we were told to so we didn't go into the room. We stood outside the door close enough to see and she glanced up at Josh and you could tell she recognized him! It was hard not to just scoop her up!

One by one each family had their turn. There were 4 families and we were last! I stood there just in awe of her. Here was this baby that we have loved from so far away and now there she was! She was sitting in one of the orphanage directors lap and they started looking through the photo album we sent her. That's when I just completely lost it.

FINALLY, it was our turn! We were taken into an office and had to sign some paperwork. Before I was completely finished, they brought Mia in! I've never slapped my signature down so fast in my life! HA! She was crying when they brought her in and I was told to take her. So I did. And she was screaming and sweating. They hurried us into another room where the other families were with their new babies! The dads were taken to another room to talk with the orphanage staff to ask questions while the moms tried to calm the babies. It didn't take Mia long at all to stop crying. I just kept kissing her and tell her it was ok even though she couldn't understand me. She was POURING sweat. It's in the upper 70's here but they think it's cold! She had on several layers of clothes. We took pictures and headed back to our hotel!

They don't use car seats for kids here in China so I just held her and Brooks sat beside me! About halfway back to the hotel she laid her little head on my chest for the rest of the ride back. Melt me! She stayed either on my hip or in my lap for about an hour or two once we got back to our room. Josh and Peyton left to go get us some pizza(we were starving because Josh and I couldn't eat lunch because of nerves). While they were gone she jumped down out of my lap and the rest is pretty much history. She's been running around playing with the other kids. She will plop down in my lap. She grabs my face and kisses me! She fits right in! It's taken her a little longer to get used to Josh, she hasn't really seen a lot of men but she's warming up to him. She won't let him hold her but she will give him a hug! She will realize in no time she can get anything she wants from him! haha!

Last picture as a party of 6!

That's here standing in through that doorway!

This was when they were looking at our pictures!
When she saw her daddy!
When they brought her to us...

You could tell she was VERY loved by the orphanage staff!

Party of SEVEN!!! WHAT?!

Our agency staff came to our room to finish some paperwork!

Seriously? SASS!

We had a bit of a rough time at one point. You never know what can trigger these little ones. She is very attached to her shoes and her backpack that she brought with her to meet us. We learned the hard way to not touch either! :)

I love this little girl more than I could have ever imagined. She needed us. We needed her.