Wednesday, September 30, 2009

legitimacy of abandonment

Lately I've been reading to much stuff and I am spending more time thinking about the early days of my daughter's life. I wonder about her abandonment, was she left by a Mom who could not keep her and wanted the best for her? or was she taken from her birth Mom without her consent? Was there a pay off for her cute little mug or was she left by a Mom with a broken heart? Was the life of my daughter valued enough that people didn't exchange her in order to make a buck?
How widespread was the Hunan scandal or does it continue to be? It makes me sick to my stomach reading all this stuff. I can only hope and pray that Emerson's birth Mom can feel how loved she is deep within her soul.
Interesting reading coming from this site...
One story resonated deep with me because of the span between birth and abandonment...I pray this isn't the history of my daughter. At some point I will have to make peace with the unknown and better prepare myself for the day when my daughter has her own questions about her history.

Sunday, September 27, 2009

3 words & random photos

Emerson has been really busy playing, walking & discovering. She is fascinated with everything and she is always in motion. So our 3 words this week belong to the little tot who keeps our home in constant motion. & to Mali Sue....because she turned 5!
Happy Birthday Mali!
Emerson loved the balloon, while it lasted that is...
& she is also extremely excited with the little button on her belly. She checks on it about 20 times a day, just to make sure it's still there.
Lil' Girlfriend: Hard at Play

Big kids Mali & W
Eme, aka: snack queen

the big beautiful smile that melts my heart...

Thursday, September 24, 2009

4 months home & attachment update

It's been awhile since I talked about attachment and on this day, Sept. 24, exactly 4 months after a complete stranger handed me my daughter, I thought it would be good to mention how far my champ of a girl has come and yet how far she still has to go.
There's a part of me that evaluates the significance of her time in China with her time home. Her time with us has surpassed her first 2 disruptions. My daughter's attachment was disrupted with her birth Mom after a little time had passed with her & I'd rather not say how long for the sake of her privacy, but she was then moved to a hospital and then to an orphanage for 4 months before she ultimately ended up with a foster family. I think of her time home with us at 4 months and I could easily tell you that she is completely bonded to her family. That she greets us all with her huge smile, a big "HI" and a hug. That she knows who each of us are, that she would much prefer me over anyone, that she has adjusted to the point of more smiles, giggles and laughter over crying and looking away. That her eye contact is dead on, that she craves the snuggles of her Mama and how much she is .trying to say words and that we understand her seamless communication. She is super fun 99% of the time and she is my good time girl. However, to ignore the past of my daughter would be completely ignorant. We don't focus on her history, but her history has helped us to maintain our steadfast commitment in doing it the 'Nancy Th0mas' way. To assume that all is well because of the great amount of change we have seen in her would be foolish because quite frankly, with all the good she is experiencing, she still does not have the ability to speak her fears, to verbalize her pain and to ask questions.
Recently when we were at Disney, my girl had a smack down episode with a happy little girl about the same sage. I have no clue why, it came out of nowhere and it made me question the anxiety she still feels at times. I wondered if this place carried to many people and she was not ready for that busy of a place. Do large busy crowds = high anxiety? Maybe.
Some of the attachment things that we still practice every day with Eme is holding time, especially at nap and night. Immediate family members are the only ones that hold her for comfort, bath her or feed her, all food passes through our hands first. Absolutely no kisses from anyone other than Mommy, Daddy & brothers. This rule will stay into affect for quite some time because Eme tends to seek kisses from anyone that is close in range, from adults to children. She will lean into them and give her humming sound that she does right before she desires a kiss, that alone shows me that she has not established her boundaries. I know many people think it's affectionate and cute, but it's a red flag warning to us. By practicing attachment parenting, we are not harming our child. We might go through all this and she will still have some RAD or PTSD, but the effort that we are putting in now, will certainly not hurt her.
The past 4 months have not been easy. It has been an adjustment for all of us, but we could not be happier with the little girl that we call our daughter. I can't tell you how many times a day I hear the boys tell me how much they love their sister. Just last night, G said, "Isn't she the best girl ever? I just love her so much." I couldn't agree more.
I don't know what goes on in that matching room at the CC*AA, but they have proven to know exactly what they are doing. Emerson Grace was born to be our daughter. To compare the pictures of the scared little girl that was handed to us 4 months ago to the happy smiling girl she has become just makes it all so surreal. She has always been a tropper with her smiles, but I never felt they were 'real' until recently. My heart is complete & my life is full.

