Friday, September 21, 2007

Lian's Orphanage in Gaoyou

Its been a few days since we were in Gaoyou, but I thought I would reflect for a moment on our time at Lian's orphanage.

This is a picture of one of the Ai Yi's who was there when Lian was a baby. Her name is Wang Ping and Lian took an immediate liking to her. How do you thank someone adequately for taking care of your child for the first year of her life? And then you realize there are so many more children who will never be adopted. Less than a tenth of a percent of all the orphans worldwide are adopted.

I asked to hold one of the babies. Lian asked if she was her little sister. It was very difficult for me to say, "No, she is still waiting for her mommy and daddy." Today, in Nanchang, Lian was collecting leaves off of a bush. I asked her what they were for and she said, "These are for all the little girls and boys who don't have mommies and daddies." Somehow she knows in her heart that we cannot forget about them.

I've spent time in orphanages in Russia before, but to visit where my daughter was placed by her birth mother, played, slept , and waited for us was pretty emotional for me. While we continue to struggle with infertility, Dano and I left our visit even more thankful for the way in which our family has been formed. Adoption is truly a miracle of the heart.

Several of the women in our group treated ourselves to a $6/hour massage today. This was the first time we had all left our babies with the dads. One of the new moms said she couldn't believe how hard it was to leave this baby she had only had for three days. Her eyes welled up with tears as she said, "I just didn't realize how quickly I would attach to her." It truly is a miracle and a gift.

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