There has been a lot happening in our house the last few days. And in us. Some of it is lovely and fun, some of it is confusing and frustrating, and some of it is harsh and ugly. I have dealt with more emotions than I will ever be comfortable with, my poor husband and mom can testify to that! I think what has taken me so off guard, is that I have felt and continue to feel off and on, anything less than complete and utter joy and thankfulness that our girl is home. I definitely have felt that, but I have also felt other things too that I don't like, don't want, and don't really know what to do with.
I remember reading other families updates when they got home with their kids, and reading that adjusting was really hard. I just wanted to be at that point though, I felt ready to be at that hard place instead of the hard place we were in. Well, we are here, and it is hard. :) I have come to understand more and more that attachment is truly a two-way street. I knew that going in, but it's hard to really understand until you are in it. And it has nothing to do with her. Intellectually I completely understand why sleeping is hard for her, why she doesn't want to eat what I make for her, or drink from a sippy cup. I understand why she doesn't yet love her brothers they way they love her, or why she only wants me. But my feelings don't always match what I know in my head to be true. What I feel is that it's hard to give up control to a 17 month old who has behaviors that my boys never did, and parent her in a completely different way than we did our boys, at least for now. I have seen my pride and selfishness raise their ugly heads and try to take over again and again. You know you always hear that becoming a parent shows how sinful you are, well try adopting and it brings it to a whole new level. I have been journaling daily my prayers to the Lord, and they usually start with, "Lord, I am sorry for..."
Colossians 3:12-14 have become my mantra all throughout the day;
"Therefore as God's chosen people holy and dearly loved clothe yourselves with compassion, kindness, humility, gentleness, and patience. Bear with each other and forgive whatever grievances you may have against each other. Forgive as the Lord forgave you, and over all these virtues put on love which binds them all together in perfect unity. Let the peace of Christ rule in your hearts, since as members of one body you were called to peace. And be thankful."
And I am thankful. I in no way want to be someone who looks for the hard parts of life. Our girl is home, and that is a huge deal! It's a dream fulfilled and hundreds of prayers answered. I think it's okay though to be honest about what we are going through too. I did make a quick list of prayers the Lord has answered, certainly not all of them, but I wanted to take some time and just be thankful.
1. She is HOME!!!
2. Aaron and I were a great team in Ethiopia.
3. All our luggage made it with us, there and back.
4. We didn't get sick while in Ethiopia
5. Our boys did great at home
6. No one else got the stomach flu (Micah got it the night before we left)
7. Hope attached to me right away
8. We were able to stay in the guest house we wanted to the whole trip (we thought we were going to have to go somewhere else for one night)
9. Hope slept several hours on the flights home
10. She did not get sick on the way home
11. Aaron finally felt better when we landed in Omaha (he got the stomach flu on our flight from Frankfurt to Chicago, and was sick until we landed at home)
12. Hope finally started to like the baby food I brought (lifesaver for the flights home)
13. She is eating great
14. She takes a nap every day
15. She goes to sleep easily
16. She is happy
17. She has not gotten sick
18. We were able to get to the dr. right away and get some meds for her to get rid of a parasite, before she got sick
19. My mom is here to help us
20. We have amazing friends and family who have prayed, and are praying for us
21. Eli and Micah love her
22. Isaac played with her today
23. She loves baths
24. She doesn't mind her highchair/ carseat
25. She can wear all the clothes we had for her
26. She is affectionate
27. She loves Aaron, and smiles at him all the time
28. She is not overly fearful