Sunday, 6 September 2015

May 22, 2013

Today I stood at the spot.

The spot.

The spot in which your world must have stood still. The spot in which the pendulum swung between whether you should run with him still tightly clung to your chest, or to run with him tightly clung to your heart.

I can't begin to imagine what was going through your mind.

I cannot allow myself to imagine what your heart must have felt.

How it still feels.

As I stood at that spot today. The spot. I wept.

Not for myself. Not for our son.

My tears fell for you.

Because of circumstances only you know of, and I can only speculate, you lay our precious boy at the gate.

And as you wished the world for him, you walked away in faith.

May you know that the One who holds the world in His hand has heard your wish.

Monday, 20 May 2013

Letter to an Unknown Chinese Mother

I write to you today to say thank you for the most amazing gift you could have given me.
It all happened so quickly today. We walked into the room, and before we knew what was happening, he was already in our arms. We didn't even have time to get the camera out until after our introduction. I wonder if his birth was like that too? Did he arrive quickly - too quick to even have the camera ready?
I can imagine not a day goes by that you don't think of him. How could you not. Those gorgeous dark eyes, so full of gentleness, are unforgetable. Oh, how he loves to talk with them. They smile long before his mouth.
I can imagine you wonder if you would recognize his precious little face if you saw him today. Believe me, you would. It would be hard to forget. I wondered the same thing today. Would I know he was my son when I walked into the room? Would his face be familiar? Would I know it was him?
I did. It was those eyes. I knew right away.
And you would, too.
I can imagine you wonder what he is like, what his personality is like, how tall he is...
He likes to laugh. He is gentle. He is the size he should be, although smaller than my other two at this age. However, he is solid. You should see the size of his hands and feet! And he is a smart little one. You should see how he mimicks everything I am doing.
I can imagine you wonder how his health is. Has he thrived? Was he taken care of?
I know it was just as hard for his nannies to say goodbye to him as it was for him to leave his nannies. They have done well and they have cared for him more than just physically. He is a chubby little guy which means he has been getting the nutrients he needs.
He drinks from a bottle on his own. He feeds himself, but also lets mommy and daddy feed him too. He is a slow eater though! We are just so happy that he is able to get food in. No wonder he has been able to keep his weight up!
His little lip has been repaired. However, his palate won't be closed until we return to Canada. Don't worry, though, I have already met with the team at the Cleft Lip/Palate Clinic at the Alberta Children's Hospital. They are waiting for him and will provide the best care possible for him! He will get everything he needs.
I can imagine you wonder what he is like when he sleeps. Does he look like a little angel? He does. As I write, he is sound asleep on my bed. He fell asleep in his Daddy's arms during lunch. He fights to breath through his nose. His sleep is restless because of it. Please don't worry. He is getting the air he needs and his doctors in Canada will address this when he is home. I am watching over him. More importantly, so is the Lord, just as He has done for the last 21 months.
What I can't imagine is how much your heart must ache. My filled heart comes at the expense of your pain. For that I am deeply, deeply sorry.
I wish he could have known you and known how much you love him. I promise to tell him of your love. I wish he could have known your touch. I promise to hold him in my arms each and every day. I wish he could have known how much you cared for him. I promise to meet his daily needs and do all I can for him.
I wish he could have known your comfort while dealing with his medical needs. I promise to comfort him and care for him throughout his medical journey. I'll also hold him close through every cold and flu and fever. I promise to be there when he wakes up after surgery and tell him it will be okay. I promise to give him extra cuddles when he just isn't feeling well.
I wish he could have looked into your eyes as you tucked him in at night. I promise to rock him and snuggle him each night before bed. As I kiss his little head, I promise to kiss him a second time, for you.

I wish I could have known you, to thank you in person. I wish I knew your name, knew your personality, what you love and don't like, your favorite color and flower and book. I wish I knew all these things so that I had answers to the questions our dear son will have. I promise to answer him the best that I can.
And when I don't have the answer, I promise to pray over him so that the One who gives a peace that surpasses all understanding will comfort his tender little heart.

I promise to tell him of the One who knit him together in your womb. The one who has now placed our precious baby into my arms. The only One who can comfort us all. The One who gave His own life for you, and me, and our dear son.

May you know he is now loved by two mothers. He also has a Daddy that adores him. He has a big brother and big sister that can't stop saying how much they love him and showing him new things. He is enjoying them too, smiling and talking to them. He will be surrounded by the love of grandparents, aunties and uncles, and cousins. May he always feel our love, and yours.

To an Unkown Chinese Mother, I thank you.

And I honor you today.

