Wednesday, May 18, 2011

Attachment Progress

Oh, the dilemmas of what to share.

How much should I keep to myself in the name of privacy? How much to share in the spirit of keeping it real?

Anyone who has adopted or is close to someone who has knows and understands the issues behind attachment and bonding in adoption.

It is very real and very key to the child's adjustment and even future relationships.

This is why we have tried to be very careful with their interaction with others outside our home.

I feed them.
I bathe them.
I dress them.
I gift them.
I reward them.
I "potty" them.
I rock them.
And I (and hubby) hold them.

*I* am trying to teach them that I am different.
I am not just a mama.
I am the mama.
I will always be here.
I will always be safe.
I can always be trusted.

Jonathan loves to be held by me. He loves to be rocked by me. He loves to curl up in my lap, suck his little thumb, and have his back rubbed.

He loves to rub my hair, give me kisses, and call me mama.

But he would do the same to you.

Or the elderly lady on the street. I promise. It has happened. :)

So we have a long way to go with him.

But that is ok. We will go that long way.  He is worth it.

Josiah is a little different. You see, he seems to have had a wonderful, caring foster family before he came to our family. He knew love. He knew a "mama" who helped him learn what a family is like.

Josiah seems to understand, as much as he can, that we are his. He understands that I am the mama. But his affection towards me has been very slow.

Very, very slow.

I mean, he wants me to feed him. He wants me to help him. He even prefers my assistance in the bathroom. (go figure) And he cries for me when he gets hurt. And he when goes to bed, he wants me right there.

But physical affection? Not so much.

I can count on some good holding time when he wakes up and when I wrap him up in a towel after bathtime.  Or when he gets a boo boo.  Other than that?  He manages to wiggle down and find something else to do. 

So imagine my delight when tonight, after I helped him get his very favorite footie pajamas on, he spontaneously threw his little arms around my neck and gave me his first Josiah-initiated, spontaneous neck hug! 

Thank you, Lord.  We are making progress.

Tuesday, May 10, 2011

Details for Sonia


Well, I'm in China, and I realize something is amiss.

So I think, "maybe I am just stressed. Maybe I just need more sleep."

A week later in China, suddenly the breakfast buffets don't seem so yummy. And the Pearl River cruise makes me even queezier than it makes Jonathan.

And the return flight home through 4 airports pushing a stroller and carrying a 22 month old in an Ergo seems really, really tough. ;)

So the first morning we are home and hubby can't sleep and is making a run to Walmart.

And I say, "How bout picking up a little test while you're there."

(pick hubby off the floor)

And the rest is history. :)

True story. (except the part about hubby on the floor ;)

Post-jetlag? We are very excited!

Sunday, May 8, 2011

This Mother's Day......

feels extra special.

I have much for which to be thankful.

Actually, I ALWAYS have much for which to be thankful; the list could go on and on.....

But today I am especially thankful for all my children.

The 6 the Lord gave through the miracle of birth.

The 2 the Lord very recently gave us through the miracle of adoption.

And the one on the way. ;)

(This time no papercuts.......)

Sunday, May 1, 2011

God's Glory Evident in the Lives of Tornado Victims

I've been a bit quiet this week.  Obviously, we are in "re-entry" mode, somewhere between "survival" and glimpses of our "new normal." 
However, I will unfortunately always remember our boys' first week home as marked by our state's tornado destruction.

Our family, personally, received very little backlash from the storms.  We were without power for less than 24 hours.   We never lost water or phone lines and were able to offer our water and showers to friends nearby who did. 

Sadly, though, we have dear friends who were affected much worse by Wednesday's deadly tornadoes. 

About 5 or 6 years ago, one of my closest friends, Robin, began taking me to a monthly Bible study led by Kelly Crawford ( and Kathy Broddock (  The things I learned and the women I met changed my life. 

I remember meeting Sherry Lee.  She was expecting her 13th child, and I thought that made her an official "supermom."  Maybe "the" supermom.  I was only to learn that it wasn't the number of kids she had that made her so special.  It was the gentle and quiet way that she mothered and directed and disciplined and taught them.  As I observed her children, I realized how the fruit of our parenting shows up in our children's lives.  I was making mental notes and soaking in all I could.

I realized that these ladies met together with their husbands and families every Sunday night in the same little cabin (just next to the Lee's home) for a (family-integrated) Bible study.  My husband began to take us, and the studies and the leader and the families made such a big impact on our lives.  My husband was so impressed with Sherry's husband, Tom Lee, and has used him as an example in sermons countless times as an example of a godly husband/father who was committed to leading his family in the faith.

I am sorry to share that the Lee family was tragically devastated by one of Alabama's deadly tornadoes.  The same F5 that plowed through Tuscaloosa and lifted up at the edge of Birmingham but touched down before ravaging the Lee's and the Crawford's and the Boyd's little community.

The Lees' home collapsed upon them, trapping them for hours.  Several of their 13 children were injured, and Mr. Lee was killed.

Below is an interview with the Lees' oldest son.  God is definitely glorified through this family.

Also affected by the storm were the Crawfords.  This family is another testimony of the Lord's grace and goodness, even in the midst of great trial. 

The Boyds are another precious Christian family who live very close to the Lees and Crawfords and saw and experienced the power and destruction of the F5 tornado, yet testify of God's faithfulness and love.

These families are fine examples of persevering through trials.  They definitely need our prayers, but I think, also, our admiration.