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Monday, March 5, 2012

March 5, Monday {beginnings}

There was rain and then a traffic jam, and by the time the babies reached the hotel they were two hours past due.  They brought Mimi directly to our`room because they were so  late, and I was glad for this.  On top of the trauma of being passed to us, she was overly tired, very hungry, and drenched with pee from her knees to her chest.  I assume she had been in car for at least 6 hours.
And then it happened.
They handed her to me.
She was passed to my arms, and I haven't let go since.  Don't think I ever will.

She is so very sad.  She is looking for her mama everywhere, and it isn't me.  Her cry isn't screaming but a the most pitiful wailing.  Each time the door opens she looks for her mama, and once when the door was left open, she tried to make her escape.  This is the only time we've seen her take a couple steps yet.
Her first dinner was congee and dum-dums.  What a fine mother I'm starting off to be.  But they were the only things she would touch.  She has still to drink a bottle of formula or water.  But she has had a few very little sips of water last night from a cup.  She shoves away the bottle everytime we offer although I was told she drinks one twice a day.  Time will surly help I think. 
These pics are about 18 hours in to our life together.   The room was so quiet, and it was just her and me.  During these very seldom moments of happienss, I catch glimpses of what time holds for us.  The window seems to be her favorite spot. (Which for the photographer in me is a dream come true.)  She gazes at the cars, I assume looking for her mama, and makes little noises.    But for now, each time we go out, when she sees any Chinese woman I think she remembers, and the tears come and shut-down mode resumes.
She's scratching herself raw almost constantly.  She has little scratching scabs everywhere.  We're not sure if it is bad eczema, plain ol' dry skin, scabies, or perhaps a nervous reaction to all she's been through in the last 24 hours.  I went ahead and treated for scabies anyway.
Her special need and those "delays from an unknown cause?"
Well it's all still a mystery.  There are no more answers after meeting her, then there were when we were matched.  There is nothing obivous yet.  She is obviously significantly delayed, but to what extent remains to be seen.  She is shut down and in survival mode almost all of the time so far.  This is the leap of international adoption.  The unknown.  The unknown that can easily bring fear.  It hasn't for me... yet.  Maybe it will.   For now, I'm totally at peace with whatever will come.  And totally head-over heels in love with someone I just met yesterday.
Amazing how God can make love so strong that it can crush the fear.
It's not always like that.
It wasn't for me last time.
And I'm so grateful to have this peace right now.


  1. I am a long-time follower of your blog, but a first time commenter. I just have to say that Mazie is breathtaking! Soak her in!

  2. She is gourgeous. I hope she addapts really well and that she feels how loved she is! <3

  3. Maize is simply beautiful. Enjoy this time with her..getting to know her. I love seeing all the pictures.

  4. The pictures are beautiful. She has such a sweet face.

  5. Beautiful! Her smile lights up a whole room. One day at a time....

  6. Nancy, she is beautiful! I'm so happy that she is finally where she belongs, in your arms.
    I admire your wisdom and your strength regarding the great unknown.

  7. Such a beautiful brave little girl. The grief, while so, so hard, is also so good. Everyday will be a little bit better.

    My girl was also a scratcher (and still is 4 years later). Lots of lotion and gentle redirection is sometimes all you can do.

    Enjoy this time together, it goes so fast.

  8. So much blossoming in just 18 hours, it's miraculous. I can already the beauty she will have when she's in "full bloom." You have a lot of joy and wonder ahead, I can see it in Mazie's eyes. Lucky #9!

  9. She is precious! Praying for you all. Thanks for sharing your journey. We are going in May to adopt our 3 year old son. We are preparing for the grief and loss he will experience. Thanks for being so real and sharing your feelings so openly.

  10. Hints of beautiful smiles on day 1! Your wisdom and strength and experience and patience just radiate through every word that you are such an inspiration, friend!! PTL for ONE LESS!

  11. OHHHHHHHH Praise God!! Mazie is absolutely beautiful. I keep thinking of Psalm 139. God knew way back when Mazie was being formed in the darkness of her mother's womb..that you would be her true forever mamma. This is the day that the Lord has made in deed! Enjoy her as I know you are. Thank you for letting the blogger world in on the intimacies of your life with your precious children. Makes me feel like I know you and a part of your life

  12. She's beautiful! I will definitely keep you & your family in my prayers. It's so very hard to watch them grieve the loss of everything they've known and begin the process of learning to trust you.

    My girl was a scratcher as well...not so much herself, but anyone who got too close to her.

  13. She is such a doll.

    Praying that she will let you in and allow you to help her heal.

  14. She is an absolute doll!! Incredibly adorable... Who wouldn't love her?? She's perfect!! So happy she has her Mama now.

  15. Oh Nancy, she's just an angel. Time will heal her. She will open her sweet, beautiful eyes and see her Mama right in front of her! Congratulations. She's right where she belongs!!! xoxo!!

  16. Congrats!
    If she is still not drinking and you are getting worried, try giving her sips of water from a spoon - that's what we needed to do with our daughter, and it got us through the shut down time until she would drink from her bottle.

  17. The pictures are absolutely beautiful. She is breathtaking !! We are praying for her, bless her sweet little heart!!

  18. love her! Piper was a "scratcher" too - she did it every time she got nervous for the first probably 6 months. Have to know where that adorb outfit came from! And again - so in love with that sweet girly of yours!

