07 November 2009

Meeting Nathan

The day after our arrival in China we got up early, had breakfast at
the hotel and were ready to meet our guide, Cindy, at 8:30. She was
going to take us to New Day Foster Home where Nathan has spent over a
year and a half of his short life. Right before we left for China we
were informed that we would not only be able to meet him but would
also take him with us if we were interested! Of course we were
interested!! So, needless-to-say, I was a bit nervous as we got into
the car and were off to meet our son! Our adoption journey took over a
year so this has been a much anticipated moment to say the least!

On our way to the foster home, our driver kept having to stop and ask
directions. Cindy mentioned that China is constantly changing and if
you haven't been somewhere in a month that it can be unfamiliar the
next time. I was fine with stops and just took it all in. I remember
turning the corner and saw a sign directing people to the foster home
and became so nervous. I didn't know what to expect and wondered how
things would go that day. Finally, we arrived and we got out of the
car. Karen, the director of the home, greeted us along with others.
They were so welcoming and nice. We entered the building where the
kids were having preschool and walked down a corridor when a little
boy came out and started looking at us. Then out of nowhere Nathan
runs out and gives Richard a hug and then gives me a hug! It was so
sweet and that moment seemed very surreal. It is quite overwhelming!
Then he went back to Richard and wanted Richard to pick him up. We
went into the preschool class where they were starting to sing songs
and we all sat down and took part while Nathan sat on Richard's lap.
All the kids are so cute and almost all of the preschoolers have been
matched with a family! After the singing there was coloring and
playing with rice like a sandbox which the kids loved!

When that was over, all the kids got to go outside and play until it
was time for lunch. Richard and Isabel went out with Nathan and the
other children and Karen took me upstairs to see the babies. Most of
them were taking naps but I got to meet little Judah who was playing
in a walker. Judah has a heart issue and sadly there is no operation
that can help him. I knew this before we arrived so we've been praying
for this little boy. We are hoping that God will perform a miracle
there as one is truly needed. Then Karen took me into another room
where 3 babies had just arrived. She asked if I wanted to give one of
the babies their English name. They all have a Chinese name that their
home orphanage gives them but the foster home has an English name for
all the kids as well. What an honor! Karen pointed out the little girl
whom I could name. She is so precious! The name I chose was Eliana. I
love that name and if we ever have another daughter, will use it for
her (Isabel's middle name is Liana which is a short form of Eliana).
The best part is the meaning which is, "My God has answered me." It is
a special gift to those children to be at New Day - in a place where
they are so well cared for until they are adopted and most
importantly, a place where people pray for them! I pray that God is
answering little Eliana. She is a heart baby and is 14 months old and
I can't wait to see what God has in store for her.

After meeting the babies, I went outside to play with Nathan. He was
having a fun time on the swings with Richard. If you know Richard, you
know that he loves playing almost as much as kids do so I don't think
any child cannot have fun with him! After playtime was over, we had
lunch which I really enjoyed. It was very good! Also, Nathan sat next
to me and I got to give him his food. This is where we found out that
Nathan likes spicy food. There was this cabbage dish that was a little
spicy and he ate it right up! After lunch we had some more playtime
with the kids until it was time for their nap. At this point we were
able to meet with Nathan's nannies, a nurse and some others who went
over his routine and answered any questions we had. This is such a
gift to adopting parents who then don't have to figure out everything
on their own.

After our meeting, it was time to go. I imagine it is sad to see the
kids leave the foster home but of course happy that they have a family
of their own. Nathan was completely calm leaving. I think he wanted to
ride in the car but he just waved good-bye and blew kisses at his old
life and got into the car to start his new life with a forever family.

Since Nathan missed his nap he fell asleep pretty quickly after
getting in the car. He didn't sleep long though and after waking up
kept pointing at all the buses and cars. He really liked all the new
sights. After getting back to the hotel we played a little and then
went to find some dinner. Dinnertime is when the jet-lag hits us so we
start to get tired around 5 or 6. We didn't know where to eat and then
Richard saw this woman standing out in front of a restaurant and
spontaneously asked her if she spoke English. She said a little and
that was enough for him to determine that this is where we'll eat. At
first, the waitress gives us this menu and it is all in Chinese. I'm
thinking we need to leave but then the first lady comes with a menu
with pictures! Yay! This place serves hot pots which is a hot pot of
soup that they cook on the table and have all these ingredients you
can add to it. It was hard to order but when it came, we were thinking
maybe we made a mistake however after tasting it, we loved it! It was
so good. Isabel and Nathan liked it too but they were both tired.

After dinner we came home and bathed the kids. Nathan wasn't too
thrilled with taking a shower but he is so much faster to bathe than
Isabel because her hair is long and needs to be washed and
conditioned. Then we read and this calmed his considerably. He fell
asleep quickly and so did Isabel. He woke up about 30 minutes later
crying and realizing that this wasn't what he was used to and he
didn't like it. It didn't last long because Richard's blackberry went
off with a message from his sister and Nathan was fascinated with the
beeping. After that Richard let him watch a video on his phone from
when the three of us went to the beach over the summer and I rocked
him while he watched. Soon he was asleep and slept through the night!

Sorry this is SO long but I want to document our trip with detail,
especially for Nathan who will want to be able to read about joining
his family. Tomorrow shouldn't be nearly as long!


Tami said...

Kelly, Richard and family...

This was such a wonderful post...thank you so much for sharing this special day. What a blessing Nathan already feels so comfortable with you and that his transition from New Day went so smoothly...God has surely laid on His heart the fact that you are his family! PTL!

Sending continued prayers as you continue to 'gel' into a family of 4!!


WilxFamily said...

A Daddy's boy already!!

How awesome is God to give you this sweet, sweet meeting. It almost seems so surreal. I love seeing the kiddos all tucked into bed. No doubt that Nathan has been bonded into Isabella's heart for the last year.

I am so thrilled for your family...and now praying that we too will have such a kindred and peaceful meeting with Evan. I'm so excited that Isabella got to go with too!

What a thoughtful name you chose for Elilana. My daughter was tickled to see the new babies and what they are named. I can't wait to read to her how you were able to name her and what her name means.

TanyaLea said...

Richard and Kelly~

I am just catching up on your blog since you posted photos. SO glad to see it is working well. I will know WHO to turn to when it is our turn to travel!! ;)

It's so beautiful to see your family all together and your photos are GREAT!! I hope you don't mind, but I did a post about Khloe's first package with the photos that Karen sent, and I told how you were the one who brought it over for us, and linked your name back to your blog. If you want me to remove the link, just let me know! But I have a few NewDay mamas and supporters who follow my blog, and knew they'd be interested in following your journey while in China, too! :) I just LOVE the photo of Nathan and Isabel sleeping next to one another...just so precious and so real!

Sounds like everything is going well! NewDay is just wonderful and we have been so blessed that our children were in their care! And I think it is SO neat that Karen asked you to pick one of the names of the new babies... I love the name Eliana, and even more perfect is the meaning behind her name...just wonderful!!

Well, I'm off to read the rest of your posts and get caught up. Praying that you have a blessed week and that everyone stays healthy and safe! <><

Love and Hugs,

FlacaS29 said...

Oh I love the pictures! Especially of Isabel and Nathan sleeping together! It is the sweetest thing! I am so glad that he is so comfortable with you guys already!I think it must have melted your hearts when he just came up to you and gave you hugs. I could imagine the fear of not knowing how he would react when first seeing you. I had tears when I read it. I am so happy for you.