I want to start off by saying that many people are surprised to know that AnnaClaire was adopted through China's special needs program. She looks and is INCREDIBLY healthy. Her SN is one that just requires monitoring. (Note: We, as a family, have decided to keep AnnaClaire's medical need private so please do not ask me why she was on a SN list. I have responded to a comment in the comments section of this post to tell you why this is.)
We did not really know much about AC's need at referral and had a lot of questions. However, everytime we looked at those pictures... that precious face, we KNEW Xun Hui was our AnnaClaire and so we took a step of faith and accepted her referral. I often think about that. What if we had said no? She is PERFECT for us. Her need has been SO manageable and we honestly forget she even has it. There is absolutely no doubt that SHE is the child God intended to be a member of our family.
It was easy when we were paperchasing and went on the interested families list for Kate. We wanted another child with this need. We had experience, we have a great doctor, we understand it all, we have researched, etc. We filled out the form in September 2007 with just this one need listed. And then we waited. Our agency doesn't normally match before DTC, so we were officially waiting for a referral in December 2007, once we were DTC and LID. There were a few batches that came from Dec. to May. Not one had a baby girl with this need (that we know of.)
Two weeks before receiving Kate's referral, we went through the checklist again. We knew there were SO many other needs we could handle. Initially, we had felt very strongly about Kate and AnnaClaire sharing their SN. However, suddenly that didn't really matter. We decided to open our checklist up and added quite a few more needs.
There was one need in particular that I remember talking about time after time. Hemangioma. I honestly don't know why we ever questioned it. However, I think there was a scare over the size that it could be. We have two close friends who both received referrals with us summer 2006. Both of these families adopted girls AC's age with small hemangiomas. They both told us about their experiences, the treatment options, etc. We researched and put a big YES by "hemangioma." 2 weeks later, we received a call. A 15 month old girl with a hemangioma on her right cheek. We locked her file, sent our LOI, started preparing for our sweet little Kate, etc. She was PERFECT for us (still is) and we were in love (still are!)
Sure enough, the next month (July), and the following month (Aug), a family with our agency received the referral of a precious little girl with the same need that AnnaClaire has. Now, remember that all of the months prior, there hadn't been one young girl with this need to be referred to a family with our agency. At once, we realized that all of these months, God had kept our agency from receiving a referral of a baby girl with this need. All of these months, he was waiting for us to update our checklist so he could send Kate... OUR KATE, our Kate who has a hemangioma on her cheek!
On that note, only EIGHT days until we leave for China!!!! And somewhere between 10-12 days until we get Kate!!!!