So, Are You Attached Yet?

No.

I remember that question being asked by someone in DECEMBER.  DECEMBER!  Mayah came home in December.  This was shortly after I pulled our family back to seclusion a bit.  Like a few days of not going anywhere would break 7 long years of neglect and pain. 

It is incredibly hard as an adoptive parent to simply be a parent.  Since I only have experience with an older child-I would have to say, for the most part, it’s probably harder to parent an older adoptive child than a baby.  I’m sure adopted babies come with their own sets of rules, limitations and puzzles to solve. 

Our daughter has been home for just over 8 months.  I’m sure she is not bonded with us.  Yes-love overcomes many obstacles-so we will continue to push forward. 

She internalizes every thing. 

She has a high pain tolerance.

She has no sense of self.

She’s more like a baby than our 2 year old.

We have to find a balance.

Things in our house are not chaotic.  Mayah simply blends in.  That’s always been the problem-her blending.  She’s very good at it.  She mimics what the other children do-and keeps a “normal” distance.  By normal I mean it seems as though she is bonded and fits nicely into the family. 

Mayah cannot communicate in any way what her old life was like.  In fact, I truly believe she has almost forgotten it altogether. 

Completely forgotten.

Admittedly, I get a bit jealous when I read on another adoptive mom’s blog that their child is beginning to express what their old life was like in the orphanage.  Albeit terrible, the child is still expressing it.  It is hard to accept we will never know what Mayah’s life was like before we got there.  We have to fully rely on the Holy Spirit for guidance.  I’m not saying that’s a bad thing-but there is comfort in having a tangible leg to stand on when it comes to helping your child cope. 

There’s also comfort I knowing I have to draw even nearer to the Lord so HE can help me deliver my daughter from her past life. 

Mayah is suffering.

A lot.

It’s easy to just “let her be” because she blends so well.  However-no child can spend 7 years completely neglected-likely abused-and come out like our typically developing home -grown sons. 

So here we are back at the drawing board.  Seeking the One who made us to help us.   He will deliver us so we can deliver her.  None of it’s possible without His help.  His gentle guidance. 

Not only do we need to evaluate and change some bonding activities with Mayah-this is beginning to affect our boys as well.

People who don’t live in our house don’t hear the:   “Mommy why does Mayah get that and we don’t?”  (even though they did as babies they just don’t remember it)

“Mommy why don’t you do that with us?”  (even though we did and they just aren’t remembering it now)

“Mommy, why do you love Mayah more than us?”

OUCH.

I can take the dirty looks.  I can take the judging from [family] and non family members alike who have no idea what it’s like to bring a secretly hurting institutionalized child into the family.  I can accept every single move I make is being scrutinized by someone because they don’t think I like my daughter and I should just “let her be” –after all she’s blending right in.

“Mommy, why do you love Mayah more than us?”

And that’s where the new activities are going to be implemented.  It breaks my heart to hear that question.  My sons know that I love them.  But they are now seeing some new behaviors that aren’t “normal” for me to do with a 7 year old girl-“normal” for a brand new baby-but not a 7 year old (almost 8) who can play right along with them.  We are seeing they too need their own special treatment.  So today marks a new day.  In an effort to reduce those questions and any anxiety the boys are having-we will work extra harder at making them feel loved and secure as well.  Sure, we won’t do the same things we’re doing with Mayah-but each one has his own way of needing his Mama.  Today-today is the day we outwardly seek their silent cries and quench them with love. 

I have a feeling this will also help our overall bonding with Mayah as a whole. 

Thanks for the prayers, friends.

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   God is working a mighty work. 

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2 responses »

  1. Bless your heart, Tammy. I so appreciate your sensitivity to the needs of all of your children. God WILL indeed guide you. Keep up the good work.
    Joy

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