Not sure if it's visible, but on the paper place mat, Etienne wrote the letter 'E' and the letter 'b' (the b is sideways on the mat). I teared up when he held this up because we have been working on learning the letter 'b' since September 6. He got over-the-top praise and we didn't ask the sound of b or words that start with it. Let's rejoice and be glad in this little (big) accomplishment!
The weekend was bitter sweet for Ryan and me. We returned to the community that started the adoption journey with us, Basehor,attend a wedding. It is hard to go back now because we have changed so much and I think it's difficult for our old friends to understand the new us. It is also impossible to explain in words the depths of joy, pain and struggle that is post adoption life. "It's something you wanted, remember?"
People want to hug and love on the boys but this is so discouraged for little boys that are trying to learn to be attached to their family. Trying to differentiate affection from strangers to loved ones is challenging for Etienne and I could see his confusion this weekend. When we first came home, E would climb on, kiss, hug and snuggle with literally any person that gave him attention. To the by stander, they want to think "wow, this little guy is irresistible, and he likes me!" He is indeed irresistible but he doesn't care who you are as long as you are giving him attention. For his mom and dad, if he runs into your arms, it stings a little. Blake wouldn't run into your strange arms and neither would Molly. Your biological 4yo wouldn't kiss an adult they didn't know....see where I am going?
The most painful piece of this scenario is that this was our old home. These were our friends that loved and prayed us to Africa and home again. They deserve affection from E and Zeke. It's just so stinkin' complicated. I look forward to the day when the boys are old enough that I can introduce them to our Basehor family and say, "This is the woman that made you a quilt; and this whole church sold pizzas for you. That guy over there, he donated his whole penny collection for you to come home. Everyone here prayed you home." And hope that each of them knows I treasure that piece of our family story.