Sarah’s update

Todd here. Up again in the middle of the night still having a hard time getting on China time. At least I got about 5 hours sleep this time. I stayed in bed awake for two hours not wanting to wake anyone. Finally I got up, and now I am bummed because I woke Kim and Hope up.

I was going to start posting our pictures, and telling you all about the last day, and I will hopefully, but I was again brought to tears when I read Sarah’s email newsletter update, so thought I’d make it the next and most appropriate post:

Yesterday I said goodbye to little Li Hao, and I met her forever family. It was such an amazing experience to watch adoption from a totally new perspective. I remember Willie and Katie coming home, and I understand a lot more that side of it. But seeing Li Hao go through the process was so new and incredible. We’ve been telling her for months now that she has an American Mama and Baba coming for her. Yesterday was finally the day. When she got up from her nap, one of her ayis asked her if she wanted something in her hair. Her hair is so short she usually doesn’t wear all the bows (and quickly pulls them out if she does). She nodded that she did. So she was in her little dress they had sent her several weeks ago, and she had little pigtails in her hair. I picked her up and snuggled her a bit talking to her about her exciting day. Then an ayi from her hometown or.phanage arrived. It is all part of the formality I guess to have her there as a representative. She went to Li Hao all excited and wanted to take her from me. I was wondering if Li Hao even ever knew her. Li Hao resisted and pulled away from her and held on to me. The ayi seemed to want to keep trying, but I would have none of it. The little girl was already getting ready for a huge transition, and I wasn’t going to make her go to some stranger for a couple hours. One of the Bethel ayis also tried to take her (I think, hoping to transition her to the hometown ayi), and Li Hao pushed her away as well. It ended up being kind of a big deal because it made the representative ayi look bad, and I could tell she was really mad about it. But I was mad about it too! I ended up sneaking her out of there and just trying to get her to a quiet place. We spent the next few hours together before her family arrived. She was so different than her usual self. She was silent and did not smile or play. She would shake a noisy toy, but that was about it. She usually belts out “Ma, ma” quite often and laughs when I tickle and play with her, but she was so solemn. It was so obvious she knew something was happening. So I just held to her and sang and walked her around. I was surprised that she was feeling so clingy with me. She always loves to come to me when I call for her to come snuggle and play, but she doesn’t usually have this desperate need to be close right with me. As I held her and pr-ed for her, I felt like G was saying, “This is part of how I’m transitioning her to her new family. You get to be a part of that” It was such a privilege and my eyes were full of tears as I realized what a precious gift He had given me…my heart had been so sad to say goodbye, and I’d been hoping for time with her before hand. G had provided just that.

Delphine had everything set up for a party: gifts, balloons, cake, the kids to sing music etc. Everyone was very excited. When the Phillips family came, I was worried. Li Hao had clung so close to me all day, and now she would be meeting her new family. How would she do? Would she be so confused and scared? I took her out to the room where they were entering. Tears filled my eyes as I saw her Mom, Dad, two sisters and brother come in. They gasped and were in awe of seeing their little girl in person for the first time. After a short time, I gave her to Kim to hold. At first Li Hao wanted down. Then for a few minutes she just roamed around, bumping into things, going away from whoever was reaching for her, and seeming really out of sorts. Soon, though, she started to warm up to the kids in her family. She especially seemed comfortable with her big brother. Then it was like something clicked in her. She knew she was the center of attention, and that all these people adored her. She began totally putting on a show. It was hysterical! She started jumping around, spinning in circles, going down to pat the ground and standing up again. The kids giggling at her performance which made her so happy. By the time I left two hours later, Li Hao was LAUGHING in her Mom’s arms. She was loving the attention and seemed so peaceful and happy. It was like watching a miracle!

The family gave me presents and thanked me for loving Li Hao. It was so sweet. One of the gifts was a little locket necklace with a tiny picture of Li Hao. Ya, I about lost it. I love that little girl so much. I am so incredibly happy for her and her family. And even though saying goodbye is so hard, it is so beautiful to see what G has done.

And here are the pictures she included:

9 Responses to “Sarah’s update”

  1. 1
    maita jones Says:

    There are no words to say how beautiful this is!! Look at your baby!Look at your wonderful family!God is soooo GOOD!!! How touching to hear Sarah’s perspective,I am in awe of God and the adoption process.What a happy time….

  2. 2
    Stacy Richards Says:

    How absolutely beautiful! Sarah is such a precious gift and such an important part of Hope’s birthstory! I’m with Maita…LOOK AT YOUR BABY!! You finally have her and she is soooo wonderful! She looks sooo tall 🙂 Congratulations you guys…keep the pictures coming! You guys are doing such a great job journaling…I feel like we are there with you. Hugs, stacy

  3. 3
    Vince and Denise Says:

    Hi Kim and Todd, Denise and I are looking at the pictures. What a beautiful little girl. It seems like we had been talking about your trip to China forever. Now the day has finally come and you have little Hope in your arms. That is totally awesome. We are looking forward to you guys getting back home. Give Hope a BIG hug from us and tell her we are excited to have her in our family !!!!

  4. 4
    Alida Says:

    Yes Jesus! You are wonderfully good. Beautiful. I am in awe of Gods redemption and sovereign power!

  5. 5
    Bonnie White Says:

    I am weeping with joy at what an incredible journey this has been and to have it be reality now is just amazing. I am praising the Lord with you for your precious little girl and can hardly wait for you to bring her home for all of us to meet her!
    Love, Bonnie

  6. 6
    Mike, Erin, Shekinah, Bella Grace, & Purity McStay Says:

    If a picture speaks a thousand words, then we are speechless for sure. You made it through all the waves and now have changed the course of humanity with your hearts full of love. In time, through the transition, more and more will be revealed about God’s Spirit of Adoption…. Abba!!! I am blessed to have watched the unfolding of this miracle. The girls can’t wait to see more pix, but more importantely… meet her in person. Don’t forget Abby (Tell Hope, “Uncle Mikey can’t wait to meet you.”) Phillips family.. We so cheer you on!!!
    Love, Hugs, Kisses, & Ping Pong, 😉
    Mikey, Bubbles, Ninah, Lella, and Pur Pur

  7. 7
    Jenny Says:

    It’s C R A Z Y how much crying I have done over my laptop!! You have a luminous family in every sense of the word. The shot of the four kids on the floor…God’s love is all over them, and their love is all over Li Hao. She’s absolutely lovely and, Kim, you are a Precious Beautiful Princess of a Mighty King. You are His Special Daughter and He is GUSHING for your brave Faith and childlike Trust. The same for Todd. You are both His Obedient, Persevering, and Courageous Servants and this child, Li Hao Hope Eternal, will see with His vision and through His eyes. Thank you Dear Loving Doting Daddy for this perfect testimony of Your rewards to the diligent seekers of Your will! We have all been witnesses!!! YEAH!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!

  8. 8
    Jonathan Says:

    The reason I’m not in the last picture, is because I was TOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOO busy taking pictures, and playing with the kids! They are so precious! They may look cute in the movie, but in real life, THEY ARE EVEN CUTER!! One of the greatest
    experiences of my life!! I was playing with Zei Wei.. or how you say his name. And he would blow on his party horn, and I would puff up my cheeks, and go, Bwwwww! and he would laugh so hard! He also had a friend, and we were both making a noise, ‘Dooooooo’! And he had a big smile on his face, those kids sure like music!

  9. 9
    Jonathan Says:

    another word for spinning in circles, and jumping, is break dancing. I mean it! She was break dancing!
    IT WAS CUTE! She had a huge smile on her face.

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