Thursday, January 15, 2009

Birthday, Sickday, Offday, Coldday

I am writing this post at lunchtime, one of the busiest times of the day! How? Well, it's a weird day. Not a normal day. It's Carlie's 8th birthday...hooray! Yet, Clay has a tummy bug....boo! And Carlie doesn't feel that great either....boo! And so we're having an off school day...and it's also the coldest weather we've had in six years. Weird! So Carlie and Clay are snuggled up in the spare room watching a movie, and the other 5 are taking advantage of the off day and watching a movie in the den. At lunchtime! This is so weird for us! We should be doing school, eating lunch, getting things done! Off days are hard for me...I like schedules. But to God be the glory...there is a reason!
Poor birthday girl and her bro who is 15 mos. older than she...they are always playing together, and now they're sick together. I'm so glad the bell is in this picture. This bell is one of the most important components of our family...ha! It rings to tell us it's meal time and it rings when sick ones needs their momma and it rings when toddlers can reach it just for the fun of it. And when it rings, let me assure you, it rings LOUDLY.

And now I can try to blog about something that some of you have asked about. Candace's adjustment as an older child.

Well, from the beginning, she has fit right in to our family. And she still does. She thrives on being a part of the group, yet she likes having her "own" things. She is still delighted by little things...like when we went to the beach and she realized the condo had a refrigerator, a bed, an oven...just like home! She was amazed. "Weelie!", she exclaimed, which is her way of saying "wow" or "pretty" or "amazing". Oh Lord how we take for granted those things. I go to a hotel or the condo and think "It BETTER have a bed, an oven, a fridge..." Candace has helped us see things from a new perspective. How thankful we are that she has opened our eyes!
She still eats a TON, but no longer feels the need to hide food. She also has stopped hiding her belongings under her bed and pillow. She is feeling more secure that this is a permanent situation and she doesn't need to fear that she won't have what she needs. She has bonded wonderfully to me, Rob, and all her siblings. She is so well-adjusted. She tells us bye when we need to run to the store and there is no separation anxiety whatsover. That has been a big difference with adopting her compared to adopting Kimmie and Quan. I'm sure it's the age, and the personality too. She stayed in another class at CBS yesterday and her teacher, Ms. Adria, said she did wonderful! She interacted with the other kids, communicated well with motions, and seemed fine! Carlie and Clay were in the class with her to make sure she was doing fine. She still has much to learn with social graces, but she's getting better! She is beginning to understand how to greet people and how to treat people. She is such a sweet heart.
Though she can be a stinker...don't you know it! She can still pout better than any 8 year old I know, and she is a Queen Tattle-teller! ;) Especially on Kimmie and Quan. That's because they're the prime mischief makers. They like telling on her too. Little stinkers! All three of them! What am I saying? I've got seven stinkers! And I wouldn't have it any other way! ;)

We have not had any attachment issues with Candace, praise the Lord, Hallelujah! Thank you Jesus! Our main issues are her medical needs. She is not growing, and so we will see an endocrinologist next month. Her thyroid is not working properly. She is not hearing as we had hoped she would after her surgery. She will go back for another hearing test next month. My 3 main prayers for her are that she will grow, hear, and speak English soon! Our second biggest issue is the language barrier. She is slow to pick up English, and I know that is part because of how long she was in China, and part because of her hearing. She can say all our names, potty, water, shoes, teeth, hair, nose, eyes, mouth....and "weelie!" Candace is classified as having severe hearing loss. Her hearing bones are intact, which means when she wears a bone conducting hearing aid (which we borrowed from the Hear Center in B'ham-she wears it like a head band) she can hear well. It also means she is not a candidate for cochlear implants, but is a candidate for the BAHA...a bone anchored hearing aid. When she had surgery last month to create an ear canal, Dr. Hill also put in a screw for the BAHA. In about 2 months, if she still cannot hear, she will get a little hearing aid that is about 1 inch square that will pop on to that little screw. That will be much better than having to wear this head band. My hopes, and Dr. Hill's hopes, are that she won't have to wear the BAHA. We hope that the surgery will do the trick...but so far we are not seeing results. I'm disheartened by that, but I remember that to God be the glory, and if He can gain more glory this way, so be it! His ways aren't my ways. Thank the Lord!
We are so thankful we were able to visit her foster home and spend time with her foster mother. This has helped us see the reason for some of her behaviors so clearly...like the hoarding of food and the hiding of her belongings. It makes such a difference when parents can see where their child grew up, I believe. I wish I could make the Chinese gov't. believe that, because I think every parent should get the choice to meet the people who raised their child thus far. It makes us feel so connected to Candace. It helps us understand her. We know why she finds everything so "weelie!" It also gives Candace the gift of having pictures and video of where she spent her first 8 years. What a blessing! I wish I could share that day with you all, but I made a promise not to share it on my blog. Several have asked about it...just know that so many prayers were answered that day.
If any of you have specific questions about older child adoption, or toddler adoption, or special needs adoption, or ANYTHING that I can maybe help you with, please send me an email or leave me a comment. I don't want to hoard the blessings the Lord has given me. I don't want to hoard what I've learned. I want to be able to share with others...and it may take me a few days to get back to you, but I will, don't worry! And please don't think I'm too busy for any of you. Yes, my family comes first...but I fully trust the Lord will provide all the time I need to nurture and share in the sweet friendships I have with all of you!
Thank you all for your prayers for our family. You are all so special to me, really. I love each and every one of you. You have had a part in building our family! How wonderful! I feel like I cannot convey properly my grateful heart. I hope you feel it. You are all very "weelie" to me!

