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Saturday, July 13, 2013

so many new things

whew most days have been so busy with family and resettling here, settling Kidist in, that at the end of the day we feel like we have run a marathon. All of us are really giving it 110% to family time, engaging Kidist in new experiences while at the same time trying to keep her world small. She seemed eager to meet some little girls her age- but only was able to hang out with some for a short time at the water park before rain set in. John has been home all week except for Friday. We have been busy- kids museum, pool, small water park, playing games here with Sam, Gabe and Ross. She likes video games, and Gabe has been trying to show her the Wii- shes getting good with certain Wii Fit games. We have not called her sister yet, but plan to very soon. She prays in Amharic and at times sings in Amharic- but has been trying to mimic Sam and Gabes words. This girl knows how to go to bed. As soon as she sees thats what we are all doing, she gets her dolls ready on her bed, gets changed and before we know it, is often laying down awaiting good-night hugs. Today we had a former student of mine come to do her hair. She loves getting her hair done. Food- she tried any and everything, but is not gorging or hoarding. She will often clean her plate and get more but in a very non-aggressive way. However, when it comes to certain snacky items she will go through the kitchen at will and pull out any food that looks interesting. We have child doors on the larger cabinets but the fridge gets open from time to time. Drinking from a straw at the guest house and at restaurants has been a new novel fun thing for her- so much so that she has been known to drink up ketchup with a straw. She gets along great with Sam but just today I have started to see a bit of rivalry or testy-ness with Gabe. It may be brought on by him, a bit, because he gets overly territorial/argumentative over most everything, so she could be reacting to him a bit. He sees little value in giving of his time or effort unless we specifically tell him when and what to do.This has caused significant strife with Sam and I fear it may cause issues with Kidist. But at this moment i have put them both on the Wii, without disruptions of me, Sam or John and they are doing well together. Of course I am in the very same room. We are making sure not to let her too far from us even if shes with a brother.
I was re-reading a post on another blog I follow about attachment and some guest posts from another blogger about older-child adoption (the challenges, unknowns and positives). This time it does feel lots different than with Sam- but theres good and challenging 'different'. The good- shes able to really relate to Sam and Gabe in great ways, is responsible, able-bodied and can take care of many of her needs. She has a great memory of her language, culture and history and values singing and praying in her language. She is ahead of where we thought she would be as far as school skills goes. NO POTTY TRAINING! The challenges- since she is not small and in casts (like Sam)- there lack of physical contact. We would hold and hug Sam all the time and now we have to try make opportunities for that. She has a big personality that can exude lots of confidence but at the same time it make be a mask for not letting us in on a deeper level (which I totally understand). She and Sam both have complicated histories- both spent years in institutions and/or not living in a traditional family structure. Luckily both have taken to John in a big way- which I am so so thankful for. Kidist and Sam both just seem to exude so much joy when they are experiencing fun and exciting things- little trepidation. However, when they do not get what they want, they both show it- Sam more so than Kidist. Next week will bring changes- Gabe will be at his dad's house, Sam will be back at his pre-school/day care and John will be at work. It will be just me and K, and at times going to work for little bits at a time. Wish us luck!!

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