Monday, January 30, 2006

No turning back...

Today we had a consultation via conference call with Dr. Susan Gillespie, a pediatrician with the International Adoption Clinic of the Texas Children's Hospital in Houston, TX. Our agency recommended we consult with a doctor who specializes in international adoption before accepting the referral, so we followed their advice.

By the time of the call, we were both kind of wondering why we were spending the money for this consult. In our hearts we knew Lindy was ours, no matter what the doctor would tell us. Each day since the referral we have fallen more in love with our little Fan Xiao Jia. She's our precious Lindy.

However, we met with Dr. Gillespie. She had reviewed Lindy's pictures and the little bit of developmental and physical information from the referral. She did not express any concerns, and was happy to learn she has been in foster care since two months of age. In addition to reviewing the medical information, she spent a lot of time answering our questions and discussing how to care for babies. She was very patient, thorough, and practical. She didn't even shriek too much when Don asked at what point would we resort to ice baths to bring down a fever.

After the call wrapped up over 90 minutes later, we immediately signed our letter of acceptance for both our agency and the CCAA (China Center of Adoption Affairs). We headed down to Kinkos and sent our packet via Fed Ex. No turning back now...

Now we wait. We wait for the Chinese government to give us a travel authorization to come to the country so we can have a visa issued. Typically, there is a 6-8 week wait between referral and travel. Fingers crossed, we'll be leaving mid-March.

That's all for now!

Don & Lisa

Thursday, January 26, 2006

Special delivery

Today I rushed home to try to meet the Fed Ex man so I could get pictures of him as he "delivered" our referral. Unfortunately, I didn't make it...So, instead our special delivery was left on the porch.

We now have all the referral information in hand, and originals of Lindy's referral pictures.

What a precious package!!! Hi checks out news of his sister.

Wednesday, January 25, 2006

We got the call!!!

Today, at 11:06 am, I got "the call" at work. Don and I knew we were going to get the referral this week because we had seen the information change on the China Center of Adoption Affairs (CCAA) website. However, we weren't certain what day it would be. I had it in my mind that there would be a preliminary call from Gladney to determine who should be notified first, and what numbers to call. Well, there wasn't a preliminary call. When I saw a number coming in from New York City, and heard Andrea Yonai's voice on the other end, it was the real deal. I can't describe the feeling of hearing Andrea say, "Lisa, I have your referral. I am looking at a picture of a beautiful little girl."

Overall, I remained fairly calm and didn't cry too much. I was shaking like a leaf clinging to a tree. During the call, I asked many questions to learn as much as I could about the baby. However, the information Andrea had in English was very limited. Oh, how frustrating to want to know so much, but to walk away with so little. However, I had to remind myself there will always be questions--most that won't ever be answered. Anyway, Andrea told me she was brought to the social welfare institute at five days old, and that she has been in foster care since she was two months old. We will receive a translation of "her story" in a few days.

There was about a 90 minute lapse between when I got the call, and then saw Lindy's face for the first time. During our journey I have looked at so many referral pictures, so I wasn't really sure how I pictured her. Would she be chubby? Would she be petite? Would she have that crazy hair that sticks up everywhere? Would she be bald? I had wondered how I would react, and whether I would experience the amazing love at first sight so many women undergo when they see their child for the first time, no matter how they look.
When I first saw her picture, I was speechless. I just stared. I don't remember my thoughts because I was captivated by her big, beautiful eyes. Then I came out of my trance and kept thinking, "this is my daughter, this is my daughter, this is my daughter." Does love at first sight exist? Yes, yes it does.

"Like cold water to a weary soul,
So is good news from a distant land."

--Proverbs 25:25

It is with great joy that we proudly announce the long anticipated referral of our daughter

Fan Xiao Jia
"Joyful Dawn"

Soon to be known as Lindy (Middle name TBD) Osborn
Date of birth: 05/08/2005 (Mother's Day 2005)
Changsha, Hunan Province, China
We can't wait to bring her home!!!

Thank you for your love, support, and prayers.

Don & Lisa

Sunday, January 15, 2006

Welcome to our blog

Dear Family & friends,

Welcome to our blog. A year ago I hadn't even heard of a blog, and now I have one and am officially a "blogger." How weird is that? Isn't technology wonderful (most of the time)? Through the power of technology, we hope to be able to let you share in our journey to Lindy.

We're a little late putting this together. We debated back and forth about it. It isn't really our style to do something like this, but we succumbed to the idea.

You all have been an amazing support system for us and such a source of strength during our very long wait, and we are very thankful for that! Your love and outpouring of encouragement has helped sustain us during some of the times when our faith has been weak.

We hope this will be an enjoyable way for you to share in our journey of a lifetime. Happy reading!

Our love,
Don & Lisa