Today marks our second full day in Guangzhou. I do love this city. Both today and yesterday, thought still marked with grieving moments, have been better for Eden. We are so thankful and feel encouraged. As always, Thank you for your prayers. One other prayer request and setback is that Zack's sinus/allergy issues have moved into his chest and he began to feel very achey and very fatigued this afternoon, along with a deep cough. He began an antibiotic today, so please pray that it will do the trick. He has done such a wonderful job with Eden and I can't imagine going through any of this without him. As you can tell from the pictures on Facebook, Eden is so fond of Zack, and for good reason- he is a wonderful husband and father, and he has been amazing with Eden.
Yesterday we had medical appointments for Eden and all the other children. She did very well, especially amidst a crowded room full of loud and crying children and nervous parents (we all were). Each child was first seen by a nurse that takes their basic measurements, then an ENT evaluates them, and then finally a general pediatrician does a complete physical. We went with Eden to each evaluation and she did very well. She even allowed me to hold for her a little while, which thrilled my soul! She still strongly prefers Zack, but I will take whatever I can get! The most difficult part of the exam comes at the end when they draw blood- the nurse takes the children alone into a room and it doesn't last long, but it's very scary for the children and hard to not be with them during such a frightening ordeal. Eden came back crying, but she did at least come to Zack for consolation.
After the medical appointment our guide took us to Wal-Mart (yes, another trip ;) to pick up any supplies we might need while in Guangzhou for the week. We have learned that Eden loves pistachios and peanuts, so we picked up some of those, along with some fruit, which Eden also loves- she is a very healthy eater :) The Wal-Mart in Guangzhou is much nicer than the one in Guiyang- still underground but much more calm and cool.
Eden took a nap on the bus and during part of our Wal-Mart trip- it was a much needed nap as we didn't get much sleep the night before because of our late arrival, and we had to leave the hotel at 8:30am for the medical appointment.
When we got back to the hotel, we finally had a chance to let Eden explore our amazing hotel- it is the same one we stayed at during our trip with Emmie. This hotel is a huge part of what makes the stay in Guangzhou so nice!! There is an indoor and outdoor playground, a pool, Starbucks, and lots of shops to browse through with the stroller. There is also a beautiful park not far from the hotel and it's super close to the subway, so it's easy to get around the city.
We explored the hotel and we found the pool. Eden seemed pretty interested, so we went back to the room to change into our swimsuits. Back at the pool, she was a little hesitant to get in the water, but after Zack and I showed her how much fun it could be, she sat down on the side of the pool and slid right in :) Our kids all love the water, so it was exciting to see that she seemed to like it as well.
After the pool we relaxed in our room, then we went to dinner with some of the other families to a local noodle restaurant. On the way to dinner Eden fell asleep on her stroller, and we had to wake her up to eat- I think she was just exhausted from the day and didn't want to wake up- and on top of that she began to grieve again, so Zack and I took turns eating as our food had already been served. The other took Eden outside and tried to console her. We ate as fast as we could and went back to the hotel.
She had almost calmed down by the time we got back, and a nice warm bath seemed to calm her down even more. She was a little restless at bedtime but no tears and she slept well. Overall, a better day for her than the day before.
This morning we didn't have to leave until 9:30 for some sightseeing, so we were able to sleep in and take our time at the wonderful breakfast in our hotel- think Shoney's or Frisch's breakfast buffet but only on steroids and with a Chinese twist :) Let's just say it's amazing and you could easily over do it without some self control :)
This morning we went to a local museum and also a local store that sells traditional Chinese art, tea, dresses, etc. we had a tea tasting experience and the tea was amazing! It was very hot and humid in Guangzhou today, but even still the hot tea was refreshing. For lunch we took some noodles and beans to go from a local restaurant and ate them in the hotel room- very yummy!!
We played for a long time in our room this afternoon as it was rainy and stormy here. I was a little nervous about how this would go as Eden hasn't been able to tolerate being in our hotel room for long periods of time, but she did well. We went for a stroller ride outside when the rain quit, and again she fell asleep- a double edged sword as she needed the rest but waking up from nap time has been difficult for Eden. Zack and I are partly to blame as we are still trying to figure out her nap times and the timing- it has been quite a while since we have had nap times and we are a little rusty :) It was tough for her for a little while, but we headed on over to McDonalds and a Happy Meal and some weird tasting green tea ice cream seemed to do the trick :) She allowed Zack and I to feed her and laughed with us and smiled a lot. Very thankful for times like these :)
Once we got back to the hotel she became very serious and it wasn't long before the grieving began. I would say this time it lasted around an hour, but the wonderful thing was that she allowed us to hold her the entire time, and even thought it didn't stop the crying or sadness, she didn't reject us, and we are thankful for that. I think that we have accepted the fact that she may grieve everyday for some time. It of course still saddens us greatly, but I think we feel comfortable with it and are okay with the fact that we can't make it better right now...if that makes sense. We can just continue to love her and provide safety and security for her.
It is now bedtime and Eden is resting quietly. A few funny things I want to share about this sweet girl- she came to us on her Gotcha Day with a backpack with Pleasant Goat on it- a very popular kids cartoon here in China. The backpack had the things we sent Eden in her care package inside. We also brought a backpack with us that was given to us as a shower gift and was filled with lots of fun toys and snacks for Eden. We brought this with us on Gotcha Day. Eden didn't want much to do with it that day, but ever since, she won't let either backpack out of her sight! Anytime we go anywhere she has one backpack on her back and the other in her hand! They are definitely a security "blanket" of sorts for her. She also puts her most prized possessions in her backpacks and gets very upset if you try to remove them, even if it just to try and play with the items. Bottom line- don't mess with Eden's backpacks :)
We also found a new favorite fruit of Eden's today. It's called dragon fruit. We passed by some today in the tea store and she went crazy pointing and moaning! We are all about doing whatever we can to please her right now (remember we are in survival mode :) and so we bought a bag for her. The fruit itself tastes like a sweet raisin or fig. Eating them is quite an adventure. I posted a video on Facebook where Eden displays how to do it :)
Goodnight from Guangzhou! And Happy Memorial Day!!
She also loves
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