We started the day by meeting Helen in the lobby and headed 10 minutes away to the Civil Affairs Office. Once we walked in there were already two families with their children. One, a little girl and the other, a boy. When we first walked in I was searching the room for her and was disappointed to see that she was not there yet. So we waited, and waited. In the meantime a little boy 2 years old, but looked to be about 9 mos came to visit his family who was not yet there so we made eye contact with him and smiled and tried to keep our mind off the fact that whenever someone came through the door our hearts went into our throats. We waited for about an hour.
Then she came in! And she was already not happy. She was terrified of the elevator. The director tried to place her in my arms right away but I did not take her because I did not want to scare her anymore than she already was. So I waited and talked to her and said things like "Wa shur nee de mama" (I am your mama) and "Wo ai ni" (I love you). I showed her the little book I made of her with her pictures of the cake party. This seemed to register to her that we shared something. The director also said some things to her and then she came to me sort of willingly. She clung to me and didn't let go. But she would not look directly at me, only when I looked away would she sneak a peek at me. And she continued to cry but the wailing stopped. Unless someone else came near us. Somehow daddy managed to get her away from me because I had to sign something and then she sat with him in the taxi holding his hand the whole way. She was very quiet, very observant and focused on anything but us!
When we got back to the hotel we had to take the elevator up 32 floors. She was wailing again, and I have never seen so many tears come from one baby! When we got to the room we took her layers of clothes off because her cheeks were bright red from the heat. We noticed her skin was really dry too. When we got settled in we gave her a banana and we became just about the best people in the world in her eyes. Mama and her took a nap together and when we got up it was playtime! And boy did she like that! She started dancing around, acting silly, stacking blocks, throwing a ball around and keeping daddy busy! We noticed she was pretty aware of her senses. Apparently she hadn't been on carpet before with barefeet because her little toes kept opening and closing and she kept shuffling her feet back and forth. She was also pretty aware of the pullup because she kept grabbing at it and pulling it.
Then it was time to wind down for bed. She got a bath, which she wasn't too sure of. She does speak. When I ask her to pee she repeats "neeow, neeow" back at me. But alas no pee in the potty yet. She just sits there saying the words. So we finished up the night with the bath, night clothes and dinner and boy can this girl eat. Watch out Adrian because I'm pretty sure she'll be eating seconds before you can!
She slept soundly through the night. Then, this morning bright and early- here she is bright eyed and bushy tailed raring to go!
She has had a couple of crying fits. Just out of the blue with no rhyme or reason she starts wailing and the waterworks start. I'm sure she is still confused and scared but I also think she is understanding at some level that she is safe with us and that we bring her comfort. Today we go back to the Civil Affairs Office to finalize the adoption. We are absolutely smitten with her, she is very sweet and happy. So thankful that things have turned out even better than I could have dared dream.