And Then Everything Changed

January 31, 2012

  As many of you know, D and I are in the process of growing our family through another adoption.  We had our homestudy this weekend and got some very exciting news.  Because of our previous adoption experience, I had expected that we would be matched with a toddler at our homestudy.  Apparently our first adoption was a unique case for the agency here and there aren't any toddlers in the program now, which means that we will be adopting an infant.  A baby!  We're on the list for a baby that hasn't been born yet.  We don't know when we'll get our referral but it should be some time this year and we've also opted to accept either a boy or a girl.


January 30, 2012

  I finally had a chance to ask the adoption ladies some questions about Sky's birth mother the other day.  We were matched with her so quickly and then adopted her only 3 months after being matched, so we never really had the chance to ask the important questions.  I have worried about someday trying to explain to Sky why she was put up for adoption, why her birth mother did that, and now I have an answer.  It's something that I can understand and sympathize with and that hopefully I'll be able to explain to her.
  Skys wasn't abandoned, she wasn't not wanted, she wasn't the child not chosen.  For that, I can forgive her birth mother and hopefully, Sky will be able to, too.

A Letter to Sky's Birth Family

January 27, 2012

   I've been writing to Sky's aunt once every two or three months since she came to us but the one that I wrote the other day was really, really hard, for so many reasons. Not only is it almost our one year anniversary with Sky (so one year since they had to give her up), we took her on a vacation to Thailand, celebrated her second birthday and Christmas. How do you write about all that in a letter?

   "Dear aunt who loved Sky with all her heart and didn't want to give her up,
Sky's been with us for almost a year now, is growing like a weed because we can afford to feed her better than you could. We took her on a vacation to Thailand that cost more than your husband makes in several years and gave her experience you never could. Oh, and then we celebrated her birthday- yes let me remind you that she's been away from you for almost a year and you didn't get to see her for any of it. Let's top all that off with a recap of Christmas in which Sky recieves more toys in one day than she needs and than you could give her. To make this letter extra special, why don't you look at the pictures I included that show how big she's getting, how much fun she had on the vacation and then some of her opening all those presents!
   By the way, she still misses you, calls you Mama when she sees your picture and needs lots of hugs after talking about you. But it's okay, because maybe we'll be in Majuro some time this year, so maybe you can see her."

   That's not the letter that I sent, I promise. I told her about the vacation, Sky's birthday and Christmas but I kept it pretty vague. I know if I was on the recieving end of my letter, regardless of how nice it was written, how much the writer had tried to spare me from pain, it would have sounded like the letter above. I did tell her that we looked at her picture the other day and that Sky called her "Mama". I would want to know that I was remembered and missed. I know that will be hard for her aunt to hear but I don't want her to think that we're encouraging Sky to forget, and I did tell her that I hoped we could get together when we're in Majuro this year. I can't even begin to understand how hard that would be for her, to see Sky after a year and then have to leave her again. I would understand if she didn't come but I wanted to give her time to think about it and get ready for it.
   We have no way of knowing if she's gotten any of my letters. I've asked the adoption ladies and our lawyer if they've seen Sky's aunt lately and no one has. Even though I know it must be awful to read them and see the pictures, I hope she is getting them and that we can meet with her when we're in Majuro this year. I really want Sky to know that she was loved for her whole life and that they miss her. I want her to know who she came from.

Finding Nemo in Sky's Room

January 26, 2012

Since we live in concrete block base housing, decorating can be difficult. If you want to hang something on the wall, you have to drill a very permanent hole (that you're not even supposed to be drilling) so you'd better be sure you really want that hole there. Sky's favorite movie is Finding Nemo so I was pretty excited when I found these wall stickers on Amazon. They're big and bright and feature most of the main characters from the movie. They were easier than anything to put up and don't damage the wall at all. Sky loves them and they really cheer up her room.

Happy Belated National De-lurking Day!

January 25, 2012

  I missed de-lurking day!  Darn you, wonderful weekend on Roi for keeping me from sitting on by butt in front of a computer and discovering that this day even existed!  While having lunch today I was doing a little lurking myself at Rage Against the Minivan and found this post: it's de-lurking time!.  What a brilliant idea!  A chance for folks to pop their heads up and say, "Hi!  I stop by here every now and then."
  So how 'bout it, folks?  I'm really, really curious who checks out our blog.  I've got my 15 lovely followers but my Stats page says that there are a few more than that stumbling onto our blog.  You don't have to leave your name or any info (but it'd be cool if you did!).  As Kristen at Rage Against the Minivan suggests, this is a great time to tell me what you do or don't like about the blog and what you'd like to see more  or less of.   Just click on the "Comments" button at the end of this post and leave me your thoughts.
  Of course, if you want to keep on "lurking" (or as I like to call it "blog-trawling") feel free, and to everyone, thanks for stopping by!

