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Wednesday, June 15, 2011

Meeting Mei Mei

Mei Mei is absolutely perfect, just as she is, just where she is.  The Tongginator burst into hysterical sobbing within the first five minutes of meeting her new sister.  When I turned to her in alarm and asked what was wrong, she blubbered, “I’m… just… so… happy!!!”


And we are… just so happy.

Obviously Mei Mei isn’t so sure.

These past 24 hours have been brutal for her, as she experiences so many unknowns.  She approached our initial meeting with cautious acceptance, but – as the hours wore on – the grief and fear built to a crescendo.  The Husband and I continue taking it slowly with Mei Mei, and the Tongginator is doing beautifully in regards to giving her new sister space and acceptance.

Last week, in Maryland, the Tongginator and I watched her own adoption trip video (for, like, the millionth time).  I reminded her of how scared the other babies felt the day we all met, and pointed out the times she herself felt fear, most especially when we arrived at BWI airport and her cousins met her for the very first time.  The boys felt so excited to finally see her, they crowded in, trying to make her laugh with “monkey faces.”  (They’d recently been to the zoo.)  Even a child can spot the fear on our then one-year-old Tongginator’s face.

Before we left for this trip, the Tongginator and I decided that I would say our code phrase – monkey faces – if her excitement and love became a little too much for Mei Mei.  I’ve only said it one time since Monday, and the Tongginator immediately backed up to give her new sister a bit more elbow room.  Which made me feel oh-so-proud. 

Of course.

Mei Mei is absolutely amazing.  We see glimpses of her personality, most especially when she is playing with her new daddy, but I know there is so much more to come.  She loves the carrier – she seems to feel very secure in it – but clings for dear life if I hold her in my arms without the carrier.

Obviously she is a bit delayed skill-wise, having spent the first eleven months of her life in an orphanage setting, with a ratio of two caregivers for every 25 babies.  She seems to catch on to new skills rather quickly, however, and we also aren’t yet sure of all of her accomplishments.  (She may still be hiding a few under her belt during these initial days together.)  I feel tremendous relief that her sensory challenges appear nominal.  After our long road with the Tongginator, I can’t tell y’all how much that eases my heart.

Mei Mei is physically sick at the moment, but God smiled on us in the form of Doctor Laura from just outside Minneapolis.  This pediatrician and her husband adopted a gorgeous 16-month-old just two weeks ago (they leave China tomorrow).  Dr. Laura examined Mei Mei in our hotel room, along with several of the other children in our travel group, and passed along some medications to various parents.  Our travel group crowded into the room, actually, and the group discussion centered around fungal infections of the skin, upper respiratory infections, possible asthma and hip dysplasia.

I could go on and on, but we have another appointment.  We have to meet in the lobby in less than five minutes.  I’ll sum it all up by sharing what her new daddy said just ten minutes ago, “I can’t believe we are allowed to parent this beautiful child.  I feel so very blessed.”

73 comments:

Johnny said...

Woot! Woot!

Chris said...

Wow!

So happy for all of you! :)

Chris said...
This comment has been removed by the author.
Myrnie said...

So very, very happy for your family :)

Heather said...

Thinking of all of you in this time of transition, joy, fear, and hope. Sending much love to you, and especially to little Mei Mei.

*Overflowing* said...

Congratulations! I am so happy for you guys!!!

Journeywoman said...

Mazel Tov! May the road ahead be smooth with only little bumps.

Kim K. said...

Congratulations!!! I'm just so happy for all of you.

the meaklims said...

Tears of joy!

Hot Hot JJ said...

Amazing post. Keep them coming. I'm in awe of your strength!

Love Letters To China said...

Congratulations! So happy for you....

Jboo said...

Oh my -- so happy for all of you! Congratulations!

Janet

Laurie said...

Congrats to all of you! So exciting to see that first picture! Even covered up, you can tell she is ADORABLE!! We have "key phrases" at our house too- they work wonders without anyone having to get upset! :) can't wait to see MORE, MORE, MORE!!!

sara said...

I have such a lump in my throat. I'm SO happy for you guys and for Mei Mei!

Aus said...

Words fail me....

HOORAH

hugs - great joy - aus and co.

Bell said...

Congratulations! I'm so happy for you all!

Robin said...

So happy for you! Congratulations! Praying for all of you as you adjust.

Jennifer said...

I feel so privileged that you are letting us peek in on this journey to grow your family!

prechrswife said...

Congratulations!!!

3D said...

Amazing!! Congratulations! Take it all in. So happy for you.

Keep smilin!

epin said...

Congratulations! I am so happy for you and your family.

thewonderfulhappens said...

Wow. Just wow. So happy for all of you.

Football and Fried Rice said...

perfect!!!

Karrie said...

Yay!!! I am so glad it's going well.
And 3 cheers for the Tongunator for her wonderful start as a caring big sister.

Congratulations to the happy family!!!

Shirlee McCoy said...

I am so happy for you, and you are, indeed, blessed!

Saint Louis Family Robinson said...

Awww... You're a family of 4! So happy for you and that things are going so well!

heather said...

COngratulations!!!!! I'm just so happy for you guys!!!!!

Juliette said...

Welcome mei mei! Hope you'll get better soon.
And good job to Jie Jie.
Glad you are all together at last!

Sunday Koffron said...

