It Takes an Army.

I told my kids at home that we were praying for two things: for Dolly’s cough to get better and for her to poop.  Well, I specifically told Middle-Middle to pray for poop because if there’s anyone who would find it amusing to pray for poop, it’s that boy.  He’s just like that.  It’s not like I encourage that kind of humor, but his ridiculous laugh when you tell a poop joke makes me smile, and I like hearing that, especially right now when I feel so far away from my other kiddos. 
Anyway, no more need to pray for poop.  Thanks to the prunes I packed, we’ve got poop like crazy.  There isn’t much that surprises me about the process of getting a child to adjust.  I’ve seen it all: the anger, the frustration, the fear, but not the constipation.  Be warned parents who are coming after me, this is apparently a common problem, and the Chinese have some lovely, but kind of scary, ideas for how to fix it.  Water down her formula?  Feed her these really odd looking herbs?  Um, I’ll pass.  Since quite a bit of my day job involves talking to parents about how the heck to get their kids to poop, I’ll go with what I know.  My advice to all of you parents who are reading this because you’re adopting in the next few months, pack the prunes, and your common sense. 
Dolly’s cough has improved too.  She had some funk nasty left ear drainage, so I dosed her Amoxicillin and then sent a text to my pediatrician.  Turns out I under-dosed her for the first day.  She’s had a full dose now and sounds better already.  I am one lucky mama to have a pediatrician who lets me text her.  Seriously, if you live in my community and need a pediatrician EMAIL ME.  I have four that I would love to recommend, and truly enjoy working for.
I haven’t written a whole lot about what China is like.  I’ve gotten to see a lot, but more then I thought I would.  Honestly, I was excited to come and see some of China, the Great Wall has always been on my bucket list, but mostly, I came for my girl.  Once I got to her, I had absolutely ZERO expectations for touring.  Surprisingly, once we started hitting our girlie hard with some good antibiotics and feeding her well, she perked up and HATES being inside, being still, or anything that involves sleeping.  The girl is a mover and a shaker.  Problem is, there’s only one of me.  For those of you who have had a baby, you know how hard it is to go out alone.  Now try it in a foreign country with a baby who is critically ill.  My guide in province has been less then helpful.  Now that I’ve been here a couple of days, I gently asked her why that is.  She admitted that Dolly’s health freaks her out a little.  Well lady, it freaks me out too.  All we can do is move forward.  Put on your big girl pants and do the job I’m paying you to do.  Sheesh. 
I have gotten to see some amazing things though`.  The Great Wall was awesome, and I saw it the morning before the snow storm rolled in that tragically killed several Japanese tourists who became stranded up there.  They died the same day I was up there.  The weather turned that quickly.  I’m so sorry for their families.  I can’t imagine. 
I saw a lot of Xi’an.  The Bell and Drum Towers in the center of the city are closed for refurbishing, but I got to see them from the outside.  Amazing architecture.  The Grand Mosque and the Muslim Open Market were also amazing.  China is notorious for not allowing any sort of expression of religion.  To visit a mosque where over 1000 people come to pray, well, it made my spiritual heart soar, even though that’s not my religion. 
I got to see the Terracotta Warriors today.  Known as the eighth wonder of the world, they were truly amazing.  Dolly did great on the tour.   She held our ticket on the way in. 
And then let me look around for over an hour and a half before we had to stop for a bottle. 

This is something I will never forget, a true piece of our Dolly’s homeland.  I bought two tiny little Terracotta Warriors to proudly display in or living room, where we have symbols of each of our children’s homelands.  I am so happy to add these.  I will always be thankful to the nations that allowed us to parent our children.  The care they received while in those countries will never overshadow that.  I am grateful for my daughter, and I am so proud of her Chinese heritage. 
I’ve travelled pretty extensively in other countries before, so not having a guide all the time has allowed me to venture out on my own too and see some more of what this part of China is really like.  Since I don’t speak ANY of the language, it really is shocking culturally.  It is also a blessing though.  Unlike in Ghana, where people will see a different looking foreigner on the street and just up and shout “OBRUNI!!!” (the word for white person), here you get some seriously curious double takes.  Sometimes, someone tries to speak to me, but I just shrug and walk on.  Sometimes, they gesture wildly with a cell phone, and I let them take my picture.  Twice, I’ve let people that look like they had clean hands touch my hair.  It’s kind of creepy though.
I found this little Chinese bakery the first day I was here.  It’s only a few blocks away.  Since it’s hard to eat in a restaurant, and Dolly is usually wiped from grieving at night, I’ve been eating ramen in my room and sharing it with Dolly, who also enjoys her prunes and baby carrots.  Having a Coke and a piece of cake has become a nightly tradition for me after she finally passes out.  The people at this little bakery have begun clapping when I come in every day.  When you don’t speak the language, it’s hard to know whether people are making fun of you, or actually enjoy you coming in.  Maybe they’re clapping because the cake loving American is back again.  Yesterday, when I was in there, the man at the counter handed me a very neatly written note, in Chinese.  I nodded several times awkwardly and took it.  I had our guide translate it today, it says, roughly, “thank you for taking care of this girl” then it goes on to wish Dolly a long life of happiness. 
Thanks for appreciating me, because I REALLY love my girl and wish these things for her too.  It made my heart feel really good. 
And, just because I can’t NOT say something after watching election coverage for the entire week, because the only English-speaking channels on the TV here are CNN and CNBC, the election results make my heart VERY happy as well.  My Dolly needs really good health care coverage.  She has a prayer of getting that now, without lifetime caps, or pre-existing condition clauses.
  who likes it that we’re moving FORWARD!  

One thought on “It Takes an Army.

  1. Your whole post had me in tears today. But the note- that did me in. Bless that man for seeing your heart and giving you such a treasure.Wyatt will really enjoy your Terracotta Warrior pics. He is fascinated by them, and wants to see them someday.You’re halfway home!!

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