Wednesday, August 11, 2010

Life with Madelyn

Oh my goodness, we're in love with this child! Madelyn is still doing wonderful! We honestly believe this is ONLY because of the Grace of God and the 16+ months we prayed for this child. And I'm talking about all you bloggy friends too!!! Prayer is an amazing thing!!!!

Yesterday we had some pretty heavy tears from Madelyn (finally). I never want to see my kids cry but I felt Madelyn need a good cry to get it all out...And she did...Twice! I held her tight and just let her cry it out. I myself was starting to tear up because it was obvious she was not crying over the fact that one of the girls (who shall remain nameless) upset her, she was crying for home. China home. I prayed over her and gave her lots of sugar and in time she felt better and went off to play with her sisters after one of them apologized for her actions. All the girls are learning how to be sisters. I often wonder how I would be if my parents adopted an older child and I had to welcome this child into our home. I'm always in amazement at how open minded and easy going my children are when it comes to adoption. They have the mind set that there's always room for one more and that makes CJ and I very very proud!

Bonding continues to be easy but I will admit, last week... I. Struggled. I had a few days of endless tears and feeling out numbered and overwhelmed (thank you to my "in-loves" for letting me cry on your shoulder). I felt it difficult to be mama to all of my kids while struggling with jet lag and a touch of a bug. All I wanted to do was sleep and hide!!! Finally, I mustered up the energy to cry out to Jesus and beg him to not allow the enemy to steel my joy of FINALLY having this precious treasure home, in our arms! On my knees I was praying asking Him to please open my heart to this child, the one I knew He chose to be our daughter. Why was I feeling less bonded to her!??!?! Frustration ensued me as I could not think of anything to do other than get into my bible for strength and guidance. Jesus is always faithful, isn't He? I mean, He promised to never leave us or forsake us and the works of His hands are always for the good and His ways are perfect. Always. So I took refuge in Him and opened my bible. Inside I found all the notes I wrote on the stationary from the hotels we were staying in while in China. I reread through tears all the scriptures verses I wrote during our time across the globe and my eyes fell upon this verse....

"Now that you have purified yourselves by obeying the truth so that you have sincere love for your brothers, love one another deeply, from the heart." 1 Peter 22

And with that, it clicked. I felt the Lord telling me ... AMY, LOVE HER FROM YOUR HEART! Love this precious child from Your heart. Stop asking questions, stop doubting, stop worrying and Just love her from your heart. And that's what I did. I stopped all the other distractions from the enemy and Just started to love my daughter from my heart. Madelyn's mother's heart. Within a day things changed, the Lord set me Free and I came out of my fog. Praise you Lord Jesus! Thank you!

I was worried for a couple of reasons and many of you know that Linzhi Rose and I had some difficulty in the bonding department for a few months. The Lord worked on me then too but just differently and I see now with adoption #2 that each time IS different. I was so terrified I would not be able to bond that I closed myself off to her (sort of) because I didn't know how to relax and just let it happen. Madelyn engages me, hugs me, kisses me, loves me (and her daddy), Linzhi on the other hand wouldn't let me hold her for more than a few minutes. She didn't engage me, she didn't know what to do with me but WOW she loved her daddy!! And for that I was so grateful because I knew she could bond to someone. If it couldn't be me then I was happy it was her daddy. So in time, we managed to figure out how to be mother and daughter and now it feels like all the bonding issues never even took place! She is my cuddle bug and loves her mama and her mama loves her more than I could ever have imagined. Adoption is not easy. Adoption will bring you to your knees! However... Adoption is full of miracles. Adoption creates forever families. Adoption saves lives. Adoption teaches. Adoption opens children's hearts . Adoption changes lives-forever!

So now we are beginning to get into a new normal. I am working on the school room everyday and loving every minute of it! The girls have been working a few days a week in these booklets I bought so they can keep up on what they learned in Kindergarten and Pre-school. I bought one for Madelyn and let me tell you, our girl is SMART!!! She can't read English but just show her once and she's got it! Actually, all the girls are bright little bee's so I know we're going to have a good time schooling in our little room. We also signed them up for an art class through our area's home school association, acrobats at the dance studio (all three of them) and we'll be attending a reading program at the library and all the activites going on at church. We'll be busy but it's all spread out through the week so we won't be constantly running. Trevor will start his senior (gulp) year home schooling and soon we'll be getting things ready so he can attend the local community college for two years, then he wants to transfer to Columbia college in Chicago. My boy has plans!! His mama can't stand the thought of him leaving in three years....sniff sniff...

Yesterday, we decided it was time we looked into a different vehicle. Currently, I drive a sweet cross over SUV but Madelyn cannot get in it on her own, it's too difficult for her and honestly, my back can't take much more. So we went to see Chad (my cousin's husband) at the local Chrysler dealership inquiring about gulp. Back in the day, I would profess over and over again that I would NEVER drive a mini van. I didn't feel we had a big enough family to even consider that type of vehicle (insert nervous laugh). However, watching my child struggle to get in and out of my pretty little SUV was enough to break my heart! I called CJ and said it may be time to look. Right now in my garage we have a Chrysler Town and Country Touring (whatever that means). I have to admit, I LOVE IT!!!!! THE KIDS LOVE IT (well,maybe not Trevor) and CJ LOVES IT. Mini van, where have you been all my life???? Do I miss my sweet little SUV... Not at the moment. Will I when it becomes official and I take all my belongings out of it? Maybe a little. Is it amazing to see Madelyn get into a vehicle with ease? Nothing like it!!

I know I'm jumping all over the place here...Hang with me... The sleeping situation...
Within a week, Madelyn is now sleeping in her room with zero issues. Linzhi is back in her bed and Yes, oh Yes, Rachel Catherine is still sleeping in Linzhi's room!!! Linzhi wants Rachel to move but Rachel refuses and Linzhi is easy to change her mind. Oh well, eventually she'll go to her room...That's what her father and I keep saying (trying to convince ourselves)...LOL...

I've been so bad about pictures but I have been able to capture a few sweet moments. Enjoy!!

Sisters forever!
Getting ready for a dip.
Forever daughter.


The Ferrill's said...

Oh Amy, I love this entire post. Thank you so much for giving us a sweet glimpse into your "life with Madelyn!" That verse you wrote really spoke to me as well, "love each other deeply, from the heart" I needed that today!
Many blessings to your family as you continue to love one another from the heart!

Julie said...

I'm so happy things are falling into place for you. Reading through your struggle with bonding, it makes me realize how many times we choose to struggle with things, instead of just giving it to the Lord. He is so good to take care of us when we remember to turn to him. Thanks for that reminder.

Just wanted you to know that second picture of your Rachel with her arms around her sisters brought me to tears. Such a great illustration of how, in love, God wraps his arms around us.

Prayers for you and your family as you continue in this new season.

Sandy said...

Hey Cuz,
Oh, ow Faithful is our God?
Your post i fantastic and the pictures are Wonderful....
Wish I could get up to see you guys and meet Madelyn.....I will be praying for you and homeschool as well. We homeschooled too and I kinow prayer is the glue...
Love ya,