More to come soon, I promise!

Candace thinks our puppy is pretty "weelie" too! We think Candace is "weelie" herself! Looking at this picture I can see so much how she has blossomed since those first pictures we took coming home. That makes us say "WEELIE!!!!!!!!!!"

16 comments:

Kimi said...

Laine,

You are "weelie" to me too! I am so happy to read your post and am so glad she has adjusted and bonded so beautifully. I will be sure and pray for your concerns.

I will email you about the Leap Frog items and give you the specifics on them.

Blessings to you my sweet friend....love you!

Kim

connie said...

Oh, Laine, I'm so glad to reconnect with you! It was such a blessing to finally meet you in China last October, and I've thought about your sweet kiddos ever since. I'm so glad Candace has bonded well, and we will lift up your concerns. Most of all, to God be the glory for all He has done and is doing in your lives! Can I just say that I wanna come live near the beach too ;-) It looks amazing! Then again, would I really be brave enough to take my mischief-makers to the beach?? Love and miss you~
Clayton, Connie and the K-Krew

Rebekah said...

Praise the Lord for answered prayers! I am so excited for the Lord's blessings on your family!

Trace Car Driver said...

i love it! the weelie story is my favorite part i think :) sounds like trace, he picks up "Awesome" and "Cool" and knows exactly when to say them, it's so cute! can't wait to see more pics of the kids... hope you were able to enjoy today and can get back to school and a "normal" day tomorrow!

Buffi said...

Thanks for the update on Candace. It's good to hear her transition is going well. I believe with you guys that her hearing will come. You guys just amaze me!!! Wow...I can't imagine being able to visit with Sadie's foster parents. I SO WISH we could have. There are SO many questions I have and things I wonder about. I'm so glad you got that opportunity with Candace.

It's so good to be hearing from you again. I hope everyone stays well and warm there. It's frigid here too. My thoughts...if it's not going to snow...let it get warmer. SIGH.....it never snows here! Oh well...maybe one day our kiddos will see a big snow!!! Have a great Thursday! Love ya,
Buffi

Cindy Jones said...

Happy Birthday Carlie!!!! I hope that you and Clay feel better soon.


Laine I love the update. It is great how she has adjusted to her forever family.

Amy said...

Thank you for sharing, it was all such a blessing to read. I will be praying for her health!

Sherri said...

Thanks for sharing about Candace. I will pray for the requests you mentioned. There's one thing I know--God will be glorified! He has shown that to you every step of the way in this adoption. It's going to be exciting to see just how He chooses to do that!

I miss your updates.

sherri

Sherri said...

By the way, Happy Birthday, Carlie!

And I wish I could have had the opportunity to see Mia's foster parents. There's so much about her that I would like to understand.

sherri

Tina said...

Laine,
You really can tell how much Candace has blossomed just by pictures! She is beautiful. I am so sorry you have sick ones and I know about those "off days" from homeschool to everything else! I hope your crew is back on their feet again soon!
Lv ya
Tina

MichelleQ said...

Candace is VERY "weelie" and even more so since she's been "home" with you guys, truly! Puppy is "weelie", too--just doesn't have a very "weelie" name! LOL

Happy Birthday, Carlie and feel better--both you and bubba!

Mike and Barb said...

Love, love, love that update, Laine. You just have to be one of the sweetest women out there, seriously!
I'm so happy and thankful that Candace is doing so well, and I'll be praying for wisdom with her medical care.
What a little sweetheart!
Love to all
Barb

Mama Hen said...

She is so cute Laine. I am amazed at the work the Lord has done in you these past few years. You are such a wondrful momma!

Keisha said...

I love that smile!! So glad to hear there are NO attachment issues! Praise the Lord! She sounds like she has made a Perfect fit.
Thanks for the update!
Glad to see ya back to bloggin too!
:)

mommy24treasures said...

so glad you are all adjusting so well. I have been hoping all was well.
I am so sorry for your sick babies, hope they are feeling better. We are meeting at the zoo in the Spring right? I can'twait to meet beautiful Candace a nd see all the sweet Ferrills again.
Love
Connie

Kristy said...

Precious post, my friend.
Had to comment on the bell - we have one too for when there is a sicky around here.....only it's a cow bell.
Fitting, huh?
**hugs**