Wednesday, May 18, 2016

SHORTEST BLOG POST EVER

Today a little moose danced.

(I can't wait to explain that one...chuckle.)



Tuesday, May 17, 2016

All Things Timothy



We learned in country that our little man is brilliant (note the bias).  He was speaking in full (thoughtful) four year old sentences.  He continues to amaze us (and crack us up a bit).  He is now four and is 24 lbs and in 18 months clothes.  Today's post is not about sad things, things picked up from four years in an orphanage (enough already :-) ).  Today's post is about the beautiful personality we see emerging daily.

Little Bits:
Medically, we still know little.  He has a huge appointment this week with a doctor specialize in international adoption and another with a specialized pediatric orthopedic hospital in early June. We think the last one may tell us the most.  He is now consistently drinking out of a straw, with a cup coming slowly to him (since he only had a bottle in the orphanage).  He knows how to use a fork and is figuring out a spoon.  Potty training is next.  He is completely capable, but we won't rush him with all of the changes in his life.

What Timothy doesn't like:
*If another child crashes a car into his while playing, he tells them off in Mandarin.  I will admit I hide behind my hand and crack up.  He's just so serious and shaking his finger at his sibling.  I told said sibling of the need to apologize while hiding a giggle.  I've explained he lets them know in his own way that he doesn't like something and they need to respect it.
*Me exiting the room...to go to the bathroom...change...breathe (wink).  Poor little guy can be distracted for a bit, but he's worried.  He doesn't want me to go away and (big picture) this is very good.  We went through this with another blessing (cough cough Bekah...been teasing her about it this week) for six months and then one day she just knew we were around for good.
*He doesn't like anything really cold.  OHHHHHH the face he makes! Remember the picture with the Green Tea McFlurry in country?  He makes that face with everything uber cold, even if it doesn't taste like you are chewing tea bags with chocolate thrown in.
*Being told no when he REALLY wants something (like a toy someone else is playing with).  We really only get this reaction if he's just woken up or is tired.  He waits....gets really serious...waits....thinks about it...closes his eyes...waits...then bawls (occasionally peeking to see if we will give him what he wants).  Okay, this is cute too.  I have to reign myself in.

What Timothy DOES like:
*He loves going places...stroller...car...wherever.
*Food- He's eating really well now and his appetite is increasing.  He ate very slow before.  I am now wondering if part of it may be how much energy he expended before.  He was in a crib (not tons of movement) and now he's all boy exploring.
*His brothers and sisters-He knows all their names and I have to keep them from catering to him 100% of the time (giving him things he demands, etc.).  He yelled for Rachel to come and take his bottle today.  He ONLY allowed Rachel to take it (chuckle).
*Daddy-He talks about him (no clue exactly what he's saying) during the day.
*Turkey lunch meat, raisins, rice, and bananas- We were SO glad he loves lunch meat.  We buy and organic nitrate free because we have a child that has reactions to nitrates.  Timothy has held all meat like a chipmunk in his mouth...until this specific lunch meat.  YEAH!
*Cars, coloring books, and the toy kitchen (and toy food).

It's amazing he's only been here a week and a half.

Timothyisms:
*He looked at his daddy the other day and said, "All Done! Mayo-la!" He then signed all done.  (Mayo-la is about how you pronounce "all done" in Mandarin.)  We sign with several different words   so he will always have a way to communicate if he can't remember a word.
*We bought just a couple shirts and shorts in 18 month sizes.  Everything we have is too big (24 months/2T).  My friend is bringing some tomorrow, but we needed just a few to get us through. He held up the shirts one by one and said, "How cute!!!"  A few (a bazillion) people have said that about him since we've been home.
*He tapped my leg today and I looked down.  He said (unprompted), "Wah-eye-nee mama" (I love you mama)

This is the Timothy we see peeking out.  OHHHH how we love this kid!

I will share how the other children are adjusting in another post (it's actually been sweet).

For now I leave you knowing how you all helped bring a little light from God home.

Thank you...PURE AWESOMENESS!!!!

“Let the little children come to me, and do not hinder them, for the kingdom of God belongs to such as these." Mark 10:14b

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Prayer Requests
1.    Continued prayers for Tom and Elizabeth (blessing and protection).
2.  Prayers for our grandchild (in utero) and mommy as the pregnancy progresses.  Sarah has to be so careful with the severity of her allergy to wheat (seizures) and she also has to gain a lot of weight (she lost and couldn't gain before her Celiac diagnoses and was only beginning to gain before her pregnancy).  She's doing great, but could use the prayers.
3. For our little man as he transitions.  Specifically that he sees us as different (attachment) and has some stranger fear (showing he sees us as his security) and his sleep. It's easy to look at little ones newly coming home as "friendly".  That may be a bit of it, but often they have no concept of family and view everyone as caregivers initially.
4. For direction as we move forward with so many changes and future changes.
5.  That we can get into a good co-op with home school (in the works) for next year..

Monday, May 16, 2016

And I Mourn

It was perfectly silent as we walked up to the orphanage.  

