Our last day in China was a whirlwind of packing and making the preparations for the 3hr drive to Hong Kong. At 4:20pm the van was waiting at the hotel when our guide arrived with Kate's visa. It was the oddest thing...leaving China. Hearing Jocelyn say, "It's time to go home" turned out to be much more emotional than I expected. I cried happy tears that this portion of our journey was complete and that I was given the rare opportunity to witness several other children leaving with their families as well. It's indescribable to watch families being made through adoption..and I am so thankful that I was able to witness this miracle for Kate and the other little ones in our group.
Although happy to be headed home, unexpected tears soon followed. I felt sad for Kate, who would be leaving her China home forever. I wept for Kate's birth mother, who would always wonder what would become of her precious daughter. I cried for Kate's grandmother, surely the source of our Little Love's bravery. And my heart shattered into a thousand tiny pieces knowing that countless children are still waiting for the day they are "chosen" to be part of a family. I have seen their beautiful faces, played hide and seek with these little ones and hugged and tickled every child at Katie's orphanage who craved human touch. The language barrier didn't matter, not for a second, because we were able to communicate without words and sometimes that's enough. The power of a hug speaks volumes...it can mend ouchies, transfer love from one person to another and give hope to a child waiting for a family.
I left China with a favorite verse in mind. A verse shared with me severel years ago by my own brave and selfless grandmother: For unto whomsoever much is given, of him shall be much required. Will Dennis and I be headed back to China? Yes. In what capacity? We're not sure yet, but we do know that there is more that we can do.