Wednesday, September 14, 2011

U of M adoption appt.

We had our University of MN adoption appointment today. I have been looking forward to this for quite some time. Usually they like to see families 2-3 weeks after they come home, but due to their business and timing with us, it has been 8 weeks before we could get in!

All in all, it was very reassuring. Both kids are showing good signs of attachment, and they gave us some helpful advice when Kembia freaks out. Moyz is strong, but we need to do some occupational exercises with him at home to help him build up his core and then he will be able to move his muscles a little quicker as far as reflexes. They said this happens a lot with kids from orphanages, and once they are in a family who works with them improvement happens extremely fast. We definitely have seen this with both of the kids, but he needs just a little more help. He gets to do some fun exercises on a bouncy ball that keeps him just off balance and requires his stomach muscles to tone up which in turn will help him with lots of things. And because he modify crawls, he acutally uses different muscles other than his core and kind of doesn't help his situation, but they weren't worried about it, but why not give him help if we can?

He also tested positive for Giardia on the 4th stool sample. So my advice to anyone adopting is if you think they have a parasite, keep testing. The first 3 were negative but we just felt that something didn't seem right with his stomach. It seemed huge and gas filled and he would occasionally have black poop, which a lot of time people mistake for lactose intolerance, which it can be, but it also can be parasites. Fun!

Kembia is "really tiny". Not even on the international growth charts. However, she is close to being on the curve, so we will continue her high calorie diet, and both kids go back in December for some more testing and for a check up. Physically she is only just a little bit behind but doing well, no exercises for her. We also need to go back to sticking formula into anything possible when she eats given that she won't drink milk, even chocolate. Dark skin doesn't absorb Vitamin D very well, and um hello, northern climate so they have two things going against them. So we need to try and get as much into her as we can.

We were so grateful to be able to talk to the crew of people evaluating them and make sure that what we are doing at home is what we should be doing. One thing that I really needed to hear is that during times when Kembia is spazzing (of which there has been GREAT improvement), the doctor told us that it is important that she see us, but she doesn't need to be happy. She then elaborated and said that it doesn't mean that we even need to be holding her during that time, but that what Kembia is afraid of is that she really likes us now, even if she doesn't know that we are "mom" and "dad" and that she is afraid that we may not be there later. As long as she can see us, that is the most important thing, not necessarily that we are holding her, although if we can, that is awesome.

So for example, last week Chris and I were both cutting up veggies for supper, and she really wanted to be held and we couldn't. We were right there in the kitchen with her, around two feet away. She pitched a royal fit. We said comforting things to her like mommy and daddy love you and we are here for you but we can't pick you up right now, and eventually she calmed down. The doctor said that is right on track and life doesn't always allow for us to hold our new kids 24/7. It was good to have someone smart in this area reaffirm this for me so perhaps I can relax a little bit about not being able to hold them all the time and that they are headed for RAD. I also got a couple of really good adoption books that people suggested and that has been helpful too. We pass items back and forth using our mouths and making eye contact, and I will stick a cracker or cheerio just on my lips and she has to grab it from me looking me in the eyes and using her mouth. We do it with Moyz too and he thinks it is just about the funnest thing ever.

I did finally get my Ergo, and I have to admit that I am glad I sprung for it. It still sits a little up high on the kids, I could maybe get an infant insert, but in a couple more weeks I think it will fit both of them perfectly. I absolutely love the way it fits, and they both seem to like it. Funny when they have had enough of it and I put them down on the ground, they never yell and want me to be with them! Apparently, there can be a thing as too much holding for them!

On a side note, I tried to comment back to those of you who liked the pink chandelier, but I am seriously computer stupid, and it said that I wan't allowed to make comments on the blog. I don't know how that is because it is my blog, but I should probably figure it out. So for Verouna who had the lime green kitchen, oh my word I think that we would get along! And Jo, I totally just made the bed for the picture so it didn't look like I was a complete sloth! But that is one of my post- adoption goals, I know, shooting high here. But somehow my bedroom feels so much more clean if the bed is made. So that is my goal, to make the bed every day, we'll see how far I get!


  1. I'm glad you had a good experience with the U of M appointment. We took our kids to an international adoption clinic when they got home - and like you, we had to wait about 2 months for an appointment. When we went, we were told how tiny both B & L were, but that they had really good fine motor skills. I suspect that now that they're here and not malnourished, they will catch up in height and weight. But, back to you - that's great that they gave you advice for Kembia. Not holding her 24/7 is much better for you, especially with your littlest one, and it certainly won't be the one thing that leads to RAD. I think, sometimes, as prospective adoptive parents that we're told so many horror stories, that we become conditioned to thinking that our kids with all have something wrong with them. If that makes sense. Also, giardia is terrible. Our son had it for what seemed like forever - my mom caught it from him and she was so sick.

    On a different note, yes, lime green living room walls, bright turquoise in one of the bedrooms, and plans were being made to paint the hallway lemon yellow. Clearly, I am not afraid of unmatched colors in my house. :) But, of course, now that we've moved and are living in a rental...painting will have to wait.

    Wow, this is a long comment...

  2. Sounds like you are all making great progress! I am so glad to hear that your photo was staged... I was feeling pretty guilty about my unmade bed! lol.
    PS - I have heard of many people using receiving blankets rolled (or folded) up in the bottom of the ergo instead of using the infant insert.