A Rainy Day in Nanchang

Thanks to all who have been sending comments – I haven’t got time to respond and I’m just figuring out the “moderation” thing but please know that we are reading every word and are incredibly grateful for the support!

Our third day with Special K! It was our first rainy day, we’d had a thunderstorm last night too. I noticed a huge difference today in her behaviour with me. Much clingier and intentionally wanting me, wanting to snuggle, upset when I leave the room, etc. All good!

She was so happy and content this morning (she slept great, I did not) so we decided to try a bath. Of course I was a bit nervous but she was in such a good mood that we thought we’d go for it. Katie loves to explore the bathroom anyway so we filled the big tub up with a little water (not the baby tub) and Cindy, Tyler and I started a game of pushing various toys into the tub. She enjoyed it so I got in with her and gave it a try. She loved it!! Whew! Washed her hair and everything else too. We did great! She did get upset right at the end but all in all really satisfying. We Skyped Dad in so he could finally see her in action and it was so much fun. He sang Tum Balalaika to her πŸ™‚ We had a lot of nice play time in the morning. Katie has very little interest in any of the toys I brought. She likes the empty boxes, crinkly paper, bag of diapers etc. The do-it-yourself kind of toys:-) I brought little mini-maracas for each of the babies and the other two LOVE them. SK couldn’t care less.

We hadn’t seen our travel group at all yesterday so it was nice to re-connect at breakfast and compare notes. Cindy and Tyler were leaving at noon to go back to Hong Kong so just before they left Cindy gave us new moms a quick lesson in baby massage. I think the little ones all enjoyed it and we moms were grateful to have one more tool to help get us through some of the rough spots.

It was so hard to say goodbye to C & T!! I truly don’t know what we would have done without them. It was such a joy to spend time together and to share this unique and deeply meaningful experience with close family in this far away land. They both brought such patience, love and commitment to the task at hand. I don’t really know how to express how grateful and blessed I am.

This afternoon, we went with our group to get some photos taken of the babies for the travel visas they’ll be receiving in Beijing. Then we walked to a children’s store around the corner just to see what they had. I loved carrying Katie in the sling, all bundled in her fuzzy sweater, sleeping under the umbrella. I felt very skillful navigating the uneven streets and crowded sidewalks of a city i’d never heard of until several months ago, with a baby in one arm and umbrella in the other. Had one of those moments where you just take in the bizarre reality of it all and hope to remember the feeling.

Mom and I continued walking, exploring the street, feeling good to get out again and realized we were right near the restaurant from the day before so we stopped in for some HarGow (shrimp dumplings). We thought the rest of our group had gone back to the hotel but then they showed up at the restaurant 10 minutes later so we ended up having a nice dinner together and Sarah was able to make the ordering a little easier than yesterday. Guess who is now a huge fan of HarGow?! Well, the rice wrapping anyway. We didn’t try the shrimp.

The evening was difficult again. Katie was inconsolable. I walked the halls with her in the Beco and she calmed down but it didn’t last. Diaper changes seem torturous. Nothing was helping. She’s so tired but she just can’t settle. Tried her crib, tried my bed, tried music, tried no music…no luck. Just when you thought she was almost asleep, she would be up again. She was biting her cloth a lot so I gave her some Tempra and I think it really helped. It was either her teeth or she was having stomach issues from all the food!! She ate a bunch of chicken congee for lunch from the yummy restaurant that we’d brought home the night before in addition to rice cereal, a variety of things at breakfast and the dumplings. The pain relief brought on a second wind and she decided to entertain me from her crib. She was cracking herself up with funny sounds and playing with her pink bunny, directly engaging me to interact. We had a great back and forth ‘conversation’ going on with her leading the way. Again, this a whole new side we hadn’t seen before…SO cute, I couldn’t resist playing along even though I was trying so hard to get her to sleep. Her smile just killed me!! Finally…she wore herself out and is asleep…and so is Mom…it’s only 8:30pm πŸ™‚

So, someone from the hotel just rang the door bell, he didn’t speak a word of English but seemed to desperately need something to do with the our phone. I thought maybe it was off the hook. We couldn’t communicate at all so he walky-talkied downstairs as loud as possible to check on something. He ended up coming in (with mom and Katie sleeping) pulled an ethernet cable out of a drawer, left it on the table and was gone. I didn’t call to request anything…I have no idea what this was about πŸ˜‰

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9 Comments (+add yours?)

  1. Jackie and Norman
    Mar 13, 2013 @ 22:43:25

    Your blogging is wonderful. I feel as if we are accompanying you and sondi on this great journey to get Katie and bring her to her new home. You look so calm in the photos. Love Norman and Jackie.

    Reply

  2. joanie
    Mar 13, 2013 @ 22:47:42

    We are so thrilled for all of you….sounds like you are off to wonderful life together.
    lots of love,
    Joanie and Sam

    Reply

  3. Barbara kovinsky
    Mar 13, 2013 @ 23:35:18

    Lovely story. Your dad is coming for dinner Sunday evening and then Ernie and I are off to Florida for two weeks. You will have to tell me her clothes size so I can go shopping for some cute clothes for her. It’s so nice to be able to shop for little girls. I will get to meet Katie when I come home from Florida the beginning of April
    Love Barbara

    Reply

  4. Jerry&carolyn Wessels
    Mar 14, 2013 @ 00:22:28

    Risa, thank you for your delightful blogs re: Special K. She is a beautiful little girl and it sounds like you two are really starting to bond nicely! We are so happy for you and love the photos. We both look forward to reading your every blog! Jerry& carolyn

    Reply

  5. Rhona Adelman.ca
    Mar 14, 2013 @ 00:32:15

    It has been so amazing following you and Katie during this unbelievable time in your lives. I have to admit that I am finding it difficult to read your words through my tears and I am bursting with excitement for you. It seems that every day gets easier for both of you as you get to know your daughter. I can’t believe I am saying these words to you and I am thrilled to be able to. I am sending my love to you and my prayers for a wonderful journey and a safe return home with your precious little girl. I cannot wait to meet her. XxxxxRhona Sent from my iPad

    Reply

  6. Sydney
    Mar 14, 2013 @ 00:52:54

    you are a trio of “supermums!!!!”

    Reply

  7. Barbara Friedman
    Mar 14, 2013 @ 01:04:00

    Risa it is just wonderful to be able to share this amazing part of your life with you. We look forward to meeting your ‘Special K ‘ when you return. Love Barb & Eddie

    Reply

  8. Catherine
    Mar 14, 2013 @ 04:24:20

    I love hearing how you’re embracing being a mommy! It’s a huge step but such a gift and it sounds like you’re doing so well! Could it be that Katie is doing some of her grieving in the evenings? I remember bedtime being a difficult time for many of the babies in our group and hearing them walk the halls for hours.

    So glad you were able to share this special time with Cindy and Tyler.

    Enjoying following your time in China! You’re doing great Mom!!

    Reply

  9. Barb Steinberg
    Mar 14, 2013 @ 17:21:07

    Your beautiful daughter is doing everything she should be doing……eating, not eating, sleeping, not sleeping, laughing, crying, cuddling, clinging, refusing…….etc. This adventure of parenthood will continue to get better and better thoroughout the years to come! You’re all doing fabulously!

    Reply

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