Monday, December 17, 2007
Instant Family Outing
At Ju Yong Guan we met some foreigners holding Chinese babies.
They had just adopted them a few days earlier in Nancheng, capital of Jiangxi Province.
From what we could tell most of the babies were girls, fitted in pink or white snowsuits complete with hats and mittens. Some were asleep in their new parents' arms, or were uneasy and crying, perhaps confused by the new environment and adjusting to their new moms and dads.
Some couples were French, Spanish and Canadian. One proud father from Vancouver, Canada, showed off Emily, his daughter from Nancheng. She was the second child he adopted from China.
"I love China," he proclaimed, having visited many places in the country. But when he went to pick up 11-month old Emily last week he was saddened after seeing the dreary environment of Nancheng. One could tell he was sure to give his daughter a much better life in North America.
The families all climbed up this steep section of the wall and took snaps -- their first outing together.
They all captured the Kodak moment and perhaps years from now when their children are older they will return to retrace their steps to help them better understand their roots.
Adopting children from China has become a cottage industry. Couples not only pick up their children, but also get to tour around the country before going home.
It's great to see loving parents willing to take these otherwise neglected children. But one can only imagine what it is like for the child, when she grows up and realizes how much different she looks from her parents and trying to understand how she ended up so far from her homeland.
Will she shun her past completely embracing her new country, or will she appreciate both worlds? Each situation will be different. But as more of these adopted children get older, it will be interesting to see what they think their identity is and what it means to them.