As the van pulled up to our hotel, we entered with trepidation knowing this would be a difficult yet important day for our girl. But every step of the way, I could feel strength that only comes from our Heavenly Father (thanks to the prayers of many). She had been asking to return home since she first came to us, and we now know that was in part because she knew about dumpling day and wanted to know when it would happen. She knew it would be her time to say goodbye.
We pulled up to the orphanage gates and she dissolved into tears as she saw the workers she loved standing there waiting for us. With tears streaming down her face, we visited her school room and friends as well as the rooms of other children adopted in our group.
Finally, with heavy steps yet peace in our hearts, we walked toward her door. The door swung open to reveal her foster baba who she immediately reached for with fresh tears. He had tears too. A moment I will never forget.
They ushered us into their tiny apartment as if we were long lost family members. Hugging us and sharing information about Eva with us. Her foster baba wanted us to know she is afraid of thunder and her foster mama showed us her favorite toys.
The dumpling making station was set up in the living room and the kids sat down and got to work. Eva was beside herself with joy over this, a brief respite in a difficult day. The children had great fun, but then the dumplings came out. Of course, the foster mama had made tons of dumplings for everyone with us! It was decided by all that they were some of the best dumplings they had ever had!
They gave us gifts as well. Thoughtful little gifts for Grace and Anthony and very special ones for us. The foster mama made us a beautiful cross stitch.
As I looked around her room, clearly decorated with love, my eyes landed on a beautiful photo of Eva. I took a picture of it so I could remember it and her foster mama came over with tears in her eyes and gestured to me and the wall. She wanted me to take it.
But the real gift they gave us was love. Their love for Eva and their love for us. Love that crosses oceans.
I know I will have more thoughts as I process all that happened but for now I will leave you with this. Isn't our God AMAZING?!