Tuesday, October 21, 2014

Brody's Forever Family Day

I'm not sure how I begin to describe what emotions we felt today.  Redemption, second chances, loss, joy, family, and faith all come to mind this morning.  I can't imagine all the pain and loss our little guy has experienced in such a short time.  What I do know is that from this day forward he won't experience it alone.

We left the hotel at 9:00 to go to the Civil Affairs office where we would complete the China portion of the adoption paperwork and meet Brody for the first time.  The trip to the office seemed to take an eternity.  As we drove there I wondered if he had arrived?  When did he learn that we were coming for him?  Was he scared?  Would he be open to letting us into his life and heart?  Our guide, Maggie, told us that Brody had already arrived at the office and would be waiting for us. 

When we arrived at the office, the lady said that Brody was there but first we needed to complete some paperwork.  What?!  How do you tell a new mother that you can't see your child when you know he's in the office?  After signing the 24 hour guardianship agreement and the final adoption paperwork for the following day, we could see our son. 

 Anxiously waiting...

 And there he was!  All smiles.  My heart was full.  I embraced him, thinking to myself, little guy this is forever.  He is a very happy child.  He immediately allowed Ryan and I to hug him.  He was so brave and his smile melted my heart.  I'm amazed that God moved so many mountains to bring him to our family.  This is the picture of God redeeming a child who due to no choice of his own was given a difficult start. 

 The institute sent a photo book of him that we will cherish.  It gave us a glimpse into his life and his time in Shanghai.  We also received a DVD about the institute.  Brody is actually in the video and when we arrived at the hotel, he was excited to show it to us.  The institute also sent some gifts for him including shoes, an outfit, and cup.  A volunteer at the institute also sent a game for him to play. 

 A group photo with our guide Maggie.

It was amazing how brave Brody was when it was time to leave.  He took Chase's hand and walked out of the building calm and confident.

 That smile melts my heart...

  Once we left the civil affairs office, we stopped the supermarket to pick up some snacks and toys for our visit to the institute on Wednesday. 

 He was eager to help us push the cart, pick out toys, and load the cart with our snacks and gifts. 

 Many of the grocery stores are located in larger buildings with services and places to eat.  After completing the paperwork and shopping, we were quite hungry.  Brody was hungry as well and cleaned his plate at lunch.  We are working on small bites and slower eating.  I'm sure these are simply behaviors from his time in an institute and he has already begun to slow down when reminded.  It amazed me at how clean and neat he was.  After finishing all (yes he cleaned his plate) of lunch, he neatly organized the items on his tray. 

Brody and Chase hanging out in the hotel lobby.

 Piggy back rides are fun!

 We came back to the hotel and planned to spend some quality time bonding.  Brody was super excited and asked to play hide go seek right away.  After that we played basketball, tossed the sky ball from the loft and first floor, and worked puzzles.  We also purchased a remote control car at a local toy store and the boys enjoyed driving it around the room.  Within just a short time, we were able to tell that he is such a smart and funny boy.  I just look at him, smile and shake my head at his cute personality. 


Our little guy can work puzzles quickly and methodically.  He was proud of his accomplishment.

A little basketball before bed!

 He had no issues taking a shower and putting on his pajamas for bed. We went to sleep early as it had clearly been a fun and busy day for all of us.  He went right to sleep.  What a great Forever Family Day for a kiddo that already has my heart! 

~A little note from Brody:  sun qiu le brody mama

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