I know so many of you are wanting to hear how we are doing?!?! This is only a sorta-update as I need to get kids up - some to school, some to doctors appointments, etc....
Don and the kids arrived home last Friday. It was amazing to hold each child in my arms - new and old! I need to get some pictures posted because I have some of the cutest kids ever! Until then a quick update on each of the three new ones:
Lucy: This girl! She gave everyone monster hugs several times and then bee-lined to the house. We followed her to see what she would do. She went right to her bed (which may or may not have had new "Frozen" sheets on them, even when a certain mother swore to never buy "licensed" products....ahem) and began unpacking. Honestly, you could just see the weight roll off her shoulders that she was finally HOME. I cannot imagine what her little heart went through for a year waiting for us to come. She has settled right in. She has put on some weight from last time as she has matured - which honestly, she needed more weight! She is definitely bossier to her younger siblings, but really, really wants to help. She wants to help dress the little ones and work in the kitchen. She wants to do things by herself, which is awesome with proper directions and oversight. We have a new pediatrician for these new kiddos that has a child with DS herself. She is going to run just about every applicable test there is to just get a "baseline" on each child. Lucy has a tooth that really needs to be taken care of and then my next priority is a hearing test. We will be getting all that put in place very soon. What a treasure this girl is. What a relief to have her home forever!
Peter: This little guy was the hardest by far in China - but he has settled in relatively easily here. He did have some meltdowns the first few days and he is NOT sleeping well - which is hard on everyone. He also gets a very nasty grip on hair that is hard to get him to let go of. He does have a lot of "orphanage" behaviors, like Hope. We will see how many he grows out of in time. BUT he loves to snuggle and be touched. He loves to sit on our laps. He LOVES to be outside on the slide. He does have an issue with his hips or with lack of muscle strength which makes for a very awkward walk. The doctor has already done x-rays and we will see what comes of that. We will be checking everything with him - sight, hearing, sleep apnea, thyroid, etc, etc. The doctor recognizes the difficult background he has come from (other than the time at Swallow's Nest) but she has great hopes for him as he gets consistency, love, and good nutrition and medical care. This little guy has already been swept under my mama's wings. As we watch our new baby chicks out in the barnyard be tucked safely under their mama's wings, I just think it is a perfect picture of my heart for him.
Jesse: Oh my goodness - what a kid! He is amazing. There is just no other word for it. But his needs may be a little more complex. He is so loving and affectionate. He wants to kiss and hug everyone! But, you adoptive mamas already know this is a danger - he is completely indiscriminate in his affections. He loves on EVERYONE. Although this is a gift to everyone around him, it is a danger to him being emotionally attached and bonded to his family which is absolutely critical to his long-term emotional health. We "cocoon" with all our new kids - meaning they are always with immediate family and we ask others to be kind and warm - but no kissing, etc. - until the bond with his family is firmly established. This is going to be especially critical with Jesse. He is adored everywhere - and we do not want to take an ounce of that away! But he needs to know "I am adored, but THIS is my family. THIS is who I belong to. THIS is my safe refuge. THIS is where I belong." He never had a ounce of trouble in going with Don and the girls and leaving everyone else behind. This honestly makes for a really easy "gotcha" trip - but is not a good thing long term.
He was very happy to be home and have so many to love on him. He won even the most reserved over instantly! He sleeps fairly well and eats a lot. This is a tiny boy - like 28lbs - but he can pack the food away! But with our experience, the hyperactivity and the extreme eating without weight gain makes me think we have a sleep apnea problem. :( I am praying it can be resolved with removing tonsils and adenoids and not a trach.
He did finally begin melting down a few days ago - which I am actually relieved to see - some release of all the emotions that have to be pent up inside. Some days a nap helps, a snuggle from his family always helps. He definitely is not used to being told "no" and having that be the end of it. He keeps asking and asking and then will try to do whatever it is anyway. Then a full blown temper tantrum starts. Just like all my others, that is a signal that they need to be restrained in mama's arms until they can pull it together. This is much easier with such a light-weight!
He will have many months of appointments and tests ahead of him as we find out what he needs and how we can help. The sleep study and then the eyes are at the top of my list...a very, very long list.
Have so much more to say but need to get the crowd moving. Thank you for all your prayers!