  19. Li'l Bit refused the bottle the whole time in China, but she happily takes one now. She doesn't want me to hold it though and I admit I've let her hold it. She does sit in my lap though.

    I don't know if this will help but try making it HOTTER and sweeter. Li'l Bit drinks vanilla almond milk and I heat it in the microwave. I just stir it to make sure no hot spots.

    Still none of this may help in China. Shut down is a powerful thing and it does just take time. Li'l Bit was also looking (and often reaching) for any Mama we met on the street, so much so that I passed up some of the touring and stayed in the hotel room with our two girls. In the room, I was Mama to her; outside she wanted nothing to do with me. :(

    Now, just one month later, I am definitely Momma and when she wakes up in our bed, she smiles instead of cries. I think Mazie is just going to blossom in the love of your big 'ol family!

    Hugs to you and many congrats!!!

  20. Mazie is so beautiful and she looks like she has such a sweet spirit underneath all the hurt and anger. I can only imagine how much she will blossom and change within the love of your family.

  21. What a beautiful and precious soul she can see so much in those precious eyes. Slow and easy...

    Tracee (sorry can't remember my gmail password)

  22. She is so beautiful Nancy, and you captured her beautifully in these. My heart hurts reading about her loss and pain, but happy for you that she feels these things. Linhsey gave up her bottle the day we met and never touched it again. She only ate congee for days and that was her only form of liquid. She would drink nothing else. Finally I found a sippy cup for her that she would drink anything from but the formula they gave me. I look at these pictures and I feel this peace come over me Nancy. She's with you.

  23. Congratulations on your beautiful little baby girl. Our daughter from China, whom we adopted at age 2, had the scratching issue too. She is almost 6 now, and she is still a stress scratcher. We need to keep her nails short or she will still give herself scabs. It is also a comfort thing for her, she will scratch in her sleep.

    I concur that lots of lotion, teaching her to rub her skin verses scratch, and kind re-direction will help.

    Enjoy watching your little flower unfold her beauty before you.

  24. Our Maia had an itch, rash & reaction too! Good luck w the unknowns, but so worth it! Sweet face-hugs to you!

  25. Sweet little one. Poor sweet little one. She is so cute and so helpless and I just can immagine how desperate she was, and maybe still is...

    I am still praying for her, you know. And for you as well. I hope her hard time passes quickly and she understands how loved she is.

    Stay strong, Nancy, and keep that calm.

    Give sweetie pie a smooch for me, if she allows, will'ya. <3

  26. Dear Nancy,

    I found your blog about a month ago and literally spent hours reading your story. I have been anxiously awaiting your trip to your new little girl and am absolutely in awe of your love for her. She is amazing and I'm so happy she has such a wonderful mama. My Hadley, home at age three from China, scratched herself raw the first few weeks, we found it to be related to stress. Thank you for letting us follow your next chapter, she is truly a beautiful little girl.

    Antinette Mama to Hadley

  27. Gorgeous! Those eyes are just gorgeous. Hope she is soon feeling better. Blessings

  28. I cried as I read your post and relived our dear girl coping with the loss of all she knew...its painful on both sides because the watching has a pain of its own. God and time bring the healing. Praying for you and that dear precious little cutie.

  29. OH, Nancy, she is beautiful. And you words are the details I need...those to be reminded of the God moments to focus on in the trials of international adoption.

    I've had one of those overwhelming days in the wait, just 10 days until we leave for China. I need to be reminded of the joy that waits for us in China.

    I love, love, love your posts.


  30. She is ADORABLE!! You can see the little glimpses of her smile and it warms my heart to see that they are there. I pray that she begins to trust you more and more. I look forward to hearing (and seeing) more soon! THANKS for the update!!

  31. I forgot to mention.....Jacob had the scratching and scabs when we got him too. LOTS of lotion and trying to distract him when he scratched. For him, some of it was nerves. It was the only manifestation of it that we saw. He was quiet and would just scratch the base of his neck. Eczema is the only issue we have had with Jacob. It was getting better, so I haven't been hitting the lotion as hard this winter and his legs are showing the effects! BOY, I feel like the bad mom! His first solid food was a potato chip on the drive back to Hanoi, so Dum Dums are OK for now.

  32. She. is. beautiful. Absolutely gorgeous!

  33. She is so breathtaking. Absolutely gorgeous. And you are going to be the best mama to her. Enjoy those quiet moments... and your photos are stunning. Thanks for sharing your journey with all of us bloggers!

  34. Good morning Nancy - Please don't misunderstand - but may she mourn well - and long - and hard...may she purge all the emotion brought to her by such a difficult start in life - and may she then learn to enjoy and love basking in the love of her mom and dad so that she may, one day soon, know the peace and security and love - of HER family.

    Oh - and that "love that crushes fear" - you know what it's called - it's mother hood. And it's what you need right now - so it's the Gift the Father sends!

    hugs - great joy for you guys - your daughter is simply beautiful!

    aus and co.

  35. She is gorgeous! Those eyes! Hoping you're all doing well and seeing more of those sweet smiles! I remember how heartbreaking those first few days were when Mia was grieving....I knew it was a good thing, but still so hard. Hugs to you!


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