Is it normal to put on your sweatshirt inside out {on accident} and zip it up from the inside out anyway because you are too lazy to fix it?  

Just checking because I am wearing just that right now, and I don’t care.

I don’t care for a lot for a lot of reasons.  First you can’t see me, second I wouldn’t care if you did, third I AM TIRED.

I promised myself I would post a new addition to “adopting a toddler” once a week.  It is a lot easier for me to write about the happy exciting things than to be open and honest about the challenges with Handsome, but I can’t tell you how much it would mean to me if I could find a blog that I could read about that on.  SO, I want to show all sides, the happy, sad, challenging, delightful, and meaningful.  After all that is motherhood in a nutshell anyway.  I experience all of those emotions with my other children as well.  

First I want to report the outstanding and beautiful accomplishments Handsome has had over the past while. He is TALKING.  OK, maybe I am exagerating a bit, but seriously he is communicating so well.  When he first came it was all grunts and points with a few mixed in sounds.  I don’t really know the level of what he said before he came because it happened so fast but  from the first several weeks until now it has been remarkable.  He now signs “more” as he says “mo” but you can understand when he wants more food, water, etc.  He says go, “un” for run, “lub” for love, yea!, “uck” for truck, car, airplane, jamies for pajamas, shoes, socks, pants, points to his mouth for drink, outside, and more.  

I could go on and on, but there are so many new words everyday I can’t keep up!  The girls all work with him and Little Jon and I do as well.  My very most favorite darling thing he does is point to our family picture and go through each person over and over again and says every ones name to the best of his ability.  On my blog when he does it he names them all and then sees himself and yells “ME”!! It is darling.  It is obvious he is realizing he is part of something than himself.  He is not alone and he has a big team of people there for him. 

 (more than he could ever imagine yet with countless others that love him)

He cheers and does it over and over again.  Little Jon LOVES it and laughs every time.  While I am on that subject, Handsome and his dad are getting so close. It melts my heart every time he gets home from work and Handsome runs up to him and throws his arms around him.  I tear up regularly and if that didn’t get me, watching them wrestle does me in.  They play differently with each other than the girls did.  Little Jon is always amused by the fact that he can chuck Handsome on the bed over and OVER again and he laughs harder with each throw.  In fact, the higher he drops him on the bed that harder he laughs. He is tough and the are both sweating after a major play session.  Just tonight they were playing this way and Handsome would run and jump on dad and then turn around and run up to me, slow down and lay down against my chest for a 2 minute snuggle over and over again.  

He is happy.  He is adjusting. He is perfect.

Having prefaced my next challenge with those great things I feel a bit more comfortable venting the hard parts.  Yesterday I had to go on some errands which usually doesn’t bother Handsome because he is so busy playing with the kids but this time it did.  He ran for me as I tried to leave the front door over and over again.  I tried to talk to him and calm him down but he wasn’t having it.  I was late to meet a friend for a surprise birthday lunch and didn’t have the option to push it off, so I left.

I felt so bad getting into the car so I called home to make sure he had calmed down.  Sure enough, he had and I felt much better.  I came home afterward and the day moved on like usual…

until bed that is.

Mac tried to lay down with him first and that didn’t work so I took my turn.  I am usually the one that lays down with him for every nap and bed time so I took my turn.  He fell asleep and I executed my secret Matrix move to sneak out of his bed.  The springs popped as I put my left leg on the ground and offset the weight with my right arm leaning over his limp body.  A slow roll and then a thump..”DANG!!!” Naughty words flew through my mind.  I was SO tired and I needed sleep.  Jewel was trying her best to muffle my graceless exit from the bed.  I have gotten pretty good at timing my movement with the louder yodelling parts of her songs and 

*MAN OH MAN, HANDSOME NEEDS A NEW SLEEP MIX. I’M ABOUT TO GO CRAZY LISTENING TO IT AS MUCH AS I HAVE.* Lets see, 2 times a day by 2 months…roughly 120 times I’ve listened to it.  

