We are getting ready to go to bed for our last night in China! Like I said before the rest of our group members left today so we are the last ones to leave. We spent the day playing in the room and getting organized and packed for our long trek home. Hannah does best when we keep things low key so we wanted to have a slow-paced day before we turn her world upside down tomorrow.
We have to put our bags out in the hallway for the bellboy at 5:45am tomorrow morning. We will leave the hotel @ 6 am. Our flight itineraries and tracking information are listed below:
Guangzhou to Beijing:
Depart Guangzhou @ 8:00am Saturday/ land Beijing 11:30am Saturday
(Local times back in Texas: 5:00pm Friday night/ 9:30pm Friday night
Beijing to Houston:
Depart Beijing @ 3:00pm / land Houston 2:40pm Saturday
(Local times back in Texas: 1:00am Saturday morning / 2:40pm Saturday afternoon
We will basically leave China on Saturday afternoon and arrive in Houston on Saturday afternoon, all without the help of a time traveling machine! We will have been awake and traveling for approximately 24 hours at that point so we will be excited but tired!
While we are excited to head home to everything that is familiar, poor Hannah has no idea what is about to happen. She is leaving everything she has ever known by coming home with us tomorrow. All the sights, smells, sounds, language and people in her new home will be foreign to her. While we (and everyone at home) have spent months preparing emotionally for her to come home, she has had little to no time to be emotionally prepared.
Bryan and I want to do our best to make Hannah feel secure, safe and attached to us during this time of transition which goes well beyond our arrival at the airport. We welcome anyone who wants to greet us at the airport to come-- just know that Hannah will stay in my arms while we are there, and our first priority is hugging and kissing our sweet boys and the wonderful grandparents who took care of them! We are looking forward to a family dinner at Bryan's parents home before we head to College Station with Hannah. We are excited for our families to meet her and hope she will handle that time well. We have found that Hannah tends to shut down in large crowds and new places. She lets her guard down and is happy, expressive, playful and funny when she's in the safety of our hotel room. It may take days or weeks for her to realize her new home (and her new extended family) are 'safe'... or she may feel comfortable right away! We will just have to wait and see.
Once we are home, we will be conquering the beast called jet lag! So if you see us looking rough and tired, it's probably because we are tired and feeling rough!! :) We will primarily be staying close to home with Hannah so she can transition into her new family and life. Of course we will have to get out and about for some things - the grocery store, taking the boys to school, etc-- but all of those things will be new and overwhelming for Hannah. We can't wait to see the familiar faces of people who have prayed for us, encouraged us, and shown so much enthusiasm for Hannah's adoption. Just know that she may need a little space and time to warm up slowly, and will be staying safe in our arms especially when we are out in public. In the months to come it will be important that Bryan and I be the only ones to meet Hannah's needs: changing her, feeding her, comforting her etc. She has had significant changes in her life 5 times before she met us and we want her to realize that we are forever for her.
We don't say any of these things to sound harsh, but more as a way to prepare everyone for what we think will be best for our new daughter. We cannot wait for you all to meet her and get to know her sweet, smart, spunky and sassy personality.
Thank you for joining us on this adoption journey! We are coming HOME!!!!