Sky the Explorer

January 23, 2012

Do you see a resemblance between this little girl

and this one?

Sky does! She thinks that she is Dora, or should I say, that Dora is actually Sky. We don't have a TV feed to the house so if we watch anything it's a DVD and we put a half hour show in every morning for Sky so that we can do her hair. For the first six months of this, we only had Dora the Explorer for her to watch but since then we've added VeggieTales, Thomas the train, Clifford, Backyardigans, and Kai lan. Sky calls them all "Aya", which is how she says her name.
  To get her out of her Dora rut, and because David and I could sing the theme song in our sleep by now, we've been putting in her other DVDs more often lately and Sky has taken that as a sign that she needs to be more specific in her requests. Yesterday morning as we were walking down stairs she asked for Boots, Dora's little mokey friend. "Boots and Aya, Mama?" were her exact words.
Okay, smart girl, we'll watch "Boots and Aya".

A Weekend on Roi

January 20, 2012

   Last weekend we had a three-day weekend and  flew up to Roi for a little time away.  It was so much fun!  We hung out with our friends, went to the beach, ate Missile burgers (the best bacon cheeseburgers ever!) and just relaxed.  D didn't get to do any kiteboarding but he did some wakeboarding for practice on his board.  On Sunday morning, our friend Lannie watched Sky so that D and I could have some baby-free time which was really great.  Sky and I flew home on Tuesday morning and D stayed up for the day to go sailing with a friend.  We love our weekends on Roi!

 Cheesin' on the plane

Choo Choo!

January 18, 2012

  Aunt L and Uncle J gave Sky a train set for Christmas and it has been a big hit!  She doesn't quite get driving the train on the tracks yet but she likes putting pieces together and loves driving the train around the living room.

A Sister For Sky?

January 12, 2012

   Here's a joke in our family: how do D and A make a baby? With a pen and paper! Well, we've put pen to paper again and are back in the adoption process. We'll be having our homestudy sometime in the last week of January and we may get matched then too. We've asked for another girl and that she be at least a calendar year younger than Sky. If we go by our last adoption timeline, we could be in court as soon as March or April. We'll keep you posted!

She Remembers

January 9, 2012

  Sky stayed home from school today with a cold and I had the morning shift taking care of her.  While we were having a snack and playing outside, it popped into my head to try something.  When she was playing and distracted I called her by her birth name.  Her head whipped around towards me and her eyes got so big.  She Remembers.  I didn't expect her to forget, and I don't want her to, but we have no way of knowing how much she will remember from before.  And she definitely remembers that.

Christmas, Part Three

January 7, 2012

  There were two more Christmas boxes in the mail on Tuesday, one from my brother and sister-in-law and a surprise one from my aunt and uncle in Arizona.  We recieved soup mixes and Starbucks cocoa (more things we can't buy here) and Sky got some cars for her birthday.  She spent the whole evening driving them around the patio.  My brother and sister-in-law hooked me up with some more pictures frames and D got some specialty peanut butter and cookbook.  They gave Sky a big box of trains and she's really excited to play with it.  One of her grandpas gave her a Thomas video for Christmas so she's starting to get into trains.

Christmas, Part Two

January 6, 2012

   We celebrated our second Christmas when boxes arrived from my aunt J and my Mom.   D looks forward to my aunt J's box every year because she sends him her home-made peppermint bark.  D rations it out over the year and had just finished the bark from last year a few weeks before Christmas.

 Sky rocking out on the guitar that she got for Christmas from Mommy and Daddy

Christmas, Part One

January 5, 2012

   Because of the way mail works here, we had three Christmases- the first one on Christmas and the other two when our Christmas boxes arrived from our family in the states.  All of them were great and it was nice to have the holiday season keep on going. 
  We went to church on Christmas eve and then came home to put out the presents and perform that age-old Christmas eve activity: putting together a bike.  On Christmas morning, two of our friends came over for breakfast and to watch Sky open presents.  After church, lunch and a nap, we spent the afternoon around the house, playing with our new toys.

A New Year's Thought

January 2, 2012

  One year ago today I sat down at our computer at home and checked my email.  We only have dial-up at home so I don't usually bother, but that day I did.  I logged in and about two seconds later I was screaming for D.  There was something in my inbox, something I didn't even know I should be looking out for: our petition to adopt Sky.  There it was in black and white.  Our names, her name and the request that she become our daughter.  One little life-changing email. 
  2011 was a great year for us and I hope it was for you too, and  may your 2012 be even better!
Our Charmed Life. All rights reserved. © Maira Gall.