Wow- we have been home over 300 days now!!! And A LOT has happened to our Ruthie and to our family in that time. Let’s start with the big stuff.
Halloween! Ruth participated in her first ever Halloween and she loved it. We had two different trick-or-treating experiences: one at a camping trip and another with our church. Ruth had chosen to be a purple ballerina for Halloween, but since her costume had not come in for the first trip she was Doc McStuffins. She cared way more about the candy than she did the costume! Carrying lots of stuff around in a bag and filling that bag with more stuff is literally Ruth’s life dream. Our little hoarder-in-training!
Ruth got her adenoids and tonsils removed earlier this month. She did fantastic and recovered like a champ! I mean, I seriously couldn’t tell anything had happened to her. She ate and drank well, never complained of pain, wanted to run around and scream and do all the normal things. She was doted on by grandparents and parents- got special things to eat and was able to watch movies and TV like no other time in her life combined. “I will watch Frozen two times, then I be all done, okay?” Ha! Ruth and Allen have also discovered the exciting world of child games. Woo-hoo. You parents of young, incapable independents get me here.
This girl just amazes me with her resiliency. Part of me wonders if she’s still just playing a part. Adapting to another situation in her life because that’s what she has had to do. And maybe she is, but that doesn’t have to mean she doesn’t love her life. Love her family. And that she isn’t happy. It’s just something I’ll always wonder: is she just adapting to survive or is she really living freely? Trauma goes so deep, y’all. So very, very deep.
We did size up on her corrective orthotics and have finished physical therapy sessions! She is staying dry all night about half the time and always dry for naps. Also, I’m hoping Ruth is about to have another growth spurt because she is hungry LIKE NO OTHER. Seriously, she would have eaten an entire frozen pizza the other day had I not just literally cut her off. I’m not sure why she’s been a bottomless pit these last few days, but if it’s not a growth spurt we have got to start a GoFundMe for our grocery budget…
Thanksgiving was celebrated with sort of both sides of the family. We had tons of food, in which Ruth preferred the veggies and sweet potatoes to the bread, stuffing and meat options. She would, of course, want a bite of anything she saw me eating whether she had it on her plate at some point or not. And she got to meet a few other family members who we hadn’t been able to introduce her to since we’ve been home. It was a joyous time with family!
We are currently experiencing some significant life changes that are starting to confuse Ruth and I anticipate there being some fallout because of them. We are no longer at our former church and will be moving very, very soon. This change happened abruptly and without warning, so there wasn’t time to prepare Ruth (or Allen) for the change in our place of worship and all that would accompany (different class, friends, teachers, location etc.). There are a few of their friends and teachers that both Ruth and Allen have been asking about when we have visited a new church or talked about going to a new church. It’s been a difficult process explaining to our kids, who understand things are changing, but can’t understand why. Frankly, we are almost as confused as they are. But whatever challenges we will face in the near future, we will have the support of our family and friends and our kids know they are safe, loved and cared for. So we will take it all one step at a time, and in faith.
So many have commented on my Facebook posts about how much Ruth has changed in the relatively short time she’s been home. And she has, so much. Her eyes are brighter, her smile wider, her step lighter and her voice louder. She is, essentially, not the same girl we met almost exactly one year ago. She is so inspiring. God is doing an incredible work in her life and we continue to feel humbled and grateful that we are being used to love and shape her. We have a front row seat to the best story on this earth- and that is not lost on us.
We love you, sweet, silly girl. You are growing more beautiful and powerful in Him every day!