Today we flew from Nanchang (WanYing's province) to Guangzhou (where the US Consulate is, so we can finish up WanYing's visa and head home). The first 80% of the flight was just fine. The non-stop screaming and writhing for the last 20 minutes was sheer horror. Mom is still recovering. WanYing was fully recovered as soon as we left the plane. Sigh.
So, rather than reliving any of today, we will strive to forget this day and talk instead about WanYing.
We haven't talked much about WanYing's limb differences yet on the blog - the truth is that it's really been no big deal and there's not much to tell!
For those of you who are new to our blog, we'll catch you up. WanYing was born with Amniotic Banding Syndrome (ABS) effects on both hands and her right foot. ABS is where bands from the amniotic sac slough off during gestation and work their way over the developing baby's extremities. The baby grows and the bands don't, so the area within the band gets choked off.
In WanYing's case, her foot is only a little effected - her big toe is short and the next two toes are adhesed where the band was. Her left hand has a fully-formed thumb and two fingers, with the pointer finger and middle fingers shortened and adhesed. And her right hand has a fully-formed pinky with the fingers and thumb all bound together.
Folks have asked about surgical options, and we have an appointment at Shriner's in May to see what they think. I wouldn't be surprised if they want to "loosen" (in our experience this is the word that surgeons always use in place of "cut apart") the banding on her right hand so that she has more dexterity with the shortened fingers, but we'll see.
The limb differences don't slow our gal down one bit. She has amazing dexterity and can grasp objects with both hands (read: can and regularly does eat watermelon slices double-fisted) and is walking and even running just like your average two-year-old.
Sasha inadvertently coined a great name that we'll use for WanYing's hands and foot when we first met and she asked why WanYing had "sticky fingers and sticky toes." Isn't that a great neutral, family-friendly term? So now we regularly refer to WanYing's "sticky fingers" as a way to normalize this new aspect of our family life.
Today's prayer request:
It was so heartbreaking today to see our girl uncomfortable and afraid and not yet ready to turn to us for comfort when things got really hard. We know that bond grow slowly and that it's totally natural for us to need to earn WanYing's trust - after all, we haven't even known each other for a week and she is enduring more change and transition right now than any little girl should be asked to bear.
Please join us in prayer that our relationship will grow at just the right speed - not too fast and not to slow - and will be built on the firmest of foundations. Pray that WanYing will learn to lean on us when the going gets tough and the world is heartbreaking and that we will, in turn, teach her to always trust in the God who will never, ever fail her.