Thursday, October 31, 2013

The Seashell

I was on vacation last week in Nova Scotia. It is beautiful and I got some much needed rest. I found something when I was there that I would like to share with you. On this beautiful beach, I found one perfect, delicate seashell. Why is this remarkable? Well you don't find many seashells in Nova Scotia because it sticks out into the Atlantic and there is a lot of pounding crashing surf due to the geography of the coast line. While holding this shell, it suddenly hit me. This is just like our Waiting Children.


They are tossed and tumbled in the waters and end up on the shore. They are each perfect and unique. The cracks and wear from the ocean only make them more beautiful. They are my seashell. They make it to us. We pick them up and move them to a new place and we discover they are more beautiful than we ever imagined seeing them on the beach. We are the lucky ones. We find this amazing gift, this wonderful child who has been through the crashing surf. This child is only beginning to be their most beautiful, loved and appreciated. Still, we are the lucky ones when a child comes into our lives.

So, next time you see a waiting child think how unique and special they are. We are in a place to celebrate differences endorse uniqueness and rejoice at individuality. Even better, we can give that seashell a home, a place where it will be even more beautiful on the beach.


Here are a few beautiful, unique, amazing seashells.
 




Monday, October 28, 2013

This and That

What does this and that mean?  Well, its odds and ends.  How is everything with our Superkids going?  This has been our focus the past 2 weeks.  We all pause at least daily and think of the children waiting for homes.  Our connection to them is strong.  We see their profiles as they come in bunches from China.  I dream about them.  Dream of each and every one finding their forever families. We look for profiles coming, who's next.   We are questioning, looking, and once again visiting with the kids through their pictures.  It is so important to give prospective adoptive parents every little scrap of info we can. We take copious notes when we are in China.  We want to remember every scrap of information.  Erin and I will ofter call each other and share a special story about a waiting child, like remember when... Or do you remember his sweet smile.  Or that was the child who liked the stuffed doggie toy.  We rejoice when every child finds a family.

So in general we are connecting the dots,  pulling info together for families.   So in general this and that is pretty important this and that!  Here are some pictures of some of our kiddos who still wait.  Could they be your son or daughter?








 

Friday, October 25, 2013

Special kiddo with a big personality.



We met Austin on the final day of our Superkids trip this Summer.  He has a big personality and filled the room with energy.  He was smiling continuously and we met him with his best friend. They go to school and live in the same setting.  It amazed me how well Austin made himself understood with just gestures.  Austin is deaf mute and does not sign.  Austin also has another medical need.   He is going to a special school but has not learned much Sign language. We tried some simple ASL and our Guide tried some sign that he is familiar with in China.  We did not get a response.  No worries, Austin was able to make himself understood well.

 Austin wanted his picture taken. Austin wanted a turn with the iPad.  Austin told us what he wanted and we understood.  He loves his best friend and hugged him.  He was cool, but not too cool to hug his best friend. Austin communicated it all.  Austin has been an orphan longer than he can remember.

 Austin need someone to love him.  To nurture him.  To help this incredible child grow into adulthood and maximize his potential.  He is an amazing person who is so ready for a family to love him and to treat him as the special amazing individual he is.  Austin just turned 13 so the need is urgent.  If he reaches 14 he will not be able to be adopted. Could Austin be your son?

Would you like to learn more about Austin?  you can read Chelsea's amazing advocacy post  Here
If you want more information on Austin contact me at Patriciamarcuspt@gmail.com or Lindsay.miller@gladney.org.

Wednesday, October 23, 2013

Boys!

Before I was so involved in adoption, the stories of so many boys waiting for adoption in China baffled me.  How could that be?  China adoption is mostly waiting child adoption.  It is mostly children with special needs waiting for families.  The phenomena I do not understand is why the girls are picked first and the boys linger on the shared list, never picked or continue to wait.  That is so amazing to me.  We are so intent on making life fair and equal, I just do not understand how this can be.  It just seems so unfair that being a boy should be a special need.  So today's post is dedicated to all the amazing boys the Superkids team met in China.  Heck, its dedicated to all the boys who wait for a forever family to love them.  
I can tell you so much with just a gesture.

I'd love to play catch with you!

 I love lollipops!

 I can tell you so much with just my eyes.

Waiting for a hug!

 I love playing with water from the faucet!

Soccer anyone?

So if you are considering adoption, consider some of these great boys who wait.  We want every child to have a forever family to love them.  Boys, Girls, serious needs, minor issues, needs a forever family.



Sunday, October 20, 2013

Wishes do come true!

