Monday, November 29, 2010

Birthdays, Anniversaries, Postponements, and Firsts

Novemeber has been a pretty big month. November 22 marked Troy's birthday as well as the one-month anniversary of Aiden becoming a U.S. citizen. We returned from China October 22. To mark the auspicious occasion(s), we went to Spezias where Troy and I had celebrated many important milestones in the adoption process. Aiden amazed us once again with his exemplary behavior. (Not even joking) It was a wonderful time. Also during the month, after much soul-searching, discussion, and talking with our social worker, we decided that I would stay home with Aiden until after the first of the year. It is another few weeks without pay, pay we're trying to figure out how we'll live without, but we feel me remaining home is important enough to warrant the loss of wages. Although he is an incredibly happy, outgoing little boy most of the time, he is having a couple issues. He is not sleeping well. I am currently sleeping on an air mattress next to his crib (until we get a portable crib in our room). He often wakes up in the middle of the night crying, looking for us. Usually, not always but usually, if he sees me, it's enough to stop his crying and get him to go back to sleep. Sometimes, though, it is even almost as though he is having night terrors. Again our social worker made a suggestion that we stay near him until he adjusts and gets over his fear of abandonment. He is starting to warm up to other people more readily now, but it is still not an instantaneous occurrance. :) My cousin Maureen adopted a child from Guatamala a while back, and what she was told was that these adopted kids, although they are as cognizant as other kids their age, they are emotionally starting at day one when they are brought home. I guess that means we have an infant that can and DOES get into everything! He is incredibly busy - SUCH a handfull! He's not busy enough to burn off all his calories, though. The little turkey has gained almost two pounds in a month! Aiden also got to participate in his first Thanksgiving. He liked the food well enough, but he really didn't have much time for that. He liked exploring the grandparents' homes. He also really enjoyed playing with his cousins. In fact, Abigail even came to our house that night to stay over. We even did a VERY little shopping on Black Friday while Abigail babysat for an hour! The other 'big' news of November? Aiden experienced his first snow. We know that they get a little snow in Xi'an, China, (which we were told usually melts in a day) but judging by his initial reaction, this was his first encounter. When I walked him out, all bundled up, he at first didn't want to walk in it. He kept putting his arms up for me to hold him. Then he'd try to retreat to the garage. I got out his little shovel he and Dad bought, and he started to get to work. By the time Dad got home from work and started to clear off the driveway, Aiden was beginning to think this snow thing is all right! It didn't hurt that Ceit, true to form, was leaping and lunging to catch the shovelsful of snow. :) All-in-all, it has been an unforgettable first month with our beautiful boy! Pictures - Top to Bottom: Abby and Aiden after Thanksgiving, Thanksgiving at Grandpa and Grandma McDonald's, Birthday / Anniversary Supper at Spezias

Friday, November 19, 2010

Photos :)

Bottom to top: Watching the Vikes game with Dad; Playtime! (The game stunk); First American haircut. Not a fan! Katie did a great job, though!; Post haircut supper. All better!

Wednesday, November 10, 2010

Post Placement Visit and Miracles!

We had our first post-placement visit by our social worker on Tuesday night (11/9/10). It went really well. She was impressed with Aiden's adjustment and said the sleeping would probably resolve itself with time; he probably just needs to reassure himself that Mom and Dad are in fact still with him. He was a character that night. He is really starting to be more comfortable with other people, especially on his home turf.
Our big news, though, comes from our cardiologist appointment (11/10/10). We have experienced a miracle! We went to see Dr. Waltz, our pediatric cardiologist, where they conducted an ECG and an ultra-sound. The ECG took just a short time, and Aiden tolerated it well. During the ultra-sound, which was supposed to last 20 minutes, Aiden fell asleep. It was just as well. It took 40 minutes! Dr. Waltz even came in and took over for the tech. I guess they took upward of 200 images of his heart. They carried on a relatively lengthy conversation, and the only term I heard / understood was aneurysm. MY heart almost stopped. Afterwards, we met with Dr. Waltz (who, by the way, is amazing), and he gave us some interesting news. Apparently Aiden had not had just one hole; rather, he had a major hole and several small holes. Somehow, the large one closed on its own, and all but one of the small ones had closed. The remaining hole is small enough that there is no surgery or medications required. We do need to go back in a year, but that is the extent of it. The doctor says the prognosis is excellent! In fact his murmur is almost imperceptible. What I'm trying to say is, this is nothing short of a miracle (thank you, thank you, thank you for all the prayers)! Dr. Waltz was pleasantly stunned. The rest of the visit was NOT as good. It was determined that we needed to do some basic medical checks since we have no medical history. They tried to draw blood to do eight different tests. Aiden was hysterical. Unfortunately, they had to stick him FOUR times. :( The ordeal last 40 minutes, and they still didn't get enough to do all the tests. The poor little guy cried so hard, he almost threw up. It took 5 adults to hold him down. What a nightmare!
However, he recovered quickly. It wasn't long before he was running around, singing (one of his favorite pasttimes), and laughing. It probably took Mom and Dad longer to get over the trauma. The little guy is a handful! He has an amazing sense of humor. Unfortunately, he thinks he's funny, too! He loves to tease and BE teased. He smiles almost all the time and loves to give hugs and kisses. He also loves to go bye-bye. We think that can be attributed to our early days together when we were always on the run.
In short, we are stunned by the changes we've seen in the month we've been fortunate enough to have him in our lives. Today, 11/11/10 is our one month family anniversary! We are so blessed! I just don't know how I will find it in me to leave him in a couple weeks. :( I will attach updated pictures this weekend (as my dad has hip-replacement surgery tomorrow, I will not have time). Until then.....
Pictures: Tubby time with Daddy; Eating carrots with a Dorito (pretty sure that's ok!)

Thursday, November 4, 2010

Doctor Appointment

We had our first doctor's appointment yesterday, 11/3/2010. It went pretty well. Although, Aiden did have a pretty significant meltdown when he saw the nurse. He must have a 6th sense about them and certainly hasn't appreciated what they have done for them in the past. On the other hand, he loved Dr. Van Es. The doctor's assessment of Aiden's overall health was positive. He actaully made the growth chart for weight. Height? Not so much. Oh well. Now, we have scheduled an appointment with a pediatric cardiologist for November 12. We're praying for good news there, too.
Before the doctor's appointment, we visited the high school. Aiden got to meet many students and held up admirably. He also got to meet several of the facutly and staff. Dr. Talcott even "bribed" him successfully with fruit snacks; Aiden smiled for him!
Even though Aiden is playing quietly by himself, not uncommon, I had better wrap this up. I am not feeling well (how fun is it to be sick with a two-year-old in the house who is still figuring out the ins and outs of this new world?) and need to go try to relax on the couch, even though I'm pretty sure I'm going to end up at the doctor's today, this time on my own behalf. It doesn't help that Aiden took a header onto the wooden platform of our bed last night and hours later ran full-force with his chest into our coffee table. He cried a lot last night in his sleep, and the only place he would sleep? On the floor next to his crib. :( So guess where Mom DIDN'T sleep all night. Yep. On the floor next to Aiden's crib.
I will post again soon (if not before, I will post after our doctor's appointment and tests on the 12th) with more information about Aiden's ever-chagning / evolving personality and characteristics. His true colors shine through more each day. For now, we'll just say, pretty much EVERYTHING is funny - including Mom when she says no. Cute. Till later!