Friday, June 15, 2012
Yesterday I took part in a conference call with the other 4 families in our travel group and the director of CCAI (our adoption agency). It is neat that the director takes the time to personally speak with each family before they travel. He was just making sure we didn't have questions about travel or the schedule and giving us some encouragement about the trip. He and his wife immigrated to the US from China long ago and started this adoption agency in their basement 20 years ago! They never imagined they would grow to be the largest Chinese adoption agency in the world and be recognized as the #1 agency by China! Anyway, a couple of things he said stuck out to me. First, he thanked each of us who were adopting a child with a special need. He acknowledged that they were all created by our Almighty God and he was so excited that they were getting a chance in a family. How neat is that? Then, as he was wrapping up the call, he said that when a group leaves for China, he and his wife pray each night for every family on the trip by name. He said he prays for our protection and for God's blessing for us. He acknowledged that not every person who uses CCAI believes, but said, "You just don't know the spiritual impact this trip makes." I feel so blessed to have been led to use this agency. We had no idea when we first applied to them what path we would take or that the directors were believers like us, but we know we are with the right people!
I also received our final travel packet yesterday, which has a full schedule in it! Although we leave the US just after lunch on the 20th, because of the length of the flight and the time difference, we don't land until quite late on the 21st in Beijing. We will tour Tiananmen Square, the Forbidden City, and take a Hutong Tour on the 22nd and tour the Great Wall on the 23rd. After those days, the goal is to be more adjusted to the time and culture, and the morning of the 24th we will fly to Zhengzhou. We will stay in Zhengzhou for a week. Zhengzhou is the capital city of the Henan province, and every family in our travel group is adopting from an orphanage in this province. We will stay in the capital, and our children will be brought to us on the 25th. We will use the rest of the week to apply for our child's passport, register her adoption with the Chinese government and wait for the passport to be ready. It is also during this week that we might have the opportunity to visit Hannah's orphanage. On the 30th, we will fly to Guangzhou, where the US Consulate is located. We will have some free time here for touring and shopping. It is here that our children all must have physical exams, tests, and vaccines. We must take official photographs and prepare our paperwork for the Consulate appointment. On July 5th, we will have our Consulate appointment and apply for Hannah's permanent US visa. Once we receive her visa on the 6th, we are free to leave! We actually fly home on the 7th. As soon as we land on US soil, Hannah will be a US citizen.
This trip will be full, busy, emotional, amazing, wonderful, stressful, and so many things I am sure I cannot even imagine yet. But, I'm ready it for it all. Most of all, I am so ready to bring my precious baby girl home, teach her that she is now part of our family for ever and ever, and that she is so very loved.