Thursday, August 13, 2015

How things change

Since we already had our final documents we had today free. Jeff and I talked about different possibilities. We decided to go to central market in Riga and feeding the ducks in the park. We wanted a low key day because tomorrow we fly home very early.

While we were walking to meet up with another family on trip three to feed the ducks, we talked about each of our kids and how they have changed. I can't get over the changes each of them have done in just 6 months. We picked them up on 2-17-2015 and it is 8-13-2015 today.

Elliana when we got her could hardly walk to the park just 5.5 blocks away. Today she walked to central market which is over 2 miles away. No she is not perfect but her feet don't turn in as much as when we picked her up. She feet are also half the size they used to be. She is also building muscle we have a ways to go but is far better then where we started. Today in the park we did wheelbarrows. It was a great way to get her to build her left arm strength up. Additionally, her personality has not changed but it is starting to come more to the surface. Prior, she was pretending to be someone she was not. I don't believe she was acting that way purposefully but rather her prior environment was forcing her to be someone she did not want to be. Elliana is a very caring person. If you get in a argument with her, later she will want to make sure you are happy and apologize. She cares about animals and people. She is very kind and sweet.

Spencer is the one Grandpa Holub even says has changed the most. He is our most emotionally detach child. He has suffered the most rejection and I don't believe ever had a good bond with anyone. We have been following "The connected Child" by Kelly Purvis method with him and it has really worked. I know it helps a lot that we did not method from day one. It is not a easy method for the parents but it is most successful one of the child. Highly recommend it with biological or adopted children that have emotional issues. Spencer now does trust that we will meet his needs in our normal daily routine. This trip three has shatter some of what we have build. He does not like change of the routine. He counts on it and trusts it. We timeline his entire day and go over it often with him to avoid quick transitions or unknown activities/events. He will randomly come up to me and tell me the routine. He has been opening up more about what he remembers from being in Latvia. I encourage it because he needs to talk about it in order to heal. Yes at first I had a ping of jealous when they talked about their Latvian Mom but he has to in order to move on. Now we talk freely and I ask questions about his stories. I want him to know he can tell me anything that is on his mind.  I look forwards to our next step together in this healing process.

Hunter physically changed the most. When we got him he was just a little pudgy boy. It did not take long of playing on the playground and just running around to turn that baby fat into muscle. He is the fastest and strongest of the three. He is definitely the most strong willed at times. I sometimes smile because he reminds me of myself. When we first got him he acted about 2 years old now he acts like most 5 year old's maybe 4 year old every now and then. He is starting to problem solve on his own which is great. We encourage them to be more self sufficient as in cutting up their own food, filling their own glass of water, putting away toys, picking out clothes to wear, and starting to wash themselves. Our goal for all three is to have them become good healthy and happy adults so that is what we are teaching them, life skills for their age.

OK, back to today, we meet with with a mother and her adopted son and feed the ducks. The kids really enjoyed spending the day together. They played around like kids, rolling down the hill, chasing each other, wheel barrow rides, hand stands, and summer-salts.  So much for wanting to take nice pictures....When they had to leave for their Embassy appointment we walked over to the central market. This is a giant four building indoor and outdoor place where you can buy anything. It is used mainly by locals for food and clothes. Yes you can buy trinkets and some souvenirs but really it is food. It reminded me of our Westside Market in Cleveland just five times bigger. We did not buy anything just walked around. Had our kids been able to walk that far on trip one we could have tried different local foods. The bread makers had some interesting treats to try. Even the fruits and vegetable stores had different things that look interesting.  I really enjoyed myself.

We walked back to the apartment to watch movies and sleep. Spencer and Hunter were starting to act out so we called it a night early. I think its a combination of being tired and maybe a bit scared again because we packed. Yes we say we are going home but it is another change for them and they mentally have to adjust back more so for Spencer then Hunter. Hunter is excited and Elliana wants to have a picnic in our backyard. I am excited because this is hopefully the last night I sleep on a couch. My back is not liking this at all.

Wish is luck as we drive across from Canada to US, let us hope nothing goes wrong. If it does Dad you will get a phone call from me saying "I am in some boarder crossing holding house come get us out!!" :)

Such a cutie!

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