Monday, October 26, 2009

Documentary Screening

This past Saturday my local FCC, and Dr. Tony Tan from the USF College of Education, hosted a screening of a documentary on China adoptions. The documentary was filmed and produced by Dr. Changfu Chang, a Chinese professor and film maker from Pennsylvania. Both professors were born in China and have spent many years studying adoptions on Chinese children.

The documentary is called Long Wait For Home and it really is a must have for all families that adopt from China. It started off by profiling three birth families who told of their reasons for abandoning their child. It was heart wrenching to hear their stories - all three of them very different.

Then, Dr. Chang and his team were able to get footage inside an orphanage. They interviewed several of the nanny's and were able to give us a glimpse as to what life in a Chinese orphanage is really like. It was amazing and at this point I don't think there was a dry eye in the room.

Lastly, they interviewed several demographics of people in China and asked them their views on foreigners coming to China and adopting their children. Some people just had no clue and other's were very appreciative. It was eye opening.

I purchased all six of his DVD's. I feel that any insight that I will be able to give to my daughter will be worth the cost.

Most people that attended were already home with their children. They couldn't believe that I've been waiting for over three years already and still have no idea when I'll get a referral. If one more person told me that they only waited six months I was seriously going to hit them.

After the movie ended there was a Q & A session. Obviously, the first question asked was "are there really fewer babies being abandoned?" Dr. Changs answer was interesting. In short, his answer was NO. He explained it like this:

China has a population of 1.3 billion people
There are an estimated 10 million marriages per year
1/2 of those couples will get pregnant and have a baby
1% of those couples will adandon their child
That equals approximately 50,000 babies per year

So where are they? According to Dr. Chang, they are there. He has seen them. His thoughts are that they have been moved from the orphanages that participate in international adoption to the domestic orphanages in the poorer, smaller towns. This was China's way of "saving face". The fact that the rest of the world was coming to "save their children" because they could not take care of them, did not sit well with the Chinese government. Again, this is his theory. He does not believe that China will shut down the IA program but he does not expect the wait times to decrease.

I'm so glad that I went and was able to learn more about the possible circumstances that my daughter may face before I even meet her. Dr. Chang speaks at many FCC events throughout the year. I highly recommend any adoptive parent or family member to attend if he should come to a location near you.

Sunday, October 4, 2009

Race For The Cure & 37 Months LID

Saturday was the 11th annual
Komen Suncoast Race For The Cure.

I walk every year to celebrate my Aunt Beth.

She was first diagnosed almost 20 years ago.

She's had more rounds of chemo than I can even remember.

When they removed the tumor on her spine,
they told her she might never walk again.

She did.

They told her should would NEVER be able to conceive a baby.

Liam Matthew was born on November 24, 2003.

When they did a PET Scan last year
her body was riddled with tumors.

When they did a PET Scan last month, they were virtually gone!

THAT is why I walk EVERY YEAR!!!!

This year I walked with my best friend Rachel, her beautiful 2 year old daughter and a bunch of her "mama friends".

Talk about odd man out ~ I was the only one not pushing a stroller :o(

Me & Rachel

The "mom's" made these cute t-shirts for all the kids!

On a completely separate, and much more depressing note,
today I've been logged in for 37 months37 months closer to my dream!