Monday, January 20, 2014

Surgery Day - surgery

Cav really has been doing great lately with food (another post I promise)

Anyhow when they called on Friday and told me we had a noon surgery I thought it would be fine.

Even now I'm not sure if it was the food or walking into the hospital - although we love Children's.

Regardless, we got to the hospital at just after 10 and just about the time we get to the elevators I look down at him in is wheelchair and his face goes to glass.

Someone called it the survivor stare.

No matter what I tried, he didn't get out of the mood.  And oh yeah surgery was delayed an hour.

Which I never complain about since his surgeon became an expert on amputations because his primary job is as a orthopedic oncologist.  Frankly, we are blessed.  I would never rush this main who just might be saving a child's life, or comforting a mom who didn't have the luxury of choosing a child who would become an amputee.

Luckily, the anesthesiologist we got was amazing - he came in - pretend wrestled Cav (who I was afraid was going to cry but then snapped out of his funk and tried not to laugh.  Oh yeah this man kept pretend farting on him too.  I felt like I was with an overgrown 15 year old!!

We love him, he is perfect and his specialty is achondroplasia so---- we got his card LOL!  You know just encase but I really am about done with surgeries for a lifetime LOL!  I realized today in 18 months we have had 6 fairly major surgeries on 9 body parts and to many casts to count.

Anyhow, I got to spend the last hour of our wait with a happy smiling boy, tool him back to the OR and he went right to sleep without that guttural fight or flight response he has had before.  So proud of him!

I also discussed with everyone who came into the room to make sure to over drug him right after surgery, as he usually needs enough drugs to kill an elephant for pain.

And you know what THEY DID!!

PLUS< they put a block into the area!

So we ended up waiting on the nurse to scoot out of there, by the time he woke (about 10 min in recovery) he was wanting to go HOME!!

All of the other kids called him and face timed which he also loved.

So, he is now playing with the little boys, and so far so good.

I am insisting he stay home form school tomorrow although he is raring to go LOL!

As a side note - I have to say I love how God works.  His surgery is the same exact surgery they do one the dwarfs who have bowed legs.  They get the 8 plate surgery and we had a 2 plate surgery.

His doc will monitor his growth and eventually the plate and screws will need to be removed.  But let me tell you how amazing this man is.  He sutured it in a way that there is NOT a know at the end of the suture inside which might affect Cav's comfort level when he puts on his prosthetic leg in a couple of weeks.  The glued the outside of the incision so he could go into the bath.

We are praying that he will be able to comfortably wear his prosthetic and that the plate and screws are in an area where there is a little opening (because of how his fibula grew) and we don't have to have the prosthetic reconstructed.

I walked in and was horrified that Cav was on the floor -
Brahm apparently picked him up even though Cav outweighs him be 5-7 lbs LOL!
(oh and the child is denial about the pats LOL)

Sunday, January 19, 2014

Cav's surgery

Tomorrow is Cav's "surprise" surgery to place 2 screws into his growth plates on the outside of his longer leg.  THis will allow the inside portion of his leg to continue to grow and hopefully straighten the tibia a little bit.

We are praying it will at least buy us some time.  Selfishly, I need the time until we get Dawson home and settled.  But also time for Cav.  The kid we anticipated would need one surgery once home is going into his fourth in two years.  And truly I know lots of kids who have gone through way more - but oh my momma heart breaks for him each time.

In addition, the recovery without a prosthetic is only 2 weeks with this surgery.  If he has to have another osteotomy (break the bone in 3 pieces and put a rod through it to straighten it out) - that's 8 weeks alone int he cast.  The poor kid already went through this 18 months ago ugh.

Lastly, he is finally getting to a point that he cares - he is self conscious about not wearing his legs.  Mind you this is the kid who puts them on when he gets up and takes them off at bedtime.  On weekends if I don't give him socks then he will go without around the house but he truly has never fought us about wearing his legs.

In the orphanage, they obviously pulled on his little feet, and taunted him.  All he ever wanted was shoes. . . even two years later I think this is still very important to him.

So please will you pray for him, for his little heart.  We tried desperately to get him able to walk with forearm crutches.  His hands are just to weak, and we have made the executive decision to only use his wheelchair.

I pray this is the right decision, he would need to stand on his full prosthetic leg which means standing on a gravity driven prosthetic knee.  Using hands that will never have the strength of "normal" hands.  Fall after fall he would get up as he practiced around the house (even though we went to 2 and 3 PT appts a week to get him where he could use the forearm crutches.)

Anyhow, please pray that the other kids don't make fun of his legs (his teacher will talk to them the day before he gets back.)  We have fun socks for him, and his wheelchair is super cute with a teddy bear "footplate".

Doing surgery once again now 2 years home does have it's advantages.  We have always scheduled early morning appts because of the food issue.  Dare I say, but I think he is past the HUGE food issues he has had (Can I get an Amen!!)  We talked extensively about his not being able to eat in the morning - and he got special McDonal's tonight so praying this is one less thing we have to worry about.

Surgery is tomorrow (Monday 1/20) at noon MST.

8/2012 in his teddy bear wheelchair

Thursday, January 16, 2014

11 days

Anyone who has done adopting knows the sinking feeling when your husband (who finally knows if it says Hague it's important) hands you a full size envelope that is THICK.

You see approvals come in their nice little trifold business envelop, one page thick.

Ours was half open and the envelop looked like it had gotten stuck in the postal service sorter.

I stood there at 8pm wanting to scream and cry.  My heart sunk as opened the rest of the envelope and all of my I-800 paperwork was in it.  ELEVEN days we had just lost in a 14 day process.  I wanted to cry.

