This month’s featured child is Ya, Bai's (last month's featured child) younger foster sister. Ya came to the Little Flower Baby Home in late May 2012, when she was a one and a half years old. After about six months, she joined her Group Home family and has since been living at Group Home #6, together with Ji, Ling, Tao and Bai.
Ya was diagnosed with Bladder extrophy, and was admitted to the hospital for surgery as soon as she arrived. Actually, when she first arrived at Little Flower, Ya's name was "Su," and "she" was thought to be a boy!! Just looked at that short hair.
It was during pre-op testing that it was discovered that "Su" was actually a girl. Upon learning this, her orphanage changed her name to Ya. Here's a photo of Ya with her nanny in the hospital, who was doing a great job with the huge challenge of her post-op care (keeping her still, for one!)
After many weeks of bed rest, doctors finally allowed her to get up and start walking again. She was weak, but very happy to be out of bed.
She recovered, and this little "boy" has since become a healthy little girl.
The only remnants of her Bladder exstrophy are occasional urinary tract infections. Painful infections didn't help to increase her faith in doctors, and like most kids, she doesn't much like going to the hospital or seeing the doctor. But being a very brave girl, she's confident enough to deal with these challenges.
Ya is clever and has a very strong character. She knows her own mind! When she joined the Early Education center one year ago, she was only 2 and a half years old - one of the youngest kids at the school. But she would never feel like the youngest student in class. If you asked her, "What is your name?" her answer would most probably be "Jiejie", which means "older sister." Actually, that's how she likes to introduce herself to new people. Linda, who volunteered teaching English at our school recently, called her Jiejie for a whole week until she realized it wasn't her real name.
Here's a photo of Ya learning how to use chopsticks. Just look at that concentration!
For Ya, there is a big gap between right and wrong; there is no gray area in between. Rules have to be followed by everybody. And Ya really does make sure that those rules are followed by everyone, even her teachers! One time, she found Maria, our Curriculum Manager and teacher, eating with a fork and a spoon. The kids, however, usually only use either a fork OR a spoon. Ya straightened Maria out right away!
Seeing herself as the "older sister" among her classmates, Ya always wants to take the lead. Before lunch, there are always two children assigned to help prepare the tables by wiping them down and setting out the utensils. Ya will often serve as the "third helper," checking that her classmates have done everything correctly.
This outgoing and talkative little girl never has problems making new friends. She can talk and talk, conducting long conversations even with strangers. She is adorable and lovely, and she knows it!