June 29, 2012


There is something I forgot to share, so this is another SHORT entry (I PROMISE this time!!!)


I forgot to mention (I don't know how I could have forgotten this) that on our way to McDonalds, we stopped at a local park and took a walk through it.  It's the same park we took the girls to a few days ago---a very BEAUTIFUL park.   Today there were LOTS of people there, and we drew quite a bit of attention.  We had a large group of people come up to us, and try to communicate.  Of course, we couldn't understand them.  We have a card we have worn around our neck this week, though, that gives our name, our child's name, and explains that we have adopted this child. 

Callie Beth at the Butterfly Field

Callie Beth and Molly Kate at the Butterfly Field in the park.

Molly Kate loves the Butterfly Field
SO, I proceeded to show the card to an older lady in this group.  She read the card, turned around and said something to her husband, and then got right up in my face and yelled, "AMEN!!!"  I really didn't know what she was trying to say to me at first, but then I realized it was her blessing on us for adopting our child.  We have received many smiles and thumbs up from people this week who have seen us with our girls, and who have understood that we have adopted them. 

The picture is of part of this group in the park who was our fan club!!!!  They allowed us to take their picture with our girls.

Vicki :)



Today was our last full day in Zhengzhou.  We will be leaving at 10 in the morning for the airport for the 4+ hour flight to Guangzhou.  It will be Callie Beth's first time on a airplane.  I sure hope she likes it!!!!

We had another laid back day today.  It rained again, so we spent most of the day in our hotel.  The girls have enjoyed their time playing in the room, even though we don't have a great variety of toys.  I worked on repacking the suitcases, putting the girls clean clothes in one (I REALLY am glad I brought SO many outfits for them!!!), mine and Roger's clean clothes in another, and all of our dirty clothes in the third one.  We still have a few things to throw in the suitcases in the morning after breakfast.

We did venture out this afternoon, even though there was still a fine mist of rain, to go for a visit at the GOLDEN ARCHES.  I'm sure most of you have heard of the GOLDEN ARCHES, known in the United States as Mickey D's, or better yet, McDonalds.  Junk food just sounded better than Chinese for some reason.  Our friends, the Robichaux's went, too.  Tasha and I waited outside with the girls, while Roger and Joey went inside to order.  We were quickly surrounded by a large group of kids, most of them being around the ages of 10 to 12.  They were very interested in us, and asked LOTS of questions in Chinese.  Finally, one of them asked, in English, where we were from.  I responded, "The United States."  They had a really puzzled look on their faces.  A few minutes later, I was asked the same question again, and I again replied, "The United States."  It was as if they had never heard of the good old U.S.  Then I added, "America."  When I said that, their faces lit up and they started nodding their heads and babbling in Chinese again.  They were a really nice bunch of kids.  Several of them took pictures of the girls, so I took a group picture of them, too.

We brought our food back to the room to eat, and then we took another short walk to a 7 Eleven store to get ice cream.  We decided when we got back with the ice cream we would sit in the hall and eat it.  In just a short while, all the other families in our travel group had come in, and we congregated in the hall for quite a while, giving our kids time to play together.  I know I've said it before, but we couldn't ask for a better travel group.  Everyone is GREAT, and the kids are all so precious.

We had planned to Skype with Evan at 10 PM our time.  By the time we went to the lobby to try to connect with him, the girls were so exhausted that they were crying and whining.  We did get to talk to my dear friend, Ginger for awhile, but it was hard for me to hear everything she was saying because of our VOCAL girls.  We never we able to connect with Evan.  We are going to try again in the morning.

Molly Kate waiting to Skype

Callie Beth waiting to Skype

Today was a better day for Callie Beth.  She did have one meltdown this afternoon, but it wasn't as extensive as last night's, and today I finally just put her in her bed and ignored the screaming.  I know that sounds harsh, but she wouldn't let me comfort her anyway.  It didn't take long for her to calm down, and when I lifted her out of her bed, she was all smiles.  She started in again tonight when I put her in bed.  She wanted me to keep holding her, but I had to take a shower.  As soon as I left the room and went into the bathroom, she stopped the screaming.  Roger said she sat in her bed really still and was asleep in just a few minutes.  I talked with Rita, our guide, about the meltdowns, and she said the language barrier is really the instigator of the problems.  I totally understand that.  This is just really common, anyway.  All of the other children in our group have had meltdowns, fits, and major moments of sadness, too, and they are all under two years old.  I can see how it is even harder for Callie Beth.  We will take one day at a time, though, and I have now doubts time WILL heal!!!

I'm going to add a few pictures, and then I'm off to bed!!!  The next blog entry will be written from Guangzhou!!!!

