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Bear Juice for “Juna”

January 30, 2012

Those of you who followed our journey to China will probably remember the little girl who is pictured with Grace in these photographs.  Her name is Jun McKnight. The top photos are commonly referred to in the Chinese adoption world as the “Red Couch Photos”.  For years, families who have stayed together at the White Swan Hotel in Guangzhou have placed their newly adopted little girls on one of the many couches found throughout the hotel lobby.  In most of the “Red Couch Photos” that I have seen, there are tons of cute little girls seated on the upholstery together………all from the same travel group – as determined by their parents’ adoption agency.  When we were setting up travel arrangements with our adoption agency, we learned that we would be traveling with just one other family.  I was surprised that we only had one other family to travel with because most of the adoptive families I had spoken with had traveled in groups that were quite large.  But, I must say, because our two families were the only ones that made up our “group”……we were able to get to know one another better than we probably would have amidst a large group of people.   Jun’s mother, Shannon, and I have kept in continual contact since we arrived home with our girls.  They live only a few hours away from us.  Last summer we (unfortunately) failed at meeting up with one another.  But, we have already begun talking about arranging a reunion this summer.

Jun is a bit older than our Grace.  They were a good pair on the trip, and did have a few moments of sweet interaction (like grabbing hands while they were seated on the red couch together), however there wasn’t a ton of interaction between the two of them.  But, can you blame them for being less than cordial?  My goodness, those girls were desperately trying to each figure out what had just happened to them – and why their worlds had been rocked!

Last night, we said a prayer for Jun at bedtime because she has her big surgery coming up this week.  Little Jun was born without a femur bone in her right leg.  Her family travels to Atlanta this week to try to surgically prepare that leg for a prosthetic leg that will allow her to live as normal of a life as possible.   (If you are reading this and you wouldn’t mind adding Jun and the McKnight family to your prayer list, that would be wonderful.)

After we had prayed for Jun (and lifted up a few amusing requests from the kiddos), everyone headed off to bed.  As I turned out the lights in Grace’s room, she said, “Juna needs some bear juice for her leg”.  First of all, I loved that she referred to Jun as “Juna”………what a cute nickname (I had to tell Shannon about that one).  And secondly, “bear juice” is what we call cold medicine around here.  Why?  Because the cold medicine that we like to give to the kids has a bear on the label, of course : )

Yes, Grace, it would be great if a little bit of “bear juice” could help Juna.  If only it were that easy.



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