Friday, August 31, 2012

Owl Mail

I had another rough day yesterday.  I can't even pinpoint why, but I have gotten to the point that reading facebook jsut puts me in a - feel sorry for myself mood.  We were DTC on May 30th, it then took 3 weeks to be LID (6/20)  this is normally 1 week.  The whole summer and nothing on Griffin.  People are getting close to travel that sent their Dossiers at the same time.  Now don't get me wrong - I am thrilled for each one of my friends - but it is jsut hard.

Anyhow, I got home last night from a Women's Ministry meeting (which did my soul good!) and realized I needed to change the little piece of paper I have been using to keep track of dates.

Instead of counting each day as it passed, I would circle 120 days from LID and if our LOA came before that I figured I would be thrilled.

As I was circling October 18th,

I also thought I should circle 120 days from our RFE date

SO I circled November 15th (oddly enough the same day I originally was trying to beat since that was when our visa's from our last trip are good until)

You know it did my soul good to realize that even worst case scenerio we would have the baby home by the beginning of 2013.

 The angst was gone.

Now I wish that was the whole story but then the title would make no sense LOL!

As we were getting ready for bed the dogs lost their mind.  We have a can't shut up Collie and a 3 lb Yorkie.  I know if I hear the lazy ole Yorkie there is something trying to get our chickens.

We figured it was the stinking Husky or Coyotes again so I sent hubby out - cuz . . . well, you know!!

He was gone a long time, so I thought I would see what the commotion was.

As I walked out I heard the strangest thing.

For a minute I thought it was a really loud Dove (we have tons at our house which I love!)

Nope, it was an OWL!

We live in Colorado, we have lived here for 30 years and I can NOT ever remember seeing an OWL!!

AND he was huge.

When I woke this morning it dawned on me that either this was a fabulous sighting or really bad (thinking of Fei's surgery in particular).

As I was googling owl's and symbolism my cell rang!


Griffin Taomega born 5/13/10 - 
we will be there soon sweet angel!

Anyhow, I jsut got home from drop off and walked into my office.  I had to laugh.  What was sitting there?  The gorgeous OWL purse I won from my friend Tracey's auction!  God has giving me winks all along I just had no idea what they meant!

And since I am pretty vocal about how bad our last agency was, I want to also be sure to say how incredibly magnificent our new agency is.  Apparently our NEW references were misplaced in Chin@ and Madison sent their in country rep to check on it several times.  After talking to them they really went to bat for us.  They are truly about the kids!

Monday, August 27, 2012

Wrong Line

I think I have resigned myself to being in the long line for LOA's.
I am standing here with my cart full,
of cute baby clothes,
hopes and dreams,
heck I even made dinner tonight for SIX kids.

Um, hello . . . one is eating breakfast with his foster family today LOL!
I swore I wouldn't be like this,

Yeah, right
I jump at ever phone call,
I hate leaving the house
jsut encase I MISS the call.

You know the one from the agency,
who I am sure will overnight my package even if I don't talk to them.
Of course they have EVERY number I have access to.
PLUS, I have email on my phone.

Even my kids (meaning my daughter)
asks several times a day if we got the letter yet.
Just encase in my excitement I forget to tell her.

And the sane part of myself,
realizes this is THE dumbest thing for me to be worrying about!
Really, I mean we have a cranial surgery,
and have to find some legs,
and possibly teach one little boy to walk,
and my dang kids talked me into playing,

oh and did I mention

Yep, 3 kids playing on SIX TEAMS!

OK, see I knew you would make me feel better.
The last thing I need right now is to leave for China,

BUT oh do my arms ache to hold my baby.
Who my husband reminds me is no longer a baby and is very worried about the update we got (in March) particularly this statement!

"If he gets mad, he will sleep on the floor and roll over. The foster parents need to be patient to deal with it."
Yep, he will fit in perfectly!!

Saturday, August 25, 2012

Pure Joy

8 months.

Although we know it takes 9 months to create a baby,

We had no idea it would take about the same time to heal a heart, and free a soul

Can you feel his peace, 
his happiness, 
this boy of ours who feared the outside, 
and screamed at the plants,
ok he jsut screamed,
and cried,
and hit.

Yep, this pretty much summed up our time in China
 (doesn't he look like such a baby here and I don't mean cry baby LOL!).

