Monday, September 26, 2011

Humble Request

Good morning everyone!  It is the beginning of another week here in the Monier home and while I love the start of new weeks we are actually beginning this one with a bunch of sick boys.  They all have awful allergies, even Dima, and once they have been congested long enough it usually turns into an infection of some sort.  The have been sneezing, coughing, and hacking for several days now.  So while we are still doing school, they are all still in pajamas and this worn out momma is making some homemade chicken soup.  I see naps in our near future.

Anyway, I've been wanting to write this entry for a few days but not really sure how to word it without coming across as rude.  So please bear with me as I try to be transparent and make a humble request to you all.

Dima has only been home 2 weeks as of today.  While things are going relatively well, there are so many dimensions to an International adoption that some of you may not be aware of unless you have already walked this path.  What I am about to say it not in any way a complaint, just stating what should be the obvious:  the first several weeks home are not at all easy.  That does not mean we are unhappy, regretting our decision, that Dima is awful, etc...  It is just a HUGE adjustment for all of us and especially Dima.  That being said, I confess that I made my first mistake of getting Dima adjusted.  This past weekend we took Dima to a birthday party at a bowling ally for an adorable little friend of ours.  It went against everything I had been told and was feeling and boy did I ever pay for it.  Not only was it overwhelming for Dima, but there were people there (not in any way associated with the birthday party) that really overstepped some lines and boundaries and they were in no way polite or understanding about it.  Complete strangers!  It was beyond infuriating and by the time I got home from the party I was totally drained and just cried.  It was too much.  Period.  Almost every adoptive expert advises families to "cocoon" for the first several weeks.  It is not to be selfish or greedy with the new child, but it is for the adoptive child's best interest.  Things can be especially difficult for the adoptive child if they have a special need such as Down Syndrome.

Suffice to say that after the experience that we had this past weekend I will be following that advice as much as possible.  Please give our family some time to adjust.  Repeated invites to various social activities are just going to be a flat-out "no" until we are better adjusted to everything.  Oddly it seems that people are more respectful if a woman brings home a newborn baby and gives the new momma some space.  Well, please think of our newest addition as a newborn baby in terms of us needing space.  Dima may be 7 years of age, but there are so many other factors that make this a very unique situation.  Neither Eric or I are getting much sleep as our little man loves to wander around the house most of the night.  That is perfectly normal in an International adoption situation and we were expecting this; some of you were not (ha ha!).

Also, please do not be offended if Dima does not hug you, wave to you, or run up to you in shear delight.  The poor kid gets frightened easily since he basically spent the past 3 years of his life inside the same 4 walls and within the same gated yard.  He rarely ever saw a man so he has a fear of men.  Gracious, he can even be fearful of a woman since he had been neglected and mistreated by his birthmother, grandmother, AND great-grandmother.  Again, we totally expected this and are doing everything possible to help him overcome that fear.  Getting in Dima's face and insisting that he say hello to you is NOT acceptable in any way.

Finally, we are not accepting visitors at this time.  Having people come into our home makes Dima uneasy and it can be a very stressful situation for all parties involved.  It is not that we are being rude, unkind, or antisocial, this is just the way things are for a little bit until Dima feels secure in his own home.  Trust me, I so very much wish that it was not at all like this as I missed everyone so much.  But this is what is best for Dima and our family at this time.  In a few months things will be better and we will not have to be so secluded.

If you have any questions, I welcome you to Google bonding with an Internationally adopted child.  You will find that Eric and I have done our homework.  Also, if you have a concern, please address Eric or I directly rather than someone not in our family.  We inevitably hear about it and would be happy to answer your question or concern directly.

Again, I hate to sound rude, but I personally find that direct communication is necessary sometimes.  If you want to be helpful please continue to pray for our family as we adjust and bond.  Know that overall things are going so very well and Dima is a happy boy.  But he had such a sad and rough beginning that it takes time to trust and heal from that.  We fully trust that the Lord will bring about that healing in His timing.

Thanks for taking the time to read this entry.  I appreciate it as does Eric, Dima, Jeremiah, Elijah, and Sammy.    


Regan said...

You were not rude at ALL! You need this time. You guys are wonderful parents!!

GrumpyJaxMomOf3 said...

I saw your family on RR, and saw that you were bringing (or ad just brought) your child home. I am so happy to see you that you have been able to bring your child home!!!

I am just starting a RR journey myself.