Vicki :)



Last night Callie Beth had a major meltdown.  She screamed at the top of her lungs and sobbed uncontrollably for almost an hour.  There was no consoling her.  This is very typical for adopted children.  Molly Kate didn't have any episodes like this while we were in China, but after we were home, she had night terrors several times, with the same uncontrollable crying.  There seemed to be no comforting her, so we would put her in her bed, and I would lie beside it, telling her over and over she would be okay and that I loved her.  Eventually, she would fall asleep.  That's what I had to eventually do with Callie Beth last night. 

We learned a lot from our visit to the Show Hope Center in the orphanage where Callie Beth lived.  As I told you the other day, the nurses and nannies there were WONDERFUL.  They were all SO sweet, and it was obvious they were crazy about Callie Beth.  From what we saw, though, Callie Beth was one of the older children in the unit, and by far, one of the more advanced.  However, due to the severity of some of the medical conditions of the children there (children who need HOMES and FOREVER FAMILIES to love and nurture them) ,I saw no children from whom she might pattern "typical" three-year-old behaviors.  Since her English is limited----Mama, water, and milk----the only way she knows to communicate when she has a need is to groan loudly or scream.   She sometimes bangs on things, but does so in a playful way, because she always smiles really big when she does it.  We know this will change with time, but for right now, it is a reality we are having to patiently work with. She does understand what "NO" means, and obeys when we give her that command.  We have no concerns about her intelligence.  She was playing on our friend's I-Pad the other night and immediately understood what to do to change from one icon to the other. 

We also don't know the extent of Callie Beth's congenital vision problem.  It is obvious that she is constantly struggling to focus both of her eyes at the same time, due to what appears to be strabismus.  Her teacher in the orphanage said she didn't think she could see colors, and that she had very poor vision in the dark.  I don't think, though, her eyes have ever been examined by a specialist.  I truly believe when we get the strabismus under control, it will make a MAJOR difference for her.  There is no discoloration in her eyes, though----they are beautiful and have quite a sparkle to them!!!!

The best news for us is that the surgery Callie Beth had at age one month for the biliary atresia was successful.  She has quite a scar from the surgery, but there is NO DOUBTS that she is physically healthy!!!  She is quite a chubby chunk, and eats like a horse!!!  This is a blessing beyond words, because not all children with this condition are so lucky.  We will be taking her to a pediatric gastroenterologist as soon as we get home because this is a condition we will need to keep an eye on, but our pediatrician told us since she has gone this long without complications, it is very likely she will never have any further problems with it.  I want to hear that from a specialist, though!!!!

I guess I'm sharing all of this because I don't want any of you to be expecting to see a 3 year old who is like most other typical three year olds, because right now, she's not.  She behaves like a child who has been institutionalized all her life, which she has, and who can't communicate verbally because she doesn't know our language and we don't know hers.  She is maybe functioning on the emotional level of an 18 month old.  She has a lot to learn, but with the love and patience and support of family and friends, she will be fine, just like Molly Kate is now.  It's not fair to compare her to Molly Kate in any way, because there situations are totally different.  Molly Kate has now spent almost half her life in a normal (well, I'm not sure you would call our home NORMAL) family life, with constant love, attention, and nurturing.  While Callie Beth has had plenty of love and attention, it hasn't been a HOME or with a FAMILY.

I can also tell you, though, that Callie Beth is a BEAUTIFUL little girl whom we love with all our hearts and souls.  We have no doubts WHATSOEVER that God matched her with us to be her Mama and Daddy, and we are going to give our all to give her the good life that Molly Kate and our boys have.  She is PERFECT for our family, too!!!!

We appreciate the prayers from all of you.  Taking care of two toddlers is not always easy.....but then, I knew that from the beginning.  The REWARDS, though FAR OUTWEIGH the stress.  The girls are SO precious together, and I have no doubts that they will become best friends.  They have both already shown a deep compassion toward each other.

As I read back over this entry, it seems I've painted quite a bleak picture of our new daughter.  Actually, she is happy, sweet, and cooperative, 95% of the time.  We have been out and about constantly since we got her on Monday, and she has done fine.  She especially likes to ride in the stroller and go for walks, just like Molly Kate does.  I think she's going to be an athlete, because she can throw a ball like a pro already.  She hangs on to me like a leech, but then, that's just fine.  I love the knowledge that I am a comfort to her.  She plays rough and tough----part of the survival of the fittest in her past life, I'm sure!!!!  I have a feeling Molly Kate is going to learn just as much from her as she learns from Molly Kate!!!!!

Thanks for taking time to read my daily posts.  I know I'm quite long-winded.  It is very special to me, though, to get to share this WONDERFUL special event in our life with you!!!!!

Vicki :)