ali just posted these on her blog and i need them here. they ARE the pictures of RELIEF.
that hug (sorry, ali, i kind of felt like i was holding on to you for dear life...i was...), the words whispered,
these days are sweet, i know. and i don't want to forget it. these first few days are simple. the goal is ONE: take care of everyone.
soon, there will be more goals...they will slowly creep in, i know that. and i want to soak this in for what it is.
i was laying on my bed last night after pat got home, just trying to take a deep breath to get through the bedtime routine. i was thinking about groceries. we needed (*needed* seems silly after what we've seen this last month) a couple things. i was thinking through the next day, should i try the grocery store? or just do without? i checked my email a few minutes later and a friend emailed saying she was going to the grocery store tomorrow morning and did i need anything?? seriously?? WHY do i keep being surprised by my God? He lavishes me with His love over and over!!!
a friend is driving my kids to swim team for me. so kind. yesterday, i got in the car (with the younger 3) to go pick up the older 3 from swim team. it was the first time i was driving since being home (pat drove this past weekend wherever we went). i backed the car up, turned on my country music and started crying as i drove down the street. it just felt so GOOD to do something so NORMAL!
these are lincoln's english words so far:
*table (that's where we have him put his cup)
*all of our names (he called rebekah "picata" - not sure how that translated like that. i think it's cute. she doesn't)
*he said, "potty" once. every other time he says, "quinara". it kind of made me sad when he said, "potty". i LOVE hearing him talk in his language! it's amazing! (he's the boy version of bailey - so he talks a LOT!)
*pray (and stretches out both hands to hold the hands of whoever is next to him)
*amen (at the end of every prayer)
*he can say #1-10 but you can tell the orphanage taught it to him and he has NO idea what he's saying
*today he said, "yay!" when we got to the pool!!! that made me smile SO big! i say that all the time and it cracked me UP!
i'm sure he understands so many more words...he just doesn't SAY them
when sawyer gets upset or someone has taken something of his, he makes a sound that we've termed "the pterodactyl". it's awful. it makes you want to give him whatever you took.
since day 1, lincoln also has his own sound. it's called "dying duck". it's awful. and we're hearing it less and less, which is nice.
this morning they were fighting over a train and each making their respective noises. it would have been funny if it wasn't so awful.
when we first met lincoln and levi, neither of them knew how to PLAY. i had no idea that kids LEARN how to play! lincoln just collected trash in his backpack. and rearranged things in our hotel room. levi would just THROW anything you put in his hand. it made me sad. but it was also frustrating because we didn't know how to keep them occupied all those hours we had to spend WAITING in offices, etc in africa.
they are both learning to play. it's amazing to watch. lincoln and sawyer played at the train table for a good 15 minutes this morning together. it was so sweet.
the first 2 days that we had levi (just during the day at first, remember) all he did was sleep and lay there. we could barely even get him to drink a bottle. he had NO expression on his face. he would just stare. it got to a point where i was pretty concerned. the 3rd day we finally got a small smile. and he sat up (we weren't sure he could). then he started crawling. and THEN he stood up and WALKED!!! we were SO shocked! when we mentioned it to the orphanage when we took him back that evening, they were so surprised. he still goes into those "spells" even now - no expression, kind of just lets his body go limp - but more and more he's lively and smiles and is engaged in what is going on around him. oh, and he LOVES to eat! at first, he would barely eat rice cereal or applesauce. now, he almost refuses baby food and wants whatever WE are eating!
it's still hard. so many aspects of it are hard. i desire to love and like lincoln and levi just like i love and like my other children. but, if i'm completely honest, it's just not the same...yet. my actions (hopefully) show that i do. but they were strangers to me 3 weeks ago. i have welcomed them, cared for them, tended to them, and i DO love them...but we are still figuring each other out. lincoln has a look he gives me. and i don't know what it means. i KNOW it means something, and it kills me that i don't KNOW what it is. eyes say so much. i can look at my other 4 kids' eyes and KNOW how they are. that isn't there yet with lincoln and levi and it's just hard. i'm a HEART person, not a surface person. i want to know what's going on in their HEARTS. it will come. i trust that. that will be a joyous day!!!
the other 4 are doing great. amazing. they are so patient. so forgiving. the FIRST words out of sawyer's mouth this morning were, "where is lincoln?" that made my heart SO happy and content!
remember that hug ali and i had at the airport? where i was hanging on for dear life? that is what life feels like right now. i'm hanging onto God and His promises for dear life. i'm hanging onto the encouragement from family and friends for dear life. if i let go, i will drown. it's a hard place to be...but also exhilarating!