Friday, May 14, 2010

Glasses. are. cool. (and a few other thoughts & updates)

Elliana- spring
It feels like it's been forever since my last post. Really it hasn't been too terribly long, but SO much has happened and I still feel like there is a lot more things from the summit that I'd love to share about. But I can't just yet. It's complicated and involves more prayer. :-) Which is a good thing! Hopefully soon though...

So how about a little update on our sweet girl?
Well, I guess if you insist. he he.
Elliana- spring

I have LOTS of pictures for this post and just by glancing do you notice something very important in every one of them?
Elliana- spring
Yep- she is sportin her super cool pink frames once again!
Elliana- spring

And get this- she has been wearing them for 6 WEEKS straight with hardly a fuss!

What happened?
Elliana- spring
Well, as you might know for the past 6 months or so Elliana has refused to wear those darn glasses for any length of time. The minute we'd put them on, she'd yank them right off again. On. Off. On. Off. It was getting ridiculous and I just about gave up even trying anymore. I would go to the dr and the nurse would just tell me that I was the mom and I just needed to try harder to make her wear them because she needed them. She assured me that there were other 15-18 month olds that wore their glasses consistently. What? By consistently you mean like everyday? For more than 1 minute a day? Great. That makes me feel like an awesome mom. Right.

Well. about 6 weeks ago we had an apt with the head dr and I basically went in and just told her that it seemed hopeless and asked her if it was really going to do any damage if she didn't wear them again until she was 3! (I know, another great mom moment.) She told me to not give up and that she was going to help. Ok, good- now we're getting somewhere! She tells me to watch. At this point Elliana is on my lap and I'm going, ok watch what?
You are going to laugh...
The Dr then gently puts her hands on Elliana's cheeks and looks her squarely in the eyes and tells her in a sweet but firm voice "Elliana, I'm your Dr. and Dr. says you need to wear your glasses. Put them on and leave them on right now." And the Dr puts her glasses on her eyes and stands up to walk out.
Meanwhile Elliana is just sitting there completely still and almost in a daze. She doesn't even touch the glasses. It's like she had been hypnotized or something. I on the other hand am teetering back and forth between laughing hysterically or getting really upset because we are paying this lady so much $!

So I chime in and say "ya know the minute you walk out of here, she is going to pull those glasses right back off!"

And she says "oh that wasn't all- of course she is going to need the eye drops."

Eye drops? Now that atleast sounds a little more like something the leading pedeatric opthamologist would recommend. So she gives Elliana a prescription for these eye drops that basically would dilate her eyes for 2-3 weeks. Yes I said WEEKS.
We only used them for 2 days and then sure enough her eyes were dilated for almost 3 weeks. During that time, her eyes would be blurry unless she wore her glasses and she would actually cry if the glasses came off. Her eyes were really sensitive to the light too.
Elliana- spring
Now it has been 6 weeks since that appointment and she has worn those glasses non-stop!

Why didn't we have these eye drops 8 months ago? Sheesh! How simple was that?!

She basically got into the habit of wearing them because she had to and then it just stuck. YAY!!!
So here we are back to getting used to seeing her with those things on non-stop and thinking that there couldn't be another kid in all the world that could pull the look off as well as her! :-) I may be biased, but I think she is the cutest thing ever with those crazy cool plastic glasses on.

Elliana- spring

Speaking of pulling them off, she does have her moments when she yanks them off and because she is a smart little cookie, anytime she doesn't get her way and throws a little tantrum- the glasses are the first thing she grabs and then hurls them down very dramatically. Oh my. People told me girls were dramatic- but wow. It is actually really hard not to laugh when she does it because sometimes she even tries to step on them- little stinker! But other than that, it's going good.
Elliana- spring

It's funny when we go places, because almost everyone we see will ask questions about her glasses. I assume people are staring at her because she is Asian and we are not, but no it's because they are trying to figure out if those are real glasses or safety goggles of some kind! I'm serious! I don't know how many times different people have come up to me and thought either they were protective safety goggles, or that they were an accesory that I put on my baby because I think it's cute- like a bow or hat or something! You're kidding me! Do people really do that? Um NO.
And when I tell them, no they are prescription glasses just like anyone elses, they are just baffled! I usually explain a little about strabismus and that we are hopeful that because she is wearing her glasses consistently, her eyes will eventually be corrected and no surgery will be needed in the future. It really is a cool thing to be able to talk to random people at the park or the store first about the glasses but usually then about adoption and how God brought her into our family and sometimes I have even been able to share about God's adoption of me into His family. So yes, Elliana has become a tool for evangelization- lol!
Elliana- spring

In other areas, our peanut is still growing at her own pace. She is now 21 months old and weighs 21 pounds and is around 30.5 inches tall. Not quite on the growth chart- but getting close!
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Developmentally she is doing excellent. She seems to be catching up in some areas, and still at her own pace in others. She love love loves babies and baby dolls. Snacks are a must. She now is able to open all the doors in the house, get into every cabinet and low drawer and has even discovered how to reach into the toilets and splash water everywhere- yuck. And speaking of that, her tummy issues and mega-colon seem to have completely cleared up- no more miralax for this girl!
Elliana- spring It has been so much fun to see her learning new things each day and getting really excited about them. She absolutely adores her brothers, especially "Nay-Nay" (Nathan) whom she follows around like a little shadow and just giggles when he even looks at her. As you can see from the pictures, he is the one who spends the most time with her and the one most willing to be in pictures with her as well!
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The one area of development that we are a little concerned about is her speech, but we are keeping an eye on it. Our pediatrition just gave us a referral for an evaluation but I think we're going to wait a few more months to see what happens. I am kind of hoping and expecting that one day her language is just going to explode and we are going to hear her just talk and talk! Right now she understands just about everything, but still seems to be around a 12-14 month level in expressive language. She says about 10-15 words consistently, but mimics a lot of what we say and babbles on about who knows what! I love her little voice and the way she really tries to say things- I really think it will be very soon that she is putting together words and sentences and we won't be able to get her to stop talking!

