Monday, March 29, 2010


I was working on photos of our trip to Ethiopia today when Bekeh woke up from her nap and walked into my office. This picture was up on the screen and she instantly exclaimed, "Daddy!"
In Cancun, Caleb was calling Jason "Ababa" which he rarely does at home, and I looked at Bekeh and said, "Ababa?" to see what she would say since she's never spoken the word herself. (I know it means Daddy, but I wanted to see what she said.) She said, "Ababa is Daddy." It was the first time for her to "translate" for me. The only other words she still says in her native tongue are ooha and shint.

I had shown her video and pictures a week or so after we returned home and she didn't seem to have any reaction at all. I even wondered if she remembered her time in the village. But today she knew her daddy and she knew Askalech and was confident enough to tell me in English who they were.

I then showed her a picture of Jason and Lapeso together and asked her who they were. She said, "Daddy, and, uh, Daddy! Two Daddies!" It was so sweet.

We then heard Caleb stirring and she began calling for him very excitedly to come look at the pictures. I put one of just Lapeso up first and he looked at it for a minute and quietly said, "Daddy." But then when I put the picture of Jason up he began jumping up and down yelling, "Daddy Daddy Daddy" and laughing. I would point to Lapeso and he would completely ignore me until I pointed to Jason and then he would get excited.

I'm glad to know they remember their first father. I wish I could seal their good memories away so they'd never lose them, and hopefully keeping pictures around the house will help them do that. I cried for a while after they scuttled off to find their sippie cups. As much as I love them to pieces, it would have been better for them to stay with their first father if he had been able. I want to do so much for their village to help make it easier for them to keep their children and not have to make the sacrificial and painful decision Lapeso was forced to make for their lives.
Thank you heavenly Daddy for working all things for our good.

Friday, March 19, 2010

Two Months Together

Can it possibly have gone by so quickly? Month one was SSSSSOOOOOO LONG and month two flew by with a whistle.
So, where are we at. . . hmmm. That's a moment to moment, changing by the day answer.

I looked up some symptoms of attachment/bonding disorder, here's what I found . . .
  • Cries; miserable all the time, chronically fussy (Only when others are around and mommy is trying to interact with you too - just the two of us, you're happy)
  • Resists comforting or nurturing (Again, if others are around, but can't get enough of me if it's just the two of us)
  • Resists or dislikes being held (Every ear in Mexico can attest to this, again, just with momma)
  • Poor eye contact or avoids eye contact (Painful screams when I even try)
  • Angry or rageful when cries (I swear strangers think I'm pouring acid on you or something!)
  • Exceedingly demanding (Well, you are two.)
  • Looks sad or empty-eyed (When Mommy's holding you, and others are around, and you've given up screaming)
  • Stiffens or becomes rigid when held (You are a strong little bugger too)
  • Likes to be in control (Again, you're two. But you listen to daddy, just not momma)
  • Does not hold on when held (no reciprocal holding) (Again, when it's the two of us I get lots of hugs, but forget it when anyone might witness it!)
  • When held chest to chest, faces away (You will calm down until you actually look at my face and realize who's holding you. You refuse to look at me, but Corban told me I'm pretty today, so I won't take it personally!)
  • Doesn't like head touched (combed, washed) (I thought surely dad combing your hair would get you to cry with him, but nope, another thing reserved for mom!)
  • Generally unresponsive to parent (This is hard when I'm trying to take your picture and you won't respond AT ALL when I call your name!)
  • Cries or rages when held beyond his wishes (Which is every time past one second when others are around!)
  • Overly independent play or makes no demands (Nope, you're quite demanding, for everything opposite of what I ask!)
  • Reaches for others to hold him rather than parent (Why does this hurt so much when I know it's not personal? This one is the killer.) (Ohh! Except at Xel-Ha this week when the waitress wanted to hold you and you grabbed my neck and said no! That was a momentary victory and I'll claim it!)
  • Does not return smiles (Depends on your mood)
  • Prefers Dad to Mom (Well, that's obvious)

So is mommy feeling hopeless? Well, I've had my moments. You and I had to walk into the jungle in Mexico and both cry it out til we couldn't breathe last week, but hopeless? No. We serve a mightier God than any situation, and there is always hope. You and I play together well, you do love me. You love to fall asleep in my arms, a sign to me that when your guard is down, you do feel safe. It's my kisses you really do covet when you're hurt, and you do show signs of jealousy when Bekeh or the other three are taking too much of my attention away from you.From all my research, things I believe the Holy Spirit has told me, and some evidence from the international pediatrician - I know you had a rough first couple of years sweet cheeks. I know you've got some trust issues with the momma's in your past, and God gave you to me because He knew we could work through them together. You can't help it Caleb, and mommy knows that it is my job to teach you how to calm your feelings, handle stress, and self regulate your emotions. You've got some catch up to do with your mental and emotional development, and we're going to get there baby, don't you worry. God is in control, and He's promised us a beautiful, healthy, bonded relationship, and we're not going to stop until we have it! This is a marathon, not a sprint and I'm actually in shape for this one.

