|After a restless first night with us, Micaelyn understandably woke up teary eyed.|
|Considering how much she was missing her foster family I considered it a great blessing to get a few smiles out of her.|
|Big brother Caleb tried so hard to comfort her.|
I knew going back to the Civil Affairs Office to complete the adoption paperwork would be very difficult. Just the day before her foster family had brought her there. Returning there was certain to cause her to expect to see them again, and when they didn't show up it would only increase her grieving. Unfortunately we had no choice, despite how confusing and painful it would be for Micaelyn.
|Just as we expected, she broke down when we got back to the Civil Affairs Office.|
|Caleb was trying so hard to be a good big brother to her.|
|One aspect of her special need, Beckwith Weidemann Syndrome, is an enlarged tongue. Thus it often protrudes somewhat from her mouth, and she rarely closes her mouth all the way.|
|In order to get a picture of her with her mouth closed I usually have to catch her just after she swallows. I think she is always adorable, but with her mouth closed it's easy to see just how beautiful she really is.|
|She was so cute carrying a cup of water around in one hand, the little wand we had bought at WalMart in the other hand. She liked filling her mouth with water and holding it there.|
|She had to put her hand print on the adoption paperwork. I was really praying none of the red ink would get on her beautiful little dress my mom had made for her!|
|She was extremely fascinated by the digital cameras!|
After the long drive we ended up spending a lot of time waiting around in a small room before actually touring the orphanage. All 3 of the kids were hot, bored, and cranky. Micaelyn was doing her best to convince all the Chinese people (e.g. our guide, driver, etc.) to take her back to her family. Ernie wondered why we were wasting our time and going to so much trouble just to see the orphanage, especially since Micaelyn spent so little time there. However, as soon as we started touring the orphanage and seeing kids his mind was changed, he understood. He saw the line of preschoolers sitting on baby potties, looking lifeless as if they were accustomed to sitting there for endless hours each day. He saw the sweet faces of children and felt the tug of his heart for those precious boys and girls. He was hugged by a boy who wanted nothing more than to be loved, who the social workers told us had been praying for a family, all while knowing chances are very slim his wish will ever come true. It certainly wasn't our first visit to an orphanage, and of all our adopted children Micaelyn spent the least time in the orphanage (after about 2 weeks she was place with a foster family through the orphanage), but even so it was life changing. Ernie even admitted to me later that evening how significant it had been to see those children and that he felt bad for getting angry with me about going there.
I wish more people could experience that, see countless precious children so desperate for a family, desperately wanting to be loved. I have been to orphanages in Siberia (Russia), India, and China. Though the children may all look very different, inside they are all precious souls in need of love. It may seem a big challenge to jump through so many hurdles completing endless paperwork, travel around the world, and bring home a child who has lived in a completely different culture, knows no English, and may have any number of physical and psychological issues to deal with, but the blessings far outweigh the challenges!
|Walking back to the van with the driver. He was a wonderfully sweet man, and an amazing driver!|
|Standing together outside of Micaelyn's orphanage. She was brought in through those doors as an orphan, but she left as our BELOVED DAUGHTER, praise God!!!|
|At the end of the day Micaeyln got her first bath from Mommy. She wasn't too happy about it, but at least she was clean!|