Three vague sheets of paper were on top.

One said the check was not the correct amount or was not included.

Another said a page was missing from the I-800.

I admit - I didn't expect our LOA - I was shocked AND then frazzled.  I wanted to speed the process up, so I grabbed the papers I had already filled out and drove the 35 min to hubby's shop for a signature .  On my way I called my friend who has done this 4 times and reviewed all my papers.  Realizing I forgot a copy of the I-800a approval I turned around and grabbed that, found my agencies info on sending LOA and got back on the road.

Out of all of our adoptions this was the most that reminded me of a crazy race to the hospital because my contractions had just started but they were already a minute apart.  We were giddy, frazzled and excited.

All our other LOA's were like 90 days - I didn't expect anything until the of January or February.  We have never been a lucky one with a quick LOA ** as a side not it seems that PA before LID is finally being processed expeditiously and in order since the big computer change**

Because I-800a waits way back in August were taking so long, and I had been smart enough to mark 2 when we had to file a new one for Tao's adoption - we reused.

I knew I had to send Uncle Sam his money most people send at the time of the I-800a.  So I threw a check in for $720 and Fedexed our package.

Fast forward to getting our paperwork sent back.  I reread the USCIS website and it still said $720 for subsequent children.  I shot an email of to the lockbox that night still unsure of what to do about the stupid check.  It was in the packet, stapled to the front and endorsed so I knew it was seen, and the amount was the same - it just didn't make sense.

I also knew I needed to pay Uncle Sam.  Did they somehow get it wrong and I could save my money - but then they would catch it later down the road.

AS far as the page missing - apparently the stupid page 8 - the one with current expenses and future expenses was the one in question.  Our agency is super sweet and mails us a page already filled out with expenses typed out.

That page was there - behind page 9 ugh

You wanna talk about hitting the ceiling - I was mad, mad at them for not moving page 9 back just one spot, mad at the possibility I put it there (although I swear it was in the correct spot.) mad at knowing our boy has to wait just a little bit longer.

I finally got a reply back from USCIS and they mentioned in their not so concise and clear manner that some people need to pay $720 for subsequent children AND $85 per person for fingerprints.  Ugh was that it - so I decided on a hail mary pass and sent a new check for $890  - I still have no idea if this is correct or we will have the packet sent back once again.

Remember we were the daily with 3 rejections on our I-800a - USCIS is absolutely killing us this time around.

So today is the day we should have gotten approval.  I am praying the super secret location (heehee like a spy novel at this point) I had to USPS, because fedex does NOT send to PO Boxes, will speed up my processing.  I am praying I can catch up somehow and still travel with the people I thought I would travel with.

But ultimately I know that GOD'S timing is perfect and more than anything I need to rest in that.  We have prayed since Dawson goes to school, that our travel will be best for him.   God knows when that is, and even if it isn't until summer then we need to rest in that fact.

Wednesday, January 8, 2014

No excuses

I keep facing the same responses about adoption and it has weighed heavily on me for weeks and even months.

I can't adopt because . . .

People let me give you a little bit of reality -

Do you see this ~

That's right I - the mom who has adopted FOUR children (almost) did not grow my own potato's, scrub them, boil them, and then mash them.

This is NOT organic.

Along with it I made a meatloaf from my favorite cookbook 

- the college students survival guide.  

You think I am lying don't you or just spewed pop all over your computer 
- I AM NOT!!

I have had to double the recipe - and then because I didn't start until late I realized the centers weren't completely cooked through and so I served the ends to my starving kids and continued heating the rest.

The worst part - we haven't even started school yet - I don't have an excuse.

I will admit it - I shouldn't have a hamster some days never mind all these kids.  I read blog after blog of mom's grinding their own flour, baking their own bread (and encase your confused I buy Sara Lee whole grain WHITE bread).

The point is you don't have to be perfect to adopt.  

You don't have to be the best homemaker, 
the best cook, 
super crafty, 
or wealthy.

ALL you have to be is OPEN.

Because I guarantee that those waiting kids do not CARE!

they don't have warm enough clothes, 
enough food to eat,
a name,
or the love of a family.
Your failings are still 100 times better than the best person currently in their lives.
if you are hearing the call - PLEASE stop with the excuses.

Tuesday, January 7, 2014


I'm late posting - heck I have been terrible about blogging - and even worse blogging for real LOL!

BUT we received our LOA on 1/2/14

Have I even shared his name?  I don't think so -

We wanted a name with the Da (not the long A but like when your Dr wants you to open wide to look at your throat.)

His Chinese name is YueDa, he is 11 - we want an American name for him, and a Biblical one.

I looked and looked - there are not many names that fit into our requirements above.

Then I saw Dawson - it means Son of David - hmmm now most would say
 but your husband's name is Chris.  
But all I could think of when I read the meaning was that being the son of "King" David fit him perfectly - 
a child who was a son for 2 years (until we assume they figured out something was wrong) 
and now our son, 
but most importantly a forever son.  
And it flows perfectly with our older two.

Then we wanted a nickname for him - our oldest goes by his initials and Brahm could if he wanted, so onto a vowel name.

Ezekial - means God Strengthens - just perfect!!

And his nickname can be Dek (said like Dex) I know you are rolling your eyes by now but our oldest is Tak and EVERYONE calls him that LOL!

So, in just about 3 months Dawson Ezekial (do I add a second middle YueDa)? will be joining us.  We are excited and scared to death at the same time.  I so know God has this, I know we are following His path and I know that it's my humanness that is worried about the details.  So as the new year dawns upon us I am trying more and more to rest in His word, allowing him to navigate this ship and not worry about where it's going and how we are gonna get there!