Hannah Claire Shi Lin

Monday, August 17, 2009

We Found Hannah!

I didn't think it would happen this soon, but we found Hannah!!! On Thursday I requested information on a little girl from the shared list of waiting children. Friday afternoon I got an email with her file attached. I forwarded the file to Chip while he was at work and then I called him. We discussed it quickly, then I called the Waiting Child Program Manager at Great Wall, and talked with her about how everything works. Basically, if we wanted to consider this child to adopt, we would need to "lock" her file to prevent anyone else from looking at it. She recommended that we have a doctor who specializes in international adoption look over her file first, but we decided to go with our heart, skip that step, and move forward. The information in her file told us she is healthy and we just felt that this little girl was Hannah.

Hannah is 3 and a half years old and was born with microtia of her left ear. "Microtia" means "abnormal smallness of the external ear." We've done research on this condition, and found that most children with this condition have normal hearing in the ear not affected with microtia, and in some cases, treatment is available to restore their hearing in the affected ear. There are also amazing treatments available to reconstruct the external ear to a more "normal" appearance.

Our daughter is a beautiful little girl, such a little cutie! She was born in February of 2006, so she's right at 2 years younger than Miles. We are told that it should be 7-9 months until we travel to China to get her. We can't wait to have two kids running around here!

Thank you for all your prayers thus far. Please continue to pray for us and for Hannah.

Saturday, August 1, 2009

Waiting Child

Chip and I decided recently that we would like to adopt a little bit older child after all. In the beginning of thinking of adoption, this is what we wanted, a little girl closer in age to Miles so that they would grow up together and have a closer bond. Then after talking with our social worker and learning about the harsh conditions in some Chinese orphanages, we thought we might should adopt an infant. But lately, it has weighed heavily on our hearts that we really want a little girl 2-3 years younger than Miles. We want them both to have a playmate close to their age, someone in our family to identify with and someone with whom to share common memories of growing up.

We've prayed about this and it just feels like the right thing for us to do. As a result of this change, we are now pursuing the "waiting child" program, and are looking for a little girl with some possible mild special needs. Because of switching programs, we may have our little Hannah with us much sooner than we had thought, within 7-9 months, as opposed to 3+ years, if we find her soon. I say "find" her because with the waiting child program, we have the opportunity to look at available children beforehand and request information on them. Then, when we decide to pursue a particular child and everything goes well, that is the child we get to adopt. So, rather than someone else matching us with a child, we have more of a say in being matched.

We ask that you all keep us in your prayers about finding Hannah. We know that God has already chosen her for us; he knows exactly which little girl is our Hannah Claire. She is somewhere in China right now waiting for us to come and get her. Knowing that is exciting in a way, but also makes me more apprehensive and so anxious to finally see her in person. We need prayers for patience and for God's guidance.