Sunday, 19 May 2013

One More Sleep

Long before I became a Mama, there was a little boy the Lord brought me to that taught me many lessons about life. I travelled half way around the world to work in a Children's Home in Northern Thailand and to care for this little one.
He was four months old. He had been left in a hospital, his mother unable to care for him.
For whatever reason, the Lord chose me to care for him day in and day out. He holds a special place in my heart and I love him dearly.
His name is Danny.
Not long after the Lord brought me another little one. This time, a six week old. We named him Matthew. Oh, how I treasured the nights that I was up at 3am feeding and rocking this little treasure back to sleep.
Through Danny and Matthew my mother's heart was born and because of them a babies home began.
We knew there would be more. Too many babies were being left behind for so many different reasons.
We would name the next one Caleb.
I even had a bear made with the name "Caleb" stitched on his shirt, waiting for our Caleb's arrival. But he never came.
Oh, many, MANY more babies came to live in the home. But none of them were "Caleb." It just wasn't meant to be.
Until now. I have been reflecting on this all week. God laid that name for my treasure on my heart years ago. He would wait 13 years before He would place my Caleb in my arms.
He knew Caleb would have the most beautiful brown eyes and brown hair. He knew my Caleb would be from Asia. I just didn't know he would be from China rather than Thailand.
The best part, He knew Caleb would be more than a child I cared for. He knew Caleb would be my son.
I'm not sure where that "Caleb" bear is now. It doesn't matter. Because starting tomorrow, my dear boy, I will care for your every need, I will protect you, and I will love you.
And I will get you a new bear!
We had a wonderful day exploring Hangzhou today. Although this is not the city that Caleb is from, it is the capital city of his province and where we will be meeting and adopting our son.
Most of the day was spent exploring West Lake. It was beautiful. Everything happened at a slow pace, not because there were too many people to maneuver around, but because everyone wanted to have their pictures taken with the kids.
So imagine when we had them dress up in traditional outfits. I'm sure we could have paid for our entire adoption had we started charging for every picture taken. Instead, we had to pay for the pictures.
The kids are doing great. Caleb is never far from their minds. This morning at breakfast Hudson asked, "Can we go see Caleb today?"
They are so excited. So are we.
It is 9:30pm. Everything is ready for tomorrow. The kids are asleep.
I cannot describe what I am feeling right now.

That Was Fun

That was fun....
We have now said goodbye to our beloved Cambodia. Being there the last couple of weeks almost felt like we had never left. And then it was time to say goodbye again. She will be dearly missed.
Our flight to Guangzhou was uneventful, except for the two littles wanting to sit with no one but their daddy. Um, okay! I'll take the seat in front by myself.
The next flight to Hangzhou, however, was quite the scene. Just after the plane loaded we were informed of a delay. When we saw the carts pulled out and dinner being served before we had even taxied to the runway, we knew it was going to be a long night.
In swept the worst thunder and lightning storm I had ever seen. I was sure our plane was going to be taken up into the air by the wind alone!
We sat there for over two hours. This resulted in the whole plane up and walking around. And then the fun.
A full on, Chinese yelling match between several passengers and the flight attendants. It wasn't long before Mr. Powerful Breath beside me joined in on the fun. This screaming fest lasted for a good 20 minutes and included the passengers in the row in front of us, our own row, and that behind.
The louder the screaming, the louder everyone else's talking got.
After several "serenity nows" Darren and I stiffled our giggles as we hung our heads down low, mostly to protect ourselves from all of the horking happening around us.
Soon the plane was on its way to the runway, passengers still mingling about and heading into the washroom. Everyone managed to make it to their seats in time for us to take off. The storm made for some turbulance. This helped to rock two of my babies to sleep. Darren and Mattea.
Hudson chose to talk my ear off.
We arrived at our hotel after 10 and endured the excitement of a new room for another hour or so. Then off to sleep we went.
Two adults and two kids tucked tightly into two twin beds.
We are here Caleb. One day to go!

Friday, 17 May 2013

Twas the Night Before China...

Tomorrow the adventure begins.
Not that we haven't been on an adventure. Trust me we have. We've seen our "family" in Cambodia, drove on tuk-tuks, rode on elephants, held tarantulas, had fish massages, lost a guest,  and been stuck on the Mekong River after sunset.
Oh, and I can't forget... the family being offered heroin at the riverfront. Yes, bag of herion held up to my face in front of my children. A Cambodian first.
We've travelled the land of our hearts. We've visited with dear friends. We've enjoyed really hot weather. And now it is the eve of our departure to be united with our son.
Over the last two weeks Caleb has never been far from our minds. He's been our distraction.
It has been glorious to see the kids at separate times, on their own bring up Caleb, letting us know that they, too, are thinking about their little brother.
During our visit to Angkor Wat Hudson informed us, "I sure wish Caleb were here with us." Already he wants his little brother to experience life with his family.
During lunch Mattea looked up and said, "I wonder what Caleb is doing now."
Yesterday Hudson produced a series of pictures depicting, "special things that tell people about Jesus. I'm making these for Caleb because he might not know Jesus yet."
Today Mattea told me, "I hope Caleb is really happy about us."
Every night my babies pray for their little brother. For his protection. For a good day. "That Caleb will be just like us." We think that is Hudson's way of saying that he will fit in with our family.
Even when we are out buying souvenirs the kids make sure we get something for Caleb as well.They are excited. We are excited.
The time has finally come.
It's time to go get our baby.
It is time to become a family of five.