Tuesday, July 17, 2007

Juna 9 months

Juna is 9 months old today.

I thought I'd do a little update on her progress so far- almost two weeks home.

I still monitor the China adoption boards and love reading referral information, especially from Juna's orphanage (Suichuan SWI.) I love how parents are now celebrating the fact that the baby is from Suichuan, since there has been so many happy adoption stories from that province lately. Add ours to the list.

Even with coming from a "good" orphanage, it's still an orphanage. Juna still has issues when it comes to security and confidence. She worries we will never feed her again. She hates going to sleep. She doesn't like it when we leave the room. Hmmm. These issues are not unlike issues I have had with my bio kids. Which sounds funny to say- like they are science superheros. Bio Kids, to the rescue!

I have learned that it's good to be educated about attachment/bonding/issues that come with children adopted from Chinese orphanages. But I have also learned you can get too wrapped up in the worry over attachment/bonding. You can get too many case studies in your head and start looking for issues that aren't even there. Your child can be crying because her teeth hurt and you instantly think, "She's grieving for her nanny." No, a razor sharp tooth is breaking through her gums. Sometimes the worry over attachment/bonding is blamed on basic baby-related problems. It's good to be educated, it's good to know the signs, but it's also good to just relax and let your child just be a child- not just an orphanage baby.

I use my mother as an example. She has no clue about attachment/bonding. She treats Juna like Juna's been with us forever. At first I was like, "Oh, don't do that, it might scare her.. bonding/attachment/blah blah." Juna and my mother get on famously. They have a great time together. After watching them interact, I learned to just let go a little bit. Let Juna be Juna and not Juna from the Orphanage. It's like Jenny from the Block, but with a lot less bling.

Example? Mom had the three year old in the tub and was holding Juna in her arms while seated in the bathroom. I had sliced my finger open on a knife while making lunch. Again. I do this often. I need Jenny from the Block money I can hire someone to cook for me because obviously I am dangerous in the kitchen. So Mom was wrangling the children, Av was asleep, and I was bleeding everywhere.

Once I realized I didn't need to rush to the ER- again- I peeked into the bathroom. My mother had Juna in the tub with Miss Boo. I said, "No, this is a bad idea, Juna's not used to water and this might scare her off baths forever!"

Puh-leaze. Juna was having the time of her life. Splashing and giggling! It's now a routine. Juna bathes with her big sister for a few minutes out of each bath. They both have a great time and I have cleaner children as a result. And hey- it's BONDING TIME for both of them. Something I wouldn't have realized because I was too worried about Juna's "special issues." So worried about bonding that I didn't give her a chance to bond. Hmmm...

Other things I want to remember:
Juna's boil is almost completely healed thanks to antibiotics. Again- so happy I joined the online group for parents adopting from her orphanage. I expected a boil, I got a boil, I knew how to treat a boil. Thanks, Internet.

I also learned the girls from Suichuan like to sleep with lovies/wubbies/little blankies cuddled to their faces. Juna is using one from when Miss Boo was a baby. We started giving one to Av. The problem is that when Av has on a bib and I'm feeding her, she will rub the bib against her face, stick her thumb in her mouth, and pass out.

Juna is both fascinated and frightened of her older sister. If you know Miss Boo, it's easy to figure out. Miss Boo is... everywhere at once. And not in a subtle way. Juna is also protective of her little sister. She is now rubbing her head against Av to show her love. When I bring Av into the room from a nap, Juna lights up with a big smile. If Av is crying, Juna will pat my leg and go, "Mmm! Mmmm!" As if to say, "Take care of her, Mom!" Not sure if I've written about this yet, but hey- it's not the first time I've repeated myself. Today.

And because the other blog isn't up yet, I have to make a note that Av started babbling today. She looked at me, opened her mouth, and said, "Da da." Then didn't stop saying it. "Da da da da. Ba ba ba ba. Da da ba ba." Then she moved her mouth like she was talking, but no sound came out. And that was it. Nothing more since. Except when I make high pitched noises at her and Juna. Both babies will make high pitched noises back.

I spend most of my days on the floor playing with the babies and Boo. The house is "sanitary, but not clean," to use my friend Britney's famous quote. We're eating meals that friend's have prepared and will continue until the weekend when they run out and I have to start cooking again. Ugh, hate that idea. Not because I hate cooking so much ( I do) but I also I hate tearing myself away from these kids. Even to work- ahhh work. It's REALLY slowed down. But so have I, so I guess it's ok. Right now, the kids are the top priority. There will always be work, but I can't get these young years back again. Some day they will be in school and I can take over the entertainment world. Until then, it's Baby Time!

Yes, it's exhausting. No, I have not done my fabulous Chinese hair-cut hair since we got back. I wear nothing but old Tshirts and sweats. Most get covered in baby snot and cereal. Looks WONDERFUL with the Louis Vuitton I bought in China, let me tell ya. When I can carry my Vuitton, on the rare occasion I do get out of the house. Oh and it's soooo pretty. But I'm not. And that's ok. THIS is what I wanted. THIS is what we worked so hard for all those years. It's happening. And I want to enjoy every single exhausting and amazing moment.


Anonymous said...

I LOVE your blog! We are LID 11/17/05 and I have read A LOT of blogs in the past two years. Your blog has been the most honest heartwarming one I have read!

Three, on the verge of four said...

My Suichuan cutie, Sophie, loves having a blanket snuggled up against her head too. When she is fighting sleep (which isn't too often, thankfull), I put the blankie or a stuffed animal up alongside her face, or even over the top of her head and eyes a little, and it really helps.

Glad to hear all is well with Juna and that you're enjoying your family time!