• Shuang Shuang turns 14

    Date: 2013.06.02 | Category: Jasmine (Shuang Shuang) | Tags:

    When we found out that expediting Eli was possible, we knew that we would be cutting it close with Shuang Shuang’s aging out of the orphanage.  In China, when you turn 14 you are no longer available to be adopted.  We were told that it didn’t matter if the paperwork was all done and we were traveling, if we weren’t there before she turned 14, then we couldn’t adopt her.  God had shown himself over and over again during this year that lead us to four beautiful souls.  We decided, once again, to trust in His plan and proceeded, believing with all our hearts, that He would get us to her in plenty of time.

    We were told many things about what would happen to her after she turned 14.  Someone said she would be put out on the street.  That could not have even remotely been a possibility.   She isn’t able to sit-up, roll over, or really move herself.  Someone else told me that they thought she would have been moved to an adult mental institution.  I don’t honestly know what would have happened to her, and it breaks my heart to even consider the possibilities.  I hurt for all the years she spent in the orphanage waiting for a family.  I have said many times that I don’t always understand God’s plans, but I trust them.  I do know having seen her with our little ones that she was probably a wonderful big sister to the children in the orphanage.  I bet she encouraged and changed many lives.

    Having read the posts about Lauren (Shuang) on Love Without Boundaries site, you see quickly that her life has touched many people.  Many people were praying for her and we even heard from her sponsors this week.  They both talk about how much they care about Shuang.  It’s been a very moving couple of weeks.

    So on this, her 14th birthday, a whole week as a US citizen, it seemed appropriate to celebrate.

    We had a busy day today.  The girls had a dance recital at 11 and 5:30, so we chose to let Shuang Shuang sleep in.  I woke her up after noon and she still wanted to sleep.  Jet lag is no fun!  Maisey and Eli woke me up at 4:30 a.m. so we decided to start decorating.  During our decorating fun, I had to put Maisey in time out because I turned around to find her having already opened two of Shuang’s gifts.  More wrapping, more decorating, and we were as ready as we could be.

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    Dan may have gone a little overboard on the gifts.  He said she has missed 6 birthdays and he wanted her to have a nice one.  He went shopping and found a random array of gifts.  From a stuffed dog that you make sing with a microphone, to really girly purses.  The sad thing was she didn’t understand gifts.  She didn’t know how to open one, but that was soon rectified.

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    And even some random goofy gag gifts….

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    Mema brought her a special, big, pink, princess, cake.

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    Eli especially enjoyed Shuang’s cake.

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    We went to her siblings dance recital.   Where Maisey proceeded to turn herself slightly with her back to the audience and not dance one little bit.  The audience ooohhed and awwwed and I wondered why I always have the child who loves dance and refuses to perform at the recital.   She looked cute in the outfit though.

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    And on our way into the recital, a lady who had been selling bouquets of flowers to dance families, said that she had one bouquet of flowers left and wondered if she could give them to Shuang.  I told her that it was her birthday and that would be wonderful.   Happy birthday wishes were spread around and Shuang felt special.  It’s not often you are on a sidewalk and a random person hands you a bouquet of flowers.  I love Godcidences.

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    What a wonderful addition Shuang has been to our family.  Everyone loves her.  While Ben was dancing on stage, he stopped and yelled, “Hey, I can see mama and Shuang.  Shuang, Shuang came to watch me.  Awesome!”  Cassie and Gracie especially have fun with Shuang.   Gracie has always had a special place in her heart for Shuang and had hoped that they would be friends.  It has turned out better than Gracie had hoped.  They sleep in beds right next to each other.  They giggle and play their I-pads.  It’s a wonderful thing to see.

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    It was a big day.  Cassie took the littles into the playroom so that I could take a nap. This is what happened a mere 20 minutes later.

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    But Shuang and Gracie were still going strong at midnight.

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    All in all, it was a wonderful day filled with happy memories.  I fell in love with her picture on LWB’s site, when LWB was advocating for a family for her.  I cried tears because we had already decided that adopting an older child was not a good fit for our family.  At the very same moment, in another room, on another computer, Dan read the same story and cried tears too.  He came to me and said we needed to talk and the rest is history as they say.  Thank goodness God doesn’t listen to what we think we can handle.  I can’t imagine my life without that sweet smile in it.

    Happy birthday Shuang Shuang – my beautiful Jasmine flower.  Mama loves you!