Wednesday, July 08, 2009

Off to W@alm@rt we went.

On our second day in Kunming we visited a W@lly M@rt. It was our first experience with a five story one. Talk about overwhelming. All the families made this trip, to stock up on whatever they would need for the next three days. We did not need much, but went for the experience. A purchase that came in really handy was our thermos. We carried hot water with us everywhere, and shared with a family who did not have one.

P wanted to get cards for our cell phones to make them operable while in China, without losing our savings in the process. He was concerned that we would be separated and unable to reach each other. As much as I worry about everything, that one did not cross my mind. Lucky us, the iPh0ne would not cooperate. When P realized that it would be a long wait he suggested I walk around with SS. Are you crazy? You want me to wonder around a five story building, in a country where I do not speak the language, and happen to be trotting around with one of their children? P assured me that I would not get lost (all the families had gone their separate ways) and that it would be better than standing around. For the record, I am not a clingy person, have been on my own pretty much since I was sixteen. I do have an incredible knack for getting lost. When I am late coming home, P worries that once again, I managed to get lost. That's how bad I am.

My silly concerns were unfounded, as I was not only safe, but easily findable. I can't be 100% certain, but I am pretty sure that I was the only Hispanic woman with a Chinese child in that store. BTW, the escalators where you can take the shopping cart are handy and cool. I need to get out more. By the time we made it to the second floor, I was completely relaxed, just looking around. I'm sure that we were stared, pointed and gawked at, but did not care. Maybe it is because I have always been the odd one out, or who knows. It was really fascinating looking at the amount and variety of food available. SS was totally chilling in the Ergo, sticking her little head out just enough to see.

A few of our travel mates were disappointed that Pl@ytex products were not available. When you are spending two weeks in a hotel room, those drop in liners come in handy. We had been instructed not to bother bringing bottles and such, because you can find everything in China. Well, not always and not everywhere. As usual, I brought more liners than we needed and shared with one of the families. P was slowly forgetting about the $55 charge we paid one the way to Kunming (and out) for overweight luggage.

A VERY important item not available at W@lly M@rt, and have been told in China, is prunes. Totally worth packing those little packages.

That afternoon, the reality of her situation caught up with our SS. It was so difficult to see her in pain, mourning her loss and grieving by wanting to be held and whimpering. Can you imagine trying to make sense of her situation at fifteen months? SS never let out an all out crying fit. We so wish she had, and wonder if that is part of why all hell broke loose in March. We will never know.

While we knew that we were not going on a vacation, we also wanted to take in as much of our daughter's birth province and country. We wanted to get at least a glimpse of what her life would have been like. The agencies encourage outings and of course you dine out for every meal. Our agency required payment for breakfast and dinner (to be arranged by them, whether or not you participated), and we were on our own for lunch. Not sure if that is the norm with all agencies.

The problem is that our children, whether in foster care or a SWI were accustomed to very little stimulation. SS had no idea how to play with her toys, doubt she was exposed to many. Imagine living in a building for fifteen months, then one day, yeah let's party. It is really difficult on the children, and they should be the main concern. We did skip some dinners and outings, but maybe we should have skipped many more. That is one thing to look into if we do this again. To find an agency that will give us the freedom to make our own arrangements, without incurring monetary penalties.

I was reading my account of that day , and realized how screwed up my dates are. I was new to Bl0gger and had no idea how to manipulate the date posted stamp. We were fifteen hours ahead, so I need to go back and fix things.

Today, SS reminded us of the power of comfort food. She has not been eating much, and while better, not our usual SS. I made rice, beans and avocado and SS ate more than she has in a very long time. If you want to comfort my husband and children (none born in PR, and only one has visited), make RBA and you can't go wrong.

SS was crying because I stepped into the bathroom and out of her sight. It was only for a few seconds, but she cried. It really broke my heart. If you look closely, her pants are up to her chest. Capri pants but ankle length on her and wide at the waist. SS only kept them on because she spent her time in the Ergo and was not walking.

SS has had few difficult days, but she managed to smile for Baba. Much better, so much better.

One thing that has not changed in a year, the tongue.

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