A few weeks ago, we were given the OK to send little Kate a care package. I live for this stuff and my mind ran wild as I started to plan the perfect care package for my girl. I browsed online sites and spent hours filling my cart with items from Amazon, Baby Gap, Pottery Barn, Janie and Jack, etc. Even Dennis was excited and told me to "have at it" as I debated the color of a blankie that I found on Etsy. Oh, the decisions! Soft pink? Embroidered? Satin trim?
I took a small break from my shopping frenzy and found myself looking through Kate's photos. I have her lovely face memorized, right down to the dimples, but this time I was drawn away from my little peanut. Instead, I was looking at all of the other darling children who are still waiting for families, the children who do not have mamas working on care packages or sending special treats. In that moment, I felt so ashamed of myself. How could I consider sending little Kate a package and not something for her friends?
Sending a care package is a hot topic of discussion in my adoption groups. Some people believe in them wholeheartedly, while others think that it is painful for the children (especially the older children) to see special treats lavished upon the one child that was chosen to go home with a forever family. Other people believe that the orphanage directors and nannies do not let the children have their care packages until right before they leave the facility to prevent these hurt feelings. If this is true, I can understand why. So, there I sat, not knowing if I should send a package or not. I decided to pray for guidance and sleep on it for the night.
The next morning, I knew exactly what I needed to do. I spoke with Dennis, contacted our family and made a few phone calls and emails. By late afternoon, our family had come together to sponsor ALL of the children in little Kate's care facility. A package this size could not be mailed from the US without getting stuck in customs, so we found an alternative way. All of the children received fresh fruit, milk, suckers, coloring books and crayons. We sent several wooden puzzles, a wooden block set, sweatshirts, Pokemon cards and ping pong paddle sets. Contrary to popular belief, several little boys are waiting for families and "boy things" are rarely donated. Sweet Kate-Hui received a labeled photo album with our pictures, blankie and a bag for her personal items to be used on the day we meet. We also sent a thumb drive in hopes of the nannies loading it with pictures from their digital camera or computer. Lastly, we sent a note to her nannies thanking them for loving and caring for Hui Jia.
As difficult as it was, I did not ask for an update on my little love. It is frowned upon by our agency as it does not follow protocol as outlined by the Chinese government or Hague Convention. Translation: We are not allowed to directly communicate with the orphanage or ask for updates on Kate. I thought the packages would be delivered and that would be the last we heard of it. However, I was surprised to receive these a few days later! I am guessing it was their way of saying thank you to a family 7,800 miles away. A family who loves a little girl they have yet to meet.