Monday, December 3, 2012

I Brought Home a Baby!

Isabel is 17 months old, but in so many ways, emotionally and physically, she is not.  She can sit up, but cannot get herself to the sitting position, should she fall over.  She cannot crawl, stand alone or walk.  She still drinks from a bottle and can only hold it for a few seconds at a time.  She cries a lot, especially if I leave the room.

I say all this knowing that she has special needs that have contributed to her delays.  She has been taken from her familiar surroundings and been placed into a world so completely different.  I understand the emotional and physical delays.  What I have had to do, though, is remind myself frequently that she is not a toddler.  I have an 18 month old at home.  I know what a typical toddler can and should do.  I cannot expect Isabel to be anything like that.

So, I treat Isabel like a new baby home from the hospital.  I love on her a lot.  I am not bothered by the frequent nighttime wakings that she started shortly before leaving China.  She needs lots of comforting and assurance, like a new baby.  When I see Isabel like that baby, it is easier to understand her.  If I expect her to be a toddler, I can get frustrated.  Just like coming home from the hospital, I have to take it easy myself.  I cannot jump back into my daily routine.  Isabel needs me... a lot.  We have been blessed with meals.  Thank you to all who have brought us a meal and are scheduled to.  It is incredibly helpful and takes a lot of stress off of me at this important time!

This is a whole new world for me and our family.  Going through a few hours of training and reading books are good, but do not replace real life experience.  This is it for us.  Real life.

I share this not in a disappointed tone... not at all.  Isabel is a doll.  We are SO incredibly happy to have her home with us and love her completely.  I share this because we have had to change our expectation.  When we were told that you have to be very flexible to adopt, they weren't kidding.  And I think we have had it pretty easy, comparatively.  Still, it is different and hard, but it's ok.  Does this make sense?  Or is it jet-lag rambling?

It's all good and I'm sure Isabel will be running around the house with a self-confident stride in no time!

This picture was taken just before she burst out in tears because I moved a couple feet away from her. 


  1. It is all about perspective but instead of the months and years of baby stages she will be on warp drive. We found with Cav he needed the steps from the beginning to get to where is at now . . . Why? And besides Isabel inthe cutest princess ever! But it must be hard with the so close together and your mommy heart mourning all she lost along the way

  2. I completely understand! I have to treat Ava more like a 2 year old, instead of a 3 1/2 almost 4 year old. But, I want to hold her, just as much as she needs to be held. Your sweet Isabel is precious! I just figure they will grow up soon enough! As much as Ava needs to make up for all the time she wasn't carried around and babied, I have to make up for that time too! Your right, adoption is not easy, but isn't it wonderful! I'm so glad you're home!!!

  3. Right there with you my friend. Miss you guys!