Samuel Jerome and Richnightder

Samuel Jerome and Richnightder
Our boys in Haiti

Sunday, May 17, 2009

Nothing is ever as it seems

I had always anticipated that I would have challenges with Jerome adapting to a homelife and having a family. NOT! He is a happy-go-lucky, pleasant little guy and seems to really enjoy being in a family; to include the good, fun things, and the plain old arguing and drudgery. He has been a little whiney, but since I learned how to say 'don't whine' in Creole, he has had a marked decrease in whineyness....however that is spelled. He smiles all the time, is rarely in trouble, and has learned to stay with us in stores and is making great advancements in realizing social boundaries and appropriate social interactions. He loves going to his functional language playgroup and is the social butterfly of the group.

Richnightder is my quiet, intro-spective, sensitive one. He seems to still be mourning the loss of all he has ever known and struggles to express it to us. He is compliant 90% of the time and enjoys helping out greatly, but when he is corrected for doing something naughty, watch out. He flat out refuses to apologize for his misdeeds and we have had to take his bike away for 27 hours until he apologized for knocking Madison off of her bike. The next day he did the same thing, and it took him 2 hours to apologize. Yesterday, he was naughty and refused to look at me, so in a stroke of brilliance (at least I think so) I picked up the phone and pretended to call Teacher Jean. He flipped out and screamed "NOOOOOOOOOOO." He changed his tune immediately and apologized and looked me straight in the eye and followed it up with a hug. He is exceedingly bright and loves to learn. He desperately wants people to praise him and seeks it out most of the time. All in all, the settling in is going as expected and Rich is working thru some issues and will continue to for some time.

We took a short walk yesterday and as he held my hand, he started to talk about Camesuze, his birthmother. He was spelling her name and metioning that he had walked (mache) with her. His language acquisition is amazing and he continued to tell me that he does not miss her and he is not sad. He does however miss his birthfather, but is not sad about that either. I keep thinking about how foreign EVERYTHING is to these kids and how scary it would be to get scooped up by strangers professing love and be taken far, far away to where nothing makes sense. I realize, especially for Rich, that our love for him and trust must be earned. ALthough we love him, I know he must only think of us as kindly people who feed, bathe, and care for him. Hopefully in time, he will come to love us as much as we love him. Until then, we continue to try and live as normal a life as possible all the time realizing, we have two little boys who are struggling to grasp even the littlest nuances of life here in the states and within our home.


Tifanni said...

Great post-and how do you say no whining in Creole :)

small town girl said...

Seriously, how do you say 'no whining' in Creole?

I read once that whining is the by product of not enough attention, and I have found with all my kids if I can get them on an activity, where they at least have my attention, this seems to stop it. But I would love to be able to tell them to stop it so they can identify their own behavior, it worked with my bio-son.

You experience with your (older?) child is mirroring mine. 90% of the time, GREAT! but that 10%=some very challenging times. Thanks for writing that.