Friday, March 22, 2013

Why China?

Why China? I couldn't tell you. Most people assume we are adopting from China because we wanted a girl. I can honestly say that I never had a huge desire to have a girl. I was so grateful to have ANY babies that I just didn't care. I am a great boy mom-I was made to be a boy mom! It took me a while to wrap my around all of this girl stuff but now that we are closer to Ella I am ready to embrace all things pink and ruffly!! But back to China. When I thought of adopting I never had a preconceived idea of what it would look like for us. I just knew that I had a heart for orphans and I just always felt like somewhere there was a child that needed us. Boy, girl, baby, toddler, elementary age, teenager. I just didn't know. I had even been asked if we would ever go to China and adopt a girl and I always replied "no" without hesitation. I know, I know! Never say never, right? So we prayed and we talked and I read books and I asked so many questions of anyone that had adoption knowledge! Slowly God revealed his plan. As we ruled out certain ages, domestic, and countries, China was still standing. There is such a need for orphans ALL over the world. It doesn't matter if the child lives in Texas, or on the other side of the world in a foreign country. A child in need is just that. Simply. A child in need!

We are very VERY blessed with incredible support from family and friends. Everyone is excited to meet her and love on her! I really don't think they would all be this excited if I were actually giving birth!! Haha! I mean-been there,done that 3 times! But I also realize that some people don't get it. That's ok. Trust me-it is MUCH easier to live life without eyes wide open to the orphans. This last year we would not have been drowning in paperwork and chasing documents. We wouldn't have built out part of our attic. We wouldn't have been in a holding pattern waiting for our last family member. We wouldn't be traveling to China to stay for two weeks with a 2 year old we have never laid eyes on. Honestly, we probably would have put in a pool since our boys are great swimmers now! However, we chose the harder path. We chose it for her. Because SHE is worth it. I hear things like "she is a lucky little girl" or "how blessed for her that she will be in your family". I get it-because unless you have been where we are right now, you don't realize that WE are the ones that are so lucky to get her! We are blessed by HER.

People have said "I just don't know how those birth moms can abandon their children". I have learned that the moms abandoning their babies are the true heroes. They do it in hopes of a good life or LIFE at all for their child. Chinese policy is incredibly harsh and heartbreaking. Sadly, the mothers have no choice and they are punished and outcast if they try to keep their babies. They suffer forced abortions and infanticides. Unlike birth mothers here, they leave their babies to be found and never have any information about their child again. They lose them forever. They do not get to select a good home and the perfect parents to raise their child. They can never research records to find information about their children. They will never see updated pictures. I admire these brave women and my heart breaks for them and their losses. I can not even begin to imagine.

This year has been so interesting in lots of ways. Throughout this process we have all changed. I have learned more patience for sure! I have watched all of my boys get excited over cute little girl dresses and pink squeaky shoes and hair bows. I have listened to them as they talk about their sister to strangers and their friends. They pray for her. They talk about things they will teach her when she is forever home. They LOVE her. I am truly amazed and so proud of them. I have seen a change in Eric as he prepares to be a girl daddy. I know little Ella Joy is going to wrap him so tight around her finger that the rest of us probably won't be able to take it! She is going to be so loved and spoiled I am sure of it. However, after being abandoned, and spending her first two years in an orphanage without parents to snuggle her up and love on her, I think she deserves some spoiling! So-why China? Because our daughter and baby sister lives there.

Thursday, March 14, 2013


We FINALLY have LOA (letter of approval from China)! It's been a bit of a bumpy ride but it's official! This sweet girl will be ours! We think we should be traveling in May or June. It all depends on how fast our paperwork goes thru all of the channels around the world. Literally. We are all so in love with her! Can't wait to get our hands on those chubby little cheeks!

Her name is Xiao Mei which means "little beauty". Before we knew the meaning of her name in Chinese, we had ALL agreed on the name Ella Joy. Not an easy task to have 5 people in agreement on something so important. We were all passionate about the names we had each chosen. Eric would not discuss names until we saw a picture of her and when he did, he suggested Ella. Then he stuck with it until we all agreed it was a perfect name for her! After learning the meaning of her Chinese name, I looked up the meaning of Ella. One of the meanings is "beautiful fairy". Without even knowing it, Eric chose the best name for our little beauty (and of course he is taking all of the credit)! It's ok-I'll give him the credit for naming one of our kids!!

I'll be updating this blog more often. I kind of lost heart after my nephew died and we were bogged down in paperwork and red tape while waiting to transfer to the new agency. Well, it is a little busy around here too with 3 boys and little girl preparations!!!

Please start praying that our paperwork continues to process without issues and that Ella will transition as easily as possible to her new family. Poor girl has no idea there are so many people waiting to smother her with love!