Thursday, April 30, 2009

Hide and Seek

How many girls do you think can fit in this little space?

All 5 that are big enough to play hide and seek. Apparently. Of course, all the giggling gave them away. That, and all the loot that is normally hidden in there was on the bed. Not the smartest hide-ers ever. But they are the cutest!

Wednesday, April 29, 2009

Breaking the Silence, and Beautiful Babies

Let's face it. I just won't ever be very consistent. At least not anytime soon. We should be closing on our current home tomorrow or Friday (hopefully), and closing on the one we are buying about a week after that. There is a few days to a week's worth of work on the new one before we can move in, but I'm already packing and purging like a crazy woman. I love throwing things away! ;) The complete opposite of my mom, who said, "I guess as long as I don't see what you're throwing away, it'll be ok." Very serious like. I assured her most of it was truly trash. And what might actually still be in tact and working, but hasn't been used since who knows when is being passed on to someone else. I'm really almost embarrassed at the amount of stuff we've accumulated. Good grief. Who even knew this house could hold that much?

A couple of random things I've heard since my little blog-cation:

"Mom, can I make with glitter again for st. bernard's day?" - Grace. I think she meant Valentines Day.

Said at church just after Sunday school, "Where's Tinkerbell? I can't find her!" - Blessing. With all the seriousness that assured me she knew Tinkerbell. About that time, a little girl I had not seen before came literally flittering by in a very pretty fairy looking dress. I leaned over to the teacher and asked what the new little girl's name was. It was Annabell.

"I can't wear those. My hair is brown." -Charity. Who thinks her hair, shirt, pants, and shoes should all match.

"Aren't you too old for that?" -Faith. When I was trying to dance the way they were. Did I just admit that?

"You're gonna pull your back!" -Hope. Darn that wittiness. You can expect her birthday post coming up... we'll have a big 9 year old girl soon!

Monday, April 6, 2009

46 months, Take 2

At 46 months old, Blessing had lived with us for half of her life. Charity, on the other hand, was 46 months old when she came to live with us. Just 2 months shy of her 4th birthday. That means, theoretically anyway, that we can't really expect the fears she has of being ripped from us to leave until she's lived with us half of her life.... 92 months old, 4 months shy of her 8th birthday. I can't think about that now. Our life with her is very much so day to day. I get overwhelmed if I think about continuing to live like this indefinitely. When I look back at Blessing's pictures over her first days and weeks with us, I think about how far she has come, I'm overwhelmed with love and joy and thanksgiving for her accomplishments. Sometimes, it's that bursting heart feeling, like I can't even stand the blessing she is to us and our family. Too good to have. Too wonderful to explain.

Can I be completely honest? Don't misinterpret. I can't even begin to tell you how much I love Charity. In fact, I think that's why this walk hurts so much. She's this amazing girl. I know it. I see it. She's in there somewhere. I know what she's capable of. I know the impact she can have on this world. I know she hurts. I see that, too. I know she's been wounded far beyond what most people can even comprehend. That knowledge, though, makes it SO STINKING hard to watch her self destruct. Maybe it's because we haven't seen the improvement so easily. Blessing changed by leaps and bounds at a time. Every day her learning, loving, and change was noticeable, and tangible. For whatever reason, though, when I look back at Charity's pictures, all I see is this very sick little girl. It isn't the same feeling. It's frustration, sadness, and anger. To the point that I don't like looking at them. All I can think is how sick she is.

Here's where we are with our precious Charity: her attorney has made the recommendation that we be able to adopt. Fantastic. One check on our very long list. Next up: I finally approached her case worker about my disdain for her psychiatrist, and she gave me the approval I needed to find someone else. We found an attachment therapist who was willing to take her, however does not do her own evaluations or diagnosing. In other words, we would first have to find someone who would diagnose RAD, or at the very least say it needed ruled out for her. Another wall. Let me remind you we're here in po-dunk AR, where there seems to be lots of slamming of doors at the mention of RAD. But my pessimism turned out to be uncalled for, and a local therapist did a diagnostic evaluation on our Charity. She came up with 4 possible diagnosis that she felt Charity might be dealing with, all of which need to be ruled out by a psychiatrist. They were RAD, PTSD, FAS, and Bi-polar. And I'm sure any mother of "normal" kids reading is probably blowing a gasket, I'm here to tell you I was not at all phased by the possibility of us facing one, or a combination of any of those. In fact, as strange as it may sound, it's almost comforting. Mind you I do not want anything to be wrong with my baby. I do not want to deal with any of those disorders. But my husband and I are long past the stage of denial, far beyond hoping love will be enough. We know we can't love this out of her. We know just living with us won't somehow penetrate and heal her wounds. We know we need help. We know she needs help. We are more than ready to just accept whatever this is, and get on with how to handle it. Just like if she had cancer or some physical medical condition, we just want the best care, the best doctors, the best chance for her to live a full, joyful life. And in that moment, it was nice to be heard, to know that someone was agreeing that these things are not normal, and that we need more help than, "Oh, she's just a tough nut to crack. Come again in 6 weeks."

So we're in another holding pattern, but this time optimistic about having an actual attachment therapist. The referral has been made, so we wait. And hang on for dear life in the mean time.

Yes, I'm still here

And I have pictures to share, and stories to tell! Unfortunately there are only 24 hours in a day, and I need to sleep for at least 4 or 6 of them. Lots of changes are looming for us... exciting, wonderful changes that are also scary and stressful. We will definitely be moving soon, but exactly where is still up in the air. TJ will be moving into full time ministry, and while we think we know where, it isn't an absolutely positively done deal, yet. We should hear about the church we just expect to be our home by next Monday. We spent the weekend with that church family and had a great time getting to know some amazing people. They had a sign out in front of the church, that I SO wish I had a camera with me to take a picture. They had put all 8 of our names on it, and just barely had room for all the names! ;) Too funny.

Meanwhile I made yet another trip to the doctor this morning with one of our little ones. I think that my family alone funds that entire medical center. They should put like a statue out front honoring our contributions. This time, we have a referral to a surgeon, and will be discussing a hernia repair for Blessing.

Mercy had court last Thursday, and maybe I'm not crossing any privacy line if I say it is looking more and more likely that we will have the opportunity to adopt her. I had to testify, my first to do such a thing (I am the only one who is still in contact with her birth mom). It was raining, and they were ahead of schedule by 30 minutes. I had run from our parking space to the building with baby wrapped up against me to avoid her getting wet. Out of breath, I walked into the court room to an already proceeding case. They immediately asked me to testify, and I could hardly talk! SO embarrassing. Nothing is set in stone, but the next court date, in early June, will likely be a termination hearing. They are actually calling it a fast track termination. In June, she'll be 9 months old. What about that is fast? Sheesh.

I have lots to share about our Charity, too, and will try to get that hammered out for ya soon! I know I'm losing readers by the day, but I'll eventually get back on track. ;) It's just such a blur of a season for us right now. We're trudging forward, though. One step at a time. One prayer at a time. And trying to enjoy life along the way!