Friday, October 30, 2009

Hello from China~

Well, we are finally here, it's been a long journey but I type this from Beijing China!  I had to use MEDITECH's VPN to get in because China blocks Facebook and Blogs but I'm sneaky!  We are at the Presidential Hotel.

Plane ride was long.  Wish I found out the headrests move up prior to landing in Beijing!  We have met some other couples here as well, they are all AWESOME!  Went to some mall thing with the guys we met last night, that was funny seeing us try and talk to folks there!

Today we are off to the Great Wall of China and also to the Forbidden City.  Looking forward to that!  Tomorrow we MIGHT actually get to meet Faith!

Gotta go!!!  Kevin

Thursday Oct. 29 US, Friday Oct. 30th China

So, here we are after 2 very long years aboard UA581 on our way to Beijing China.  To say it feels surreal would pale to put how we feel into perspective.  We are traveling 33000 feet above the world, at 533 miles per hour (NASCAR girl’s dream lol).  We are already missing our boys, and eagerly anticipating meeting our daughter.  I do anticipate the next 3 days to be the hardest, separated from all our children.  We are planning to live in the moment God has given us, not trying to get too ahead of the plan, as not to cause ourselves undue anxiety , easier said then done.  All things are possible with God.

Our trip so far has been wonderful, some turbulent, some confusion as to how to go about certain things like checking into airports, yes we are that pathetically under-traveled.  God has graciously sent us wonderful companions for the journey, and we have enjoyed getting to know each of them more - some traveling with their biological children, some adopted children, some left children at home like us, none of our fellow adopters is without children, which I found very interesting.  It is so good to have so many to share in our anticipation of meeting our children, and knowing that it is still 4 days away but will be here before we know it!!  We share our stories of how we got here, the wait, the referral day, the preparation for such a long trip.  Each story unique but amazingly similar in our desires to add to our families with these special beautiful children. 

5119 miles to go to our destination, and miles to go before I sleep, and miles to go before our lives forever change.  As an expectant mother, I would spend hours mulling what was to be for my baby.  What would they look like, would their temperament being easy going or hyper like me, would they be good sleepers?  I am still dreaming what Faith will be like, though I know what she looks like, there is still those same questions of temperament and sleep - but additionally is something I never considered with boys.  Will she love me?   I know you will all start typing away comments, of course she love you, how could she not love you, etc.  I would do the same if I read it on someone else’s blog, and I trust that eventually we’ll be able to come to some type of love consensus -- the difference is now there is some uncertainty to when, and how where with an infant it is easier.  Bonds are built by completed cycles of trust, of proximity and closeness, and of having needs met.   The one thing I don’t worry about is needing her to hear my voice or my words to establish that bond -- if you re-read what brings people together, you’ll see all of that can be accomplished through action, not dependent on word!

Its now nearly 5 p.m. we’ve been on the journey just shy of 12 hours -- I am surprisingly filled with a peace that is beyond understanding.  Before I departed I opened a card that sang out, “God is in Control”, then read a note from a little friend that encouraged me on the journey.  I have had the opportunity to pray the rosary twice, not out of fear as in past flights for safety lol but as a way of mediating on the blessings of my faith, and this trip.   My dear friends, and even strangers, reading this blog, and praying us along on this journey - May God bless you in this adoption - as you see His Glory revealed.

Tuesday, October 27, 2009

Blessings in the Waiting

If someone had told me 6 weeks ago that there'd be a blessing in that, I would have smiled politely at them, and said, "Thank you for the encouragement" but in my heart would be thinking, 'YEA Right!"  I am sure some of you reading this are thinking -- HEY I did say that to you.  Sorry, but I am sure you can understand my state of mind at that time!

As we stare down the wait with just 2 days left, I am amazed at what  a loving and caring God I serve.  In retrospect, it is obvious that this wait was absolutely necessary in our ability to follow God's plan for us.  During the wait, we were not only allowed opportunities to better our physical health, but also our spiritual health.  That had been my prayer - to be healthy before, during and after our trip - all 5 of us.  The notification of our delay came on the same day that I completed a novena to St. Therese praying for health for the 5 of us for our journey.  The extra time allowed Kevin and I to finish our Hepatitis A and B vaccinations and have the 6 weeks necessary to build antibodies to be safe from those diseases. It also gave us an chance to receive our seasonal flu shots, and get the boys vaccinated for both seasonal and H1N1 flus.

Our 20th anniversary came during this time, and we were able to spend a wonderful night together at dinner, and home alone to reflect on where God had brought us, and how we were looking forward to our next leg in the journey.  We had time to discuss things that may have later become obstacles to enjoying our travels and our new addition.  The sacrament of marriage provides extra grace, and this was an example of that sacrament in action - the extra GRACE is a much welcomed gift from God during this time in our lives.

We were also able to receive grace in the many blessings we have received from the amazing Catholic community that surrounds us.  I was able to attend at least 12 more Eucharistic adoration hours, where I could spend time quietly with my Lord, listening to his calming words of wisdom and love that He spoke to my heart.  Those quiet assurances that He has only my best interest in mind, and that He will be with us for the entire Journey, that HE never leaves nor forsakes us.  Kevin and I were able to attend LIFT together, and see Matt Maher (MY favorite Christian artist) live!! Yeah.. and again share in the grace of Adoration!

We received public blessings by our Emmaus and  St. Thomas Aquinas families, our bible studies, and our dear friends who all prayed over us or with us  -- providing us more strength for the journey.  There is nothing like being covered in prayer for the work God has called you to.   I was available to attend the last Rosary Procession of the season at St. Thomas and to meet a very distant cousin, who also happens to be a priest and one that knows sign language to boot!!  What providence God provides in the work to which we are called.  This weekend I attended an amazing retreat, where the speakers spoke light to my fearful heart, and I was able to pray over a relic of Padre Pio for our little Faith.  I asked for his intercession that Faith may know that we are there to love and care for her, and to protect her against being scared.   Then I was blessed with the relic, by the sweetest Franciscan priest!!  I could feel this warmth fill my body, bringing me such peace and hope, that although not capable my faith will carry me through.

Many scripture verses have emerged in these 6 weeks -- 1 that I will take with me for the journey are; "Do not Fear, but Believe!"  I will also carry with me quotes from saints who I know are praying for us, and interceding to bring us strength and courage for the journey.   St. Bernadette's, "Jesus, I trust in YOU!";  St. Padre Pio's, "Do not Worry, worry is useless!  Instead Pray!"  

The wait has been long, but the fruit has been abundant.  Every day God proves that this is so such more than fulfilling a lifelong desire to have a daughter, or giving an orphan a home -- it is truly a journey of growing our faith.  Now we pack to prepare to begin the next phase of growing our little  Faith!!

God is so reassuring!

As we prepare for the journey to adopt faith (2 days to go!) God is so reassuring to us!

From yesterday's first reading:Rom 8:12-17 
For those who are led by the Spirit of God are sons of God.
For you did not receive a spirit of slavery to fall back into fear,
but you received a spirit of adoption,
through which we cry, “Abba, Father!”
From today's first reading:Rom 8:18-25 
We know that all creation is groaning in labor pains even until now;
and not only that, but we ourselves,
who have the firstfruits of the Spirit,
we also groan within ourselves
as we wait for adoption
, the redemption of our bodies.
For in hope we were saved.

It's these little things like this that mean so much!