As far as emotional roller coasters go, today was a kiddie coaster.
It was our day for the Great Wall of China tour. We had been looking so forward to having all THREE of our girls see the Wall with us. (And imagine the photo ops for Christmas cards!!!) But after yesterday, we just didn't know how Gia Chunyu would be feeling. Also, it was a long drive, and the carsickness issue worried us. We didn't want her to have to suffer any more than absolutely necessary.
Gia Chunyu woke up with her stellar smile, like the brave little soul that she is. I tell you, this girl is a mountain mover!
We had some yummy breakfast, sheep entrails and all...
And watched some very silly girls bonding togetehr...
Then it was time to go.
Yesterday, we stopped at a pharmacy and got some motion sickness patches. Helen was sure that they would help Gia Chunyu. So, we put one on her about 30 minutes before we planned to set out for the Wall. Well, not more than 5 minutes into the car ride, poor little Gia Chunyu got that look on her face. And she started rubbing her belly. Oh.No.
Yep, up came her breakfast. And down fell her tears. Ugghh!! I just don't want this little girl to have to deal with this any more!!! Obviously the patch did not work for her. She upchucked once again. Helen tried so hard to help. She gave Gia Chunyu her phone and ear buds to listen to some music. It helped to calm her down a bit, but gosh darn it. Poor thing!!
We finally, FINALLY made it to the Mutianyu section of the Great Wall.
In order to get to the Wall (at least when you have small children, 2 of whom aren't great walkers even on flat surfaces), you have to ride a ski-lift type contraption.
Oh my! I'm pretty sure Gia Chunyu had NEVER been on anything like this in her life. I wasn't too sure how she would take it. But up we went!
Gracie rode with Helen, Gemma with Simon, and Gia Chunyu with me. Gia was holding on for dear life at first. But she was squealing with delight and grinning from ear to ear. She even yelled out "Baba!" to Simon in the chair in front of us.
Once we got to the top, we decided how much time we wanted to spend and which direction we would go. The lefthand side didn't seem too steep, and we thought that would be better for Gia Chunyu who is very unsteady climbing or on stairs.
It was a BEAUTIFUL day. There was absolutely none of the infamous Beijing smog. We could see for miles. It was breathtaking. And surreal.
Of course, there was still quite a bit of climbing involved. But we took our time and we helped Gia and Gemma as much as we could. There were many opportunities for gorgeous picture-taking.
The Gs were troopers! Gracie even pitched in and held Gia Chunyu's hand a couple different times to help steady her. :)
I just could not stop looking and taking pictures. It was absolutely beautiful!
Of course, no true American could visit the Great Wall of China and NOT take a selfie, right?
Then, I had to get some shots of my two avid Seahawk fans representing the 12th man on the Great Wall.
I tell you...the history, architecture, and craftsmanship just astounds me. I can't get enough of this place.
To get back down from the wall, you could walk, but how boring! No, the better way to descend is by toboggan. You heard correctly. A toboggan.
I wasn't sure how Miss Gia Chunyu would like the toboggan. Let me tell you, she squealed with delight on more than one occasion.
We made it to the bottom, and our guide took us to a delightful restaurant where we ate numerous dishes, family style--with a large lazy Susan in the center of the table. We were a tad worried about Gia Chunyu eating and then getting carsick again. We ditched the patch and gave her a dramamine pill right before lunch.
Okay. Back in the car. It's do or die for miss Gia Chunyu. Our guide suggested she put her head on my shoulder and take a little nap. She did this and slept/pseudo slept for an hour or so with no incidence of carsickness. When she woke up from her little cat nap, she gave us the biggest grin. It was obvious that she was feeling better. She grinned, chatted, and pointed to things all the way back to our hotel. Thank you, Jesus, for dramamine!!!
We decided to have a little coloring session when we got back to the hotel. And to order in from McDonalds and eat it while watching Chinese cartoons.
Overall, it was an amazing day. We got to see one of the most amazing and historical man-made sites on earth. We got to see some sisterly bonding. And best of all, we got to see some healing taking place in Gia Chunyu's heart.
P.S. Since the "Chinese" part of our adoption is completed, we are traveling by plane to Guangzhou tomorrow for the "American" part of our trip. Please pray for travel mercies and that the dramamine will keep working!! Also, please continue to pray that Gia Chunyu's heart will mend and that God will continue to knit our hearts together as a family of 5.