We leave for China 38 days from today.
I am at the point now where I have to temper my emotions when I think of the trip. If I let myself get carried away, I quickly realize that one of my most amazing dreams is about to come true and I get overly excited. My heart starts racing and I get butterflies in my stomach. I then start thinking about how it will feel to be there, and I get overwhelmed. I have to tear myself away from my thoughts or else I just might start crying tears of joy (the ones that will inevitably come once I am jetlagged, tired and finally in China)...
And then, I start thinking about the after-trip. I freak a little when I think of how I will feel when the trip is over and it's time to come home. Can you say devastated? Wow... I expect that leaving China will be one of the most difficult things I have ever done. Last time we were there we had a really difficult time leaving China, but we looked forward to getting home to the comforts of home with our new baby. This time, that won't happen... We know what life is like at home (and truthfully, it is awesome! but we know we will long for China once we come back). So leaving China will be tough, and I am ridiculously thinking about it now, when I should be thinking about the excitement of the trip, not the fact that it will eventually come to an end.
At this point, our preparations are as follows: We have a China box, in which we place anything we're planning to take with us. It is allowing us to start packing things we won't need for the next month, and that we plan to take with us. Everyone laughs at me because right now, it contains mostly Kleenex, toilet paper and antibacterial wipes. Oh, and Halls Cough Drops. Lots of them. That is the one thing that we wished we had brought more of last time.
The planning stage is in full force now. We have our Travel Visas, and we sent a letter by courier to our daughter's orphanage (in English and in Chinese) this week, inviting them to meet with us when we travel to their City. We have no idea whether they will respond. We had intended to use a guide, but she is not available on our travel dates, and there seems to be a shortage of guides in our daughter's particular area. So we will be bringing a friend who speaks Mandarin and Cantonese and hope for the best. Yikes!
So the countdown continues and the anticipation mounts! :-)