I hoped that I would never, ever have to write this, but Heavenly Father called Susan back to be with Him last night. Since she came out of the hospital two days ago, she has been struggling and we have taken care of her around the clock making sure that she was being held and fed. She lost her appetite yesterday and I was really concerned. We had some doctors here yesterday afternoon but they could not come up with any other kind of care that had not been given to her already. She started having trouble breathing at about 9:05pm. I tried so hard to help her, but she died soon afterwards. I am so grateful that the last thing she saw was me, even though I was frantic at the time. I am grateful that it happened at home and that she was surrounded with people that she loved in a place that she was familiar with. I know that there have been many times she almost died and it was only through the thousands of people who prayed for her that she survived. I think that having Susan made me realize just how compassionate people are and how much they can love a baby from afar.
I have so many wonderful memories of her. Her singing McDonald's at any given time and her other favorite song that Conny taught her where you twist your hands. Whenever she heard Twinkle, Twinkle Little Star she should start doing the flashing stars. She loved music. She loved watching Baby Einstein and eating. That child could eat as much as Jonas did. Even the last few days she patted me on the back when I patted her on the back. She came to teach me how to love and love well. She was one of the first six and she taught me how to be a mom because of her my confidence grew and I became better able to take care of other heart babies.
As you can imagine that it is one painful experience for me. I am sad that my will for Susan did not turn out to be Heavenly Father's will. I so wanted her to be in the loving arms of a family and that was not to be. I know Susan's new family are mourning her loss too. I think of her now in the arms of her Creator and I pray for her to know how honored I have been to be given the responsibility of taking care of her. She has been my precious girl for almost 16 months.
I want to thank the many people who have also been so involved with Susan. Kay for her unfailing love and support and for being there when I need help. My thanks to Dr Li whom I respect so much and for all he did to help Susan right up to the end. To everyone at Love Without Boundaries and how quickly they helped us by getting money ready for Susan's operation in January 2006. To the nannies who took care of Susan so well, especially Mrs Liu who loved her as if if she was Susan was her own. Last but not least to all the volunteers who come and offer their help and how loved Susan. Thank you all so very much.
I know Susan would be the first one to encourage me not to stop taking care of the babies that I have. Maybe that is part of her legacy: For us to work with more diligence to find help for the abandoned, unloved and unwanted children of China. This child will always have such a special place in my heart because she was one of the first to call me mom. What a choice experience and a privilege! I have come to understand that there is indescribable joy in helping children to live and find families, but at the same time, comes the responsibility that I have to help them to die with dignity, being well loved and well taken care of. The pain and joy comes in equal amounts.
I pray that God's strength will be with me as I continue to fulfill my purpose here in Xian with the children, that I will always know that I am engaged in God's work and that I will never waiver in doing good.
With an extremely sad heart,