The adoption was finalized today according to China law. It has been a long and exhausting day. We have a longer day tomorrow as we have to travel to Hope’s birth city to apply for her passport. The trip is 2.5 hours one way, with stops at the registration office and possibly her finding spot. We applied for Faith’s passport in her home city of Kaifeng.

April writes:

Well folks, it’s official.  We have a griever.  Our baby girl, Faith, is finally realizing that we’re not going to disappear and she is missing her nanny very much.  She whimpered all through the night, which unbeknownst to us then, was an ominous sign of things to come.  She has been a mess all day today.  She’s not the smiley, giggly girl that we have read about for months and have now come to know and love.  She is such a sad, but so very brave girl, and it hurts my heart to see her grieving.

Our day started bright and early.  Faith woke up before 6 a.m. with a soulful wail.  Rick walked the floor with her for a while, trying to comfort her, but it took a while to get her to calm down.  I took her and held her in bed with me.  As I searched my foggy brain for something to sing to her, I started humming, “Jesus loves you, this I know.  For the Bible tells me so.  Little ones to Him belong, they are weak but He is strong.  Yes Faith, Jesus does love you, Yes, Jesus loves you.  Yes, Jesus loves you, the Bible tells me so.”  Tears were flowing at the sweet reminder from the Lord that He does love her and that He is with us, the weary and weak, even here in China.

Faith rebounded, as is her norm, and we headed downstairs to the lobby for some breakfast.  I was so happy to be out of the room, proud to be having our first out-to-eat experience with our new girls.  My reverie was quickly shattered however, because neither girl would sit in the provided high chairs.  And trying to put them in them triggered the girls spiraling downward once again.  Hope began to eat everything in sight (which we are learning creates an interesting dilemma for us adults who are also hungry and desirous to eat), and Faith wouldn’t eat a bite!  I ate a couple of eggs and some bacon, Rick ate DUCK, and then it was back to the room we went!

We had to leave for the Registration Office by 9 a.m.  That was the place where we had received Faith and Hope on Monday, but now we had to go back to sign paperwork that would make the girls officially ours.  Entering the building signaled fear for Hope and she began whimpering right away.  Faith was eager to try out the indoor playground again, and I was thankful for her to be distracted.  But that didn’t last long, and I was soon walking the perimeter of the very small room trying to keep her from losing it.  We participated in a small-but-sweet receiving ceremony and then it was off to the Notary’s Office to fill out more paperwork.  Our group is so large, 11 families adopting 13 children, that we had to all file in and be seated at a large meeting room table.  There wasn’t room at the table for Grace and I, so we sat in back of the table with the girls.  They were pretty happy there, munching away on the superfluous snacks that we take with us wherever we go.

After we were done signing the papers, we went back to the hotel for a quick lunch.  The lunch time was so quick, that we didn’t really have much time to eat!  We all scarfed down peanuts and Rick went somewhere quick and got a couple of containers of noodles.  They were pretty good, but I am getting sick of noodles!  Not to sound like the Israelites of old with their manna, but I’m ready for some good old KFC or McDonalds!  A taste of home would be so wonderful right now.

At 1 o’clock we left for Kaifeng.  This is Faith’s birth city and we had to go there to apply for her passport.  Kaifeng is an hour and a half one way and Faith started crying as soon as we got in the car.  She cried a lot of the way there.  We had planned to visit her orphanage, and I hesitated on whether or not to go.  But Rick suggested that we had better go…who knows when/if we’ll be in China ever again?  We went, but by the time we got there, Faith had passed out in Rick’s lap and neither one of us had to heart to try to take her in and get her all worked up again.  Rick waited in the car with her while Grace and I went in to meet and take pictures with the lady that Faith is missing so much.  She was a very sweet lady and I’m happy to have had the honor to meet her and thank her for taking such good care of Faith for the last two years.  We did visit Faith’s finding spot and took pictures.  The emotions would have been much greater I think if we had all not been so stressed out about her crying.  We then began the journey back to the hotel.  We got stuck in rush hour traffic, so that put us really late getting back to the hotel.  We’re all so wiped out…literally every muscle in my body is aching.

Tomorrow we leave at 8:00 a.m. to go to Luohe, Hope’s birthplace, and do the same thing all over again.  I can’t begin to describe how I’m dreading the day.  Please pray for strength from God to overcome what seems to be such a daunting task.  Though I’m bone-weary, I know that He is able to do immeasurably more than I’m asking.  Much love to all.

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Adoption Finalized! Weary but thankful. 🙂

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Faith’s finding spot. She was left here 10/5/2011. This is the children’s hospital in Kaifeng.

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This is the sweet lady that cared for Faith for as long as she was in the orphanage.

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