Monday, November 5, 2007
Our Prays Answered!
We arrived at the office of Civil Affairs for Shanxi Province in Taiyuan City a little before our 2:30pm appointment. Up the elevator to the 5th floor down a cold, dark hallway to the room where we were to get Ava. The doorway was locked because the officials had not arrived yet. There was another mother there with her sister ready for her second adoption. Unfortunately, their flight had been delayed so they literally just arrived from the USA and had not even been to the hotel.
The room was sparsely furnished except for 2 desks and a large black leather couch. We were given some paperwork to look over and sign then without ceremony Ava was led into the room by two ladies. Marcia and I had both prayed (though not nearly enough) for Ava to have a peace at this time. She had more than peace and in fact shared in our joy of the moment.
As I was sitting on the couch closest to the door she immediately walked up to me smiling and raised her arms for me to pick her up. She was all smiles and we spend the next 15 minutes passing the happy child back and forth between us while trying to simultaneously capture the event on video and in photographs.
We would find out that she had received a care package we had sent months earlier. In that package was a photo album of our families labeled in Chinese with our names (mama, daddy, grandpa, brother, etc.) so she must have recognized us. She also had a well loved, very dirty pink stuffed bear which we had sent.
Back at the hotel we removed 5 layers of clothes to reveal she was wearing a pair of pink pajamas we had sent. They had been cut and sewn into "split pants". Soon after the undressing she signaled to us that she needed to go to the bathroom which she did both "numbers" without incident.
She happily took a bath (and believe me she needed one). The only thing she didn't like were some small plastic pig toys which she insisted we remove from the tub. We clipped her nails, brushed her hair, brushed her teeth (with some resistance) and ordered room service.
She immediately began to eat noodles, steamed bun, and even vegetables (a first for one of our children). After supper we dimmed the lights and she lay between us as she fell asleep.
We cannot describe the ease of the whole event and the peace and joy we all have at this moment. I had not cried until I wrote this but now God has blessed my family even while I'm on the other side of the world as he has at every step of this journey.