Now he is a brother,

A son,

A friend,

He is nourished,

He is loved!

And we can't forget our gorgeous princess!

Ni Hao Yall

Thursday, August 23, 2012

Purposeful Angel

I have to just say it has been one of those tough heart wretching days that also brings you into the very arms of our Father and we see for jsut a sec a clarity to our lives, our purpose and why our particular lives matter - atleast for the moment.

We met with the neurosurgeon and our worst fears, the very worst case scenerio for adopting a child with dwarfism has come true.  I almost hesitate to utter the words out loud for fear that someone may decide not to adopt because our reality may jsut possible become theirs.  Fei is the first child that we know of from China to come home and require this surgery.

I didn't realize that my fear of the worst case scenerio would rock my world like it did - I mean really we jsut went through amputation surgery - how can this be worse.  And yet it is our hearts - those of her daddy and I.  This child of ours who has been with us less then most people are pregnant.  This child who smiles rainbows and like a first born changed our family forever.

So we sat waiting for the neurosurgeon, sure that he would not meet the standards of this psychotic mother.  Silently I prayed the news would be good but I guess deep down inside I knew otherwise.

First in walked a med student (as a nurse I always am happy to let them learn about our kids as they are rare and we hope it will help someone else some day.)  As I was answering his questions in walked the strangest little man I immediately felt the same as I do when I am with Brahm.  I still can't explain it but all of sudden I had a comfort of familiarity and this little man with the wild hair, and twinkle was the neurosurgeon.  He gave me the news I feared the most, took a minute as I began to cry, and even assured the psychotic mother part as I heard myself asking about a surgeon thousands of miles away.

He checked her, he spoke of the good, and then he gave us two options.  But he also didn't mince words.  Doing surgery now would prevent the possibility of worse things in the future.  He answered questions, we talked and I still couldn't shake the feeling of a grown up Brahm*

One good part of traveling an hour and half to the hospital is that I have time to think, talk to others and calm myself.  I called a very special person and I hope to never forget her words.  We jsut might be the angel that the mothers of our once abandoned children prayed for.  ME?  An Angel?  But you know maybe jsut maybe if this is my purpose on this earth and you know that's pretty incredible.

I have struggled for months with the WHY of FeiFei.  With so many children sitting in orphanages why was she the one who came into my email.  She had a foster family who loved her beyond belief (we have email contact and they grieved for months for her.)  And now I know.  They would never have caught this until it was to late.  Even now I am so grateful for the neglect that led to her flat head.  It means that she wasn't sat up as a baby, causing more damage to her fragile spine.

Does our heart still break for our sweet girl who will have to go through this surgery - absolutely.  But I know God is walking alongside our family, carrying us when we need it, and cheering us on the rest of the way.

*For those that haven't met Brahm, he is almost magical.  It is so hard to explain and I thought it was a dwarf thing for a long time, but there is something about him that almost makes you finger tips tingle, and you know viscerally know he was made for greatness.  It's an unspoken but I have never seen a child even a baby get into people's souls like Brahm.  Truthfully most people pale in comparison to him, and THAT is why I was so stunned to have this reaction to the Dr.

Sunday, August 19, 2012

Starlight - March for Miracles

After my post yesterday

THe more I look at this picture, the more I love it -
it was a throw away and then I  did some editing and
I  noticed FeiFei looking through the window on the back side!

We woke up bright and early this morning, and have spent the last few hours seeing the fabulous in people.

I have no idea on the numbers but there had to be several hundred runners who came out to help raise funds for Starlight - raise funds for OUR kids so they all get to experience some pretty amazing things.

Starlight does not just celebrate our kids with special needs but also their siblings - always recognizing the sacrifice our amazing older kids go through whether financial, time or dealing with the stupid comments I mentioned yesterday.

THey had fun activities while we waited.
They had food which I have no idea how a 13 year old could eat that much and then run 5 k LOL!
But best of all (since daddy works Sat) were Cadets from the Air Force Academy who ran with children in wheelchairs and most importantly some of our kids!

Tristan and Morgan insisted on doing the 5K (this old out of shape momma knew pushing 3 kids that far was a no go!)

So we found a Cadet to run with Morgan in her first 5K (I was worried she would get lost)

The littles and I did the 1 mile fun run/walk

I do tear up when I think that most likely next year Cav too will be running!

