In 2009 we had eight adoptions at Starfish. This year, we have already had two and it is not even the end of January! The great news is that we have six babies matched and we are waiting for the families to come and get them. I think it is going to be busy this year, which makes me so happy for all the babies that will get families.
Cailean was first up. He was adopted by a Dutch family. Cailean did really well. I was not sure how he was going to handle it but he seemed to accept the situation. It was so funny when he got to the hotel he got a wet wipe and started cleaning the hotel room. I send them to their new families with lots of skills. They often clean up after themselves. The next thing is that he will be doing the laundry and putting clothes in the dryer. He loved doing that here. Cailean whose new name is Jian, has an older brother who loves Star Wars and a sister who is also adopted from China. I loved spending time with the family and helping Cailean get through this period of adapting to a new family. He came to visit at Starfish which was really interesting to watch. He went a little crazy for a while hugging people and rolling on the ground. On the last day, we all had lunch together and when I left he held his mom's hands and waved goodbye to me. He was so brave!!! His family needed to wait in Beijing for 10 days before they leave for Holland on February 2. I will definitely see them when I go to Holland in March. Jian will be getting baptized and I will be there to see it. I am very grateful for the honor to be invited.
A week after it was Heather's turn. Out of all the babies I thought she would have the hardest time. We had talked to her a lot before her family even arrived and she handled it like a pro, loved that. The Civil Affairs Office was exploding with people. Heather had just woken up and I think the other babies stressful cries really affected her. That is the only time she really cried. That was so wonderful for me because both Cailean and Heather fell asleep in my arms on the way to the adoption office. I just loved sitting in the back of the taxi, having the opportunity to cuddle with them a last time, driving through Xian. Ellie (Heather's new name) came back to visit and it was just to cute. She made a run for Rose and loved on her so much. We had gone to visit Ellie's family at the hotel and Rose and Ellie played together and made crowns with Lynda. We also got to celebrate Ellie's birthday a little early but she was so bashful while we sang happy birthday to her, while the other babies rioted by banging on their high chair tables. It is a sight to behold.
The nannies watched all of this and the commented that they could see in the eyes of the parents how much they loved their children. It soothes us all when we get to watch these adoptions and when the families come to thank the nannies for their vital part in their children's lives. They do such an important job and it is so sad when they are not acknowledged by the families. I love it when everyone is happy and there is not drama when the babies leave us. I am grateful to the parents who put the needs of their children first and work so hard to make the transfer as smooth as possible.
As is usually the case, more things are waiting for me. We have had five surgeries since the beginning of the year and we are sending four more babies for cleft lip (3) and cleft palate (1) surgeries next week.
We will prepare as much as I can for the next six babies who will be adopted and soon we will "replace" the two spots that are now open. Our purpose to save medically fragile babies continue. Off to the orphanage I will go to help more babies get a chance to be adopted.
Life, Love and Laughter,
Starfish Children's Services
US Tax Number: 20-4682916
At Starfish, we have taken care of 106 children to date, arranged more than 74 surgeries and had 26 international adoptions, so our little starfishes live all over the globe: the US, Netherlands, Norway, France, Spain and in China. Our latest two adoptions were to the Netherlands and Virginia, USA. We currently have 53 babies under the age of 3 and a half at two foster homes. Recently we learned that 6 babies have been matched and we are waiting for their families to come and get them.