What do I say?

Well, I haven’t said much lately,
so maybe now I get to be long winded…just this once.

These past two days
have been the last my son will have in his homeland.

We have tried to soak up every minute of it.

Yesterday, we had our swearing in at the US Consulate,
and I cried.

I’ve cried both times.
I don’t really know why?

There is something so ironic
and sad
and powerful
all at the same time
about the swearing in.

All the months
and years of paperwork
culminate to that one moment,
that is over in about 5 seconds,
all with a simple
“I swear.”

And it makes me cry.

We also went to Shamian Island to shop that day.

And then today,
to pass the time of our last day here,
we decided to take a trip to the ChimeLong Safari Park.

It was just as awesome as the first time
and the kids loved it!

Although, it did storm for awhile.
And then, we waited forever for a cab afterward
to take us back to the hotel.

We had to all the way out of the parking lot exit,
imagine walking to the end of the Six Flags parking lot exit
and then wandered some random China city streets
till we finally hailed a cab.
This is when a proper prayer life becomes useful people.

Anyway, our little man was a bit exhausted tonight
and pretty darn hungry because we ate a very light lunch.
And he was all tears at dinner tonight.

It’s the first time I have seen him like that since we got him.
Pretty much, this has been like a Disney vacation for him so far.
Tonight, the exhaustion took over.
But after a little food and some mama lovin’,
he seemed fine again.

However, it did remind me of how little of a grasp
he has about what is happening to him tomorrow.

I know I will cry on that plane tomorrow.

I will cry because of the injustice of it all.

Because my son is about to lose
the sights and smell of what has been his home for the first 6 years of his life.
It’s tastes and culture that he already knows so well.
And that is very sad.

Any way you slice it,
there is loss.
Any way you slice it,
this is NOT ideal.

And NO CHILD should have to experience that.

And yet…
Can we say that though this isn’t ideal,
and though he has so much loss,
and though there will be so many challenges as he adjusts to his new life with us,
that there is not still beauty that can come from these ashes?

That though this is not God’s perfect plan,
that there can not still be purpose and destiny that can come from this?

That though this story is so full of injustice
that our son or any orphan child does not deserve the chance to have a family?

I think, yes!
I think that even though the price be high
and even though the challenges be great
and even though sacrifices might be made…
That it is absolutely worth it!!

HE is absolutely worth it!

And as a matter of fact,
if I weren’t here to raise them
ANY of my children would be worth it!

So, I will cry.
I will shed bittersweet tears
because any way you slice it
adoption is beautiful,
and ugly,
and sad,
and gloriously happy
all at the same time.

But, listen here…
though Long Nan Wei
aka Judah Christopher Lokey
doesn’t live in China anymore
and though he is far away from his homeland,
and though he may loose some of his native language,
and his name will be changed,

A family that will love and respect that heritage.
Honor it.
And honor his birth family,
and his culture.

Would it have been more ideal for him to stay in China
to be adopted by a Chinese family.
But, that didn’t happen.

And for that matter we could conjecture all day about ideals.
It would have been ideal for him to stay with his birth family.
It would have been ideal for them to be able to afford surgery,
so they wouldn’t have been left with the decision to abandon him.
It would be ideal if no one went hungry
and everyone made the right decisions.
That the hungry were fed by the church
and no one went without.

But, if we are all honest,
this isn’t an ideal world.

And until it is a utopian society,
and nothing ever goes wrong again,
there are some things that have to be done.

And though I don’t think I am doing anyone any favors,
nor that this really, necessarily ideal for my son,
I do believe that it necessary,
and that my boy
and every child
deserves a family.

Whether in China,
or some other country in the world.
And no matter what,
he is now ours…
and we will do his birth parents honor
and love him unconditionally
and teach and train him
all of our days.

No matter what happens,
whether things go good or bad,
whether this is ideal or not,
we will love this boy.

And he is now our son.

And nothing can ever change that for us.

15 Responses to What do I say?

  1. Katie S-G says:

    Beautifully said Anna.

  2. Emily says:

    Beautifully spoken. Safe travels. Can not wait to meet him and see you all again.<3

  3. Jamie B says:

    Like the others said, just simply beautiful!

  4. Sandra Lokey says:

    Stop making me cry. Just to know Judah will have such a loving family & extended family, we know it’s God’s plan for him. We are the blessed ones. Safe travels, we love you all & will see you soon.

  5. Diane Proctor says:

    A thousand times…”YES!!!”

  6. Kendall says:

    Crying. No words.

  7. Leslie Oden says:

    Beautiful! So thankful Judah has a Mommy & a Daddy and four sisters to love him and be his forever family!!

  8. Debbie Titus says:


  9. Maranda L says:

    :…..) yes!!! Well said….! What a blessed child,to have a family like yours…! God is so good…(anyone have a tissue )….

  10. CeCe says:

    Anna, With tears running down my cheeks~ can I just say that with all my heart I believe that Judah is ‘your’ son. It matters not that you had to travel to China to get him. The same way that you were meant to be Shaun wife! Safe travels and happy homecoming sweet girl! Love to you all!

  11. Sennie says:

    Beautiful, and so true. <3

  12. Erin N says:

    Oh you sweet mama. So proud to know and love you guys.

  13. Kristi says:

    So beautifully written Anna!
    Wonderful sentiments expressed better than I could get them out ~ even though it’s something I’ve been trying to say for a few years now.
    LOVE it!

  14. Leslie says:

    OK, C.R.A.C.K.I.N.G. up at your realizations about boys. LOL! I have 4 sons so I GET IT ALL! No, they aren’t the best for photography skilz practice. :) And just so you know, be prepared for some potty issues. I mean, our boy came home at 5 and wanted to squat on the toilet seat. Ay-yah-yah. He was trying to figure out how to squat here. LOL! I suggested he sit and he was happy as a clam. Now he stands like big brothers but it was a hoot at first.

    Then, there are the noises they make. Well I’ll let you figure that one out on your own!

    I am just reading about your trip. I don’t read blogs much anymore, but saw a link from NHBO. I loved your recaps of so many days, like Civil Affairs and such. Cracking up again. We got to meet our older son’s foster family too. We do call them on occasion. Also got to see them again in February when we went back for baby girl. AMAZING about sums it up. Do try to keep in touch if you can. It is priceless if you ask me for our older children. We consider them family now.

    Well, I gotta get baby girl to bed for a nap. Hope you are reentering with ease. Or relatively anyway!

  15. Leslie says:

    P.S. Loved seeing Ultraman again. Sadly, our Ultraman that looked just like the one you are the proud owner of didn’t survive very long once we got home. He self-destructed!