I was at work, when one of my co-workers says "Hey Ashley, you missed a call." I look at my missed calls and see a missed call from Eugene, Oregon. (I think my heart stopped)
For a split second, I thought, "Is this the call??" But then, I thought, there is no way. Our dossier head only been in China 11 weeks. But then I checked my message and it was Beth, saying she wanted to talk to me about something. I step inside our conference room and call her back. Beth is the director of the China program at Holt.
"Ashley, I wanted to talk to you about a little girl....."
I think I heard bits and pieces of what she was saying...but definitely not all. I was slightly freaking out. (In a good way). She was able to provide me with her age, basic health information and current living situation. After spending the weekend talking with Matt, we decided that we definitely wanted to move forward and view her file. At this point, we were given a pre-released file. I was at home and Matt was at work...of course neither one of us could wait. I immediately opened it, quickly scrolled through the Chinese characters that made no sense...and then I saw this...
The tears start flooding and I try to stay calm as I quickly open more documents that are in English. I read and re-read. Ri was 5 weeks older than Xander and born with an extra special heart. I tried to stay calm and use my brain to wrap my mind around the information I was reading...but my heart was already stolen.
For those of you reading this that don't know a lot about me, I spent 7 years working in Pediatric Cardiology at Children's Medical Center Dallas as a pharmacist. By NO means am I an expert, but for 7 years, this was my day, taking care of heart babies. Little did I know...God had a little heart baby for our family.
So, I was super lucky, and had the opportunity to make many friendships in this job and of course work with some of the best of the best in Cardiology. So, thanks to a fellow co-worker and friend who specializes in Pediatric Cardiology, Ri's file was in a Cardiologist's hands within an hour. Between her and our cardiologist, we had valuable insight promptly. We also consulted our pediatrician, 2 international medicine physicians, and we had another Cardiologist that partners with our agency reviewing her file as well. Now, as I have mentioned in previous posts...the medical information you are given is limited...it may not be accurate. We have to go in this knowing that. We were able to ask a few questions about Ri and get some updated photos and videos from our agency over the next week. (By the way...at this point we have told NO family, and only one friend who happened to be at my house when I got the email referral). We wanted to get all the information we could and not have any bias.
We spent every night talking more and more about Ri as we spoke with different physicians and got more and more information on her. My heart was there. And through much prayer and discussion, fears that we had subsided, peace began to cover us, and we knew THIS is our daughter. God made HER for our family.
Are we still scared? Absolutely! The unknowns, the idea of twins (with Xander), the idea of traveling much quicker than planned, the burden of finances approaching sooner than planned. It's scary. But it was God's plan. And His plan is always best. Change is scary. Even when you are pregnant, you still have moments of fear right? Moments where you think...God, can I do this? But, that's when we try to redirect our thoughts. God..you are good. God, you will provide. God, you are constant.
There is so much more to this story....some I will share publically, and some, you will just need to make a dinner date with me to hear about.
But, for now, we are in full throttle mode to get Morrissey Ri home as soon as possible. Thank you God for choosing US to be her parents.
We are coming baby girl...
"May the God of HOPE fill you with all JOY and PEACE as you trust in Him, so that you may overflow with HOPE by the power of the Holy Spirit" Romans 15:13