Tuesday, March 6, 2012

a small piece of real (b/c I only have time for a piece)

You don't get much of the real of being a mom, esp. being a mom to an adopted child. I will, eventually have time to give you more real but for now here is a piece. Some of this is just "there are now 4 kids in the house, and we are adjusting to a new baby" real and some of it is on steroids because she is adopted.

This has been my real this week.

A loneliness that is so present it makes me want to curl into a ball (because this is really hard, but you can't really tell every one that because then you would sound ungrateful and like you wished you hadn't done it - not everyone thinks that hard doesn't equal bad).
A fear and wrestling of attaching to this broken hearted little girl that God is longing to heal.
A baby that I really know little about her health, that has had a horrible cough and snotty nose for about 5 days. A cough that at least once a day covers me in vomit because it is so strong.
A week that started out with an attempt of all 6 of us trying to go out of the house together for the first time in 4 weeks. To church we went. Got there late to sneak in the back so as not to overwhelm our little one with so many new faces. Only to last 20 minutes before she coughed so hard that she threw up all over my new black shirt.
Placing a call to our nurse to see if I should bring her in, and praying that they say no, because all the kids are home from school today, and I can't even change my spit up on shirt, much less get all 4 of us loaded up and to the dr.'s office.
An amazing husband (whose birthday is today!) who spent his birthday night up A LOT with a sick little girl, because I was cramping so badly I knew that if I got out of bed my uterus would fall out.
A husband who, even though I got out of bed and let him sleep a bit this morning and I made him an awesome omelet birthday breakfast, cleaned up the kitchen by himself so it wouldn't be a mess for me after he went to work.
A exhaustion brought on my 5 weeks of only 1-2 hour stretches of sleep at a time (that doesn't include the sleeplessness that led up to bringing her home). I really don't even feel exhausted anymore...except when I do, and then I REALLY DO!

and then there is this post...which is amazing and brings me back to what is REAL.

The other side of this real is this:

A little girl who smiles and bounces wildly when her Daddy gets home from work.
A little girl who now knows where Mommy comes into her room and when I go pick her up from her nap, cranes her entire body in anticipation of seeing me as quickly as she can, and though it is dark in her room and I can only see the white of her eyes at first, I can feel her smile before I turn the light on and reach down to get her.
A little girl who is starting to trust us and turns her body into mine.
A little girl who is starting to really want, and even cry to be held by me instead of wanting to be left alone.
A little girl who sings to me in babble, smiling, and reaching up to touch my face for 30 minutes in the middle of almost every night (OK, I do wish this one happened at 3pm instead of 3am but I will take it).

That is all the small piece I can write for now - I have to bake a birthday cake for my amazing husband!

Sunday, March 4, 2012

Learning more about the other Three

I know my three bio kids pretty well. I carried them, birthed them, have spent hours with them - learning about them, watching how they tick, how they respond to life. I pretty much could tell you how each one of them would respond to having a new little sister, and I have been pretty much dead on with my assessments. We talked to them, prepared them for how hard it could be for a while. Shared with them some of the things that Ribka might go through, how she might respond to them, and to us.

It has been absolutely one of the sweetest things to watch these three kids that I know so well, bring out little pieces of this little girl that I barely know at all. I have fallen in love with all four of them even more by watching them engage with each other. She has been an amazing gift to our family as I wrote about here, but what a sweet gift these three kids are to her as well.

Daniel, my first born. My intense, super energetic, head in the clouds, brainy, empathetic little guy. He is always busy, always plotting out something in his head, or inventing something, or crying over the ants that I killed or some injustice he has come upon. My prediction was that he would be very interested in Ribka for short burst. That he would do drive by interactions on his way to something else. That has been mostly true. But what I didn't expect is that he would dance in front of her for 10 minutes to make her laugh. That he would tear up when he startled her and made her cry. That he would love holding her. That he would flip her over when I put her on her belly and she would fuss about it. It is precious to see him respond to her.
Kate, my second born. My nurturing drama queen. My super perceptive, wordy little mother who likes to control everything. My prediction was that she would be very interested in the "motherly" type activities like changing her diaper, bathing her, feeding her. That has been true. She has helped with baths, has helped with putting on diapers, and picking out hair bows. But what has blessed me to hear and see is the conversations that she has had with her. As she sits in front of her telling her all about girl stuff - hair bows, etc. Listening as Ribka babbles and acting like she is telling her something really important. The questions that she has asked me about the things that Ribka might be feeling. The way her little body starts bouncing and swaying automatically when she holds her. The way that she has WANTED to share our girl time with her. Love Kate's heart for her little sister (and that she wants to dress alike, and put hair bows in her hair, etc.)
And then there is Micah. My rambunctious, highly physical, highly physically affectionate, overt, funny, VERY boy little guy. I said that if Ribka can survive all the "love" Micah will give her she will be one tough little girl. My prediction was that Micah would not be able to keep his hands off of her, and that he would be all in her space most of the time. We practiced gentle hands and quiet voices double time in preparation for a little sister. He is all that...and more! He seriously is so infatuated with her that he sometimes just can not control the excitement that comes out of him when she is around. He has done great with his gentle hands, gentle hugs. He rubs her head, wants to hug her and hold her at every turn, is interested in ALL things that involve her. He is such a sweet little guy and has said numerous times, "I just want to be next to my best friend, I love her so much." His love for her makes me smile!
I am not naive to think that there will always be this much LOVE going on in the house, but it is really sweet for now!