Anyway, I’m a pro at sneaking out.  

I wish you could see it.  

The Matrix

I tiptoed down the hallway and into my room next door.  I breathed *a loud* sigh of relief and laid down by Little Jon.  “YES” I thought…relaxation…finally. He rubbed my back for about 15 minutes,

And then he cried. Not only did he cry, he opened his door and came down the hall shaking and crying. I felt so bad and picked him up.  I rocked him back and forth as Little Jon talked to him until he fell back asleep.  I snuck back and laid him down hoping to go back to bed but he wasn’t having it.  Every time I moved an inch his eyes flew open and he yelled, “mama!”  Eventually I gave up trying to go to bed.  It was 2 a.m. and I wasn’t even close.  I went and got my blankie so I could sleep in his bed.  

My heart broke for him as I watched him doze up time after time all through the night only to be woken up  by a twitch or dream and call out for “mama or Dada”.  As soon as he saw my face he would close his eyes and fall back asleep.  When I say fall asleep I mean he would shove his little face right up against mine  with his cheek smashed against mine.  

Our breaths match each others, our eyelashes touch, and the rhythm lulled him to sleep.

This is a beautiful visual, but you can only sleep so deep with this going on for hours.  So, you see I have my sweatshirt on inside out and I just don’t care because at least I got it on without falling over.  Somehow I made it through the day but it is obvious we will be dealing with some separation anxiety.  I had some great advice given to me from a fellowblogger/friend that went through the same thing as a young child. 

 She advised me to: 

Sounds like he could have a fear of separation/abandonment? The anger is a way that many adoptees cope because they would rather cause hurt than be hurt. The good news is that the intense emotions are allowing you closer. Constant reassurance is all he needs and very soon he will learn that leaving is not leaving for good. Perhaps a special picture of just the 2 of you could be given or make a bracelet or necklace (rope, string) that you wear but give to him when you leave to hold until you get back. Something that can be touched and felt. Take the time when you come in to sit down with just him for a few minutes to tell him how much you missed him.Also save heart to heart talks with him for bedtime. When someone is sleepy their defenses are way down and they are more open.

I thought it was very sweet of her to take the time to help out and what she said was true. The next morning he was so happy and reassured.  He has slept fine since.  If you are dealing with any of these issues she is a great resource. 

I know I am posting random things about Handsome and they are out of order, but so is my brain.  At least I am recording right…?  We will get through it.  I am learning more each day what sets him off. *He also hates it when you close doors*  Bug does it for fun just to get a reaction from him when she wants a toy!

Today I was invited to see Steven Covey speak today from “Seven Habits of Highly Effective people”.  He was awesome and gave me a very sweet compliment.  You should have seen his face when I told him my kids had played in his pool!  True story, his grand kids go to school where mine do and they had a field trip there last year!  He told me he was 52 grand kids now.  What a man, and what a legacy he as left for future generations in his family and all over the world.  He was there promoting his new book for children.  It is amazing and only ten dollars.  

It is worth every penny!  

Also, I am VERY excited because my very good friend/cousin Mandy is flying in tonight!! Little Jon is picking her up as I write.  I should be sleeping but it is finally quiet and this is how I wind down.  She is here just for the weekend to take Rooz’s bridal shots.  Mandy is an amazing photographer and Rooz couldn’t be more lucky.  It was cheaper to fly her in than to hire someone from Utah just for the sitting fee!  Fine with me!  She gets to photograph our work Christmas party we are throwing Saturday night also, so I am happy happy.  I will take every minute I can get with her.  She used to basically live with us for about 4 years when she went to college.  We keep in touch always, but we have a bond that is special.  There aren’t many relationships like ours.  We started Native Honey together because we love to create together.  We talk about really hard things sometimes with words, and other times just by being together…without words.  

I am sure I will have a lot of fun stuff to post next week or soon after.  

Have a GREAT WEEKEND! And if you haven’t heard yet,

 I am giving away a diamond pendant necklace next Friday. 

Details are on yesterday’s post! Good luck!