Elliana- spring
It blows me away to think that a year ago she was on the other side of the world with no clue that we even existed. In the care of her sweet foster family, she was probably cooing and babbling and just starting to roll over. We, on the other hand were putting the finishing touches on her nursery and dreaming of getting that travel call. My arms ached for her so badly. A little over 2 months later, we were holding her and taking her from everything she ever knew. We could not believe how delayed she was and started to set goals to be accomplished by her 2nd birthday. Goals like "taking 7-8 steps unassisted, saying 8-10 words, feeding herself, and following a few simple commands." This sweet girl has been through a lot this year and wow has she has blown those goals out of the water! It seems funny to look back at those goals now because she is doing so well, but it reminds us of where we've been. We never dreamed that she would be doing so amazingly well in less than a year of being home, but isn't that just like our God? He is able to do infinitely abundantly more than all we could ask or imagine, so why am I surprised?!
Elliana- spring

Once again I am so thankful for the journey that the Lord is taking us on through adoption. He is revealing himself to us each day in a new light. As I hold and look at my daughter with complete joy and see her as the treasure she is and no longer an orphan half a world away, I tell her she belongs here and that she was chosen to be a part of our family. It paints a beautiful picture. My Heavenly Father is holding me, looking at me with complete joy as the treasure I am and no longer the orphan I once was, telling me I belong and that I was chosen to be a part of His family. And just like my little toddler running to me and wanting to be picked up and hugged on as I open my arms to her, I see myself running to my Abba (daddy) Father with His arms open wide and loving me with an everlasting love. How amazing to be called His princess. To be a daughter of the King.
Elliana- spring


Robynn's Ravings said...

Candice! This was the most heart-warming and inspiring post! You are so right about Elliana's adoption painting a picture for us. That ministered to me this morning. Loved it so much.

And the glasses? Well, you know we went through this with our "little" girl from the time she was three months old. I could NOT believe the bizarre things that came out of people's mouths and how they would fly over to see her like heat-seeking missles. We'll have to share stories sometime.

Hope to see you soon!

With Love,


Melissa said...

Great update!
I know this is a touchy subject, but speech therapy has made a huge difference for Ty even though we were already doing a lot of what our first therapists recommended. I would encourage you to do some research and find a good therapist. One who can name what her speech delay is and won't let E walk over her. Our speech therapy is going so well b/c we got a great therapist (and we've had some not so great). I'd love to chat more about it if you want to hear our story.

heather said...

I seriously could have written this post - the part about the glasses - word for word! I know we have the same dr. I always feel like the biggest LOSER when I go to Luke's appt. We are supposed to be patching his right eye every day for 3 hours! How about 3 times a week for 10 minutes?! I am scared to go back for our next appt.! And people ask me all the time if those are "play glasses".....I've never heard of play glasses! But it is a fun conversation starter! I am so happy to hear of all the good things happening in your home....Praise God!

Allen and Kala said...

What a great post. Thanks for catching us up. Alliana is beautiful!

Danbooye said...

Great to hear about your family Candice! Best speech therapist in Fresno is David Foushe of Central Valley ENT center. So if and when you are looking, he should be high on your list.

Emily L said...

Candice this story is hysterical! I am sure Elliana is going to love hearing it when she is older :-) So glad the glasses are staying put!

Tina said...

What an amazing post. Your words brought tears to my eyes!!! You are such a special woman, and a woman of God is what makes you so special. I am so happy to hear all the milestones that Elliana has accomplished. Her talking will also come along just as everything els has with her. It is so obvious that God is blessing her inside and out! Wish I would have been able to go to the summitt to meet up with you. I was so upset it did not work out and my work held us back. Blessings to you my friend, and I can not wait to see what els God is doing in your lives!!

Jonna said...

Your adoption of Elliana is powerful, and every post I read about her story makes me cry. And by the way, she is beyond totally cute in those glasses!

Robynn's Ravings said...

Candice, I came back over to watch Elliana's video and of course I'm sitting here smiling and bawling. And I had NO idea, until yesterday, that you HAD a blog. You are such a good writer and INCREDIBLE photographer. The pics you put up, as well as the ones in the video, are SO GOOD. You are such a precious and beautiful young mom! And you have an adorable family. Sorry I didn't discover you sooner and become a follower!

Oh, and the pic with Elliana winking in those glasses? PRICELESS!

Michele said...

I love watching your girl grow. She looks so darling in her pink frames. BTW, Eliza also calls her big brother Nathan "Nay-Nay". It's so stinking cute.

Marian said...

Love the glasses, love the pics, but most of all LOVE the God who blesses us through the work of adoption!!

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