By way of continuing the recap of our recent adoption news, here is the announcement letter we sent out in July when we were matched with Mei Mei.
It is with overwhelming joy and gratitude that we announce the referral of our daughter! The picture was taken in December, 2006.
Here's what we know so far:
Her birthday is in April, so she is three years old — just two years younger than the Bünj'. She is living with a foster family in Guangzhou, China, and has lived with them since she was 11 months old. Guangzhou (sometimes called Canton) is in southern China and has a very tropical climate.
She is described as "active," with a ready smile. She is not timid. She likes music. She gets along well with others, but is "sometimes obstinate." (What three year old isn't?) She is "talkative," just like her daddy and big brother-to-be. Her favorite activity is going down slides.
We think she is perfect!
The normal wait to travel is between 3-6 months. The average is 110 days. That means, with any luck, we'd travel in early November and have her home by Thanksgiving. We will not know our exact travel dates until about 1 month before we go.
Given the increasing wait times to adopt from China, we were not expecting to be matched with a child for many more months. However, the Chinese Center for Adoption Affairs periodically sends a list of special needs and waiting ("older") children to our adoption agency. Our agency circulates the list to all of their clients in the country who are adopting from China. We saw her on the most recent list, and we both just fell in love with her. We applied to be matched with her and were thrilled when our family was chosen. Her special need is thalassemia minor or thalassemia trait. Thalassemia is a type of anemia. Our pediatrician has looked at her lab results. Her type of thalassemia is not likely to have any effect on her. However, if she has biological children with a man who has the same trait, her children could be very ill. Therefore, she will need to have genetic counseling before she has children.
We would appreciate your prayers for as smooth a transition as possible for her. We can't imagine telling the Bünj' when we was three, or at any age, that he was going to go live with strangers on the other side of the world who looked different, and spoke differently and ate different foods. We have been taking Mandarin Chinese lessons for a couple of months and our Chinese teacher is also teaching us how to make some southern Chinese food. We hope those things will make her new life with us easier for her.
We want to thank all of you for supporting our decision to adopt. We can't wait to meet Mei Mei and for our family and friends to meet her as well. As we learn more, we will keep you updated.