Wednesday, September 23, 2009

those red shoes

Look who's walking in those snazzy red shoes...
She sure has come along way since this video taken one month ago.

Sunday, September 20, 2009

the more bling, the better...or so she thinks...

Eme loves her beads. I mean she *loves* them.
She will always swoop them up and put them on.
Rumor has it that Daddy took her to the cheap jewelry joint to purchase a whole set of beads. including necklaces, bracelets and rings for the low price of $5.

We're not used to all this girly cuteness, but we are loving it. She will push her baby with her ladybug purse covering herself in tons of bling. We just love our girly girl!

3 words & catching up after a week of fun with Col & fam

It was a spec~TAC~ular week with Colleen, Jim and Hannah!
We really did have the best time and I hope Jim loved Paradise so much that he's at home right now boxing up his life to make a move;0) I know, it's not that simple....but a girl can dream...
A whole bunch of pics of our week now that I had a second to upload them, they are completely out of order, but I'm to lazy to fix them.

I thought this was a hoot....
we called it iphone island.

just a ridiculous snapshot that we had a chuckle over... & since I have no shame, I don't mind sharing so you too can have a chuckle;)

a sunset view
learning about the proper floatation needed to safely relax...
Eme and her jet pack
our girls sharing a snack
an island float
dinner at Tommy Bahamas

A nice bar that makes the best & strongest Mai Tai's I've ever in my life had....gawd I love rum!
We also had some tasty sushi rolls while we were waiting for our Pand0ra bracelets to be cleaned. & if you've never had yours cleaned, you should. Those bad boys came back all bright and shiney!

An afternoon story that Eme had no interest in hearing. The girl will not sit still for 2 seconds to turn the page, let alone get through a whole story.
Hannah & W really like each other...really.
beautiful seaside vision of our girls in white

Friday, September 18, 2009

Jaylee day

Another dream comes true.... Congratulations to my neighbors who FINALLY have Jaylee in their arms!
They are in the Philippians now and we can't wait for her to come home!

Sunday, September 13, 2009

3 words & Disney


Let's talk about cramming a good time into a very itty bitty amount of time....
We met up with Colleen & family at M*GM for the day and had a rockin' good time, especially at the Rockin' Roller Coaster.
We had to do the kid swap ride thing & our noses just kept leading us to the bar while we waited for the dudes to get off the ride.
It was beer thirty really early in the day...

W was not happy at all that he was unable to ride the roller coaster due to his short height.
Should've brought socks to stuff in his shoes, he was almost there, but not quite.

But it worked for Hannah to have her bud by her side all day.
They are just so stinkin' cute together.
& again, we followed the beer scent to the H*gh Octa*ne Bar while J had the boys on some Star Wars ride, Jim had Hannah at the playground & Eme was asleep in her stroller.
Eventually they all made their way to the bar & our kids sucked back some big blue sugary drink that made their heads spin around.
We ended up hanging out at the outdoor bar for quite a long time waiting for the rain to pass. Not a bad place to pass the time if I do say so myself. The bartender loved us=0)
Hannah did not like it when Eme would scream, she kept hushing her. She is a loud girl.
Ms. H & W deciding on their next beverage... such big choices for such little kids.

Sharing a stroller ride...
The Bu*zz ride was a big hit with my boys.

Eme deciding that she just couldn't walk another step.

We had a terrific babysitter for the night, so the adults were able to do dinner & Jelly*rolls without all the kids! Gawd that was fun!

"...You got fins to the left, fins to the right, and you're the only bait in town.
You got fins to the left, fins to the right, and you're the only girl in town..."

Good times had by all!

Aren't these 2 just so cute?
After a couple hours sleep, J was tapping me to get moving. We left 0rlando at 5AM to get J to the airport in time for his flight out to Buckeye Country. Thanks to his brother, J was able to score a ticket to see the Buckeyes play at 'The Shoe' on Saturday night. We won't discuss the outcome of that game, but I know he loved being there for every second of it.

My kids are so hyped up on a weekend of fun that it might take me a month to detox them. We stayed the first night with their Auntie & Uncle & after pizza, popsicles, fireworks, powdered sugar donuts, icecream and fun dip...their all looking at me like the total buzz kill Mom that I am.

However, Colleen & family will be down tomorrow to enjoy the week with us in Paradise, so detoxing my children won't be happening for another week or so.