Friday, April 22, 2005


April 21, 2005 : A Day of Double Happiness

After getting our first call at 9 in the morning, I breathed a huge sigh of relief and happily put on the super cute "Fortune Tee" Jeff got me that says "A Baby Girl Is In My Near Future", slapped on some make-up and dashed out the door to pick Megan up from the car dealership in Ontario.

We left the PT Cruiser for service, and went to Montclair Plaza to return a suit Meg had buyers' remorse over (she did spend waaaay too much) and then to shop for something better, which we found at Ann Taylor Loft. Shopping always makes us hungry, and Meg felt we should celebrate the 1st Call, so new suit in hand, we headed off for downtown Claremont to browse the boutiques and dine at one of the little restaurants there.

Our first stop in Claremont was this darling little children's shop (the kind with fancy dresses & unique clothes & gifts where everything is 2x as expensive as you think it should be) where Meg bought Tenley her first pair of shoes: they're pink leather Mary Janes with red tulips embroiderd on the toes. We decided on this little Italian cafe for lunch- which was fabulous- and then paused for homemade ice cream at the confectioner's shop on the way back to the car.

We left. We passed city hall. We made a right. My cell phone rang. I said, "Oh, that must be Jeff" but my caller ID clearly said USAA. I presumed Yazmine must have forgotton to tell me something when we had talked in the morning, so I hit the green button and cheerfully said "Hi Yazmine!" There was a small chuckle and then a soft male voice with a Chinese accent said, "No, not Yazmine- this is Norman." The director of my agency was calling? NO! It couldn't be!! But it was: Norman said "I'm calling with your referral!" I couldn't breathe. "NOW?? Oh my God, hang on- I'm driving and I can't write!" I cried as I veered across 2 lanes of traffic, whipped into a parking lot, and threw my CRV in park. Megan had figured out what was happening by now and had grabbed to small notebook I keep in the car and found a pencil for me to write with.

Norman sounded excited as he said, "You have a very young infant! She is very small, very little and beautiful!" "Young?? How young??" I wanted to know. "She was born on September 13, 2004." Only 7 months!! WOW!! "Where is she from Norman?? Which Province??" Norman replied that she was from the Guangdong province, and was at the Yang Xi Social Welfare Institute. "What is her name??" Norman explained, "Her name is Qiu Li Hao. Qiu is her last name, the same as the Director of the SWI. All babies from there have this name. Li is her first name- it means 'beautiful'. Hao is her middle name... it has no meaning it is just a name." He went on to tell me that as of February 22 she was 63 cm (24.8 inches) long, and weighed 6.4 kg (14 lbs.). I was so stunned I didn't think to as him any more details.

Megan and I sat in the parking lot and wept tears of suprise and joy for a few minutes, and then I called Jeff who sounded completely shocked. Oddly, it was our parents (the new grandparents) that we could not get ahold of! Except for my Dad, who was thrilled for us and delighted to be the first person to know something for once!

Jeff and I celebrated last night by going to Babies R Us and ordering Tenley's furniture. Then we went to the Panda Inn for dinner. We had come full circle: we had dinner there on January 15, 2004 after we met with Hemlata and began this quest.

Forecast for last night: no sleep. We were busy counting the hours until we could drive to Montery Park and see her precious little face for the first time.

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