We were up and on the plane to America by 10:30 Saturday morning! The hotel was actually in the airport so it was quick and easy. I had grabbed as many things I could find with English ingredient listings on the back (which wasn't much) in the airport for Phoebe. I had been very nervous about her being in the air for 14 hours due to her food allergies. I'm so thankful to God that she never even had to use Benadryl the whole trip! He protected her I am sure! Plus, flight attendants on international flights are way nicer than domestic flights.
We were blessed with an empty seat beside me so Hope got to stretch out. All of our seats had personal TVs with an endless supply of movies and games and TV programs to choose from. Hope and Lily watched Baby Einsteins. Me and Adri watched a common choice of Celine Dion's World Tour documentary. Phoebe liked Annie. Rob liked Cats and Dogs. Who knows what Johnny watched. Half the time he was in the bathroom. For fun. Not to actually use the bathroom.
We got three meals and a snack on our flight. It's just so odd to be in an airplane that long. We went over Japan, Russia, the Bering Strait, Alaska, Canada, and the Rockies to get to Detroit. All went great for the most part. No one had a breakdown except for me. I felt like I was doing a great job of remaining calm in the closterphobic space I was contained to with Hope beside me, Johnny on top of me, and Phoebe there too. It's like lamaze. Deep breaths and relaxing thoughts. Don't look around and realize that you don't even have room for your feet and that there is no place to get away and get some fresh air.
Hope wakes up and needs a bottle. I think she was missing her crib! She started fussing so I tried to make her bottle with Johnny on my lap. I kindly asked Phoebe to again go get me some hot and cold water from the flight kitchen to make her warm bottle. Phoebe was really enjoying Annie and the part where Annie almost falls off the draw bridge so she was frustrated. Then Hope kicks the can of formula and it falls into my lap. My first fear is that she won't have enough to eat! My second fear is that I'm gonna lose it and cause a scene! I lose it! I tell Daniel that I might go crazy if I don't get up! Hope gets passed to him across the aisle. Phoebe and Johnny get pushed into the aisle. I survey. I have two blankets from home plus two airline blankets and a half a can of formula in my lap and ALL OVER the floor and seat. I am realizing this could turn into a sticky nightmare for the rest of the 6 hours on the flight! I decide to scoop everything up and go to the bathroom and try to shake the formula into the nasty toilet. I wanted to throw it all out the emergency hatch! When I get up from the seat I lean over and beat the remaining formula into the air and onto the floor. An older Chinese woman runs down the row and looks at what (or who) I'm beating with a concerned look on her face and then retreats to her seat after she realizes it is not the chinese orphans! LOL!
So I disappear into the bathroom for about 10 minutes. While there I have no choice but to put all the blankets on the nasty nasty 14 hour flight which no body attends to the restroom but should bathroom floor while I pick each one up individually and shake them out into the toilet or at least near the toilet. I am whimpering. I can control myself. I am almost to America. I have 5 kids. I am doing great. These are the things I am telling myself. Then I pick up a blanket and shake it into the toilet and my precious iPhone falls INTO THE TOILET! I lose it. I burst into tears. Realizing that it's just not that my iphone with all my photos from the trip and my whole life are in the blue abyss, but that I've been needing this breakdown of emotions for about two weeks now. So I just let myself cry not caring who hears while I rescue my phone (which survived thanks to its otter box) and proceed to wipe the formula off all the walls and surfaces of the bathroom.
When I return to our seats Husband has everyone calm and happy and gives me a look like he hopes I am not about to go crazy because he cannot do it alone. I am fine now. The cry served its purpose. I feel good now.
We land in Detroit and go thru some long lines and hand the man the infamous brown envelope and I am proud of myself that we (Husband) has kept up with everything we needed for our long journey. We didn't lose anything or get anything stolen. I had remembered all the important documents and all was good. Lily and Hope immediately became American citizens when we touched down in Detroit! Just like that, they were FREE!
I was born into freedom. Political and religious freedom. You probably were too. But Lily and Hope, without any knowledge or control, were born into poverty, abandonment, and health problems. Religious freedom was the least of their concerns. But now, because we paid a lot of money and went to China to get them, they are free. I kept thinking HOW EASY WAS THAT?!! How easy was that to CHANGE SOMEONE'S LIFE FOREVER!!!!! TO CHANGE THEIR ETERNAL DESTINY FOREVER!!!!!!!!! Yes, it took YEARS of waiting, months of paperwork, lots of money from us and from ALL our friends and family, and a big dose of commitment, but really that's nothing when you think about what it did for them.
AND THEY WERE WORTH IT!!! And there are millions of orphans in this world that are still worth it.
God did the same thing for us. The price was high. His Son. But He gave it all. We didn't realize how much we needed him. But He came anyway and rescued us! HE RESCUED US!!!!!!!!!! HE RESCUED US!!!!!!!!!!!!! HE RESCUED US!!!!!!!!!!!!
I love God more now because of this adoption. I realize more and more His great selfless love for me everyday and how I have no idea what it costs him. I am just so grateful.
We are home now. We are all happy. We love each other. All is good. And our story continues...