Wow! The difference a day makes!!! While it didn’t start so great, the day quickly improved. That’s not to say that she hasn’t had moments of grieving today, but nothing as heavy as yesterday. Thank you so much to the many people who have been praying for Kate and for us!
I woke Kate (we’re still calling her An Ning or Ning Ning right now) a little after 7 a.m. Tuesday. The second she saw us, her lower lip started quivering and she went into full grieving mode again. While I held her and rocked her and she couldn’t see my face, I cried as well. I looked over at Tim, and he was too. It’s simply heartbreaking to see/hear that kind of hurt in a child. I’ve never felt anything like that before. While it’s so hard to watch, I know that it’s healthy for her. It assures me that she was bonded to someone and loved them very much and has the capacity to do that again.
We quickly got her dressed for breakfast as we wanted her to see Bella June hoping that would help. It did! She was surprised and thrilled to see Bella June. She actually tried to steal Todd’s chair at breakfast to sit near her friend. They compared hair accessories, which was funny. Following breakfast, we had about 30 minutes before our day’s appointments began and came back to the room to Skype Ella and Nana/Pop. Let’s just say that separating from Bella June was not an easy thing. This was our second meltdown of the day. My parents got to meet her for the first time, which was sweet to see.
We had two different appointments today to finalize the adoption. All went well, and Kate is legally ours!
She did great in the car today thanks to some Dramamine that the Nichols family gave us and a smooth driver. Apparently, the driver yesterday drove very erratically which led to the motion sickness. This sort of driving is normal in China, but as David said, Tim and I won’t be driving like that at home. I was prepared though — full change of clothes, wet wipes, and a bag to throw up in! I learned to be prepared following an episode with Sophia in China when she was a baby.
While at our appointments today, we saw three other adoptive families, two of which were from the US. It was good to touch base with other Americans on a similar journey.
Kate and I spent a couple of hours this afternoon taking a nap while Tim and Sophia meet up with Todd and JD at the pool. I’m so glad that JD is here. He and Sophia have become great friends. He is a fun kid and seems to enjoy Soph’s company as well.
This evening, we went to a nice Chinese restaurant for dinner. It was good. David ordered a variety of things for us to try – none of which were too crazy, although he has challenged us to try chicken feet and takes great delight in discussing it with us. I don’t think so! Kate ate a great dinner. Her foster mom had sent a list of things she wanted us to know, one of which was what she liked to eat at each meal, but also said that she is not a picky eater. I can tell! Once she finished eating, tears started rolling. She had one of her full out grieving moments at the restaurant calling out for her mama. Bella June, Sophia, and I took her outside for a walk and that seemed to settle her down.
As we all went to bed tonight, Tim tried to get her to go with us. She shook her head no. We let her continue to play and within fifteen minutes, she was trying to climb into the bed herself. I really didn’t know if she would come on her own, but she did.
Back when Sophia was little – maybe three? – we took Chinese lessons at Matt and Kelli’s once a week with a lady from Beijing teaching for the Nelson Co. Schools. One of the things that Ms. Helen taught us was to say “I love you” in Chinese. We’ve said it some to Sophia over the years, but I’m finding myself using it much more now – out of necessity. As we tucked Kate into bed and gave her kisses, Tim and I both told her again, “Wo ai ni.” She quietly went to sleep. While it’s 3 a.m. and I’m up because she just had a grieving episode, I can honestly say that today was much better. She played with Sophia, talked to herself a ton, fought with Bella June over some crayons, ate well, looked at us when we called her name, has learned the bathroom routine (her home had a squatty potty so we’ve taught her to sit on the toilet/flush/wash hands), and taken a bath. We’re going to attempt teeth brushing tomorrow.
While I can’t post myself or get pictures posted right now, I am able to read your comments because they come to my e-mail. Thank you so much for your prayers and words of encouragement! We love you all!