Year Two Adoption Update

Time flies as they say. I wonder if time goes by more quickly when life is more intense. Yeah, I think it does. This week we celebrated the second anniversary of our son’s “Gotcha Day”!

Raising a preschool age child describes intensity for anyone. Constant motion. Endless questions. Creative manipulation.

The second year of our son as a part of our forever family brought all of that and more. Throw in a couple of months of persistent night terrors, more attachment issues and several neighbor friends moving and now we have intensity.

Our son turned three last October. He enjoyed some typical milestones three-year-olds normally enjoy, such as, moving from a crib to a big-boy bed and fully potty training.

Slipping into his room before I go to bed and see him sleeping in his twin bed without a diaper on causes me to catch my breath. Yes, he is growing up fast.

First year of Preschool

Preschool Class

September 2013. Our son began attending a two-day a week class. Perfect for our sanguine, active little boy.

  • His teachers, Sarah and Rashmi, patiently loved on him throughout the year. By the end of the school year, our son learned how to interact with others, how to listen and follow instructions. All important things for a three-year-old to learn!

After we adopted our son, Danielle and I knew we needed to continue seeking parent training. If one thing became obvious it was we needed help. Even though we never had raised children before, we knew that some of our son’s behavior was more than typical age behavior. We sought out training, support, conferences, books, videos—anything we thought could help us. We knew we needed help as parents, and our son needed help to make sense of his past.

 

 

Danielle and I love watching our son’s personality emerge. He enjoys construction, climbing, digging, helping in the kitchen, trains, reading, telling stories, singing, and of course talking. His favorite thing to say these days is, “Let me tell you something!”

Learning how to integrate into our family

Over the past year, Danielle and I made it a priority to live our life where our son is a part of the family—not the focal point. A harder task than it sounds. This meant intentionally setting date nights and overnight getaways.

10537162_10204545228932996_7661656959964901087_nThe date nights and getaways have helped our son learn that he can trust us when we say we will come back to get him whether it’s a few hours later or the next day. He has spent one or two nights with different Aunts and Uncles who have graciously agreed to keep him while Danielle and I get away to spend time with each other.

Danielle and I also have a missions heart. If you know our story, you know that we thought that we would be living in a foreign country now.

Even though we know God redirected our path, we still have a desire to be involved with foreign missions. So, this past year we decided to each go on a short-term trip while the other stayed home with our son.

 

In November I went to Honduras with Living Water International. Then in July Danielle went to Thailand with a team of women to work with Tamar Center.

Yes, we found both trips challenging—challenging as the one leaving the family at home and challenging as the one holding things down at home.

But, our son did great. He learned again that we come back; and that we believe it is important to help other people, even in other countries.

I could share so much more from year two, but the bottom line is that we are growing together as a family—learning how to trust, love and connect. Personally as I learn how to parent my son in a way that helps him heal, I find healing too. An outcome I didn’t expect.

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I am a longtime Austinite. Married my beautiful wife over 25 years ago. Adopted our son September 2012. Currently a writer and loving it. Previous jobs and careers include project management, missionary, and pastor. I enjoy sports (both watching and playing), traveling, reading, digging in dirt and hanging with my friends and family.

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4 thoughts on “Year Two Adoption Update

  1. Thank you for sharing this! Also, VERY wise that your son is no longer the center of your world! Someday, before you are ready for sure, he’ll be gone and you’ll need each other more than ever then! WISE decision to spend time together now!

    • Thank you Bette for your encouragement! I think since we have many peers whose children are leaving home for college, etc. we see firsthand how quickly the time comes when its just you and your spouse again.