Wednesday, October 26, 2011

Expectations…

Warning…This post is a compilation of many jumbled thoughts!

Frequently, I try to wrap my head around what to expect as we close in on the final chapters of the twins adoption process.

It doesn’t take much thought to conclude that there is NO WAY to guess how this is going to look.

Here are some things we do know…

-Parenting in general is just a whole bunch of trial and error!! Adopting twins and taking custody at 20ish months old is going to be no different!! It probably even multiplies this truth!

-The twins have been in the care of their loving foster family for their entire lives (outside of the hospital)!

-The twins do not really understand what is fixing to take place. They are perfectly content with how their lives are now and would never be able to comprehend this transition and the impact it is likely to have on them. We are responsible(as the adults who can process the realities of what they are going through) for accepting their grief in whatever form it comes and loving and helping them through it. This is what grief can look like…sleep issues (sometimes for months), resentment of one or both new parents, shutting down emotionally, anger/tantrums, and MORE.

-We’ve done this before, but it was with Harrison who at 11 months old was used to being taken care of in shifts by nannies. A change of hands with regard to his care was normal. For the twins, not.so.much!

-The Foster Mother sleeps IN.BETWEEN the twins. This has been the case ALL of their lives. Bedtime is a major source of comfort for children. We will not be trying/pushing any certain method with them regarding sleep. We will likely co-sleep in Korea and then once home, we’ll do WHATEVER works best for them. Our main concern is bonding, going above and beyond to comfort and assure them, and keeping hold of any sanity possible throughout our first months home and sleep certainly plays a big part. We don’t feel any need to rush any expectations on them 

-Harrison is going to respond to the twins….it’s just hard to know how! We know he loves other kids tremendously and is a social butterfly…but he sure loves mommy and daddy and all the attention/affection we so freely give too. We will be very deliberate about accommodating and working through these things.

-Life is going to be crazy….pretty much from this moment forward. Our hands, car, calendars, and house will be much fuller and our bank account much lower Smile !! We can embrace the crazy or not….we choose to embrace it. It may take a daily(maybe even hourly at first) recommitment on our behalf, but By Golly, we will celebrate the blessings the Lord has for us each day!

-Brandon and I are going to have to be intentional about our time and attention to one another! The craziness of life can get in the way of that sometimes, but our kids need and deserve us to Love one another well!

-Greer has some special needs. There really hasn’t been a broad label for them. He is developmentally delayed and needs a boost when it comes to most areas of development. That sounds vague and the truth is, it is vague. Until we have a better idea ourselves, we will not “label” him. We have no doubt that LONG ago, God ordained Greer to be our son. We have no doubt that HE is going to do amazing things in and through him. We claim Philippians 4:13 over him and will stick to that every step of the way.

-As far as me and work….I am going to be off for three months. (I am part time on a church staff). I am planning for 1 month of absolutely no expectations from anyone besides our 3 kids(eek!…a giddy kind of eek) and husband. I am planning to be back in the church attendance ballgame at the 2nd month mark(Brandon or I with the twins in their small class or Brandon will stay home with them if needed….they attend church now so I am not concerned about this experience being overwhelming). I will not have office hours and I will not be leading or directing any areas of ministry the entire 3 months.

*We are very blessed that I am a part of a ministry team that has been gracious enough to recognize the importance of this and support our family during this time. I am also blessed to be surrounded by volunteers who can step in and serve where I normally do for this time period! My place of work/ministry is much more than that. The Lord has blessed us with amazing people to share in the joys and challenges of this life with!!

My plan is to be focused with this 3 months…

1st Month- (let’s be honest….the only real focus is survival) buckling down, getting to know one another, celebrating many many firsts together, figuring out the family of 5 thing, enjoying Christmas, etc! We hope to make our visit to the Vanderbilt Adoption Clinic around week 3. We do plan to stay at home as much as possible and to rid our schedules of most everything!

2nd Month- we are going to hit the specialists and doctors hot and heavy and try to zone in on what it is we are dealing with in the Special Needs department. I may need to rent an apartment close to Vanderbilt in Nashville Smile We will also go ahead and pick up therapies for Greer in month 2.

3rd Month- Really iron out our new normal. I want to work out what Greer’s therapy schedule will look like, with very special consideration to Harrison and Sophie and making sure we are very wise and intentional about how this looks for our family. We will try to get any services that we can, in home. We will be hiring someone(that we already know) to come into our home and watch the twins for the 12 hours I work each week. We will start getting everybody familiar to one another at this time.

and of course…it is trial and error…should we have to readjust our expectations for our plans, we will!! It is just good to have a plan in mind!

In a few short weeks, we will have 3 children in our care…3 children to LOVE, to feed, to dress, to clothe, to bathe, to sing to, dance with, to cuddle, to get ready for church, to put in and out of the car, to encourage, to teach, to train, to equip, to soothe, to play with, to celebrate!!!

We can’t pretend to know what that is going to look like or how hard it is going to be, but the amazing thing is, we know that our God…

will meet all our needs according to the riches of his glory in Christ Jesus. Philippians 4:19!

10 comments:

Christy said...

Praying for you! Keep us posted on how it's going each step of the way (when you get a chance...so we won't be holding our breath!). :) Hugs!

Grace said...

Oh you are so putting me to shame with all this organization! LOL I basically plan to stay alive for the next three months :) Please send some order down south for me ASAP! Seriously can't wait to follow your journey as you become a family of five!!! I am sure it is going to be amazing.

Pam Reddell said...

Can not wait to share in this new journey and pray you guys up every.step.of.the.way!

Kelley said...

Praying for you as you bring home your twins. Been following your blog since before Harrison (have a cookbook to prove it.....even a recipe in it: ) and always enjoy your posts. By the way, I also love your blog look....I typically read on Google Reader so I haven't seen it (may not be new....just new to me).

My husband and I are currently adopting from Ethiopia (early in the process; just completed home study). Hop on over to my blog when you get a chance (www.movedtomove.blogspot.com). We just revealed our new t-shirt design.

E said...

You have been so heavy on my mind. I have been praying for you as I think about what life will be like for you, Brandon, Harrison, Greer and Sophie. I am excited for you. Hugs!

Rachel said...

So thrilled for you as you get ready to enter this exciting new chapter in your life! I can't wait to see those beautiful babies in your arms :) Our newest blessing has been home from Korea for just over four months now and I finally feel like we have found our new normal. It has been a hard adjustment for all of us but he is such a huge blessing to us and I can't imagine my life without him!!!

Tonya said...

So happy for you and your family! What a great addition those 2 sweeties will be to your home, hearts, and lives! You will all be in our prayers as you continue on the journey to bring them home and begin the process of molding them into your everyday lives!! We are so excited for you.

Take care,
Tonya, Janie, and Lexie

Amber said...

This is so exciting! I can't believe how quickly(considering) it is all coming together. Prayers everything continues smoothly, you have them home safe, and every one adjusts accordingly. So excited for you guys!

Alison said...

Wow! Sounds like a great plan! Love how realistic you are and are not too caught up in crazy expectations! I will be praying for ya'll in your transition phase! So excited!!!

Liz said...

It's going to be great!! You're right, there's no way to know for sure what it will all look like 'til you live it. But in the meantime, I'm praying for you!