Friday, May 25, 2012

Passport Delivered

Today was truly downtime in Zhengzhou.  We had been told on a number of occasions by CCAI why this trip would be so long, and we've now experienced why it is that our trip is longer than some other China adoption trips: Henan's beaurocracy is mind-numbingly slow and tedious.  At this point, it is what it is, so we're just rolling with it.  We're missing the kids at home, I'm missing work, and today Jenn reached the point that I reached two days ago:  while I'm not down on the people, I'm ready to be home from Asian culture.  As I pondered this realization of ours, it gave me a real appreciation for missionaries, such as my Aunt Beth and Uncle Mark, who leave their familiar Western culture to live in very unfamiliar cultures for a cause from which they may or may not see fruit on this side of Heaven.

Henry is just the happiest kid.  He loves just motoring around the room or hallway or lobby.  And when he falls down or bumps his head, he doesn't fuss or cry... he just gets back up and keeps moving.
Today was the first day that we put Henry down for naps instead of relying on him to fall asleep on a bus or in the Ergo, and those two times as well as bedtime tonight went shockingly well.  We're phasing out his formula, and Jenn is spending about 5 minutes of wind-down time with him and then simply setting him in his crib.  On all three occasions he fussed a bit, but then settled down, talked to himself, played with his hands and/or feet, and then fell asleep.  And he's been catching up on his traumatic front of the week.

Henry and I are making baby steps of progress.  At times, he'll let me hold him for very short period of time if I'm feeding him animal crackers or goldfish.  He's also steadily opening up with me during playtime.  Jenn and I have been joking that he either refers to me in his mind as "the snack man" or as "the stranger that sleeps in my room."  One of these days...
And he's eating his meals very well.  He's becoming more and more picky about fruit, but eggs, noodles, breads, ec., he's great with.  He's a very messy drinker, but a surprisingly clean eater.  He's not yet using silverware, and it's okay with us to have to feed him because that helps the bonding process.  But whatever he eats, he keeps nearly all of it in his mouth to the point where I don't have to wipe his face much.  This is a very differs experience on the heals of Lydia recently going through this stage.  As Jenn says, he's in for Boot Camp when we get home because it'll be a high chair all the way.  We can't have him making a scene in the restaurants, and they won't let me bring a high chair up to our room (one of my several problems with this hotel), so he'll have anoth week of eating on the bed or on Mommy's lap.

What has really kept us laughing are the faces he makes when he's concentrating on something, his walk (left hand up, right finger up; both making tomahawk motions), and his "I'm so proud of myself smiles."
Tomorrow we leave for Guangzhou by flight, and it will be Henry's first time on a plane.  I anticipate he'll do fine with most things, but I'll be curious to see if he'll sit in his seat or insist on climbing into Jenn's lap.  We're bummed that the White Swan hotel is closed.  That's the adoptive family tradition, and it was located in an area that catered to Westerners.  Our hotel will not be in that area.

We received Henry's passport today, so everything but his visa home is official.  This time next week we'll be in the midst of our journey home.

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