Chick’s Story

*this was supposed to post tomorrow but I was tired and hit Publish Post. Oh well.

Yesterday when I announced that today we would be celebrating our two year Gotcha Day anniversary I had requests to tell the story of how Chick entered our lives. It is a long complicated story that begins 7 and half years ago. So pull up a comfy chair and your favorite snack.

On a cold day in February 2002 a little boy named Boo was born. Due to a bleeding problem I had to have surgery at his birth resulting in no longer being able to have children. It was fairly devastating but I got a perfect little boy in the process.

Fast forward 3 and half years. We finally decided to adopt a baby and our first choice was China because (at the time) they had a streamlined process, a small wait and manageable adoption fees. However I was only 28 and they require you to be thirty. Several months later we were offered the chance to move to Germany and even though we’d been about to start the process to adopt from Korea we put that on hold to move on to the adventure of living abroad. We also learned of Korea’s inability to work with us as expatriates.

Two months after moving to Germany, after countless hours of research, I stumbled upon the wonderful country of Taiwan. They openly accepted expatriates into their adoption program and we signed with an agency in Washington.

While we were gathering our pictures and writing our letters to the birth family preparing for our homestudy we received heartbreaking news that our agency was closing. Since we had not been matched with a child we were refunded the fees we’d paid and turned away (along with a hundred other families).

At first I did nothing, I had no desire to continue with the process and placed a call to our social worker in germany asking him to halt any more gathering of information for our homestudy. After a very long tough week (where I would not have made it without the support of various adoption friends and groups) we decided to continue on and find a new agency.

We signed with our second agency at the end of July 2006. Little did we know our little Chick was about six weeks old at the time. There were a few ups and more than enough downs in the months that followed. {We were overall disappointed in our agency and their commitment to us as an adoptive family. You can search my archives for that story if you wish.}

Christmas came and went without any word of a child for us.


December 27, 2006 At 3 am were we had just landed in NJ after spending Christmas with my family in Idaho we saw we had an email from our agency with the words “Good News! A Match!”

In that email was a tiny 7 month old Si Xian (Sih Syuan) and she would eventually become our Chick. From that point we received update pictures about every 4-6 weeks while we continued to gather the papers we needed.

The process was very difficult in that we lived in Germany as Americans and we wanted to adopt a Taiwanese child. We had to go through a German court process to authenticate our paperwork, have all our documents notarized and hold our breath and hope that it would all somehow work out.

In May, far after we had thought we’d travel her first birthday came…and went with no word on a court ruling in Taiwan. It was the lowest of lows and I couldn’t stop thinking about my daughter growing up far away from me.

In June we received news that our process was going to take even longer if we wanted to bring her to live with us in Germany on a Taiwan passport. The only option we had was to fly to Taiwan and wait (for an undetermined amount of time, which could have been anywhere from 4-6 weeks) for the German government to approve our petition to bring her into the country on a schengen visa.

In the end we opted to have Boo, Chick and myself live with my parents in Idaho for two months while we waited for Chick’s American passport to be issued. Chick would be issued an IR3 visa making her a US Citizen the moment her Taiwan passport was stamped (normally children arrive on an IR4 visa and you must then apply for citizenship). We would be required to stay in Taipei (where Chick was living) until the official process of changing her household registration was completed (unique to Taiwan, basically the paper that changes her guardianship to us in which both adoptive parents must physically see the child before this happens for the IR3 visa – the only visa at this point we could get. This was to take two weeks but we only stayed in country for 9 days thanks to perseverance by our Taiwanese social worker who managed the form in the same day).

In mid July (the night Cycling Papa was to take me to see the new Harry Potter movie) we got word that we had final ruling and a Gotcha date of August 27, 2007. If your still reading and keeping track the day we met Chick was exactly 8 months after the first day we saw her picture.

We packed up and flew off to Taiwan, Boo and I coming from Idaho where we’d gone early to set things up for living with my parents and Cycling Papa from Germany. We met Chick around 10 am August 27, 2007 and the rest is history.

This is the little girl we fell in love with before she was ours –

And this was her last night after dinner –

She is wild, full of giggles, she runs, loves trains and animals – especially the neighbors dog who is far bigger than she is. She loves fruit and vegetables and is easily amused. She is a joy and a wonder.

Most of all she’s just my Chick.

This is last years Gotcha Day video:

Thank you to everyone who helped us through the adoption post and pre times and to all the adoptive families who are waiting and hoping. It does happen even though at times it seems like it never will.

song in video – Creed – With Arms Wide Open

**okay so I was REALLY tired and messed up the years originally when I posted. Started the process in 2006, adopted in 2007.

18 thoughts on “Chick’s Story

  1. :::sniff::: I love you sis and chick and boo! I am so glad that you guys were able to find chick and bring her into your family and from that into ours as well.


  2. You soooo need a tissue warning before the youtube video :-)What an amazing story. And the joy in her expressions that you keep capturing on film…wow.Thanks so much for telling your story!


  3. Congratulations on 2 years together!!!! I remember the highs and the lows of your journey so clearly; it's beautiful to see her home and adjusting.Tisrano longer adopting from Taiwan, but bringing home the most gorgeous little girl from India that ever existed (traveling soon!)http://lifetrain.blogspot.comP.S. Can I tell you what an amazing experience it has been being with our new agency??? Wow.


  4. LOVED, loved, loved your post! Thanks so much for sharing!What an emotional roller coaster.I'm so glad that Chick is with you and it all paid off.But I'm sure you had no idea, when you first started the odyssey, how hard it would be!


  5. Oh I loved that post Andrea! Such a great mountain for you guys to climb! Just to make it to the top and be able to relate it to others!She is gorgeous and I'm so happy for you guys and for her! :)(Pssst… we should go to BlogHer '10 together)


  6. Awe, thanks. I thought I'd catch up on some blog reading at work and now I'm crying in my cubicle. Good thing it's Friday and I'm a government worker and no one is really here today.Congrats to you all. She's beautiful!


  7. Wow, Andrea I am literally crying. What a beautiful story and so amazing. At first I got shivers reading it and then when I saw her photo the tears started streaming down my face. I am so happy for you and your family. What a wonderful day to celebrate πŸ™‚


  8. I can't even imagine how hard that must have been to see pictures and have to wait for everything to go through! She's adorable and it looks like they took great care of her before she got to come home to her family!


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