Friday, March 11, 2011

Love at First Sight - 3 Years Ago Today!

Some people say they don't believe in love at first sight. Some people say it's not possible. I think when referring to a child, that you just can't help yourself.

I'm not talking about feeling like a mother at the snap of the fingers, but I am talking about looking at a child, knowing they are going to be yours and just letting yourself love them, even if you don't know them yet.

Three years ago, I felt true love at first sight. I may not have felt like a mother in that exact moment, but I loved the little boy the orphanage worker was holding by the hand, the moment they came through the door and I leaned down and took his hand from her.

For is the email I sent home the night we met our baby boy (who isn't much of a baby anymore)!!

We met with the ministry at 9 am and it was easy. A lady simply gave us the formal version of our referral and asked if we would like to meet the child. Of course we said YES “Da”. She smiled and gave us the permission to visit the child.

We left straight for Votkinsk, an hour away and went to the baby home. Because Daniel was getting ready to eat and nap they brought him in within minutes of our arrival and he sat right in my lap and we played with the Little Tykes Hammer (makes sounds and lights up) and then we tried to look at books but like I said he turns the pages so fast!! He doesn’t talk yet except to say Wow or whoa or something to that effect. He sat quietly in Troy’s lap while I took notes from the orphanage director. They told us he loves books, music and dancing.

Afterwards we left as Daniel had to eat and take a nap. We went out to lunch with our regional rep and translator and had a nice time. Then they took us to Tchaikovsky’s house (great composer) and we took a few photos and then we shopped. We got some great pieces and souvenirs for 1,675……..rubles – gotcha didn’t I – I think that works out to approx. 71.00!! Like I said we got some beautiful pieces. Wish us luck packing them up!!

We went back to the baby home at 4 and got to visit with Daniel for 2 hours. We played with stacking cups and shape sorter. He loved both. We gave him a soft squishy ball and all he would do is put it in a cup and dump it out. He would smile when we would throw it to each other. He doesn’t seem ticklish and he doesn’t make a lot of eye contact, but that is normal. He is delayed in aspects but physically he is a pretty healthy looking fellow. He has blue clear eyes and likes to cut them to the side to sneak a peek at you!

We were watched with him the entire time except for the last hour when I suppose the director decided we were okay after all. Daniel will certainly need bonding time with us and us with him. It will take time.

He hugged mama and papa bye bye and he waved “pah kah pah kah” (bye bye) to us. He hugged Troy hard and even squeezed his arms when hugging him. I got a hug that was a whatever hug but I snuck a kiss in on his cheek!! Chopped liver already – that’s me!!

I just can't believe it's been three years. It feels like so much the best possible way. I can't imagine life without Daniel in it and I can barely think about life before Daniel. We were truly blessed three years ago today and the blessings have never stopped since!!
Here is our first family photo taken at our second meeting. We weren't allowed to take any photos the first day, but those memories are ones I'll never forget!!

Thursday, March 3, 2011

"Because I Learned it From God"

Whew!! We've had a busy few weeks. I can't believe it's been over a month since I've posted on this blog.

I've switched gears at work from real estate law to tax law and I've been working extra days to get as many tax returns out by the deadline as possible. Some returns can take two to three days to complete!! My head is spinning with numbers right now!

On top of that last week was the busiest week of my life! Not only did I work two extra days, but my older sister had her baby, my newest nephew, on my birthday!!! Yesterday we picked up her two year, brought him to our house and had a fun day raking leaves and then re-raking leaves after Daniel and Eli jumped into them repeatedly!! Then last night we headed to her house armed with dinner, and celebrated 5 birthdays!!!!! Those five inlcude mine and Jacob's (new baby), brother in law Brett, sister who gave birth Cathy, and my mom - all five within exactly 7 days of each other! It was crazy, but we had a great time pampering Cathy and holding the baby!!

Today, I am actually thankful it's pouring outside, just so I can take it easy on the couch. Daniel is watching hunting and fishing curled up in Troy's lap.

Now that I've bored you with our busy life, I have some great news to share about Daniel! I know I've posted about potty training several times, and that I think he's trained. Each time I've posted, with a few days, he's gone backwards. I've been at my wits end many, many times. Daniel is 4 and 3/4 and starts kindergarten in the fall. I've spent a lot of time working with him, making the bathroom fun, being discouraged, sad, mad, understanding, proud, disappointed, frustrated, cheering, dancing, crying. We had even put him back in pull-ups for a while. We've been training since right before he turned 3.

If your new to this blog, Daniel has a medical condition, but thankfully we are coming to the end of it we hope. Time will do the rest. His medical condition has made potty training extremely difficult. In fact, I was told more than once he would need a permanent cathedar. I'm glad I was told that because it made me even more determined to potty train him.

I'd been spending a lot of time praying about potty training in particular this past month. Each night before bad, i found myself praying the God would intervene and help my child understand his bladder.

Then I gave up...not praying, but potty training. I just let Daniel know that I would remind him to go potty, but it was his choice to go potty or not. If he chose not to go, that was fine. If he wet, he was responsible for changing himself and he couldn't come out of his room or the bathroom until he had on clean clothes. Everything he needed was at his diposal.

I noticed within a few days he was changing himself without me saying a word. He was still having accidents, but he was noticing and changing himself. Progress. Then he started going everytime I reminded him. Our "Yes Ma'am" strategy helped with this. Then I realized a week had passed and he had not wet at all.

Then two nights ago, I undressed Daniel for his bath and his pants were totally dry yet again! I hugged him, told him how proud I was and said "Where did you learn to keep your pants so dry?"

Daniel looked straight at me and said "Because I learned it from God".

Well, I sure can't argue with that. I've been thanking God ever since. Daniel has been dry for a little more than a week now, including leakage. I expect a few leaks given his medical condition, but I am such a proud mommy. We go back to the urologist in April for a large test, but it's hopefully the last one. I can't wait to tell them they can cross the permanent cathedar right off their charts, because I believe that with God's help, we have kicked this problem right out of the ball park!!
So, now that I've gone on and's some great pictures from our week!!