This is one of the first pictures of Summer we received. No smile but we knew something was in there for sure. Just had to have faith. No, she's not left handed. Reni is but not Summer.
Isn't she just beautiful?! I just wanted to hold her. That was it. Who knew it was going to be SO LONG before I'd be able to. Now, the child doesn't want to let me go. She is such a sweetheart. Her hemaginoma is more pronounced here than now. It's on her lip but now, you can't even really tell a difference unless you're looking. We're not correcting anything b/c frankly, I don't see anything to correct. I believe she was 2yo here. Perfect. The age I wanted. Little did I know, 4 would be the age I longed for.
I tried to blow it up but is even more grainy. This is all we had to go on forever. Isn't he a handsome young man though? Makes you wonder how in the world he can get passed up for so long. Why do they wait? Especially boys? Trust me, girls are not "easier" as people say.
I think before they were transferred there is where all the trouble occurred. Again, this is JUST SPECULATION as I was NOT there with them. I am being given this information from my own kids. This is what happened with Yana as well years ago once she started talking. Truth started flowing. This is where (not their last orphanage) the rock incident for Reni took place and some other "traumas."(my term for them. Reni explained in the yard they used sticks on them) Kids are starting to talk more. Reni is filling me in on quite a bit. And I know many folks wouldn't share this info but I want people to know. It really effects how you parent them when they get home and it lets you know how you can help them. When they have been hurt in their past, your main goal as their parent is to help them feel safe and secure. In the beginning, if I ever raised my voice, Reni would squat to the ground and shake her hand no, no. Now, in this house, it's loud. You must raise your voice at times just to be heard. Plus, Nik is always loud just due to the deafness. Now, she does not even flinch. To me, a sign she is feeling safer and safer each day.
I know this post got sidetracked a bit. Hope you don't mind. I know this is a topic many do not talk about. It's hard but it is reality for some. Reni told me what happened one time when they used sticks on her. The only thing you can do in this situation as a parent is comfort them and listen. Just listen. If they want to talk, they will. Some of mine have kept quiet about things in their past. Some have not. One of mine used to get picked up by their ears. They'd also get slapped for wanting more bread. One of mine got in trouble for trying to take the caretakers toilet paper. They only wanted real toilet paper. See, in their orphanage the kids used newspaper instead of toilet paper. I could go on w/ things that I know happened to some of my kids. I won't. You get the idea. As 'Annie' puts it... "It's a hard knock life for us. It's a hard knock life for us. No one cares for you a smidge when you're in an orphanage." You remember the song and the movie for sure. And please do not misinterpret what I'm trying to say. I want to make this perfectly clear NOT all orphanages are bad. That is NOT true by any stretch of the imagination. In fact, a few of my kids were in great orphanages. Reni & Logan's orphanage in Shumen was fantastic! They were caring, observant, kind, and really wanted what was best for the kids. They provided for them. Took them places. Prepared them for adoption. Like I said, they got it right. The kids respected the director yet did not fear them. This was a good orphanage. But it was not a home and there is indeed a difference. However, this was not the only orphanage they went to. And they were not treated the same in their previous orphanage. Like I said before though, not all orphanages are bad. But not a single orphanage is a family. You can not replace a family life. Not a bit. Majority of my kids came from orphanages where the caretakers took care of the kids and loved them. Some of my kids did not. I know which ones did and did not have a "good" orphanage. I will not share that info though. It will remain private. Just know, over the 8 orphanages we have seen in person over the years, the majority did an awesome job w/ the resources they had and honest to goodness truly loved the kids. I mean really loved them. In fact, I still keep in touch w/ some of the caretakers at various orphanages. Their love did not fade. That is the kind (if you had a choice) of orphanage you would want your child from. Others I have seen, do not have that same kind of love. All you can do is hope and pray for the children left behind. Right now, we are thankful our Bulgarian kids came from the orphanages they came from. And from what I've heard, the vast majority of orphanages in this country are wonderful. Again, not the same as a family but many do help prepare the kids for the transition into family life and give them the stability and skills they need while at the orphanage. Hope that made sense. This post is already too long. Sorry about that.