It is a blessing beyond measure to have a daughter to call my own and the thought of having two precious baby girls just delights my heart!
For those who have not walked the path of foreign adoption and who only see the smiles and laughter after our children are safely here, it is impossible to grasp the sheer magnitude of what they have already endured. Truly, they are survivors. Though some children who have been abandoned to a future without family find some warmth in a caring facility or foster home, precious few do and most of these little ones land in a world lacking the warmth of love.
These dear children lie in their cribs often sharing with a cribmate, watch for a precious few bottles and diaper changes a day and wait for they know not what. For many of these babies the days are long chapters of fear and loneliness, knawing hunger and thirst, depravation, emptiness, neglect and even abuse. For others the institutional life is less dramatic but equally empty and sparse. Some never escape, while others are carried away by a gentle pair of hands one day to discover a wonderful new something called life with wonderful new people called family.
The reasons behind the heartrending abandonments are many, yet they are simple, cold and hard. Very rarely does that chill originate in the parent’s own heart. On the contrary, most birthing parents are aching to embrace their long awaited child with arms of love. However, it is the arms of the uninvited party, the rigid lack of liberty, the communistic rule that snatches the child away. Whether the child is a girl, a second or arrives with a handicap very few parents have a choice. They know there is little to no provision for the medical need and unless they meet with favor of provincial authorities the chances of taking home their second child are slim. If they are blessed with a daughter the choice to raise or release her is a moral one tightly dictated by cultural mores and familial pressures. Sadly, a private adoption plan for a Chinese infant is not permitted by the state. So, for too many parents there is no other path to choose but infant abandonment.
This abandonment is often a closely watched and monitored process that falls to the mother of the baby. It is hard to imagine a vignette where those final embraces, that last suckling and the parting kisses are not watered with tears. It is hard to imagine a birthmother whose heart does not tear forever when she lies her swaddled child down and sends her to an unknown future alone.
This is a gift of love, for it is the gift of life given twice. Any birthmother who can give this dearest gift on earth for a price of sorrow that never wanes, must always be honored in the heart of the mother who receives the gift of her precious child. It is the receiving mother’s joy to embrace this child, treasured twice, and usher her into a life of liberty, the taste of which her birthmother will likely never know.
The liberty to live, the liberty to love, to taste, to know, to learn, to feel, to believe and to become the woman of strength, courage and promise she was created to be, is the gift we give our daughters. This gift is one we give to our future generations, our family to come. This is the gift we give by bringing our beloved children home. As for the gift we recieve, we mothers who hold our daughters, this gift cannot be measured. It can only be felt and treasured as we live each day together. This is the gift of family.
We will stop at nothing to bring family to our precious Lillianna Grace, who lies in her crib with her eyes closed because there is very little to see when they are open. We will keep pressing on until we can be the arms that lift her out and bring a new world of Hope and love. Thank you for walking alongside us on this journey of love. It is long and arduous but the promise of liberty is o, so sweet!