We had our first medical examination today. If you had to guess, how do you think Lucy did? Yes, another A++. She is quite the trooper. We had to go to three different rooms for three different examinations and she barely uttered a peep throughout the entire process. I have to say that the entire experience of going to a Chinese medical clinic was exactly as I thought it would be: chaotic, crowded, unsanitary and a formality. We have been told that the US is very strict on the health status of adopted Chinese children coming back into the states. So I think at this medical clinic today they went through the motions, but really were not that invested in the genuine health of the child. They basically told us that she has ear wax, weighs 14.4 pounds and is 66cm. Oh, and that she doesn't have a fever. I tried to ask about her cold and got no response. It was literally like they were just shuffling babies through a "medical factory" for processing.
After our exam, we had time to walk around and explore this beautiful city of Guangzhou….and to say it is beautiful is an understatement. We are surrounded by water and I would guess it was 75-80 today. Trees are in bloom and people are eating outside. As we walked along the waterfront there were all kinds of interesting cultural experiences to take in. There was a group of people gathered, sitting and being directed in song….Lucy loved it. We walked a bit further and there was a huge group taking dance lessons on the river front. Lucy and I had a dance with them. Folks are everywhere playing the equivalent of what is hacky sack in the states, but the actual object is something different. They also play batmitten but without the net. It has been so refreshing to be in warm air. There are so many other families here with their new additions to their families. I never guessed it would be this way.
The afternoon was spent doing paperwork….tons and tons of it. But I am happy to say that we are officially done with all the paperwork (yes, after 4 years!) and paying all our fees. We still have to go to the Consulate on Tuesday to finalize things, but other than that, we are almost home free!! What a wonderful feeling this is for us!
Tonight our whole group (there are now 5 families with us….two of the families had travelled to other provinces to get their sons, and we have all now met up in Guangzhou) went to a Chinese restaurant that our guide recommended. I have to say, the sweet and sour chicken was quite tasty. Lucy enjoyed congee and watermelon. I miss the smoke free environments back in the states…people smoke everywhere here. Out guide estimated that probably only about 20% of Chinese adults do not smoke.
Lucy is feeling better and so are Brian and I. She is a wonderful sleeper (usually 9-10 hours a night, and two naps during the day) and has tried lots of new foods that she always enjoys (bananas, eggs, oatmeal). She loves for her head to be cradled and kissed. She loves to be held tightly and sung to when falling asleep. And she makes the most adorable facial expressions when she knows it is time to eat…her lips are just too cute (in case you hadn't noticed)! Our guide told us today that the "Lu" part of Lucy's Chinese name means "road" which I would assume was picked because of the symbolism of the journey Lucy is on. The "Qie" part of her Chinese given name means eggplant and that this was probably picked because eggplant is purple and they consider purple a beautiful color. She also said that eggplant is tender, so that may be the other reason. I like to think about Lucy this way: beautiful and tender.
Hope you are all well! Thanks for all the continued thoughts and prayers!