Thursday, February 17, 2011

In A Year's Time...

I received an email about a little one year old girl from a completely different orphanage than the one I had been pursuing. I inquired on a whim. Our representative said that when she found out about this little girl, she immediately thought of our family and she was so excited to share her information. That tingling feeling of adrenaline driven hope, a familiar feeling felt once before, began to rise in my confused body. As swift as a head turns, I realized we'd been looking in all the wrong directions. Ping! Just then, up popped her medical information and her pictures into my incoming mailbox.

Pat and I poured over the little information we had about Sonalika. Coming alive with the idea that we were really going to adopt again AND that we had found our girl - were almost more than we could process at one time. Together, we grew in our resolve of heart and minds, that our search was over. Our hearts could safely open again and begin to love this child as our own forever.

...And love her we do! That was part of an entry of a post from one year ago, the first time we laid eyes on our newest family member...dubbed our jelly bean. Ironic as it is, just yesterday she said "I Love You" for the first time. I don't think she understands what that means just yet, but it made my heart soar to hear it none the less.

Just shy of one month together, I can tell you that Treya is extremely bright, anxious to soak up knowledge and loves to hide from us...waiting around a corner or a door, with the biggest smile anticipating her discovery by the seeker. Like Devi, she is going to be a strong woman with a definite mind of her own, imposing her will with every topic she feels strongly about. Currently that would be cookies, candy and cake, but also encompasses the desire to wear bows in her hair every single day.

Mornings now find her nearly leaping into my arms with glee when I come to the crib for her. She also shares the warmest welcome for daddy and Devi, with big wet kisses right on the lips every time. I love how she reaches for one of our fingers to pull us towards a new discovery or one of her many and immediate a toy out of place or a mitten that may have fallen from it's proper shelf. She tends to be as much of a nurturer as I am, but I think this comes from her place in helping the cook prepare meals for the 100 children she once lived with.

When I consider how much this beautiful child has blossomed in such a short time, I find it hard to fathom that less than a month ago we, and more importantly, she...was in India! Trust is a gift and for us she has given it with little reservation. Yesterday, Devi and I were discussing the pros and cons of being a big sister. Devi said that she gets frustrated that Treya does not follow all the rules. I asked Devi how she would feel if when she woke up one morning she found she was sleeping in a different bed than the one she knew; her mommy and daddy were not familiar; the clothes she wore did not smell or feel like what she normally would wear; the food had a funny texture in her mouth and didn't taste like any of her favorite things. And, in addition to all of that, no one could understand anything she said and she could no longer understand anything that was being said to her? She paused for a moment and then said, "I would feel weird, momma". Then I asked her, "How do you think Treya feels about all of that?" Devi uttered one word...Sad. I think in that moment it sort of clicked for both of us. We realized what big jobs we have ahead as a mother and big sister.

Because she fits so perfectly into our family we tend to forget how much her world has been rattled. How many things are still "firsts" for her. In one month, Treya, this child of only 2 years has overcome so many obstacles and unknowns, but still continues to trust us. Each of her hugs is a little tighter, a little more self-assured and is packed with a little more love. On this year anniversary of first seeing her face, I marvel at those accomplishments.

Dress Up! A kitty cat nymph!

Treya's first pony tails and learning to say "Cheese"!

Hide and Seek with big sister.

Kissing herself in the mirror - a favorite pastime.

Valentine's Day with the Carol and Lesley, our neighbors.
Putting on the shy routine.

In other news, Treya had her first pediatrician appointment last week. She was a trooper, but it was so nice to not have to worry about immunizations,. Thanks to the Hague treaty, Treya had all of her immunizations done in India, before we arrived through an approved US Embassy doctor, to ensure their viability.

To date she is 5,5,5. Her height (33 inches), weight (23 pounds) and head circumference (40.5 cm) are all at 5%. Funny, that Pat and I consider her such a TANK compared to Devi at that age, but in comparison to US standards she is just another imp.

Treya performed for Dr. Ayer nicely - saying AWWW, and showing her hands and feet to him with the most concerned look on her cute little face. He in turn, is referring us to the doctor's at Children's Hospital in Seattle to establish a base mark for her hands and feet. We are also starting her in the "Birth to 3 Years" program, to review her mobility and speech, just in case something is needed there.

She continues to be painfully shy around some and not others. We are beginning to suspect that this is all an act, perpetuated by whatever mood she tends to be in at any given moment. Just like her sister, she tends to be sweeter on men than women....go figure.


Sandy & Butch said...

What fun pictures! Your little jelly bean sure is another cutie pie! It is sobering to think of the vast changes her little life has undergone in the past month, but she sure seems to be blossoming under the nurturing love of Dad, Mom, and Big Sister!!! What a beautiful family!
hugs, Sandy

heather_and_nathan said...

Treya and Devi look to be a fun pair. It is thrilling to hear that everyone's adjustment is going so well. The hide and seek picture is a classic and so cute. Did Devi crack and start giggling or did Treya find her?


The Pfeiffer Family said...

It is amazing how much can change in a years time. I am excited to hear how well Treya is adjusting to your family. When you said "she fits so well into our family, we forget how much her world has been rattled" that reminded me of Alesha. We see glimpses of it now and then or when something triggers something within them, but overall they seem to have been a part of the family from the beginning. The girls look like they have tons of fun together and it is wonderful that Treya has a big sister (mommy and daddy) who understands all that is going on with her with this big change. You can see from the smiles on Treya's face that your love for her is bringing her out of her shell. What beautiful happy girls you have.

Peter and Nancy said...

That's exactly how I thought of Anya Rashi's willingness to accept us -- an enormous gift of trust, from someone so small and so vulnerable. I love hearing that she's already understanding that your family is her safe place, and that Devi, in turn, is learning about empathy from her little sister. Beautiful!

Anonymous said...

She is absolutely beautiful! So neat to hear how well she is doing.God gives us such perfect gifts and just keeps on blessing us. I marvel every day when I think about my kids and look at them.

Emily said...

And what an adorable kitty nymph she is! I am touched by Treya's willingness to trust you, enjoy herself, *smile* in pictures, and supply endless kisses and hugs. She must sense, on a very deep level, what a wonderful family she has. I'm so glad she does! Emily

The Labontes said...

What a fun post to look back on the anticipation, and then the realization of a dream. I love that it's always just as wonderful as we imagine it during the long wait.

The girls are beautiful, and Devi sounds very compassionate.

Irishfollower said...

Can I just say, you are absolutely wonderful parents. The love for you is already in Treya eyes. Your daughters are gorgeous. The girls are obviously well loved and cared for. You are an inspiration to us all.
We are still waiting to be matched, we pray that some day we'll do as good a job at it as you guys !!!

Anonymous said...

Hey! i'm french so sorry for my english, I read your blog since long time. Today I surprise to see Treya in this video: (0:34 and 0:40). See you