So, other than your attachment problemo with mommy, you are the most adorable, hilarious, crack us up toddler on the block! Being all boy, you love to grunt, and make crazy noises while chasing us all around the house. You eat like a champ, love the playground, and to mommy's delight, love to do laundry! You and I could take clothes in and out of the washer and dryer all day long and you'd be happy, but mommy can only stomach so much housework at a time!!! :) You love to go tee tee in the potty, and haven't had a poopy diaper in almost two weeks!!!! Thank you Jesus!!!!!! You insist on having every thing anyone else is having. When Bekeh had her blood drawn at the Doctor you kept insisting it was "Caleb's Turn!" You do this adorable little chest beat whenever you want something. The Phlebotomist, Bekeh, and Mommy all tried to warn you that you didn't want your turn so desperately, but it wasn't until the needle went in that you agreed! You're still not the greatest talker in the world. You stick with the basics that get you what you want. Mostly what we hear out of you is, "Caleb's turn" - "Mommy" - "Daddy" - "Bye" - "Eat" - "Potty" - "Yeah Caleb!" - "More" - "Shirt" - "Water" - and "No." You are so brave. All week while we went cave repelling, cave diving, Zip Lining, Sky Cycling, rock climbing and all other sorts of adventurous activities, you would tense up and shake your head "no" vehemently, but with just a little encouragement, and one brother or sister ahead of you to show you how it was done, you manned up and dove right in (or off) every time! You have no fear of water, which is good and bad. You love to be dunked and if we take too long to push you under, you will throw your own head beneath the water! Your a bundle of brownie oohey gooey goodness and we love to eat you up!


Bekeh at the Shower at Daddy's work, stealing suckers and designer sun glasses.

Oh girlfriend have you had a busy and exciting month! After much prayer and consideration, Daddy and I felt the Holy Spirit was encouraging us to go ahead and put you into a pre-school program. You go each morning from 8am til 11am and you absolutely love it. It's so sweet to watch you walk into school with Nathan and Corban each morning, and when Caleb and I pick you up, you are so excited to see us, and can't wait to rip open your backpack and show us what amazing things you created in class that day. You love playing with other kids your age and are learning so much from them and your wonderful teacher Mrs. Hart. We've felt you bond with us even more this past month as your confidence and communication has increased, and so we believe we have made the best decision for you and us. It's also a good chance for Caleb and I to get major one on one time in together each morning, and that's been really good for all of us too. So, what have we discovered about you this month sweet girl . . .

  • You love animals! Butterflies, Iguanas, Dolphins, and Fish are your favorites.
  • You love to read books.
  • You count, 1, 2, 3, 4, 5, W.
  • You sing your ABC's and every other song you've ever heard in a new mixture of Kembataan and English.
  • You are putting 3 and 4 words together into complete phrases. "Mommy, Bekeh no panties shint!" Which means, Mom I made it all day without an accident in my panties!
  • Your newest favorite words are Butterfahly, Dolphalin, Igooawhana, Lizayd, lowcean (Ocean, or "Big Oohwah", Messito (Mexico)
  • You're a major trickster! You love to tease and pull practical jokes and then laugh a full belly laugh when we catch on.
  • You love to tattle on Caleb
  • Your favorite game is to say "Daddy!" and have him say "What?" and then for about 2 minutes it's, "What?" What What What back and forth. If we try and change the word or stop, you persist until we can't help but play along!

I love that you give the best hugs and kisses and when you lay down at night you first say, "Sing song!" and when we're finished it's, "Kiss!" and then "Mommy, Hug!" I don't love that you are the most stubborn 4 year old around, and how you shrug your shoulders and back away when I tell you to do something you don't want to! You throw major tantrums whenever you sense one of your siblings received anything in different proportion to you.I loved how you giggled all the way across the jungle zip line, and laughed hysterically when you rode the zip line into the underground river cenote. You were so scared going by yourself, but once you splashed down for the next 3 minutes all we heard was, "Itza fun! Itza fun! Itza fun!" You're not as big of a daredevil as Caleb, you prefer to stay safely on the edge of the action, but still in it nonetheless. Your sweet voice never stops amazing us, and we think you are the most beautiful, precious, smiley, and loving Bekeh God has ever created.

I love how Nathan still, STILL, walks around saying, "I LOVE THESE GUYS!" I love watching Brooklyn mother you two. Her heart and patience are growing every day. I love how Corban enjoys playing with you two until I notice, and then he acts like he's completly annoyed by you, but we all know he's not! And I especially love how when I ask daddy, "Hey, what should I write about Caleb's month?" he just breaks out into a huge smile, and an hour later when I pass him in the kitchen and say, "What about Bekeh" and he just instantly let's out a single laughing-snort. The thought of you guys just makes us smile, laugh, and feel happiness in a single instant.It's been two months, it's been difficult, it's been challenging, but I wouldn't ask for more. God has blessed us more abundantly than I feel worthy of. The Crazy Roots are a happy, adjusting, working it all out, giggling family of seven. Thank you Jesus.

We're Back!

The Crazy Roots are far more crazy than we ever would have 'thunk areselves to possumly be.' We are safely home from our Mayan Riviera vacation south of Cancun, Mexico. We barely made it there, and we have now survived the week and actually made it home "together." Together being the operative word. . . explanation to follow! Pictures by the gazillions to come too! The chocolate kisses loved the "BiG OOHAW" and Bekeh is now in love with "Igooawnas" and "Dolaphins."