Brahm had his balance bike since he was having some leg pain from his first days of all day school.

Cheering on Tristan - He did awesome!

And Morgan running with her Cadet

Awesome runners - I am so proud of!

The coolest thing of all is the Littles got these medals ~ Athletes donate their race metals for SN kids!!

Ni Hao Yall

Friday, August 17, 2012

SHUT. UP. . . stupid people

Heehee got your attention!

TO bad I got the attention of the kindest, nicest and most supportive people who read this blog o' mine.

School started on Wednesday and I have been fielding stupid comments from idiot adults for a week.

Really People, I mean really!

Please when you look at our little guy,
instead of tell me what an stupid idea our sons walking cup is -
congratulate him on making mom find a way to make him mobile on his healing stubbie.

We got the great cup idea from a bloggy friend!
Congratulate him on relearning to walk, with a new center of balance

Instead of commenting on how sad it is that he has to use a wheelchair
watch him race around for this first time in his life,
watch mom in a panic as he races down a hill,
the freedom of movement for the first time in his life.

Instead of mentioning how large my daughters head is,
mention how beautiful her smile is,

how she loves to go to school.
recognize how far she has come, how much change she has experienced
and still she smiles and meets every new challenge with grace. 

Instead of whispering to your friend (adult mind you) in a crowded area
and pointing at my children,
come meet them,
and be amazed by how wonderfully normal they are.
Cav telling you he will walk AND run!

Instead of questioning why we would have so many kids
see God's glory
and the amazing transformation he has produced in all of us.
I walked out of the store today and ran right into this -
 I swear the clouds looked like China before I got to the car and my camera!

Wednesday, August 15, 2012

The lose of a mind and school

Before I tell you about the kids starting school (ok I recognize no one cares LOL but I keep this for my memory!)

It is very important to note that Cav has lost his mind LOL!  Truly, I didn't see it coming.  We had back to school on Monday.  All 5 kids bringing their bags of crap supplies, meeting teachers, etc.  I worked hard to be organized and make this seamless.  Yeah NO!  Everyone and I mean everyone seems to know atleast one of our kids.  ABout the time I was adding money to school lunches Cav no longer could filter the noise, the chaos, the activity.

HE LOST IT . . . for TWO days.

Like in back to the first months home.  Ugh I was so not ready for this.  But now I know, now I can try and be prepared.  DUH, that is why he loses it everytime we went to a school function.

Oh and encase you don't know it's a preK-12 school and I'm not talking small!

Ok sorry for the public service announcement LOL!


On to the First day of SCHOOL!

It was actually oddly nice, we have a staggered start so I only had Brahm and Morgan.

Brahm is starting FIRST grade (apparently passing on he is a dwarf with chronic pain wasn't deemed important.)  I always have a hard time with the beginning of all day school (yes we still have 1/2 day kindergarten!)

Morgan is going to FIFTH grade - she was at a different specialty school last year so she was nervous too.  Luckily, one of her friends from 3rd grade is in her class!  She worried for a week what to wear - I thought she looked so grown up!

And yes we have a giant triceratops in our yard.  The kids love it - and well what else do you do with a crazy birthday present for hubby!

And come back later for FeiFei's Kindergarten pictures - cuz I know you really care. . . less LOL!

Thursday, August 9, 2012

Cav is horrified! (funny)

You know since it has been a whopping 4 days since surgery Cav has wiggled out of & destroyed
his leg wrap from his longer leg (that has been in a cast all summer) LOL.

So we figured we might as well take it off and wash the little stinker since he was busily scratching the part of his leg he could reach - raw!

I started unwrapping and then thought to pull, yep it slid right off!

So these are the pictures of him looking at his leg for the FIRST TIME! (sorry for the crappy cell phone pics I didn't actually think this through before pulling the wrappings off!)

Now the above pics might make you want to cry for him until I add the little bit of information that infact he was horrified by the fact that his leg was covered in 

That's right folks, he was fine with the amputation -
 infact he asked if he was getting his legs so he could run like Oscar!

But the 'side effect' of the surgery (can't remember if the Dr said tibial osteotomy or amputation) but sometimes they see rapid hair growth!

And my sweet boy was HORRIFIED!!

