I thought I would give a little update as to how we're all doing since arriving home last Monday. For the most part, things are going well. I came home sick with some sort of cold and I think due to jet lag, I just can't shake it. If I could just go to bed and sleep for about 12 hours I think it would go away, but life at the moment does not allow for staying in bed and I'm pretty sure I wouldn't sleep very well if it did. It's been a stretch to act like nominally pleasant mom, much less fun and energetic mom. At least I slept passed 5 am this morning.
It is so good to be home and be back with all my children. I missed them so much. Those who stayed home did really well at our friends' house and those older than two have transitioned back without a problem. The little girls did well, but it seems that life was pretty darn good for them on their little vacation. I can completely understand. As long as they can do what they want, they are the most pleasant, charming, and sweet little girls. They do no like to be thwarted and are very loud when they are. I'm afraid that life has been a bit of a come down since coming back home. Being a princess is very, very nice and having to stop being a princess is not quite so nice. Wednesday was definitely a low point with each girl ending up in her bed for having a screaming temper tantrum at different times. My mother asked me how I could say no to two such adorable little girls. My reply was that I still wanted to think they were adorable when they were five. I don't think the 'princess recover project' will have to last too much longer.
Yes, yes, you all are saying, this is marginally interesting, but you really want to know how H. is doing. I am quite happy to report that she seems to be doing very well. She is head over heels in love with her new big brother, B. In China she wasn't quite sure she was excited over the prospect of a big brother. She would look at the photo cards I made of our family and she would happily look at and talk about everyone but B. His picture was met with a frown, a wave of the hand, and the word, "No!" I couldn't blame her. Having an instant 16 year old brother would be a bit intimidating.
Her hesitation about B. took as long as the ride from the airport to overcome. At our first dinner together the one person she wanted to sit next to was Ge Ge (big brother in Mandarin). And it has been Ge Ge all the time ever since. He has been so sweet with her. She routinely ends up in his room where he reads with her or colors pictures with her or just lets her hang out. And she really likes his turtle.
She has been sleeping well, eating well, and is willing to do just about anything she is asked. H. routinely tells me that she loves me and yesterday was going through the names of the whole family telling J. that she loved each of them. I realize that at some point the honeymoon will end and 'real child' behavior will begin, but I have to say this week with H. has been very pleasant. She even picks up toys (hers and other's) without being asked. I'm torn between really wanting that behavior to keep going and wanting it to stop because it will show she is more confident in her place in our family.
But to my Pollyanna comment. You all know I love Pollyanna and that I think the book has been given an undeserved reputation. Well it seems that God has given me my very own Pollyanna. Just an example. Yesterday I had taken H. over to our friends' house because their Mandarin tutor was there and I thought H. would like to be able to talk to someone who understood her. After a few moments of shyness H. badgered her with questions and also told her how happy she was with her new family and all the new food. Afterwards I had an errand to run and so I took H. into an American store for the first time. Without any common language, by the end of the shopping trip she had charmed the cash register attendant, been allowed to decorate the store sign she was making, and the attendant in a moment of good will gave me a couple of things I was buying at half off. As we leave the store, H. calls out, "Good-bye!" across the store and the attendant calls across the store good-bye in reply. It was a charming and unexpected experience.