Thursday, March 29, 2012

The last couple of days...

Well, I was asked to do a "daddy post" to wrap up the trip.  I'm not sure what that is exactly, but I will catch you up on the rest of the story and give some final thoughts...

"Mind Your Head"  This could have so many meanings.  I loved all of the signs around the country that their meanings were lost in translation.  Almost every one was a little off.  Some, I just had no idea what they were trying to say.  This sign was on a low overhand in the hotel.  However, I think it applies to many facets of life.  To me, after waking up from our first night home, I feel like it means I need to gather my thoughts from this fog I'm in.

Let me backtrack a little.  Last post, Amber wasn't feeling well.  She ended up heaving in the bathroom that night, and felt really weak and nauseous the next day.  Still, she sucked it up and continued on (not like she had a choice).  We packed up and loaded our things in a minivan for the trip to Hong Kong.  The driver said it would take 4-5 hours depending on traffic.  I offered him an extra tip if he could get us there more quickly.  We took all the toll roads, short cuts, and FLEW down the roads to Hong Kong.  It only took two and a half hours!  Well worth the little extra money.

Here is Mia having fun on the Joy Ride to Hong Kong.  She is going to love roller coasters.  I was a little on edge since there are no carseats or seatbelts for her.

The landscape between Guangzhou and Hong Kong was beautiful.  Large rolling hills and interesting structures.

There were endless rows of high rise apartments.

Going across the bridge from mainland China into Hong Kong.  All of those raft looking things were oyster farms.

Mia finally had a major meltdown.  I think with more change and travel, she finally let it all out.  She kicked, screamed, and wouldn't calm down no matter what we did or didn't do.  I held her and she continued to kick and scream.  I finally held her against my chest and wouldn't let her push away until she was just exhausted and gave up.  From that point on, she has been ok.

This is where Mia rode the entire trip.  We heard all of the horror stories of adoptive children screaming during the entire flight home.  We were blessed to have an uneventful flight.  She was content the entire 14 hours of flying.  However, we did not sleep at all.  14 hours of flying, plus layovers and checkpoints made for a long day.  I think Amber and I stayed up for 36 hours.

What an awesome sight to see our friends and family waiting there at the luggage claim with signs and gifts.  I told Amber to wait until I got the camera so we could video the event, but she just couldn't wait and ran to them to wrap them up in her arms.

OK, time for the emotional part to this post.  I figure that's what all the girls want in a "daddy post."  Let me tell you from a father's point of view, the experience was lifechanging.  The travel was difficult, the hotels were interesting, the people were outspoken, the food was not what we were used to.  Was it worth it?  Absolutely!  I would travel the world all over again and face any obstacle in order to get this precious little girl.  When I first held her in my arms, I couldn't believe how God had orchestrated this event and brought this beautiful creation into my arms.  He entrusted me to protect, provide for, and love this adorable child.  Every time Amber asked what I thought, I would start to say "this is my little girl" but could never get it out because of the tears.

I am amazed at the nonstop ourpouring support from everyone we know and meet.  Every step of the way to getting Mia, we saw a community come together to make this happen.  From the post office employees, to the bank tellers, coworkers, close friends and family all took an active part in this adoption.  Everyone wanted to contribute something to support us.  Even the other adoptive families during the trip were supporting one another through love, advice, fellowship and prayer.  We were able to give some medicine to a family whose child had come down with fever.  The Boggs family let us borrow and ended up giving us an Ergo baby carrier (which saved my back) to tote Mia around half of China.

Through this I can see how God uses all sorts of people from many walks of life to provide for His people.  People like my father-in-law who funded the enitire process, my parents who helped watch our boys while we were away, our friends the Jordans who got us groceries so we would have food when we got home, our pastor and his wife who got us a Starbuck's card to help with the jetlag, our friend Amber who notarized all of our documents, Ann Marie an experienced adoptive parent who gave so much comforting advice, Mary who sent us tons of little girl clothes, and so many others that I would like to thank, but for the sake of space, I can't keep going.  I'm sure there were so many others that were used that I will never know or meet.


Paige said...

So glad you are safely home! We both finally slept well last night and Janie for the past 3, so next Tuesday should be your night:)
Love the "mind your head" picture, we said that about 50 times a day because it was so funny! In Changsha there was a sign in our bathroom that said " watch for slip floor" haha!
Enjoy having your family together, can't wait to see Mia with her brothers:)

Alicia said...

How precious! We KNOW exactly how you are all overwhelmed by God's Amazing Grace in allowing you the privilege of adopting one of His children!

The Berwicks could not be happier for you all! Alex, Alicia, Ryan, Carson, Collin and Anna Bei

PS We would LOVE to come and visit when you all get settled :)

Jennifer said...

So glad y'all made it home safe and sound with your precious little girl! I know the boys were so excited to see y'all and finally meet her! There's nothing better than seeing a daddy with his sweet happy for y'all! Praying y'all can get some sleep and kick the jetlag quickly!
Oh and Love the watch your head sign! I posted that same pic because it cracked me up every morning when I saw it!:)

Beth said...

I am so happy to have stumbed across your precious family's blog!! I can't wait to go back further than your trip in China to read and catch up. We are also adopting through AWAA and our daughter is also from Qing Yang City!! :) We are currently waiting for our RA (on day 58). Praying for the transition of your precious daughter and her big brothers, as well as mommy and daddy. Thank you for documenting your journey!! :)

Debbie Sauer said...

Glad you had a wonderful journey. The adoption family is an amazing family. Looking forward to home updates and pictures. Blessings

The Taras' said...

So awesome! Loved the "Daddy post"! God is so good!! :o)