Thursday, January 21, 2016

Day 8: "Weeping endures for a night....."

We woke up at 4:30 am to leave at 6 for our trip to the orphanage. Talia is from Maoming which is about 4 hours from Guangzhou. We knew it was an extra cost and a long trip, but we thought it would be SO important to know where she came from. After a long early morning journey, we finally arrived. There were scooters, bikes and motorcycles everywhere weaving in and out of traffic and not following traffic laws if there are any. It reminded me of Toby's city of Zhengzhou, but not as bad. The orphanage was a great big circular building plop down  in the middle of a poorer area than the rest of this huge city. We pulled in the gate and Talia's eyes widened because she knew where she was. Some of you have asked if this trip was too soon after Gotcha day. I totally agree that it is. I had requested to go visit before Gotcha day so Talia could get to know us before she had to leave everything she has ever known, but they said that it is not an option to see the children before Gotcha. I didn't want to miss the opportunity to visit her history so we went knowing that this would be emotional for  her (and us too).
As soon as we arrived we were greeted by some of the nannies and teachers at the school. They have a school in the orphanage which as a teacher myself, this warmed my heart. It was set up  so well and the teachers are SO affectionate with the children. That helps with attachment later believe it or not. We walked upstairs to her class where all her friends cheered as she walked in. We were not allowed to video which stunk because there were some tender moments.  Plus the children broke my heart. All of the children had some type of special need ..most of them had Down Syndrome, but there were a variety including Downs, blindness, deafness, cleft palate, and skin disorders. These were the throw aways in this society and it broke our hearts, but we know that God created them and loves them very much.
 Talia passed candy out to each one of her friends. We took lots of pictures and exchanged lots of hugs. We didn't know this before, but she lived with foster parents during the night and weekend and attended the orphanage school on Monday -Friday. Her foster mom came to the orphanage and her sign language teacher too. Talia only knows a few Chinese signs, but no American signs......YET!
After a long time of looking at her classroom, taking pictures, and talking, we said our goodbyes. Talia was very emotional as she said her goodbyes to the people that she truly loved as her family. All I could do was hold her and wipe away her tears. It was heartbreaking! We left and went to her"finding spot." This is where she was abandoned three years ago.  It was at the Maoming bus station. We took pictures and prayed that Talia would forget that pain that she had there.
Phew...what a long day.  We had to drive back to Guangzhou so we loaded up and got on the road.  Talia felt better in the car and even gave me a few smiles. Five hours later, we arrived back in the hotel, ordered a quick bite of you guessed it, fried rice.  Talk to ya'll soon.

Here is Toby's haircut handiwork.

Sugarcane snack
Her foster mom and sign language teacher who happen to be sisters.

Mao SiRu , her Chinese name

Her finding spot

These toilets are reserved for handicapped people or American ladies who refuse to go in the gross squatty pottys.


  1. What a day for you all! Toby is clearly Talia's right hand man. His face reveals such understanding and concern. Hers reveals emotional exhaustion. You are all troopers for toughing it out with all the mixed emotions. I think in the long run it is healing for Talia to see all her loved ones together in harmony, even if it wasn't easy. Who grew the most? I suspect it was Toby. He probably underwent deep healing for himself by watching Talia and supporting her. Kudos to all of you for going out on love's limb!

  2. Quite a roller coaster of a day, I'd say, seeing and being in places that tug so hard on the heart! If you were able to get smiles out of Talia, then KUDOS! I can only imagine all the feelings that she went through seeing her foster mom and sign language teacher and friends! How sweet that she was able to give candy to her friends. AND bless Toby for being the sweetest big brother to Talia :) God bless you for opening your family to this precious five year old!

  3. Thanks for sharing all this. Touching!

  4. I love Toby & Talia's matching t-shirts.

  5. Amazing!! You can see the love!! Like I said in another post, keep up the wonderful work!! I hope to be as lucky as your family!!!