Monday, June 28, 2010

catching up......

I can't believe we have been home almost a month! The jet lag was a killer for about 2 weeks. We just could not get the girls on Virginia time. Abbey sometimes seems like she would like to slip back to China time. I have to wake her from a nap. She will marathon sleep and we all know what that means.... not going to sleep at night or not sleeping long enough at night.

Abbey has some night terrors a few times a week. But overall is sleeping and adjusting well. She clearly lets us know what she wants and needs without saying a thing. She is so smart. She says and copies many English words. We have to listen carefully to what she is saying but she is saying stuff correctly it's just kind of muffled sounding.

We took Abbey to the pediatrician the week after we got home. She told us that Abbey seems to be developmentally on target. A few days after that we met with the pediatric plastic surgeon. The surgeon said that she would like to redo Abbey's lip. She said that the scar lines are not natural looking and she thinks she can bring them together to look more like the natural lip ridge most people have. She also said that the two muscles on each side of her upper lip were not attached together when they sewed up her lip. She would also attach those muscles to make it so Abbey can use her upper lip muscles. Right now when she kisses us she just presses her lips on us. Due to not having these muscles working. The surgeon also told us that Abbey's palate is extremely short. The shortest she has ever seen. She said only time will tell what effect that will have on her speech development. Abbey seems a bit nasal sounding when she speaks. The surgeon said that we should continue to bond with Abbey for about 3 months and then get an appt with the cleft team and go from there on what to do for her. We will keep this site updated with her medical processes as they unfold.

Things have changed since we first met Abbey. As anyone remembers our report of her not liking me (Kathi) She is all over me all the time now. Abbey and Meigan now get sassy with each other over which half of my lap they are going to get. Meigan has done a bit of regressing here and there, but bounces back and is the great big sister. Abbey likes to sit on me at meal time instead of sitting in her own booster seat. Even though we have the same food (most of the time)mine apparently tastes better than hers. She loves to eat the food on my plate.

We had a couple of firsts today ( June 27). Meigan asked for a straw at lunch to suck up her soup. Abbey has to have whatever Meigan has. So I gave Abbey a straw too. She has not been able to suck through a straw at all up until today. I showed her how it works (again) by sucking the end of her finger. She immediately got it an started sucking up soup like a champ. I was so..... proud of her. Later she got frustrated with her sippy cup. She has to chew the liquid out of it. She handed it to me and indicated that it just wasn't working. I checked it out by sucking on it and showed her again the sucking technique. She tried it and was getting much more liquid out than before. She gave me a pleased smile. The second first happened after her bath. She volunteered (her idea) to sit on the baby potty sitting next to the tub and kept checking to see if she had done anything. She peed just a little bit over several minutes and wiped herself each time she checked to see if she did anything. I think we are on the way to diaper free. I wasn't going to push the issue until at least fall. It being her idea is a great thing. That's the way it was with Josh and Meigan. I waited until they showed interest to start anything and went from there.

Abbey is a sweet child! She is a joy! She has a mellowness about her. She loves to give hugs and receive them. She isn't too timid around new people, unless she is tired or hungry. She is so smart and perceptive about any and everything that is going on around her. She doesn't miss too much. She loves to help me unload the dishwasher and wants to help with laundry. She will throw stuff away for me. She is a great little helper. I don't have to ask she just does it.

When we got Abbey I mentioned in previous posts that she was in the care of Amazing Hands in Beijing from the time she was 10 months old until we adopted her. On Gotcha day David chased down Abbey's foster mother and gave her his business card. We have since then been in contact with the founder of Amazing Hands via emails. I asked her how on earth did Abbey, out of all the orphans in China, get lucky enough to go to Amazing Hands from Luoyang orphanage. Especially since they only have 12 children at a time until they are adopted. Her answer was that Luoyang called them and asked if they had any room for Abbey and they happened to have a bed open at that time. I also asked who funded Abbey surgeries. Amazing Hands said that for Abbey's first surgery they funded part of it and Christian Broadcasting Network paid in part for it (yes, that's Pat Robertson's group). For Abbey's second surgery (to repair her palate) the Smile Train paid for it. It's not written in any of the paperwork we received on referral day for Abbey but in the journal (Amazing Hands gave us on Gotcha day) of Abbey's time with Amazing Hands they state that Abbey had to have her palate repaired a second time, about 7 months after the first surgery. Her palate split open a bit after the first surgery. Christian Broadcasting Network did the second repair on her palate. CBN and Smile Train are just awesome! Amazing Hands is more than awesome. I asked if we could make a donation to Amazing Hands and they said they don't take donations. She never did answer the question as to how they are financed. But apparently they have what they need, including a doctor on staff. How wonderful is that!?

I thanked the people at Amazing Hands for loving and taking such good care of Abbey. We could never thank them enough for all they did for her. You can just tell in her personality that she was loved and given what she needed because she is adjusting so well to being with us. She still freaks out if I have my shoes on and she doesn't (thinks she is going to not get to go). But overall she is a complete joy to us every day. We are so... blessed to have her as our daughter! That 21 months we waited until we got our referral to Abbey was so.... worth it!!!!!!

1 comment:

  1. Congratulations David and Kathi! I am so glad to hear that the transition is going well! Hopefully I can meet your precious daughter soon!
    Stacy Williams