Perhaps you mistook my blogging silence to mean that we were in the throes of relocating back to China. Both fortunately and unfortunately, that's not the case. The company we work for requires a pretty extensive medical clearance process that our oldest two buddies haven't yet passed, so we're still here in America, going to doctors appointments like it's our full time job (because it kind of is right now!).
The fortunate part about this delay is that we're able to get the boys the best care possible. My medical vocabulary has been increased with words like eosinophilia (that would be for Micah, whose tummy made friends with a parasite and spiked his white blood cell count), strabismus (both of dear Sami's eyes have a slight drift to them), and orofacial myofunctional skills (those refer to Sam's inability to keep his mouth shut and the drool in. It's like Niagra Falls of his chin.). That doesn't even include the endocrinologist we've repeatedly seen for both boys' thyroid issues or the cardiologist we visited for Sam's heart murmur we didn't even know about. It's like doctor Grand Central Station in our family!
To treat his lazy eyes, Sami is wearing an eye patch for an hour a day. He really is a good sport about it and wears it for the full time without ripping it off (usually). Though yesterday he did announce to me very definitely that he was "all done eye patch."
A big sticker on your face with sparkly soccer balls and airplanes definitely creates sibling envy.
So now I am an equal opportunity patcher.
Next Thursday we'll also start speech therapy with Sam once a week for the next month. The goal is for him to strengthen his mouth & jaw muscles to help him keep his mouth shut. I am looking forward to getting the individual attention with him as I work alongside the speech therapist to learn how to help him. Recently, I've noticed so many middle child realities in Sam's life, namely the fact that he's battling it out with Micah to get a word in and battling it out with Hudson to some quality snuggle time. So some one-on-one time with him should do us all some good (especially his shirts, which end up soaked in drool by lunch time).
All of this makes me think of Pat Robertson's recent unfortunate comment about adopted children potentially growing up to be weird. In our case, they might just have a gazillion health issues. But it's not even an option for us not to get treatment for Sam, even if he isn't "our" child (oh how I loathe that vernacular!). Because he is our child through and through. He's worth the time, energy, and potential career change that all of this might cost. He's worth it to us because he is our son, adopted or not.
The unfortunate part of this delay is that we're really longing to be back in our China home. Not that we're not enjoying quality family time as we're still living with my parents, big blue skies, and the start of football season. We are certainly grateful for that, but we have very little sense of rhythm or routine here. We didn't really set down deep roots of community and connectedness outside our family because we weren't planning on being around for so long. Now we feel kind of like drifters, strangers in a familiar land. I've nearly forgotten how to manage a home, how to cook, and don't even ask me how my Chinese is faring through this extensive absence.
When we first returned from China and I was lost in the thick of reverse culture shock (why is it that everything in America is so big--big houses, big cars, big people?!?), I was encouraged by this verse:
The Lord will keep your going out and your coming in from this time forth and forevermore.
God was faithful back in February to keep me during our "coming in" season of adjusting back to American life. Surely he is just as faithful to keep us during this prolonged time of "going out." So we will trust in the unknown wisdom behind the timing of it all, soak up the goodness of God's unchanging character, and take advantage of every extra G & Pop hug that we can get.