The Crew

The Crew
Christina, Matthew, Joshua and Katie Grace XiHua

Wednesday, December 21, 2011

Do We Love Her Like Our Own?

Somebody recently said something to the effect that in light of Hua Hua's heart defect and the possibility that "if she does not pass this upcoming test", this test being this heart and lung catheterization that will determine whether or not she can move on to the life saving heart surgery she needs, that "at least she will have had precious time with us here, getting love that she would not have received at the orphanage in China".

It is clear that this person meant this with kindness and mercy in regard to our situation and please know that I do understand the sentiment they were attempting to convey! In fact for one split second, I almost agreed....almost....

I nodded, feeling somewhat defeated and downcast as we had just received this alarming report, and thanked this person as they walked away, however, something inside of me suddenly began to bubble forth with new power and silently bellowed:

"No, that is not right!"

And again, "No!" with growing indignation.

And then A LOT of indignation. Dare I admit it felt like the teenage boys who play basketball in our neighborhood might say, "awww h@ll no!"

Deep within me it was the "No!" of a parent whose child's life is on the line!

The "No!" of a mother bear protecting her cub!

The "No!" of a mother whose own FLESH AND BLOOD needs rescuing and that mom will fight to the end to see it happen!

When I peered deeply into the meaning of the sentiment the person attempting comfort conveyed, It felt as if it would apply to how you MIGHT expect a parent to feel about an ADOPTED child. As if just a few years, or ever 6 or 7 years, or even the more "hopeful" 14 or 15 years, with her would be enough because she was not our actual flesh and blood and at least she would have that much more than nothing. Well it is true it may be more than she would have had in the first place, but you see..... WE can't imagine NOT having her forever! For the FULL ride!! She MUST be here with us and the thought of her not being here is unimaginable!

Can you imagine losing any of your children? Your 3 year old? Your 8 year old? Your teen? I think not! We are as attached to her now as we are our very own little tummy grown munchkins who run around this house causing havoc, and we certainly will be just as attached if not more so in 3 years or in 10 years.

How is adopting our Katie Grace Hua Hua like having our own child? Well, let me share our birth story!........

Planning a child - After much prayer and discussion and research, we decided to adopt.

The road to Conception -1 and 1/2 years it took. It was a long and winding road through programs and agencies and waiting and waiting for a referral for a child.

We're Expecting a girl!! - We received a file and referral of a little girl, 2 1/2 years old, sweet and shy with a heart defect. Our joy was overwhelming!!!

"You have a "glow" about you!" - You go around planning every detail, clothing, room, toy, imagining your future together and all that goes with it, and you just glow with anticipation!

Gestation - Our "gestation" was another year and we worked so hard to accomplish every detail to get to that day. Finally, we traveled around the world to bring her home!

Labor and Delivery - Our first day together was full of tears and fears. It was joyful, intense and painful. She cried and cried off and on all day and I held her. We were afraid and ecstatic all at once.

Those first weeks home - Our first weeks home from the orphanage were exhausting with not enough sleep. Crying, clinging, insecure child. Learning to communicate and what to feed.

Those first weeks home were also wonderful as you study this new little person - We played and hugged and kissed and sang and danced and learned to know each other.

After a couple months you settle and are back to work - Back to work part time for me, missing my new little one, calling to check in frequently. Happy the siblings love to play together.

So here we are 4 months home with our new daughter! She is not 4 months old however, she is 3 years old. But we love her just like you love your 4 month old biological birth daughter after coming home and getting to know that precious face. She did not come out of my belly, but I birthed her in my heart and mind and she came to us through hard labor. We love her and will fight for her health and for her to be with us.

AND just a disclaimer, I hold NOTHING against the person who made the comment meant to comfort. That was meant in sincere kindness. This was all for ME! For me to build my strength for the fight and know God has a good plan, a plan to heal and strengthen!

I don't want to just imagine that she came home just to get a few years of love. I don't believe that is God's will. I refuse to believe it. I believe He wills for health and life and family and future and that is what I am standing on today for our daughter! I want her to live a full life just like any parent wants their child to live a full life!


  1. Keeping you all in my prayers and understand completely! Haleigh was OURS from the day we signed the adoption paperwork to start the process. We didn't know her but we loved her already. We waited almost five years for her, waiting and loving and dreaming.

  2. Well stated Annie! I feel the same way!

  3. I know how you feel. So many well meaning people can say things that are quite hurtful. But posting stories like this does help spread the word, and educate those who are trying to understand. Katie is your baby through and through. God gave her to you to fight for! Amen! And we have a God who can move the mountains!
    Praying for your sweet baby.

  4. Amen Annie!! I have nothing to add to these words!! You are so right!! And I hope that she will grow old together with you all. And enjoy the beauty of your family together forever!!

  5. This is the best post I have EVER read!!!! you explained it exactly. Kind of like when I here, oh how lucky my child is we adopted then, what the h@ll, we are the lucky ones that we have our children. I know its not meant in a bad way, and I can see the truth in what they are saying but H#ll no its just not how it is. Absolutely Amazing Fantastic post!

  6. I couldn't have said it better myself. She is YOUR baby. A part of you. She has your heart and you will fight for her. I'm over here praying and believing. Just know that on the days when you get scared and your faith may waiver...Mine will not. I'll have enough for both of us :) I only say that as a mom who has been down this same path before.

  7. Great post! It's hard for some people to understand adoption if they haven't been through it. Continuing to pray for complete healing for Katie and grace and peace for you!

  8. Thanks Annie! This post spoke volumes to me as we navigate our first couple of months home with our girls. We are just finding our new normal and I could feel the strength of your mamma heart in this! Praying for sweet Hua Hua.



Many hungry children near the boarder of Myanmar and Thailand-click on photo