While We Are Sleeping

Around 12:45 a.m. here in Alabama, it will be 1:45 p.m. in China, and that’s when Alison and Stephen will finally hold Allie Ruth in their arms! Please say a prayer for all three of them tonight before you go to sleep. Alison has actually posted twice on her blog since they’ve landed in China. I’m so proud she is keeping her promise. 🙂 If you’ve missed her two posts, you can read them here.

As I told you in my last post, I knew I would forget to list several prayer needs, and there’s a good chance I’ll forget some more. At any rate, I would appreciate if you’d add the following to your prayers:

  • Alison’s grandmother (can’t remember if she’s 90 or 91) fell a few weeks ago and had to have surgery. She is currently recovering at HealthSouth.
  • Alison’s mother was diagnosed a couple of months ago with colorectal cancer. She will begin her treatments on June 4th while Alison is still in China. Alison’s dad is an only child, so you can just imagine what he is dealing with having to take care of both his mother and wife. And you can only imagine how Alison must feel being thousands of miles away from her family during this time.
  • For no delays or lost luggage on their flights home in a couple of weeks
  • That Allie Ruth will sleep on the flight so Alison and Stephen can rest. And when they’re awake, that she won’t cry or be upset.
  • That Allie Ruth’s vision will be better than Alison and Stephen expected

In my last post I also said the main thing to pray for was attachment/ bonding. Even though you all know the basic definitions of those words, I thought I would explain a little more about what they mean in terms of adoption. During our home study, we were required to read The Connected Child by Dr. Karyn Purvis. She is the director of Child Development at TCU and an expert in the field of adoption. Her book has been an excellent resource for us as well as countless other adoptive families.

In her book, Dr. Purvis states that attachment “refers to the interpersonal bond between a child and his or her parents or caretaker. A child who felt consistently safe and nurtured by a reliable caretaker in early life will become securely attached.” Unfortunately, many times children who have been raised in orphanages lack attachment skills. Typically the caregiver to child ratio is too high for children to establish appropriate attachment skills and they may not be bonded to anyone. In order for a child to develop these crucial skills, Dr. Purvis says he/she will need the following (and this is by no means an exhaustive list):

loads of extra affection and kindness

appropriate rules, structure, and boundaries

varied exercise and sensory enrichment activities

cuddling, feeding and rocking

Dr. Purvis wrote that “a well-tended child is fed, cradled, and soothed when she cries from hunger or crankiness. Through this exchange, the baby learns to trust that her needs will be met and that she can rely on people. Deprived of a caretaker who touches and cradles her, the growing child cannot learn to bond with other people or to even process sights, sounds and sensations.”  I would love to type verbatim everything Dr. Purvis wrote in The Connected Child, but I’m pretty sure that’s called plagiarism. Hopefully I haven’t committed that crime by sharing these few quotes. Anyway, I will write more at a later time on this subject about how we as adoptive parents will encourage attachment and bonding and what you as our family and friends can do to help.

As for us, we finally got the PDF version of our cable letter on Friday!! I won’t even go into how many times we called the NVC and how many different stories we were told. All that matters is that they finally emailed it to us.  Now that I have this letter, I can tell you what it actually is. It basically says that they received our 800 approval and forwarded our petition to the appropriate visa-issuing post, which is the US Consulate in Guangzhou. We also sent a copy to our SW and she was able to send it along with  Article 5 on its merry little way too! Another LL mom (who is currently with the Sanders in Chongqing too) posted about the Article 5/cabling process. Since she did such a great job explaining and so I won’t have to try myself (because I’ve probably already said something that’s not correct), please click on the link and see for yourself just how close we’re getting to China!



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