Rani is really starting to attach to me now. She is really starting to be physically affectionate with me. We’ve been playing games like patty cake and rolling a ball back and forth; she loves bubbles and we gave her a spillproof bottle and let her blow them all over the house. When she gets hurt she puts on a big show but when she sees me coming she tries to hide a smile. She likes me to pick her up and kiss her booboos just like I do my other kids.
Today I was reading Toddler Adoption: The Weaver’s Craft and it was really helping me put things in perspective. The chapter on grieving was especially helpful. I realized that my ignoring Shanti’s presence, never saying her name, and not getting out the pictures was selfish on my part. I asked Rani today if she misses Shanti and she got pretty sad. No crying really but she just wanted to lay on my shoulder and be rocked for a while. After that though she was all smiles and I pulled out the scrapbook I’ve made for her and she was so excited! She was practically jumping up and down while looking through the pictures. When she got to the first picture of Shanti I held my breath, but all she said was “Shanti Mola” with a big smile. 🙂 She is definately feeling good. She LOVES my boys especially Sullivan my 5yo. She is coming around to my 2yo as well though.
Bedtime is still a struggle. I have no idea what she is used to at bedtime and nothing I’m doing is helping it seems. She really likes to sleep with my DH. Maybe she feels safer that way? The problem is, he works two jobs and he is usually only home between 5 and 9PM. He leaves just before I get her ready for bed. If he puts her to sleep before he leaves, she wakes at 11PM screaming for him. She has to get used to me putting her to sleep. Here’s what we did tonight.
First I got her undressed and gave her a full body massage with lotion. She massaged me too. Then I got her pajamas on, took out her hairclips, and brushed her hair. After that we read two stories, had family prayers and then I asked her if she wants to sleep with me or with Ollie(my 2yo who is in a twin bed directly next to my bed) She said Ollie, but when I layed her down she just started crying. So I picked her up and held her while she cried. I told her I know she misses Shanti and Saila and all her friends. I would be sad too. I’m so sorry. Not that she understands a word except Shanti’s name. But it helped me to focus on her grief and feel for her rather than fear it. After about 15 minutes she signed that she needed to use the toilet(crying always does that to her) and I took her. Then she pointed, basically saying she wants to go back to Shanti. I took her to the front door and said “I’m sorry honey. We are far away in America. I can’t take you to Shanti. We can say I love you and miss you Shanti! Bye Bye Shanti!” Then I closed the door. I sat down and held her while she cried for another 10 minutes then she asked to sleep with Ollie. I layed her down next to him and asked her if she wanted me to go. She shook her head so I lay down on my bed and about five minutes of sniffles later she fell asleep.
I’m sure she’ll wake in an hour or so and scream for Daddy as she always does and we’ll repeat the process. Anyone with experience want to let me know if I’m doing what I should be or if there’s something I’m doing wrong? I don’t expect everything to be perfect for a long long while, but I want to make sure that what I’m doing is positive and not making it worse in the long run.:meditate