It's been 3 1/2 months since we picked up our sweet Karolina from the orphanage in Czestochowa, and 8 weeks since she's been home with us. The many months of waiting, praying, and anxious anticipation have given way to a calm rhythm. The passage of time is a funny thing. Our adoption journey was so intense and emotional, and seemed never-ending at the time, but now it seems like so long ago. We pray for the families still waiting, and I hope for the same experience, that the sacrifice and waiting are worth every second, and dulled by the joy of what's to come. I can hardly remember life before Karolina was here, and grafted on to our hearts. I don't think a day has gone by that I haven't gotten teary-eyed at some point looking at her, in awe of God's amazing hand in our lives and the fact that she is actually HERE.
Her personality and development have blossomed over the past month. I need to make a record of specific dates and milestones of her achievements because she is growing so quickly. That being said, since arriving home, our lives have been filled with a flurry of medical assessments, doctors appointments, referrals to specialists and long days in waiting rooms. Sometimes I question if it's all necessary. So much so, that I recently cancelled a scheduled MRI because I just wasn't convinced the need was justified (and after consulting with her specialist). She was born 6 weeks premature, and with a medical condition that may, or may not affect her brain. At this point, she is not showing any signs of a neurological defect, except for some general delays. So, I seem to vacillate between immense pride in her accomplishments, and fear and worry over her being slightly delayed. When we picked her up she was 11 months old and couldn't sit up on her own, crawl or use a pincher grasp. Now, she's 14 months old and crawling, standing (with help), using her fine motor skills to eat Cheerios and even scooting up the stairs!
Pretty remarkable in my book. However, her Pediatrician is concerned that she's still not saying any basic words (like "dada"). With her doing so many physical things, I'm not surprised she is behind verbally, and coupled with the heard she only heard Polish until we picked her up...I still have faith she'll communicate normally in her own time. I just wish I knew of a support group a way to connect with other families who have been, or are going through, the same things. This is new territory and I feel inadequate to understand it all. I know she is smart, so my gut instinct tells me that with continued love and stimulation she will catch up. But, I would feel forever guilty if I was negligent in an area and missed something that could be corrected with early intervention. Although she is our fourth child, I feel like a novice and have been driven to my knees a lot lately, asking the Lord for wisdom and direction.
To add another twist, our surprise miracle baby is due at the end of next month. So, I'm half expecting to gain a little more confidence, just in time our lives to be shaken up all over again. Ha. :) I say that with a grateful heart, I just pray for energy and teamwork with Jim to know how to juggle it all. God is good...great is thy faithfulness and rich in kindness is He, and I trust Him implicitly with all he has blessed us with...crosses and crowns, in drought and abundance. I'm hoping to update this blog a little more now, and can't wait to see the community of Polish adoptive families share good news to come. I know there will be much to celebrate in the coming months and I can't wait to see it all unfold.