When we told most people that we were traveling to China to adopt a baby and we were bringing our 4 year old their reaction was usually horror. Most of these people really don't know Grace though. We figured Grace would be OK but truly expected some jealousy and meltdowns.
A bit to our surprise Grace was awesome. We had one incident when we were stranded in the Guangzhou airport for 10 hours where Grace woke up from a nap disoriented and cried for about 10 minutes. But that was it.
We did do plenty of preparation before the trip telling her that the baby is going to need lots of attention from mommy and daddy and she obviously got it. We told her before the trip that her job was to get Cameron to smile. Cameron smiled as soon as he saw Grace and couldn't take his eyes off her. Mission accomplished.
We dragged Grace to all kinds of boring appointments in sweaty hot buildings all across China and not even a complaint. We are at restaurants that had foods that she wasn't familiar with, she tried and enjoyed mostly everything and loved being able to eat with chopsticks wherever we went. Our fellow travel mates and guides were always commenting on how well behaved and what a good eater she was. Even the flights which are enough to make adults cry were no problem for Grace. She colored, watched movies and then slept great, something I can't even do.
She actually seemed to mature while we were in China. She was no longer our baby she was our little girl. We never considered not taking Grace with us but she surprised even us a little bit with the level of maturity she displayed on the trip. I am not sure how much of the trip she is going to remember as she gets older but it was definitely a positive experience for her.
The best part was when we asked her what her favorite part of the trip was we figured she would say the Safari Park or Canton Tower. Nope...her favorite part was meeting her baby brother. You really have to just love this kid.