I slept better last night and woke up feeling better and ready to take on the day... and boy did I need that rest because today was challenging. Luke seemed a little better earlier on in the day. He giggled a little bit this morning and was using a few more words. We had breakfast and he ate really well. At that point, still had not drank anything. We went to the park again this morning and even with all the heat, he would not take any water. He drank about half of a capri sun. And that's all he drank ALL DAY! After the park, we had our guide come up to the room and try to get him to drink. She tried different cups, tried gatorade, juice, formula, honey water, hot drinks, ,cold drinks..... she spoon fed him drinks and tried coaxing him and nothing worked. The only thing he would drink is yogurt cups which I'm not sure if that counts as a liquid. So we are still fighting this battle with liquids. He won't even try anything. We called his orphanage again and they assured us he drank honey water from a bottle and never fussed. We bought a new bottle today that our guide believes he would like and he won't even try it. Please pray this kid drinks!
This country is a little backwards in some of their rules. Traffic laws don't seem to apply anywhere... you can drive on either side of the road, you can text and scooter and go diagonal across intersections the size of the garden state parkway and drive cars and scooters on sidewalks... but you can't go on the slide on the playground without getting in trouble with the park police! Seriously, no adults can go on the playground equipment with their children, don't run too fast, climb too high or have any sort of fun or the park police will whistle and yell at you. We did get a small giggle out of Luke while trying out the seesaw at the park.
We attempted a nap after the park and he did fall asleep watching puppy videos on youtube (thanks honey) but did not transfer to the crib and woke up and has been up ever since. He started the day at 5am. It's been a long day for this kid. He is on high vigilance right now and can't shut down his brain because he doesn't feel safe with us yet. So the slightest changes and he's awake and can't relax. He was so tired at dinner (which our amazing guide ordered in for us) that he passed out on Abby's bed watching a movie.
Wherever we go, we literally stop traffic and turn heads and draw a crowd. So there are very few white people in this country, even less indians and certainly not a lot of chinese children with white people... so the locals are quite curious of us. We have literally not seen a single indian person in this country. So Priscilla is quite an attraction. Pair her with a white child and a chinese baby and you've literally got entertainment for the entire city.
Okay so as if all our troubles to this point with Luke were not enough, our guide here and Guangzhou, both decided that he should have some spots on his face looked at by a doctor in his province. The reason is because he has a doctor's appointment on Saturday with the US consulate and if it was chicken pox then they would not let us leave the country and we'd be stuck here until he was better. I was 99% sure it was not chicken pox and really didn't want to deal with a doctor's visit but the guides insisted it was necessary to have a doctor's report so we wouldn't have problems getting out of the country. So I agreed and off we went. Well, there are not doctor's offices here... everyone goes to the hospital. We went to the Shanxi Children's Hospital and I'm still having trouble articulating this experience. Thank God for our guide because I would never have figured out this crazy system. Here goes: first you make an appointment online and pay a 25 yuan ($4) appointment fee. You get a number and then when you arrive, you are seen in order of your number. We arrived and they were on number 3. We were number 27! That took about two hours to get to our number. We found our way to the skin wing (their translation for dermatology) and sat in a waiting room full of metal chairs and lots of children in split pants or naked butts who were sitting on the floor and chairs. This hospital was anything but sanitary. When your number appears on the board, you go to another room where there are tons of people crowding one doctor. You literally get about 2 minutes with the doctor while there are tons of other people crowding around you, pushing into the room and speaking over each other. The doctor diagnosed him with a viral skin infection and not chicken pox. We got a sealed note from the doctor. They said there is not cream to heal this and they wanted to scrape them off him then and there which I absolutely refused. We will deal with that when we get home and were assured by the guide in Guangzhou that we shouldn't have problems getting out with that diagnoses. While I was in the crowded room with what felt like 50 other people crowding over the doctor, Abby and Priscilla were in the hallway where a pack of at least 6 children passed them infected with chicken pox. So now if we didn't have chicken pox, we probably now have it. Please pray none of us come down with chicken pox. That was the exact reason I didn't want to go to the hospital because that's where all the germs are and this hospital takes the cake for germs! I don't panic around sick people and germs but I was starting to really lose it in there. At the end, we ran out of there to step into the scariest cab ride of our lives. The hospital is over 30 minutes by cab and this driver had a death wish. We've been in a ton of cabs already and the driving is crazy around here but this guy literally was insane of which the scariest was nearly getting hit in the side door by a bus. We all screamed and clung to each other the rest of the way back. Our guide even yelled at him and she's not phased by much. So the hospital visit cost me $4 and the 30 min cab ride cost me $3. So I guess you get what you pay for?! We ran into the hotel and showered everyone immediately!
Tomorrow we have a 2pm flight to Guangzhou where we will be staying for a week to handle all the appointments to make him a US citizen. I'm feeling a lot better but Luke is still very stoic, not drinking much of anything and eating occasionally. Our guide assures us this is normal for trauma but I'm not sure how many more days we can do this and there is no way we are going back to a chinese hospital. Luke has some serious stubborn in him which will help him fit in with his super stubborn older brother but this is getting a little out of control on his liquid strike. Keep praying for Luke and for all of us. I love all the messages and comments. I really do appreciate it. It's good to hear we aren't alone. These orphaned kids deserve a chance at a healthy life and a loving family and Luke is worth all this insanity to give him that.