Wednesday was another big day for us here in Urumqi. We visited Joey's orphanage. We were nervous and not sure what to expect. We were mostly worried about how it would be for him...Would he want to stay with them? Or would he be afraid we would leave him there? It went better than we had hoped for. It was emotional and joyful and informative. We learned a lot about the orphanage and our son. But I'm still processing and not ready to blog about it just yet....so I'm going to leave you hanging about that for a bit longer.
In the meantime, we just can't get over how well he's doing. He adores us and we adore him. He's independent in ways that are surprising and yet loves us to help him as well. We're glad that he's comfortable with us, but he's still working hard to hold it together. He has yet to cry and grieve for the losses. We're very much in a honeymoon phase still and that's ok. Things need to happen at his own pace, we're just taking cues from him. But we love that he seeks us out for attention, he loves to touch us and be near us.
In some ways he's more responsible than our other kids! Clearly he was taught to clean up after himself...he washes his hands without being asked (gasp!), Makes the beds, throws away garbage, even tried to clean how own plate with a napkin at breakfast at the hotel restaurant!
Im other ways he seems like a much younger child. His attention span is very short, we've already used all the toys and activities I brought to keep him occupied. It's like he doesn't know how to really play. Or maybe it's just all still overwhelming for him.
He gets into everything like a toddler. He goes through all our bags and rearranges things and hides things. He was getting into all our medicine, I caught him hiding and opening a box of chewable Pepto and I have no doubt he would have eaten them all. So all the meds are way up high now. He has to be watched like a hawk! We caught him with my mascara ready to paint the room.
He loves legos and action heros. He LOvES Plants vs Zombies. We brought an old phone with some games on it and he thinks it's his. He takes it everywhere and takes pictures on it and plays games. He'll call out to me "momma!" And take my picture. So sweet.
We had hoped for the boys to play games and watch videos together on the tablet, but he is very grabby and pushes buttons randomly instead of watching, so it's good we have more than one device.
We brought things like checkers and a deck of cards to play some games, but he doesn't understand them so he likes to play toss with the cards and build towers with the checker pieces. We brought a Search and Find book but he's not understanding about searching so we're just coloring. And that's all ok. He loves playing with us and having our time and attention.
He's very verbal and very active! He eats a ton and sleeps hard. He knows what he wants and doesn't want. At first he was compliant about everything, but now we're getting some defiance about things like getting dressed, brushing teeth etc. He's telling us no some and seems shocked when we follow through. We know from experience that high nurture and high structure are best for him right now, so we're doing our best to meet his needs in a loving way yet provide the boundaries he needs.
He also loves to feed us and show us things, we hear Momma and Babba nonstop.
He also has a cold which he promptly shared with me.
We're learning a lot about him physically and have some idea of the first things we're going to need help with at home sooner than later from the doctors.
It's hard to be here so long and to have so much downtime, but it's a great little cocoon away from regular life for us to get to know one another.
Ben has been such a blessing, I think he makes Joey feel more at ease with us plus he's a great buddy. I can't wait to see all our kids together!! I think my brain has not wrapped around the fact that we have 5 kids!!!