Tuesday, July 3, 2012

One of our many "RED THREADS"

Ningdu County SWI, photo by Lisa Martin
There is a Chinese belief that says:
 "An invisible red thread connects those who are destined to meet, regardless of time, place, or circumstance. The thread may stretch or tangle, but will never break."

I will be sharing one of many "Red Threads" we have encountered during our journey to adopt in upcoming blog posts, but first let me begin with one that has to do with today's date. 

July 3 will become another day with great significance for us as it is most likely the last day our little girl was last kissed goodbye by her biological mother and would soon be abandoned on the outside entrance to an orphanage. According to her report, our baby girl was 2 months old when she was found outside the gates, then taken to the police station where a report was made, and then brought back to the Children's Welfare Institution of Ningdu County, Jiangxi- China where she now continues to reside.

I can not begin to write just how much this breaks my heart. Not only for our daughter but for the mother that kept her not just for a few days or a few weeks, but for 2 whole months. From what I have read from other families who have adopted babies from China, many of them are abandoned closely after birth, within a few days. Ours was already 2 months old....how difficult this must have been. I realize that we may never really know what the exact circumstances were surrounding her case, but her Baba & I would like to believe she was Loved so much, and concealed as much as possible, until she could no longer be kept. We'll never know exactly who left her outside the gates, but we tend to think it may have been a relative as it would of been far too risky for her own mother to do this.

Throughout our wait we have been asked many times why there is so much abandonment in China especially baby girls. Many people tend to think that girls are just not valued in China. But this issue is way more complex to try to explain in just a few words or sentences. To be able to truly understand why, one must understand the history of China , a country so old and deeply rooted in history and culture. A country where one third of the worlds population lives which equals to A LOT of people. There are many great books written on this abandonment phenomenon, some of which we will share with our daughter one day when she's old enough to read them and understand them. But as Kay Ann Johnson writes in her book "Wanting a Daughter, Needing a Son", Many Chinese parents feel the need for a son to carry on the family name and to care for them in their old age. At the same time, the government's strict population policy puts great pressure on parents to limit births.  As a result, some parents are able to obtain a son only by resorting to illegal behavior, such as "over quota" births and female infant abandonment.

So what exactly was I doing on July 3, 2011 you might wonder? Well...considering China is about 16 hours ahead of us, that date would put us at Saturday, July 2, 2011. It has been such a treasure for me to have decided to keep a daily journal for the past 6 years where I have been documenting daily events with photos so that one day we can share with our little girl. There has been so much that has occurred during our very long wait but I have been particularly interested in learning what were were doing during the year she was born. There were many times during this last year that we questioned why certain events were happening. And while we were often comforted by close friends who would tell us "There is always a reason, you may not know it now, but one day you will....you just have to have faith and trust in God". But we admit that we can both be a bit stubborn at times, and always find a reason to question things. 

So as I leafed through the pages of my journal I discovered that on that particular day, I was preparing to leave for my Mother-in-law's house where I would be hosting a baby shower for my Chinese Sister-n-law Oy who was going to have her first baby girl "Skyler". For as much as I was excited to prepare this beautiful event for her family & friends, there was a part of me that felt saddened, specifically because I found myself questioning why my journey to motherhood was taking so long. Many of my friends and extended family members were already experiencing this joy not once but several times. As for me, it had already been 5 years of waiting since we decided to embark on this road to adoption, and here I was preparing yet another baby shower for somebody else. 

Oh, but what a fool I was to question such Greater Plans! 

Little did I know that while I would be preparing this celebration on this side of our world for my sister-n-law, there was a Mother on the other side of the world abandoning her 2 month old baby who would be destined to become our Daughter. 

It's amazing how God works.

Here I am with my Sister-n-law Oy on July 2, 2011.
She gave birth to baby Skyler on August 4, 2011.

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