"An invisible red thread connects those who are destined to meet, regardless of time, place, or circumstance. The thread may stretch or tangle, but will never break." --An ancient Chinese belief


"In the very beginning"
How It All Began

Since moving to Colorado in 1994, I have always thought about adopting a daughter from China. During the summer of 2000, fate, destiny, or a maybe just a gentle little soul told me that the time had come. Her name is Linzhi. Click here to learn more about her name.

I was very blessed to become engaged to a man who shared my dream. We waited to get married, because the adoption was started with me as a single parent. To keep the adoption on track, we did not want to change my marital status in the middle of the process.

The Process
It currently takes about 20 months, start to finish, for the adoption process. I started in July 2000. The major milestones are:

1. Paperwork
I provided documentation for every aspect of my life:

  • financial statement
  • birth certificate
  • paperwork from the INS
  • physical exam results
  • write up from a social worker
  • statement of heterosexuality
  • photographs

Every document was notarized, then certified by the state, and finally authenticated by the Chinese Consulate.

2. Assemble the Dossier
All the documents were checked and translated into Chinese. Twelve photographs of me were also included in the completed document.

3. Send the Dossier to China
After the dossier was completed, it was sent to the Chinese Center for Adoption Affairs. My dossier was officially received by the Chinese government on February 20, 2001.

4. Parenting Classes
The state of Colorado requires that all prospective parents must take 24 hours of parent training. Mark and I have weekend classes scheduled through 2002. So far we have taken classes covering:

  • The Brain
  • Understanding the Transition From China to America
  • Child Development and Growth
  • Discipline and Setting Boundaries
  • Medical Issues in International Adoptions
  • Behavioral/Emotional Aspects of Attachment
  • Basic Infant Care

5. Referral (April 5, 2002)
About 13 months after the dossier arrives in China it will be reviewed by the Chinese government. The government will match my file with that of a baby orphaned girl needing a home. They will send a picture and medical analysis on the baby.

6. Go To China (May 15-30, 2002)
Parents adopting from China make a trip there to adopt their children. They receive their children right away. This is called "Gotcha" day and is celebrated by many families just like birthdays. The parents spend about 14 days in China filling out official forms and getting their daughter's traveling papers in order.

Related Links
A page with a lot of links about China, Chinese Adoption, and the Chinese Language. Check it out.

Interesting Facts About China
  • The US State Department released its figures on international adoptions in fiscal year 2000. The number of Adoptions from China for this year was 5053. This brings the total number of adoptions from China since 1985 to 23,903. See more statistics on this at Families With Children from China web site.

  • The Child Citizenship Law went into effect on Feb 27, 2001. All children under the age of 18 who were adopted abroad by US parents are now automatically US citizens. The INS has posted information on how the law will be implemented. An INS fact sheet gives all of the available details about the application process.

  • China is home to 1.2 billion people who speak more than 1000 dialects. Although Mandarin is the official language, daily communication among people is in their own dialect. Dialects are symbols of tradition, culture and pride.