When I was in my early 20s, I worked for a year in Ukraine. During my time there, I spent some afternoons at one of the local children's hospitals, hanging out with kids who had been abandoned by their families or orphaned, kids who were HIV positive. These babies spent all their time in a large room, with little human contact. My friends and I would go and hold the babies and play with the toddlers. Nothing fancy, just spending time with them. Their faces still haunt my memories.
Since then, I've always had it on my heart that I would like to adopt someday. When I met Daniel and mentioned it to him, he agreed that he would really like to adopt as well. He said that if we did adopt a child, he would reach the end of his days feeling like he had done something important.
The stress of the pregnancy and delivery with Ethan did nothing to change our minds about adoption. We have no plans to have any more biological children, and intend to start working on adopting a little girl from China this February, when we will have been married for the 2 years required by the Chinese government. Adopting from China seems to be the logical choice for us, given that Daniel is a first generation immigrant, and we would have a step up in keeping a Chinese daughter fairly close to her birth culture.
She's on my mind a lot these days, as I watch Ethan grow up. If we adopt next year, we could be adopting a child who's about to be born, or who is an infant right now. So I wonder- is she getting the care she needs, the food she needs, the attention she needs. I see how much Ethan needs physical contact with Daniel and I- I see how much better he sleeps on the nights when we've been holding him and cuddling him during the day and how he can be so quickly calmed from being upset when we pick him up. I worry about our future daughter- wonder if someone is picking her up when she cries. I hope someone is taking good care of her. I hope she's getting some hugs.