Yuan Bao, (John Deere) is growing right along. He had a stint in the hospital last week because of an oxygen requirement caused by pneumonia. Despite repeated discussions with local doctors regarding treatment (my colleagues bore it all this time), spurious culture results, interesting nursing protocols, and mosquito infestations (note: you must bring your own mossie netting), the stay was uneventful and he was sprung out after a few days.
Medically, his respiratory status and infections are perplexing, and we are trying our best to sort out his problem. I won’t go into details now, but it seems his lungs have sustained some chronic damage (perhaps by chronic aspiration of formula) and easily gets sick with a respiratory infection that wouldn’t cause a hospitalization in a child with normal lungs.
Yet, Yuan Bao continues to eat well, laugh, play and move his arms and legs all around. He is not yet able to roll over or hold his head well, but I’m confident that he will continue to grow strong enough to do that.
Why not John Deere anymore? Well, the “permanent” foster family didn’t think that name really resonated with him, and they considered Benjamin, (as in Button), but in the end, decided that his Chinese name is a good a name for him as any name and we continue to use that.
The foster program continues to grow here as more and more families are stepping up to foster as we are able to get more and more kids allowed out of the orphanage t be fostered. The kids we get are the “runts”, the “sickly starving”, the ones that are difficult to care for. The commitment these families take on is huge. We are also continuing to develop local families to take on their own foster children. Although it does happen, it is generally a very counter-cultural thing for a Chinese family to do. The key is to get an entire community behind the idea and to move them in it together. Please be lifting up this need – what a blessing for all when this happens!