It is my joy, my honor, and my priviledge to introduce my daughter. Audrey Tess Sally Xiao Wan. I will, of course, only call her Audrey. In the China adoption world there is a phrase that is used to describe this moment and I am go glad that I can finally say I am, "OVER THE MOON!"
I first of all want to say how thrilled I am to be introducing my daughter to all of you and sharing ALL about her. However, Audrey has a story, like all of us, that is personal to her. Those of you who are visiting here are here because you love me, my family, and this little one. As much as you lover her and us, there will be parts to her story that I will leave up to her to share if she wants to. Please don't think that we don't trust you or want to share this information, but I want to give her the opportunity to make the decision to let the information out if she chooses. She has had no choice in the things that have happened to her in her little life and I want to give her every opportunity to make as many decisions about her life and what she shares from now on.
For those of you who don't know much about China adoption, let me explain some facts. In the 1970's China was facing a problem - too many people and not enought rescoures to feed, clothe, educate, and have jobs for an exploding population. An "easy" communist solution to this problem was to create a law called the "One Child Policy". Every family could only have one child. Sounds good on paper, right? Well, what if you have twins, or have an "oops"? People who love and want more children were/are forced by an unfair and oppresive government to make the hardest choices and were/are caught between a rock and a hard place. With a strong traditional preference for boys, Chinese families began having to make hard decisions - keep the girl child or let her go and try again for a boy. Orphanages started to be over run with little baby girls whose families could not keep her. In the early 1990's word got out and missionaries started programs that would allow these little girls to be adopted to families outside of China (boys are available also but it is pretty rare). There are two ways to adopt from China: 1. Get placed on a non-special needs list, get a log in date, and wait your turn (for me 4 years), or get placed on a waiting child list and look for a child that is either older or that has a minor to a major special need. I started on the first and ended up on the second. If I had not found Audrey on the waiting list I was still looking at 1 1/2 to 2 more years of waiting. Back to Audrey......
Audrey was found in Xi'an, China on 12/27/2009 and sent to the Childrens Welfare Institute of Xi'an. Her birthdate was determined to be 12/14/2009 according to her growth and development and was named An Xiao Wan. She was found to have an issue that needed correcting and was sent to be fostered by the StarFish Foster Home on 12/30/2009 to be fostered and taken care of after her issue was fixed. She was given the name Sally and has been in their care ever since. (translating Chinese into English is sometimes a hoot so please understand why the sentences sound so wierd) Said about Audrey, "Since she has a good eating function, she has bigger build than her peers and therefore, we give her a lovely nick name "Lafoye" which means she is well cared for. She is a pretty little girl and the caregivers predict that she will grow up to a pretty woman. Alot of volunteers lover her very much."
I had prayed that God would place my daughter in a safe and loving place, that she would have plenty of food and care, and that she would have strong bonds with her caregivers. God has answered that prayer. She is doing well and progressing at an average rate with her peers - a blessing considering some children come from orphanages where they are never held of talked to and rarely fed.
Please pray that God will prepair her for us - her world is gonna be turned upside down in a few months. WE know she is going to be adopted - she has no clue. Please also pray that God blesses us finacially end emotionally as we prepair for her arrival these next few months! Now I am off to stare at her face some more - LOVE THOSE CHEEKS!