I literally burst into tears over the monkey face code word. I am so touch that you are able to keep the perspective that while this is a joyous occasion for you and your family that it is very likely terrifying and overwhelming experience for Mei-Mei. I am honored to be able to read about your journey.

Holly said...

You really are an amazing Mother TM. I am so happy for you that this moment finally arrived. While Mei Mei's been through more trauma than any child should have to endure, she is on the road to healing and love and she is part of a FAMILY now and you get the blessing of being that family! Yahoo!! What a great Jie Jie she has!! Thanks for giving us a side peek!

Dawn said...

Congratulations and blessings upon you all! I am so happy for you... and so incredibly impressed with the maturity Miss T has already demonstrated. Mei Mei has no idea how blessed she is to become a part of your family!!!

Laura L. said...

Congratulations to all of you!!

Cedar said...

...happy tears...

Wanda said...

Overjoyed for you all. xoxoxo

Andrea said...

Six year ago this week, we had the very same thoughts! I can't believe we STILL get to parent these beautiful children! Love her hairline with the little tuft in front!

snekcip said...

I'm speechless!! I can manage to sputter out this word....BLESSED.

Mahmee said...

Hot damn! Congratulations to you all!
M.

Kim and Eric said...

Praise God!

Briana's Mom said...

Congratulations!!! I am so happy for you!!! Mei mei is in your arms!

Brazenlilly said...

SO happy for you all! Your description of this transition is a)honest, b)helpful to those of us coming after you and c)respectful to both daughters. Can't wait to hear more about T and Mei-mei as they begin their life as sisters!

Girly Girl Mommy said...

Awe!! You have Mei Mei!!! Thrilled for you all, just thrilled.

mumma to many said...

Well done on becoming a family of 4! It is a tough time for you all. Enjoy the waking out of the shell she is in and know that having a big sister helps amazingly!
Hugs Ruth in NZ

The Byrd's Nest said...

Praying for everyone especially the heart of little Mei Mei. I'm so proud of big sister....so proud:)

Tammie T. said...

Thinking of your family and praying for a smooth transition! Can't wait to read more!!! :)

Kayce said...

Amazing!!! I'm a puddle of tears here...happy tears too! So happy for all of you and will continue to keep all of you in our prayers. God is amazing!!

Kristin said...

Oh yay!! Congratulations! And Miss T is not alone in the big sister crying fit.....my oldest did the same thing upon meeting her new sister (and she was 13!).

Rita and John said...

Congratulations! And that photo was masterfully taken! You can tell she's adorable and that her big sister is thrilled!

organicnerd said...

Hooray, hooray, congrats, awesome...echo, echo all other comments!

One Happy Mama said...

AWESOME NEWS! Hope Mei Mei feels good in no time, y'all!

Beyond Normal Limits said...

The Tongginator nearly made me cry. I am so proud of her, so I cannot imagine how your heart is bursting!

Sarah said...

I'm so happy for all of you I don't know what to do with myself. Welcome to the Tonggu family Mei Mei.

Mamatini said...

(happy sigh) Really, no words, just sitting here sighing. Congratulations!

Claudia said...

CONGRATULATIONS!!!! Hooray!!!!

Mia's Mommy said...

So incredibly happy for you. Congratulations!!!

Semi-feral Mama said...

Way to go, Tongginator, restraint is so difficult when the wave of love is large.
Congratulations to all.

Annie said...

OH TM!!!!!! I am crying tears of joy for you all!!!!! I am just so happy for you and your newest little baby girl!!!! YAY!!!

Suzy said...

SO very happy for your family & for MeiMei! God bless your little Tongginator for being such an understanding big sister even though she's so new to the job.

Reena said...

What a wonderfully understanding big sister Tongginator is being!

Congratulations and best wishes in the coming days!

Sandra said...

Congratulations! So happy for you.

wheresrocket.com said...

Way to go Jie Jie, and best wishes for a smooth and honest transition for you all!

The Gang's Momma! said...

No words. Tonggu Daddy said it best.

Just big happy tears for your joy and new adventure! So happy for you and your whole family!

Cavatica said...

Yahoo! And I love The Tongginator's reaction to Mei Mei and the code word use. Brilliant. I'm sensing some good, if not sometimes difficult, famiy time in China! I wish I could be there. Oh how I love China!

Margie said...

Made me smile - I know you all are very happy :)

planetnomad said...

I am SO HAPPY for you guys! :)

Cristina said...

YAY!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!! So thrilled and happy for you all xxxxxxx

Aunt LoLo said...

Oh, TM, I have tears. God bless you, all four, as you start on this road.

Kim said...

Congratualtions!!

the_blissful_mommy said...

THIS is the post I've ben waiting and waiting for. There are NO words. So grateful with you. Praise God who gives amazing gifts. Lovingly, Esty
www.theselittlelives.blogspot.com

kitchu said...

tears of JOY. i am speechless and yet there are all these words in here that i just can't seem to put together.

carry on, family of four. blessing to you in the days, weeks to come as you all transition into this new life together.

Jen said...

Congratulations! That is incredible! Love how, "The Tonnginator" bust into tears at the sight of her sister! Beautiful! A new follower, Jen

t~ said...

Congratulations! The beginning of a new beautiful life!

Catherine said...

Congratulations!! So happy for your family!

Erin @ Closing Time said...

Congratulations!! I have been out of the blog-reading world for months, and I just stopped by to catch up. I am so happy for you!!