Not knowing what to expect when I brought home this little beauty-who couldn't yet walk, eat, or handle being off the bed in our hotel room without a major meltdown-makes how she is changing even more special.
She didn't smile, didn't make any noises, and never even attempted to communicate with us. She didn't touch toys, never looked in our eyes, and was covered in bed sores. She didn't want to be touched, turned away when we tried to hug her, and leaned away when I carried her. It was too much for her to take a bath, go on a walk, or be in any environment she was unfamiliar with...When I think about this, I am blown away by the enormity of it all...There have been days on this journey that I thought these milestones that I am about to report might never come. There have been moments that I thought this little treasure's heart would never heal..and while we have such a long way to go...She has come so far.
I use the word miracle so often as I write and talk about her. I hope I haven't overused it so much that you are now numb to the meaning of the word...OUR GIRL IS A MIRACLE!! Truly, I never dreamed that we would be witness to such! God has invited us on this journey as we watch her past, the hard things she has experienced, the loss, heartache..all be redeemed slowly by Him..I am blown away by the beauty of it all. I have never in my short life been able to be a part of something that has connected me so closely with the Lord. I have never had to rely on Him so helplessly as I have journeyed through anything else. What a privilege being a momma to this babe is..a privilege and a miracle..
I just wanted to share with you some of the things that she has mastered in the last month. She is so much less fearful and so much more trusting. I am able to correct her, stretch her, encourage her only as a momma can and she is responding..learning so much..growing into such a wonderful daughter. Learning that this place is safe, forever, and that she belongs in it.
So here goes..
1. She can roll a ball back and forth five or six times with me.
2. She can climb up anything that doesn't move.
3. She will "drink" from a spoon.
4. She sits in my lap during every family meal time.
5. She enjoys listening to the praise music in the sanctuary. She can sit for nearly an hour on my lap listening and clapping.
6. She snuggles up next to me each morning when she wakes often laying in my arms for 30 minutes in a tight hug.
7. She can clap and does it all the time. It was so funny when she discovered she could do it.
8. She can operate her light toys herself by pushing the button that makes them go!
9. She can stand on the stool in the bathroom and "wash" her hands with my help.
10. She can follow simple one step directions like sit down or put it in.
11. She is constantly seeking our attention. She always want in on the action.
12. She is very comfortable with all the people that come in our home and she immediatly interacts with them making her wants known. Usually she wants their water bottle or for them to swing or wrestle her.
13. She is comfortable in crowds as long as she is safe in her momma's arms. She will even get down to walk in a crowd as long as she is holding my hand and is in a familar environment.
14. She loves her daddy and always runs and screams with joy when he comes home.
15. She can wait a few minutes without getting upset.
16. She will hold a crayon in her hand and let momma move it to scribble.
17. She will come if you call her name.
18. She is eating lots of chunkier food and can gum it with the best of them.
19. She has gained a whopping ten pounds in eight months.
20. AND THE BEST NEWS YET...Momma has been working on getting her to feed herself. I have broken it down into small steps allowing her to master each one. Steps like..get comfortable with picking up the spoon, putting the spoon in the bowl, bringing the spoon to her mouth AND I am so thrilled to report that my baby girl is using a spoon to feed herself. Considering she had no clue how to eat, chew, swallow, or even allow a spoon in her mouth just seven months ago..JOY that she is conquering this! Watch her do it!
Please pray for us. There are big changes in the months ahead. She is turning three in just two months. Turning three means new therapists, programs, and environments..as we head into the public school for the first time. If I could choose, I wouldn't want her in public school..I must admit. This makes my swallowing it even harder, but I am praying for wisdom as I charter this unknown territory. We also have an important medical appointment tomorrow with a developmental pediatrician. We are hoping this can shed a bit more light on our girl and what we can do to help her.
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