Those of you who've already been here probably have a pretty good idea of what I'm going to be writing about today. Those of you waiting may not enjoy reading this, but you should, even though I'm not sure it will help all that much should you find yourself where we are right now. If you're family or friends who are cheering us on, we appreciate it more than you know and we need all the support we can get right now.
We're having a really hard day today. Annabelle's grieving. Really deeply grieving. I'm pretty sure she was recently removed from her foster home and the loss of that family, whoever they are, is hitting her hard. And there is nothing we can do to ease her hurt except meet her basic physical needs, babble to her in our very limited Mandarin and a language she doesn't understand, hold her close and pat her, and try to get her through this period.
The kicker to all of this is that we were prepared for it (we thought.) We read all the books, talked with a hugely supportive no sugarcoating type of BTDT crowd, and made a plan as to how we were going to help her should she be upset. I even hoped she would grieve as that it is a very good sign that the babies have learned to form attachments before and can learn to do it again. Pffft. We've walked, we've rocked, we've strollered, we've fed, we've changed, we've had skin to skin contact, we've sang, we've played Chinese lullabies, we've given oragel and Motrin and done every damn thing we can do. The one thing she wants most right now is the one thing we are unable to do anything about for her. It's absolutely breaking my heart to hear her scream for her mama for hours and to know that she is only reluctantly accepting my comforting because she is exhausted and I am all that is available. Intellectually, I knew it would be hard, but my heart had no idea how much pain her pain would cause.
We'll get through this, most likely in a day or two and the girl I know is in there will emerge. I know she's there because once every couple of hours we have had a smiling, laughing baby for about 10 minutes when she forgets to be sad. Then she remembers and the inconsolable crying starts again. But those few moments have been little pockets of joy and I know there are many many more of them in our futures.
I want to end this by saying that I don't think we're having a much rougher of a time than most new families and I don't think Annabelle's feelings right now are especially different than most babies in her situation. It just not a part of adoption that most people (in and out of the adoption community) want to know about. I guess my point is that no matter how well you plan and prepare, they may times that the emotional stuff is going to hit you like a ton of bricks and it's going to hurt more than you imagined. I just thought you should know.