Tuesday, August 7, 2012

Rearview mirror

Last week jsut was a bad, bad, very bad week!  We were under such spiritual warfare, I came to my breaking point - you know the one where you ugly cry in public. . . yeah that was attractive and gave those who carefully watch us, even more conviction why not to adopt.

But we are back to our cheery selves loving life, our family and God.

Sunday started with our annual church in the park - we all love it ~ and who wouldn't listening to the wind blow through the pine trees, sitting with our family and friends praying.  It changed my bad attitude of reviewing the wrongs in my life.

Cav had surgery to remove the rods yesterday morning.  I dropped Cav off and ran back to the room to checkout while he had his 1 1/2 hr surgery.  Not even 10 min later I get a call from the hospital (which I missed . . . BAD mom!) that the surgeon needed to talk to me.  I was panicked that Cav was going to need a skin graft over his amputation site that has been infected and jsut plain nasty.  NOPE - he was done.  All that prayer healed his site and there is jsut a little bit left unhealed.  The rods came right out and we left the hospital at exactly 10 am - the same time he was supposed to get out of surgery.  This boy is a rockstar!!

And he is thrilled the only color they had for his wrap was PINK!

Although I am pretty open here I have not mentioned the issues I have had with extended family (ok except the perfection post.)  Anyhow this summer has been hard, harder than I have experienced in the past.  I have had to realize that boundaries I have let slide for years, need to be put into place.  I am typically a pushover - um but frankly when you have a little boy who has lost everything in the world, not acknowledging him on the day he loses his legs is incomprehensible.   Ok, I only tell you this because truly God's grace was magnificent yesterday.

Cav received this darling little tiger from a grandma (an AP's mom) in New Zealand.  I got it last week so I kept it for his surgery and he loved it!  So amazing to see people who have met our son once love on him.  Anyhow, in recovery (as I was checking my phone in hopes that the illusive text might appear this time) in came Cav's nurse.  I jsut laughed at God's humor when she opened her mouth.  YEP, she was from New Zealand!  Can you see the Godwink?  Maybe, jsut maybe we need to acknowledge the love from those around us instead of looking in the rearview mirror and hoping.

Thursday, August 2, 2012

Equiping SN kids for sports

Today is our little mans birthday.

We searched for the typical toys but we also had the daunting task of finding him something very special.

If you don't know Brahm is turning six and has a rare form of dwarfism  He is proportionate but tiny.  He doesn't even weigh 30 lbs, and is at least a head shorter then the next smaller kid in his year group.  In addition, his joints are bad - as in grandpa joint bad.  He will deteriorate as he gets older until he will need at least bilateral hip and knee replacements (hopefully not until his 20's).  He is a chronic pain kid already but he never lets any of these things to stop him.

Our incredible little guy is dying to play a sport this fall.  He settled on . . . LACROSSE!

Does his choice scare my husband and I to death ~ absolutely.

BUT we would never let on to him, ensuring his safety from the sidelines.  Watching every movement, ready to leap at the single sign of aggressive play that might hurt him.

Most parents will be borrowing the equipment from the team.

But being a mom of a very special little guy means that this momma scours every store in town searching racks upon racks for the tiniest equipment.  Analyzing construction to see if alterations are possible.  Jumping for joy when the dark back corner holds the treasure.  A XXS piece of equipment that looks only a tiny bit big.

Many calls to the Daddy - a sounding board that I am sure has no idea or even care but indulges my indecision that this piece will fit our little guy.

Lacrosse gloves, elbow pads and then shoulder pads! SCORE!

Besides being a super shopper, it takes creativity too.  We had to piece together a stick and actually used a girl base which is lighter but wider to fit a unique top.  He will be unique but we are praying this will work.

Lastly, was the helmet.  Since his head is large (as in a 6 year olds head on a 2-3 year olds body) helmets became the bane of my existence.  I searched and searched an searched.  Finally we found a fully adjustable lightweight helmet that we hope will fit him, provide the protection and be lightweight enough.

Little man was so incredibly excited to receive his super Lacrosse equipment this morning for his birthday - he now looks just like his big brother.

The excitement I feel that I have accomplished the impossible of piecing together a tiny protection suit so that maybe, just maybe he will stay safe and the playing ground has leveled a tad.