(This segment was originally posted on our first blog and just recently pasted here as I try to get things up to date. Therefore, this piece might be a little out of sequence, but still a favorite memory!)
Since we really don't know when we'll be going to China , and we really don't know anything about Xiao Zhi Yu's life since the adoption paperwork was completed for her 6 months ago, sometimes it's hard to keep in touch with what it is we are waiting for. It is a wait that seems endless one day, and the next day there is a lifetime of things to be accomplished before that time when the wait miraculously leads us to our daughter.
So what do we do? What sort of things do we fill our time with? There is an endless pile of papers to sign and sort and take to various places in our community. We tell our story to the police station and the doctor's office. We visit the notary and forget something and so we visit her again. We make lists and notes and try to fill our brains with all the details so we won't leave anything out.
All of this paper chasing starts to feel disconnected to the child we love on the other side of the world. So we find other things to do while we wait that soothe our hearts and make us feel like we are doing something tangible to bring her into our family.
And that is how we became the owners of two blue penguins. You can see this funny bird in our photo section.
Why did we need two blue penguins? Why blue penguins at all? As soon as we are able, I want to send a small care package to Camryn and her friends at the orphanage. I want to send a camera and ask that the nannies take some pictures of her daily life. I will send candy as a treat for the nannies. And a few warm blankets and socks to share. And I will send the blue penguin.
I looked at lots of cuddly and soft small plush animals. I loved the white bears and the huggable brown bear with long arms. But then I saw the penguin with a rainbow belly and one arm up in greeting. And I knew this was the animal that would make Camryn smile.
We've never seen her smile. And that has become a point of fixation for me. Every choice I make, every child's toy I consider, or sleeping arrangement we discuss, all our decisions have been about making her smile.
Her pictures give me no idea what her smile might be like. But what they do show, is a bright face, just on the verge. Not sure if she is about to laugh or cry, but I can tell that her face is one that changes quickly and is probably highly animated. It is a face that will love a blue penguin.
And the second blue penguin? He will travel with us to China. So when the moment comes and Camryn is brought into a room where we will be waiting...... the first thing she will notice about us is that we are carrying a blue penguin just like she is..... a blue penguin with it's hand raised in greeting. And she will know that we are a match. She will know from the beginning that at least we have blue penguins in common. And she will begin to understand that we are her family.