God meant for us to live in families. He made man and then woman and then they made babies. That is just the way He designed it, and my experience is that when you don't follow God's plan you always pay for it in some way.
This is demonstrated so clearly by Little Bear's difficulties in adjusting to family life. He is relentless in getting what he sees as his needs met. Of course, frequently his "needs" are things like food whenever he feel like it. (Note: many children living in orphanages come to their new families are severely undernourished. This is not Little Bear's case. He is at the 50 percentile for weight even though he is not on the chats in height due to his fibular hemimelia. He have been told to watch his weight closely so that he does not get overweight and strain his joints.) Other needs are decimating the competition and being the only child in Mom and Dad's affections- the competition being his little sister.
The severity of his maladjustment is really only beginning to become clear as he begins to really master the language and become more expressive. He is also beginning to trust us more and act less like a threatened animal. Little Bear has mild food hording impulses. He does not want to throw away food or give food he does not want to anyone else. He lashes out, usually verbally, at the other children when he does not like what i am telling him, and he has a very hard time admitting when he did something wrong.
I worry that he does not understand the limits that we have to put on his actions. Pookie has many more privileges than he does but she has earned them. For example, Pookie sat with her brothers at a tae kwan doe demonstration the other night, but Little Bear had to sit with one us. But Pookie is going to stay where she is. Little Bear would start with the older boys, but then begin to roll around kicking other and eventually try to walk into a black belt demonstration. I worry that he will think it is because he is adopted, not because she is more mature than him.
On the other hand the biting and spitting have all but disappeared and these challenges are working themselves out. Bear clearly favors us above others come to us for comfort and support and that show a good attachment. I feel like I am climbing Everest: it's hard, slow and sometimes it's hard to breathe, but I can see we are moving in the right direction.
It's so amazing when you see your children begin to mature. Wonder Boy is not the easiest child. He is funny, creative,and is confident in his own interests, but he struggles to control his temper and wants good enough to be good enough. I have been struggling as a parent to continue to gently but firmly guide him to maturity without giving in to my frustrations. (Aren't we supposed to be past this?! Why haven't we got this already?! No, for goodness sakes. The bare minimum is not good enough.) Some days I succeed, some days I don't.
Over the past week or two some of what we have been trying to teach him seems to be sinking in. He even got his second stripe in tae kwon doe after several months of being stalled in yellow belt. His schoolwork is improving and we have been dealing with fewer and fewer temper fits.
I am so proud of him. What a joy to see and recognize that your child is making a milestone.
I have the best husband in the world. He is not perfect. He has his faults, his foibles, and his moments-- but so do I. The thing is that with him I am complete. I am more than I could ever be by myself. He smooths out my rough edges. He fills the places where I am lacking. He cchallenges mt to be better than I ever thought I could be. He is my cheerleader, my confidant, my sounding board, my best friend. He is everything to me and more.
I have just updated "Our Favorite Books" to include picture books and chapter books for ages 4-8. We love to read around here and trying to find good books can be a challenge. We have been blessed to have great book recommendations from our curriculum provider and I wanted to share. Check it out!
On Wednesday Little Bear and I went over to the hospital for a follow up to his surgery. After his x-rays (I swear if Bear is x-rayed any more he will glow.) our doctor was happy to inform us that his hip is in the socket. I was so worried because on the x-rays the femur didn't look in the socket to me, but what do I know. We will take a little break and get some physical therapy in. After that we will begin to tackle the feet.
More good news! Our doctor want to work on his feet surgically. At this time she does not want to amputate his left foot, which was a possibility. I hope that the foot surgery will be successful and that will remain the case.
Little Bear has been out of his second spica cast for almost four weeks. This time he started to walk after only a week. He is still not very strong and his gait is very awkward. I think that his body works differently and he is struggling to figure it out. He also seems to be having more trouble with his feet. He doesn't seem to have enough "foot" to balance on. I don't remember his having such trouble before. All in all, I am very pleased with his progress
I went to LensCrafters to last week to have Wonder Boy's glasses straightened out. (That happens about every other month.) The young lady who worked there took her tiny little pliers and promptly broke Wonder Boy's frames. After we all recovered from the shock, we were able to choose new frames and they made a new pair of glasses right away.