Thursday, March 02, 2006

Life

has been busy. Fine. Happy. Frustrating. Very much like... life, I suppose.

March is here, so winter, in my book is over. Even if it snows again. It's March. And I don't care about the rest. I feel like I made it through the winter!

Bible study began today. Beth Moore's Breaking Free is the one we are doing. I need this. I need Bible study. I need to "break free," I need that time with the ladies. I feel like there are new beginnings and a few things to be excited about. Yay!

We got our portraits today. Family. Mr. Bug. Ms. Bao. Have put them all in frames. The boy is too ridiculously cute. Bao's came out good. The pictures are totally her. The exact same look that she has in her referral photos. So, I like them because it's her personality... her pensive personality. But, I do wish we could have gotten her to smile. She does that too, and it is SO cute!

I have mentioned previously that I have been wondering about Bao's attachment. She's only been home for 4 1/2 months, so certainly I don't expect her to be totally there yet. But there are a few little things I am honing in on and will watch for a while to see if they improve over time. If they don't in the next two months or so, we have the name of an adoption counselor we can contact. We'll see how it goes.

People tell me to trust my "instinct." I do, in a lot of cases. But sometimes it seems like "instinct" isn't really the safest answer when it comes to a child who has spent the better part of her life without developing the "natural" kind of relationship that a kid should with her parent. There are things going on with her that I don't think my instinct always has a good answer for.

The best I can describe it is to say that Bao definitely likes me, but in some ways I sometimes feel like I am just the "fun lady" in her life. She doesn't rely on me for comfort to any great degree (though this has been improving, s-L-----OOOOOOO---W---l---y. So, still watching that.) She relies a lot on her snuggler, which is like a little blankie. It is to her what a pacifier is to other kids. She turns it until she finds a corner and sucks on it! She doesn't snuggle me unless the snuggler is there. (Just her personality? I don't know...)

Anyway, I have been ramping up the closeness with Bao: lots of gentle touches and as much snuggling as she'll allow. Also re-evaluating how much we leave her with other people.

So, last night when I came home from church (only Bao was with me) I decided to do something that I had done with Bug many, many times on the evenings I came home from church with him. Granted, he was a SNUGGLER, so that made it easier... but I decided I was going to institute some of my own therapy for Bao. So, we took a night time walk around the neighborhood.

I got her all dressed up and brought a blanket with us (and her snuggler, of course...) It was such a beautiful night. And we walked together. Sometimes she snuggled me. Sometimes she looked around. I whispered in her ear and sang to her.

When we got to a corner with a street light, I stopped. In the interests of keeping up my "therapy" status, I decided that I was going to try to get her to make eye contact with me. I wanted to tell her that I loved her while she was looking at me.

So, I stood there for what seemed like eternity, gently calling her name, craning my neck to get a look in her eyes. She would not, WOULD NOT, look at me. I said her name 30 times, easily. I just kept waiting. She turned away to the left. She turned away to the right. She wouldn't look, and I started wondering how long I was going to keep trying.

I kept waiting patiently a few moments before I called her name again, and at one point, I decided to pass the time by giving her a butterfly kiss (she likes those.) It made her look. She looked right at my eyes. Granted, it was because she wanted to poke it, but she looked. So, I told her "I love you," and we were able to get on with our walk.

On the way back home, she snuggled into my shoulder and started making little noises.

"ah," she'd say, and I would mimic.

"uh," she'd say, and I would mimic.

"na," she'd say, and I would mimic.

All the while, she had her hands (mostly) around my shoulders, which is the closest thing to a hug that she does... and not very often.

So, we enjoyed our little conversation game, and I especially enjoyed the snuggle time she let me sneak in, albeit short.

Good times. Good times.

Though she has been quite clingy and whiney today, I have told myself to enjoy the time with her. So, we were hanging out on the floor in the family room today, when she made my day. She was laying on the floor rolling around when all of a sudden... I looked at her and out of nowhere, she has one knee in crawling position (she has never ONCE put her legs in crawling position) and the other foot on the floor such that her calf was perpendicular to it (the floor.) She pushed her arms back and presto... she was sitting up. Boo was there to witness it and we both cheered and made a big fuss. The kid sat herself up. SHE SAT HERSELF UP! Then, just to show us that it was no accident, she did it two more times, and AGAIN tonight IN FRONT OF THE VIDEO CAMERA!

Aye, carumba. THAT'S MY GIRL! She may not snuggle... and hey, she may not even LIKE me,* but THAT'S MY GIRL!

* joke.

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6 Comments:

Blogger Heather said...

Sweet. I'm glad you had fun on your walk. :)

Fri Mar 03, 01:59:00 AM  
Anonymous mom a said...

I'll order a copy of your latest video; just let me know how much they cost!
Ahd keep up the good work you (and Paul) are doing with all your kids.

Fri Mar 03, 02:42:00 AM  
Anonymous Linda said...

Lori, Don't know if you've already found this website or not, but if not, it looks like it would be helpful to you: www.attach-china.org/activities.html.

Fri Mar 03, 03:08:00 AM  
Blogger Addie said...

Sweet, sweet story! You're such a great mom!

Fri Mar 03, 11:41:00 AM  
Blogger Leslie said...

Oh my goodness! I got teary eyed reading this. What a wonderful moment. Thank you for letting us in on it.

Fri Mar 03, 01:46:00 PM  
Blogger Luisa Perkins said...

Lovely. Thanks!

Sat Mar 17, 11:09:00 AM  

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