Nap time maybe? Then again, nap time here (with fewer children) isn't that quiet.

Today I can see their faces.  I see them as our newest son cries if I leave the room.

I find myself mourning for the time I lost.  I mourn for the cries I couldn't answer across the world.  I mourn for the years I lost.

Ben, my forever child...almost ten years in a beyond hard place...an institution without us to defend him...the damage...the memories...the neglect done by others...that cannot be undone this side of Heaven (barring a miracle).

Trauma-versaries that sneak up on them, their bodies remembering what their brains do not.

The rocking of a child that learned to self comfort.

Time-in's as to not disrupt attachment.  Because time-out may be exactly what they crave.  It is what they knew, neglect.  Neglect may be their comfort, so instead we pull them onto our laps or snuggled up beside us.  Connection what they need, even if that's not what is their familiar place.

Starvation permanently altering their chemistry, so food becomes almost a singular focus.

I mourn that these things happened to our children before we knew them, or even knew of them.

I'm sad today.  I celebrate them, but my heart is sad for the time I lost.

So much of the time I'm caught up in the here and now, but every once in awhile I remember...I remember how many memories I don't have rocking these babies in the years before I had them.

You, Lord, hear the desire of the afflicted;
    you encourage them, and you listen to their cry...
Psalm 10:17

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Prayer Requests
1.    Continued prayers for Tom and Elizabeth (blessing and protection).
2.  Prayers for our grandchild (in utero) and mommy as the pregnancy progresses.  Sarah has to be so careful with the severity of her allergy to wheat (seizures) and she also has to gain a lot of weight (she lost and couldn't gain before her Celiac diagnoses and was only beginning to gain before her pregnancy).  She's doing great, but could use the prayers.
3. For our little man as he transitions.  Specifically that he sees us as different (attachment) and has some stranger fear (showing he sees us as his security) and his sleep. It's easy to look at little ones newly coming home as "friendly".  That may be a bit of it, but often they have no concept of family and view everyone as caregivers initially.
4. For direction as we move forward with so many changes and future changes.
5.  That we can get into a good co-op with home school (in the works) for next year..

Sunday, May 15, 2016

Dear Nausea,
   We have never been friends.  I'm not sure why you insist on hanging out.  Why don't you go hang out with my friend (begrudgingly) PMS.  She kind of asks for it.
      Kat



Saturday, May 14, 2016

Love and Trauma


I may be walking around the house saying, "Lemonada" (from Courageous...BEST.SCENE.EVER). I don't know why, but it has me giggling today.  Our kids know I'm silly.  We kinda laugh a lot around here.

              The Artist                                   The Engineer     Little Mama and Benjamin

We are having a fairly casual Saturday.

We are seeing some of the signs of trauma and mourning in Timothy today.  There have been glimpses of sadness today.  He's rocked himself, self soothed, when not in Thomas or I's arms. I have to wonder if he's missing his best friend in the orphanage, the smells, the language....the familiar.

He's mourning.  It's a part of healing.  He's lost so much. He's lost everything he knows, good or bad.   He's lost what's familiar.

I think it'd be easy to go into adoption thinking love solves everything.

I have to tell you... it does.

It doesn't change trauma or pain, but because of love we can valiantly stand...seeking help and battling for our children.

I think of one friend right now, a warrior mom named Jodi.  In love she's been in battle for her son who has suffered such trauma in his young life.

I think of my friend Renae, who is in the beginning stages of bringing her very tiny and frail son home who will fight for him, not knowing the outcome.

There are so many men and women silently struggling with scuffed armor for their children, their families.

That's love...love doesn't guarantee a win....only God can do that that.  Love is what keeps us going in the battle.

This little guy, four in just a few days...in 18 months clothing...a big medical journey ahead of him...is sad.  He's seeking and cuddling with Thomas and I.  We have social workers and translators that are "on call" as needed in this process (reading this right now)...but right now we hurt with him...we love with him.  He is our son.

Again I am reminded how blessed we are.  How could I not remember when I get to look at this?



Come, let us sing for joy to the Lord;
    let us shout aloud to the Rock of our salvation.

Let us come before him with thanksgiving
    and extol him with music and song
Psalm 95:1-2

~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~
Prayer Requests

1.    Continued prayers for Tom and Elizabeth (blessing and protection).

2.  Prayers for our grandchild (in utero) and mommy as the pregnancy progresses.  Sarah has to be so careful with the severity of her allergy to wheat (seizures) and she also has to gain a lot of weight (she lost and couldn't gain before her Celiac diagnoses and was only beginning to gain before her pregnancy).  She's doing great, but could use the prayers.
3. For our little man as he transitions.  Specifically that he sees us as different (attachment) and has some stranger fear (showing he sees us as his security) and his sleep. It's easy to look at little ones newly coming home as "friendly".  That may be a bit of it, but often they have no concept of family and view everyone as caregivers initially.
4. For direction as we move forward with so many changes and future changes.
5.  That we can get into a good co-op with home school (in the works) for next year..

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