Hello to Katie! We’re so glad to see you ;-) The Video

Here we are at Katie Day #2 – March 10, 2015.  Two  years since our Special K was put in my arms on a late Sunday afternoon, in a boardroom at our hotel in Nanchang.

Finally…here’s the footage of our first moments together!  It’s about 15 minutes long.   It’s a bit shaky at first and I don’t take Katie into my arms for quite a while because I wanted her to be able to see me and get a little comfortable first.  There’s a lot of confusion when the babies come in because two of the girls (Katie & Leah) have almost identical names!  I think my favourite bit is at the end when Tyler gets into the picture 😉  Until then he was doing some of his own video recording for us. What an enormous help he was!

If you weren’t following the blog until recently here are some FYI details so things make more sense…

I sent a CD of myself singing some songs ahead of our trip, hoping it would reach Katie so she could get to know my voice and feel better during our first meeting.  That’s why I ask the officials about whether or not she heard my singing. 

It was very important to me that I NOT cry 🙂  It would have been upsetting to Katie.  

Mr. Wang is the assistant director at the orphanage.  He was my saving grace when trying to arrange for the CD and disposable camera to reach Katie before we arrived. It was almost hopeless at one point but he stepped in and made it happen in the 11th hour.  Now we have invaluable photos of Katie’s foster mom and hopefully Katie did hear my voice before we met.

Our facilitator Sarah translated my questions to the people from the orphanage in the hopes of having more details about Katie. Our latest update on how she was doing was from when she was only 8 months old and at this point she was 14 months.  This was really our only chance to get any more information about her health, personality, preferences, diet, etc.  Since Katie was with her foster mom for her whole 14 months and not at the orphanage, the info they gave us wasn’t accurate because the orphanage people weren’t actually caring for Katie.  The orphanage that Katie was associated with sets up the foster home arrangements and handle the adoption legalities.

We had expected that Katie was going to be moved from her foster home to the orphanage for a couple of weeks before coming to us which is why I ask about whether or not she slept with another baby in a crib.  That’s when we learned, happily, that the babies had not been moved but came right from the foster moms to us. Here’s a picture of Katie and her foster mom, likely taken earlier that day before they had to say goodbye.  We are extremely fortunate to have photos of this wonderful woman who clearly loved our little girl and gave Katie a wonderful home for her first 14 months. 

Katie's foster mom.  We are so grateful to her!

Katie’s foster mom. We are so grateful to her!

Katie’s clothes looks so funny from the back because she’s wearing 2 layers of split pants (common in China) and they apparently stuck a folded diaper in the back, which is sticking out.  They said she had been in diapers before but I don’t think that was true.  She was wearing several layers of pants and sweaters and just boiling after the long ride from the country.  It’s normal in China to over-bundle the babies.

Although there were only three families receiving babies,  it still seemed a bit chaotic. None of the crying is Katie (she saved it all up for later that night). I can’t imagine going through this with a dozen families in a travel group like it used to be!

It’s pretty cool that you can see Tim on my phone,  “Face Timed” in from home at 4:30am 🙂   Mom’s job was to hold my phone so Tim could watch everything and Cindy’s job was to take videos on my iPad.  We will always be grateful to Mom  & Cindy for their composure and care to get everything recorded and keep Tim part of it all…and to Apple for the awesome technology!

It feels very personal to share this video out there in blog-world but I’m so glad we could record these moments for Katie and include them for her future. We watch them together often and she’s slowly learning her story, fascinated with everything about when she was a baby.   

Shortly after the end of the video we got to take Katie back to our hotel room.  With the love and support of her Bibi (my mom), Auntie Cindy and Cousin TyTy right there with us (and everyone who was there in spirit), we could finally begin our journey together and shower this beautiful girl with love and comfort (& food!!) as she slowly got to know us.

Now she runs the joint!!  IMG_3762






2 Comments (+add yours?)

  1. Bette Smith
    Mar 15, 2015 @ 10:52:09

    Absolutely Amazing. She sure has come a long way. What a journey. Thanks for this Risa. Have to see her!!! Bette


  2. Susan Craig-Olsen
    Mar 28, 2015 @ 12:05:41

    I am just moved to tears by this! Risa, you are so strong and brave and loving! God bless you and little Katie!


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