This week went by in a blur.  Talking to families, meetings and outreach at Gladney,  conferences with Waiting Child advocates and the Superkids team.  There is more good news from Superkids.  I made a personal wish this year for on my birthday.  I wished that each and every child I met in China would find a forever family to love them.  Well, each time a family steps forward its like part of my wish is coming true.  One of the most rewarding things we all do is to see a child come home with their forever family.  One of the saddest is when a child we have met does not find their family.  That is just heartbreaking on so many levels.  To have held them in our arms and then no one sees the uniqueness and beauty of that precious child is sadder that words can even describe.  But why am I dwelling on this, because there are so many wonderful, beautiful and amazing children out there just waiting for a Mom, Dad and family.

Today we have good news!

I have found my family! 


We are so happy that Shayla found her family.  Can you hear us celebrating?  Yes, there is one more beautiful child who will be loved by a family.  We are so happy for her.

Remember there are still many children waiting for families. Boys as well as girls, older and younger, all special and unique and beautiful for who they are.  None are defined by a special need. They are just amazing individuals, precious children wishing to be loved.  Wishes do come true!    

Wednesday, October 16, 2013

Great News!!

There is good news and great news.  The good news is that China Paperwork on the kiddos we saw is starting to roll in.  The great news is that some of them are starting to find their families.  I cry every time a child is matched and the Superkids team trades phone calls.  I call Erin, we email Darla and Chelsea.  Then we let Gongzhan know.  There is a flurry of excitement.  Happy exchanges. So for today, here is the good news.

       I have found my Family 
This beautiful girl who asked Chelsea and Erin and Darla and Gongzhan and me for a forever family, has one.  Bells and whistles, horns blaring.  Yes, this beautiful girl who we called Penny has a committed family working to bring her home.  Her picture will be up on the bulletin board at the orphanage next year. We are so happy for you, Penny.   

Still, even though Penny has a forever family, many kiddos do not.  So continue to follow our stories.  Reach out, spread the word and Advocate, Advocate Advocate for all children who need families  

Thursday, October 10, 2013

Guest post from Chelsea

This was the Superkids team that traveled to China this Summer.  See that girl with the red hair?  Well, that is Chelsea who is our special intern.  She has been working in the Gladney office for almost a year.  She was our intern on the Superkids trip.  She took literally thousands of photos, played with and hugged the babies and supported the team in every activity.  I think to say that going to China changed Chelsea's life would be an understatement.  She found a deep connection with the children we saw and she formed a bond with everyone on the team.  I can't say enough about how wonderful the team was, but Chelsea demonstrated, purpose, focus and maturity well beyond her years.  In this post Chelsea shows her deep commitment to these children.  Here are Chelsea's reflections as she advocates for a very special boy!

Hua Hua was the last child that came into our assessment room on the first day of our journey. And he changed me. Maybe it was his round cheeks and his one blue eye, or maybe it was how his hands could do all the same tasks though they looked nothing like mine. But really, I think it was a sense that he needed me that created this change in my heart.
So when Pat asked me to write a post about Hua Hua I jumped at the opportunity. Hua Hua represents so much of what originally drew me to orphan care. There are hundreds of thousands of children—like Hua Hua—abandoned all over the world because of a disability or because of the social and economic burdens of raising a child with special needs. And from now on, whenever I think of these children, I will always see Hua Hua’s sweet face with his contrasting dark brown and ice blue eyes.
I sat near Hua Hua that day in the Shanghai Children’s Home and told him how special I thought he was. And as I sat, I listened to our team’s medical volunteers and the orphanage staff discuss whether or not Hua Hua has normal eye-sight (which all signs seem to suggest that he does by the way) and someone  from the orphanage mentioned the use of colored contacts to “correct” his mix-matched eye color. This bothered me. I thought to myself—“What a shame.” Why change Hua Hua? He’s exquisitely unique and special and perfect just the way he is.
And that’s the mission of Superkids—to care for children without reservations. Hua Hua doesn’t need to be changed to be loved, but he does need a family. And if you love him, I promise this miraculous little life will change you. I know because he changed me.



For more information on Hua Hua or any of the children seen by Superkids, please contact Pat Marcus PT at patriciamarcuspt@gmail.com.

Wednesday, October 9, 2013

Wordless Wednesday




This face is just too handsom!  You can find Samuel's information on rainbow kids or contact Lindsay.miller@gladney.org or Patriciamarcuspt@gmail.com

Monday, October 7, 2013

Smiles

You know how when you hold a baby in your arms, they feel warm and heavy.  They just rest snugly against you.  I have been thinking about all the babies we held. how they rested comfortably in our arms.  The moments we had with older kids.  They laughed, we laughed and we were connected in that moment.  This was repeated, orphanage after orphanage and province after province.  It was an amazing experience.   That special connection fills us with wonder and breaks our hearts all at the same time.  Now that children are beginning to be matched and find their families, we rejoice and our hearts sing.

I have spent the weekend with these kids.  Putting many profiles up on Rainbow Kids.  It was like spending the weekend with these children all over again.  I remembered the special moments with each child.  So visit Rainbow Kids to see more about these kiddos.  Here are some beautiful pictures of our time with these kiddos.







Tuesday, October 1, 2013