Friday, March 20, 2009

On Wednesday...

Reese's finding spot. The gates of the SWI
Director Geng of the SWI

At the Taiyuan China Care Home

Taiyuan SWI

Chicken fingers I found at Wal-Mart. And when I say chicken fingers, I mean that literally

Baby wipes at Wal-Mart in China

The same day I met Reese's foster family, we also went to Wal-Mart, the Taiyuan China Care Children's Home, and to the Taiyuan Social Welfare Institute.

First, a little detail that we just found out. Due to miscommunication between China Care and the Taiyuan SWI, Reese was not removed from her foster home ahead of time. That morning, in a panic, (remember, Reese was late to the Civil Affairs Office) they got Reese from her foster home, her "mama", and took her to the Civil Affairs Office, telling her her "mama" would be there. Well, that was both truth and lie all in one. Her mama would be there, but not the mama she considered her mama. Hence, why she was so absolutely distraught. Also, this just occurred to me today. The clothes she came to us in, was the last outfit her foster mother picked out for her. Those were her clothes, that her foster mother had bought her. Those clothes now have so much more meaning that they did, even with the fact that they were the clothes we got her in. Those weren't just some random clothes someone thought looked good, were in good condition, to greet her new parents in. The woman she considered her mama picked those out, dressed her in those. New revelation, that.

We went to Wal-Mart and bought donations for China Care and the Taiyuan SWI. And I bought a suitcase, since we discovered the morning I was leaving that the zipper on my big suitcase was breaking. Over the course of this trip, until I finally gave it away with some donations (it was being used to carry some), it got progressively worse. So I'm glad I bought a new one.

The Taiyuan China Care Home is nice. Beautifully painted, and the nannies care for the babies very much. Both Reese and Zoe were there at one point or another, Zoe more than Reese we believe. But they were both there, and nannies knew them. Remembered them, Reese and Zoe alike. Also, I discovered on this trip that Reese's foster mother worked at the Children's Home, and still does.

Then we went to the Taiyuan SWI. It's about an hour out of the city. We are apparently the first adoptive families to come back to see the SWI. So it was a new experience for all involved, I think. The place is nice, what we saw of it, and Director Geng is a nice man, from what we saw. He seems to really care for the children. In fact, children admitted in 2004 share his name "Kai". His full name is Geng Kai Wen, and that year's children share the same "Kai", Reese among them. He showed us around, and showed us where Half The Sky was going to be working, making a playroom and physical therapy room for the kids. About 95% of the kids under the orphanage's care are in either foster homes or in a China Care Home, which is impressive. They also gave both Beth and I copies of Zoe and Reese's finding ads. We left them diapers and wipes and formula. The Director also decided to go to Hong Tong with us on Thursday.

That was the gist of Wednesday. The bulk of Wednesday, when I visited Reese's foster family, is detailed in an earlier post.

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