Alia has been home for a little over 2 months now. I have written many a blog posts in my head over the last 2 months, but clearly have rarely sat down to actually write them. I am kind of an all or nothing type person. Even now, my thoughts are incredibly scattered . . . and I don't like scattered posts.
Life at home after the great Kazakhstan adventure is ruled by the little things . . . like Alia's hand resting on my arm. This seems REALLY minor I know. I mean of course she rests her hand on my arm, right? Well, not really - not until Christmas day. Until then, she generally kept her fists clenched. That's how we met her in the hospital - fists balled up near her ears almost perpetually (unless she was on her stomach where she used her hands to push up). And, it wasn't just her hands - it was her body. It was often "rigid" - I can't think of another word to describe her demeanor. She was not usually relaxed when I held her. She was like a little island all to herself.
I am sure her hands were stuck like that due to inactivity. I see photos of other kids from the Children's Hospital in Kokshetau and see the same thing. The balled fists became symbolic to me. Their opening - when she gently rested her hands on my shoulder and relaxed in my arms as I walked her down the stairs on Christmas morning - symbolized her opening up and trusting and understanding we are her family.
I also felt myself opening up more to Alia because I saw that she trusted me and has begun to understand that I am her mother. I feel less and less like her babysitter and more and more like her mother. I love going into her room when I hear that she is awake from her nap, picking her up and giving her kisses which she loves. I feel particularly bonded to her then.
And, so it goes. We all continue to get acquainted with our new lives.
Here are a few random photos:
All this past year, Scott would say "There's going to be a baby in that chair with us soon" when we were having dinner. Here she is!