3:29 PM

How far we have come

It has been a long while since I did an update post.  I guess things just got good and I started to look towards other adoption issues that interest me and have not really updated on Elora's progress.  I know quite a few readers are looking to see a snapshot of toddler adoption, so here is little report card, nine months out.

I feel that her attachment is very strong to every one in her family at this point.  She remembers all the aunts, uncles and grandparents as well as close family friends who we see often and they get different level of lovin' then a stranger but less than Mommy and Daddy.  Some strangers can still get a smile or giggle from her but she is having a much more normal interaction.  I don't see the mommy shopping happening at all any more.

Sibling Rivalry 
This one is our main issue right now although I think it would happen with any two toddlers in one house but I think Elora has an extra need for attention from us because of her anxiety from my return to work and just over all her love quota is just that much higher then an average child her age.

Motor Skills
Her gross and fine motor skills are now at or above age level.  This does mean that her daredevil attitude has lead her to climb and tumble off of things my other child never would have dreamed of doing.  I am counting my self lucky that she has yet to escape her crib and we have not had a trip to the ER yet.  She is feeding her self and eating properly now, drinking from a cup and can even use threading toys.  We continue vision therapy bi-weekly for good measure though.

Her language continues to amaze me.  She has gone from no words to a huge vocabulary and now is stringing together 3 and 4 word sentences.  She needs some coaching still to calm down and use her words and improve her pronunciation but over all she is making leaps and bounds, every day she gets about 2-3 new words.  She is at age level now in speech too.

I think at about 6 months home we had most issues well on their way to being resolved.  Mommy's life made a big turn once they had just one nap a day and both at the same time!!  Headbanging has gone all together.  We used sucking as a replacement comforter, first with a bottle of milk, then water and now finally a soother.  Yes, I could not be more excited that I have taught my two year old to use a soother.  At the age when most parents are trying to get rid of them we were working towards her accepting them.  It has made a world of difference for her and she can ask for her susu time and self sooth.  She only needs it for a few minutes and then tosses it aside, so I am thinking this will not be with us for too long either.
I have returned to work part time.  We tried our best to help Elora get accustomed to day care, it was really hard on her and she got very clingy for weeks after our attempt.  I am sure she could have got though it if we had persevered but luckily my mom offered to be the nanny and come to our house to watch them.  It has been a much more seamless transition for her.  We can work on being left with other people outside the family again in a few more months.

So there you are, this is our experience.  I always sum it up by saying she was fast and furious when she joined our family.  She really grieved and it was really hard, BUT because she was so determined to let us know just how mad she was, we got to address her feelings and move forward very quickly.  I am not saying she is over it by any means but she now has a really great set of tools and skills that allow her to communicate feelings in a positive way, ask for help, and learn to trust.  I am so surprised that we are here now.  I always knew that here would come some day, but here is now!  Fast and furious, and definitely unstoppable, that's my amazing girl!