Over the last month, many things have happened, but our girl is STILL a shining star, and doing really well. I would say that with each passing month, Mia has just melded into our family, like she has always been here.
In the last month, we have experienced changing pediatricians, updating records, and continuing to catch up Miss Mia on her vaccinations, a few at a time. We have seen the eye doctor and visited the dentist for the first time. Nothing new on the health front, though I still need to schedule a follow up for Cincinnati this month coming. When Mia came to us, she had many scars all over her arms and legs, and we noticed a TON of scratching. While this may be a coping mechanism of sorts, it is still unnerving. We started liberally applying Aquaphor all over after every bath, and it seems to be getting better and we have fewer open sores, making this Momma settle down a bit. She also has a bunch of ear wax, so we have been using drops each night on those as well, and this week, we will see if the doctor sees improvement in that area, too. We have a new-found habit of nail-biting, which drives me crazy, so I guess we should get back to keeping polish on! Mia went with me to get fitted for shoes, and she got her very own insoles to wear now. She is extremely flat-footed, and I am grateful for all of the help we received at Unger’s Shoe Store. Joe did a great job getting us just what we needed!
Mia and I had the pleasure of going on Camden’s first big field trip to the pumpkin patch with his Kindergarten class. What a fun day! I am so glad that we were able to take part in this, and I think Mia and Camden both had a wonderful time! I can’t help but wonder if she had ever been to a place like this? Has she ever picked her own pumpkin? Played on a tire playground? I just store up all these photos and memories and hope to treasure them always.
We had a few travel days over the last month, both up to Ohio to visit family. The first time was during the boys’ fall break from school. I took all three kids to see my Grandpa in the nursing home, and we stayed with my Aunt Cindy, Uncle Pete, and Grandma. Grandma Susa was the last of my mom’s immediate family to meet Miss Mia, and the two of them hit it off pretty quickly! It was great to see my Grandpa and have that special time with him, but the trip was very short, and we had to get back home.
A few weeks later, we got the call that Grandpa Susa went Home to the Lord, and we once again, headed back up north to be involved in the visitation and funeral. I’m so grateful for having my grandparents on my Mom’s side of the family, because I never knew my grandparents on my Dad’s side. The time with the family was well-spent and the kids did the best they could with all of the arrangements. Each of our children dealt with the funeral differently, but I wonder what was going through little Mia’s mind, as this was her first time. She excitedly pointed out each picture of Jesus at the funeral home and the church. She recognized other family members in picture boards, and is definitely understanding who her aunts, uncles, and cousins are. While it isn’t easy dealing with 7 little ones 8 and under, I am grateful that the kids got that time together.
During this month, we also had our first post-adoption home visit in Kentucky. I would guess that most families have the social worker come to their home for this visit, but we met ours in Lexington and just talked about Mia and how the last six months have been with her as part of our family. As usual, Mia was quiet and shy at first, and then warmed up to us talking at the table. The meeting was maybe an hour, and then we enjoyed a great lunch together, just the three of us at The Cheesecake Factory. I felt like we had come full circle from that first Gotcha Day restaurant outing at the Pizza Hut in China. What a difference six months makes!
Mia also celebrated her first Halloween with us! Since our little Princess loves to dress up, she chose to be “Tangled” (or rather, Rapunzel, from the movie, “Tangled”). The boys decided on “Dark Batman” and “Kylo Ren” from Star Wars. It was fun to watch Mia with all the other kids, and she had her first Trunk or Treat at the boys’ martial arts party, where she won “prettiest costume.” She was thrilled! We missed out on other trick or treating events because we were gone to Ohio, but I think they all had a great time this year.
While the paperwork chase has been over for some time now, we had received a Social Security card in Mia’s Chinese name shortly after arriving home, which we knew would need changed. We received the Certificate of Citizenship document in July, and I simply failed to do anything with it. Well, after all this time, I finally got all the forms into our local Social Security office and Mia finally has her English name! It’s official!!
As we are now in the beginning of November, I would be remiss to not mention that it is National Adoption Month! This is a time for us not to just celebrate our adoption of Mia, but to raise awareness for all of those children who NEED families! While you may not feel called to adopt internationally or domestically or through foster care, there are MANY who are willing and able and simply do not have the funds necessary. You CAN give financially to organizations like www.ShowHope.org and others who provide grants for such families. You can PRAY daily for these children who need the HOPE and LOVE of Christ in their lives. Everyone CAN do SOMETHING. I beg you to do one thing this month to help a child in need. Pray. Give. Support. Love.