Break Dancing

We're getting into a groove. H has an "episode" every morning, then pulls it together for the rest of the day. We've got their U of Chicago specialist appointment on Monday, and I've got a call in to a children's mental health facility. Hopefully we can get some answers next week, and see where we are. We're thinking PTSD for H. He's older and a bit more emotionally sensitive than Y. I hate to think that we "broke" him by bringing him here. And yet, whenever I go through the "should we have taken them from all they knew?" routine, I come back to "Yes. They will have a chance at a life here... jobs, good health, etc..."

Y is a happy, funny little girl. She wakes up happy with kisses and hugs. Mostly complies. Has issues normal to 6 year old. She can get sad, and she'll go off for 20 minutes and then come back herself. When H gets really bad, she'll cling to me with hugs and tears. Loves to draw and copy words from books.

Turns out there are tons of Schoolhouse Rock! songs that I have never heard, and about 10 that I know VERY well. Did they just show those few all the time?


Marion said...

Eek! The answer is yes! :) I also think they made up new ones after we were beyond watching Schoolhouse Rock.

You know...as your body grows bigger...

so glad all is going well

Yarnsmith said...

Rats! Wow! That's one of my favorites!

kelly said...

FWIW, H and Y remind me very much of my oldest two kids. My 9-y-o son has anger issues; I've been to a counselor several times about it; thus far the counselor hasn't felt the need to see my son but just talking to the shrink helped me cope. My 7-y-o daughter is sweet, wants to help, wants to 'fix' whatever's broken... sometimes even offers to do her brother's chores to try to preserve the peace.

I don't think you broke H by bringing him here. By your great love for these two, I am convinced that this was God's plan - not an accident, not a coincidence. God's plan may not be easy, and it may involve H being broken... but (I trust) for his glory, and (I hope) broken and remade according to His purposes. I don't in the least understand any of it, but I know God is good, and I'm praying that you'll be able to see his goodness despite the confusion and the pain (and the sleeplessness, oy!)

I had the same experience with Schoolhouse Rock, knowing about ten of the songs. I think I know them all NOW... ;o)

Katherine said...

Chris, I don't think you 'broke' H either by bringing him here. A lot of what he's going through could very well have been set into motion just by his pre-America/Gardner experience. Also, he can't really express himself to you or anybody around him except Y yet, and what good is talking to a little sister about some of that stuff? I had a thought: could you bring him to that Ethiopian guy you were telling me about, not for counseling, but perhaps to develop a friendship with someone who can speak his language? Perhaps it would help him if he didn't feel all 'alone' right now (i.e. not able to really communicate effectively with anyone). I was thinking, his issue might be comparable to, say, a little baby or toddler who throws a tantrum because they just can't explain how they're feeling to anyone, not having the words. Also, they could very well still be jet-lagged. I've never had it myself, but have heard it can really mess an adult up, not to mention a young person. Chris, you and Lee are awesome people. You're doing your best, so don't be hard on yourselves, and keep expectations low for everyone in your house right now. It's a process for everyone, and everyone will learn to live together harmoniously, God willing. Call if you need anything, even if you just need to get out for a 1/2 hour walk sometime by yourself. That's another thing, make sure you are deliberate about getting some time 'off' each of you to be out of the house, either by yourself or with a friend, no kids. It's super important, and will help you keep your sanity! We all love you!

Anna W. said...

I just caught up on all of the news and just cried and cried. What beautiful children they are and what a tremendous change for all of you. Like water on a stone(with the occasional monsoon), you are all smoothing each others' rough edges. I was so heartened by your divine inspiration to clap when Hobtamu started into a snit. I have had that happen so many times with my kids and I can't account for it any other way than God being kind to a fool like me. I am offering my house as an occasional getaway for either of the parents. I have a cosy nook upstairs away from the hubbub of the house where you can sleep or read or hear yourself think. I am also offering a place to bring the kids when you are ready for that. Our kids would love to meet the people for whom they have been praying. I also wanted to express my admiration for your writing ability in the midst of such extemities of emotion! Blessings,@

small world said...

I just wanted to let you know that what your kids are doing is sooooooo normal. Please call us sometime and I will let you know all the similarities between what H is doing and what our son from Russia did when we first got him. The best thing we did for Denis was to get him an interpreter who would come into our home and just let him express himself in his own language. He got a lot of junk out during these sessions. Just to encourage you he has now been with us for three years and is completely fluent in English as well as family life. All these kids go through so much and it takes time, but I encourage you to get yourselves a couple of people who have already been through this older adoption thing and I can assure you it will help. Please consider calling me so I can encourage you. My info is on the AWAA YG database.

Rob & Candy said...

Hi, I agree with Theresa, our son did very similar things. I don't think you broke him. He adjusting to so much... I'm so glad that you have an appointment with an IA doctor.
If you haven't tried it already, crayons with a blank piece of paper is wonderful therapy when H is calm.
If you ever want to talk to call us.
Praying for you and your kiddos.