Monday, December 29, 2008

Thank You So Much and More Details

When I received the LOA email, I was so excited and it was so surreal. I immediately had a bit of a panic as I thought of having to be in an airplane for so long, but then recovered and the rest of my day was wonderful. I had a smile on my face. I real smile and not a fake smile. There was such a feeling of relief and now total excitement. I wanted to post the LOA news right away so you could all know so I apologize that it was not flashy or in more detail. Since posting I have received so many comments and emails from many of you and it is just amazing. Thank you all so much for following our journey and sharing in our lives. I wish that I could meet you all in person and I am so lucky that I get to start with some VERY special local ladies that have been a shoulder of support for me. ---Kristin and Karen this means you - just in case you were confused :)
Since my initial post, the day has just gotten better and better. Some of you may remember that I keep mentioning Rivers who is with Piper at Eagles Wings. When Piper Skypes with us Rivers is usually with her because Piper is pretty shy and she feels more comfortable with Rivers there. River's family was a few weeks behind us so we did not think we would travel together. In fact, back in the day we thought for sure we would be there before Christmas and Janie (River's mom who I actually got to talk to in person today!!!) and her family would be following after the New Year. Well, throughout this wait I wondered why this was happening. You know...the "why me" pity party. Well, I think I know now. I think we needed to wait for Rivers. Did you guess???? Yup, River's LOA came too which means the girls will leave together. Janie and I are so excited and deep down I just know this was the right timing.
After hearing back from Janie (who I think has esp because she emailed me this morning with her cell number in case we had any news) that they received LOA, I was even more excited. We may miss Jenny as she is set to leave on February 11th for Australia, but I just refuse to think about it until someone tells me for sure. I told her if that happens that I will just have to save my pennies to come back. Ummm, I do have a handsome little man at PHF that I have been eyeing :) So, now I am on Cloud 9. But, it gets better.
I start emailing with Charlene who is in Henan right now after picking up her uber delicious yummy little gal, Grace. Grace was an PHF with Piper and I would love to post a picture because she is oh so adorable, but I want to get her mommy's permission first. So, Charlene and I are emailing chatting and she mentions that she met my friend, Heather, in China that morning. What? I am so jealous. My bloggie friends are meeting each other and China didn't invite me :( Charlene is telling me about her 4 wonderful kids, giving me tips on the trip, telling me about PHF, etc. and then I mention that if she happens to be going to the orphanage and has time can she stop by and see Piper. Super Woman Charlene - who is in China and its the middle of the night - emailed me back several times getting her Chinese name, etc. and then emailed Eagles Wings to find out how to get there. Is this amazing!!!!!! If she is able to she should be there in the next couple of hours. Now, she may not be able to, but she may be able to and that is just so exciting I do not know if I can sleep. If she can, she will be meeting my sweet wonderful Piper. I cannot wait to check and see if she did tomorrow morning. Oh, and the cherry on top is that when looking on her blog I found a new picture of Piper with Grace at PHF and a picture of our handsome sponsor child, Jacob Jai, too.
I also heard from my friend, Heather, today who has met her darling son, Drew. Heather endured way too much getting to China with a travel nightmare and I was so happy when Charlene said they met. I have been stalking her blog for pictures of her minnie man and will steal one and bring it over in a minute. I didn't ask her, but its a public blog...and, she is in China...what is she going to do!!
Can you believe all of this????
So, it gets better. When I get home at about 10:30 p.m. from work, there are some items on the kitchen counter for me. One is a soft envelope from my Secret Pal Joy. I thought, hmmm...what is this? I was speechless when I opened it. Ladies, this woman who is so amazing, so thoughtful and so kind sent me a birthday gift and it is BEAUTIFUL! I will take a picture for the blog, but it is a stunning craftty natural picture frame that I cannot wait to put a picture of my two minnie loves in. Joy, you amaze me. I am so lucky to have you as a friend. I'll be stalking your blog in a moment to gush over there...oh and Facebook too. By the way, I keep forgetting to mention that I need to meet your Dad. He is so funny on Facebook!
Another item on my kitchen counter was a handmade Birthday card from Piper. It was an adorable card and under it was a Garmon. The card said...."Mommy, do you think you can use this to come get me now?" Thank you Hubs for such a sweet card and wonderful gift!
Ladies, yesterday and today were hard. The end of the year is rough at work and I am drained. Then, the reality of life is sometimes just too darn real. I miss my family. I am 36 and both of my parents have died from cancer. My sister isn't thrilled with me after my mom's death and I am the only biological child of a family who has all died from cancer. This birthday was just harder than last year. My mom was 36 when my Dad died and she was left to raise my sister and I alone. Maybe that is why? She seemed to mature, so adult, so together. I still feel like a kid who is pretty good at faking being an adult. I don't mind getting older, that is not the part that bothers was just something about this age...and something about time passing. I guess I was sad and I still am sad, but today made it SO SO much better.
Today has given me hope.
Rejuvenated my spirit.
Healed a part of my soul.
You have all helped me to get here and have been a part of this journey.
Thank you!


Heather Thompson said...

Oh you made me cry! Ashley, I am SO thrilled that we share a wonderful day where I got my little man and you got your LOA. I wish we were both here together but I'm still celebrating for you! Congrats and may your TA come more quickly than you could imagine!
Heather (FL)

Jenny & Robert said...

Oh Ashley. Your post made my heart sad. I'm sorry you've had so much to endure.
But please know there is so much more wonderful and beautiful life to live! You have your darling little girl who is waiting for you. And you are right. The more I wonder about such things, it is all in God's timing. We may not understand it (I know I sure don't!!) but when we are going through it or are looking back, we realize it was all in perfect timing.
It sounds like you have wonderful pals nearby and we in bloggie land are here for you. We cannot wait to meet all of you one day. I look forward to those pictures of you all as a family! Now THAT is something to smile about girlfriend!

Sue said...

Hooray!!! So glad that you got that paper. What a wait! And I am happy that you are seeing the positives in this wait and the timing. Happy belated B'Day!!!!
Here's to a super speedy TA!!!

Tiffany and Marty said...

Had to let you know that we got our LOA today! You are so right. I love this feeling!! It is incredible.

Blogging2china said...

Hey Ashley!! I just wanted to congratulate you, finally LOA, I have been so worried about you. Time will fly by from here with so much to do....I did want to mention I paniced too big time thinking about the flight, honestly it was not nearly as bad as I had made it out to be in my mind. You will do fine! Congrats and check out our blog, we have new pics, all of this is so worth it in the end, I am (almost) sane again, finally!! Shay