“Mommy, come find me!” update letter from the Hedden family in China

“Mommy, Come Find Me!”
Our family has so enjoyed getting to know the orphaned children at the Dexing (pronounced duh-shing) school in northern Kunming. A few months back we noticed one little girl hanging back in the shadows with her head hung low. We found out that she had been dropped off at the school by her mom back in August, and hasn’t seen her since. She had a far-away look in her eyes and refused to make eye contact or interact with us. Her Chinese name is Mengrui, but as all the others loved it when we gave them English names, we named her Lucy. Amy later described her as, “ . . . the most forlorn child I have ever seen.” We have slowly been getting to know Lucy, but it hasn’t been easy. The recent Chinese holiday gave the kids some time off from school, so we asked the headmaster if we could have them to our house overnight and were given permission to do so. When it was Lucy’s turn, she wandered in, immediately gathered up the dollies, and quietly played for some time with them. She slowly began to relax and enjoy her time with us. Amy then took her up for a long warm bath after which she emerged looking like a little Chinese princess – clean, warm, hair braided, and smiling. Things seemed to be going really well . . . and then she had a meltdown!
Lucy got upset about something and began to shout. Soon she was crying, and this turned into screaming. I scooped her up and held her, but couldn’t console her. I set her back down, and she slid like a waterfall onto the floor where she writhed and began yelling, “Mommy, come find me, mommy come find me!” My mind had been racing, grappling for parenting solutions, but when I heard her words, I realized that she was wailing from deep down inside of her; she was grieving. We were witnessing outward behavior that reflected wounds way beyond her ability to express. Amy held and rocked her with a new understanding of Lucy and her situation. We felt incredibly inadequate! The next day we took Lucy to the zoo where she talked, laughed and joked with us. When it was time to take her back to the school she said, “I don’t want to go to school. I want to go back to your house with you.” Lucy is just one of many children here who need love, guidance, and hope! Please continue to pray for her!

Our Upcoming Trip to MN
We have been in Kunming now for more than two years, and are planning to return to Minnesota sometime this Spring in order to be at Jacob and Rachel’s wedding in June. We are really looking forward to spending time with our friends and family in Big Lake, and eagerly anticipating some “down time” in and on the lake itself. During our time in the U.S. we will be taking Natalie to Chicago for surgery to further correct her cleft palate. We’ve heard that this surgery will be her most painful, and we aren’t looking forward to it. In addition to this, if Andrew’s adoption is completed by the time we get home, we hope to have him evaluated for surgery as well. As you may remember from our last newsletter, we were pursuing surgery for him in Hong Kong with a pediatric neurosurgeon; however, when we took him to his home province and applied for temporary travel approval for him, the local police denied our petition. So we are pushing for his adoption to be completed soon so we can bring him to the U.S.
We would love to visit with as many of you as we are able when we are home. We want to catch up with all of you and we have so many things to share with all of you concerning our life and work in China. If you would like to have us come to your home, small group, Bible study, school, church, or civic meeting to speak or just hang out, please email us at reddoorchina@gmail.com and let us know. We will make every effort to get there!

One thought on ““Mommy, come find me!” update letter from the Hedden family in China

  1. TanyaLea

    Imagine my surprise when I came across your website via a video one of my good friends (and a fellow AP) posted on her blog today. The video is about 5 years old, but touched me to the core. I was in tears by the end of it. I then signed onto the web address listed at the end of the video, and realized this was the Hedden family that we learned about just before Christmas through our big kids local youth group… through the Becker E-Free Church here in MN. Our kids have sold items to help support your ministry there in China, and my oldest daughter, Breanna, recently met your son when he drove her and a group of kids from the youth group to the UnTour down in Eden Prairie. She enjoyed getting to know him a little and talking with him about China. We are soon to celebrate our 1 year “Forever Family Day” anniversary since adopting our daughter Khloe from China in May of last year. We pray your trip home is a blessed one, and hope to have the chance to meet you when you are back. We attend a church that is further away, so we are not regular attendees a BEFC, but our kids continue to be active in the local youth group. May God continue to bless your family as you reach out to orphans and bring awareness to adoption and how everyone is called to do something! Keeping you in our thoughts and prayers!! <

    Tanya Thom
    Becker, MN


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