Tuesday, November 04, 2008

Trip to Hefei

Yuan Before & After Surgery

Hope & Chelsea

First, I would like to thank you all so very much for all the emails I received. The amount of prayers for Bella was just amazing. I so appreciate your concern for this baby who was in such tremendous need, a child you do not know and so your responses were very special to me.
I am so thankful to have been part of her short time on earth. About the last half and hour on the plane, I could tell that she was not doing well. I could see that her little spirit was fighting so hard. It was such a spiritual experience for me and I sat on the plane stroking her head and face and knowing that her time was coming to an end. She was so incredibly brave and I was so in awe of her. I prayed so hard that she would not die on the plane but that once we got to the hospital there would be doctors that would be able to help her. My prayers were answered. The Love Without Boundaries doctors and nurses were there and I am so grateful for their help. The tumor on her face was really fast growing and had already destroyed her jaw bone. I do not think there is much anyone could have done for her. I learned that she came from another province and that her parents had come to Xian to find some medical help for her. She was abandoned last week Wednesday and I found her on Friday. I have thought a lot about her family in these last few hours.
As with many experiences there are some sweet that comes with the bitter. I would like to think that Bella's legacy would be bringing a group of people together from all across China and the US for a few hours, in which time we made some plans on how to help children in the future. Decisions that will have some future benefit for other children, even if we could not do much for her. I made a lot of new contacts and got information that will help babies at Starfish get medical care. That is always a quest for me: Finding good doctors.
I also got to watch a cleft lip repair. Dr Lisa allowed me to come and watch her in action. I was so impressed with the skills she has. I asked her why she started doing clefts and she told me that it is because she wanted to go on medical missions and she wanted to learn how to be of the most help. Cleft lip and palate children fill China's orphanages. One time I was trying to contact her and she was in Zimbabwe on a cleft mission. You might not know but I lived in Zimbabwe for three years. It is an African country right above South Africa, one of extreme poverty now and intense political turmoil. Anyway, the baby that got surgery looked so much like Sarah, her name is Yuan I think. We were at the same hospital in Hefei with Gabriel, Michael and Sarah. As I watched Dr Lisa repair this little girl's lip it reminded me so much of our trip there with Kay and Deborah. During the surgery the lights went out on the whole OR floor. I loved watching just how the group works together as a team and who many children they help. Thank you so much to all of them for offering their skills and time and for really changing the life of a child. By week's end there are going to be more than 20. Chelsea is going to be one of them.
Our next project is on Sunday. Our Rachel is getting adopted. We got the news a few days ago from the Xian orphanage. She is going to a family from the Netherlands and she is going to be a younger sister. Olivia (Mei-Li now) and Rachel have shared so much. They came from the same baby room at the orphanage, they had their heart surgery at the same time and they also shared the same nanny and now they are going to live in the same place, Holland where they are close to one another. I hope they get to see each other often. I love the idea of them spending time together and both of them speaking Dutch.

Life, Love and Laughter,

Starfish Foster Home

New Website:


Jill said...

I have no words......
Just love, and prayer.
Thank you for who you are and what you do. You truly are an angel!

Fliss and Mike Adventures said...

I am with Jill... I am so lost for words... a ton of hugs...

Basket full o' Plums said...

So sad about Bella. It's a blessing that she was wrapped in love on her last journey home.