Wednesday, October 15, 2008

"You've Come a Long Way, Baby"

Thursday, early morning - 3:45 a.m.

Bear with the long post and I'll "reward" you with photos at the end.

Ok, those of you who have already skipped all the words and scrolled right to the end should be back now. *smile* I told Jennifer that "The Princesses" fans are pretty put out with the minions who are caring for her and not posting photos. So, to that end, you now have some new photos. I promise we'll take more today.

It's 3:45 a.m. and we've had a much better night. As I type, Ellie is sleeping in the other room. We went to bed (all exhausted) at 7:45. This was not nearly as traumatic for any of us as it was last night, so I suspect, each day her grieving will lessen. I took note of all of the wonderful advice that has been given and have come the following conclusions:
  • She is likely grieving and this will pass.
  • She needs more food and we will go to the Beta tomorrow for some carrots (they said she was eating those) and Rice Cereal (if we can figure which it is -- I'm calling Aliya for the translation).
  • The head shaking has dimished quite a bit, but according to others whose children did it, it is likely another self-soothing mechanism. At least now when I recognize it, I know she is likely overstimulated.
  • We are going to get some camomille tea at the Beta to soak a wash rag in for her to chew on to soothe her gums more. They Hylands and Orajel and Tylenol help but what can this hurt. We continue the Tylenol every 4 hours as a precaution. There has been no additional fever; thank goodness.
  • I have found that when putting her to sleep there is a "magic" formula whereby I pick her up immediately when she cries. We only call her by her given name (the one they called her in the orphanage) during her terror time. I hold her for a bit talking softly. When she has calmed, I try laying her down on the bed and see if she'll settle into sleep. Originally, she didn't. By night's end, she was doing this.
  • We are offering her a bottle each time she awakens. Four of the five times, she took a full 4-5 ounce bottle. After a burp, she was right back to sleep.

She's managed to sleep almost eight hours but has awakened four times. Of those four, she pretty much ate and went back to sleep. One time, she didn't want to eat and played for 15-20 minutes and got a diaper change -- technically a double change as we changed her, she filled that up and got changed again. The diarrhea is still there, but I know she's getting plenty of liquids with the formula so I'm ok with that for now.

I am hopeful that I can shower right after the blog post (I have my priorities straight, don't I? Readers before cleanliness). I am going to have to send laundry out today as some of the stuff I can't get clean using the tub method and it's piling up pretty quickly.

I have told Jennifer I am applying for SAINTHOOD for her when I return home. I'll get her a crown and evrything. I could NOT have done this without her. She made all the bottles last night, fetches the medicine for her, talks out my fears and basically has been exactly what Jesus talked about in the Bible as a servant. I can promise you He has a crown waiting for her on the other side.

I do not know how people travel by themselves. Granted, not all babies experience the same things but from the amount of comments I've gotten from other AP's, I suspect a large number of them have lots of issues on the front end. Hats off to those of you who can do it, but if I were a PAP considering not taking someone, I'd truly think twice.

On a side note, Ellie got her first "nose sucking" today along with her first bath. She did really well in the bath (ie sink) despite being slippery as a greased pig. I held, Jennifer washed and rinsed. She didn't act like it bothered her one bit to have a bath, so we are very thankful for that. We have treated her for scabies and will give her another bath today to get that off. The nose sucking, however, was not as pretty a picture. It did help a lot with her stuffiness (oh, great tip, BTW, Jennifer G about running the shower for steam!!), but did not really help her mood.

I wish I had known to ask questions about what to expect that might happen with Ellie before I travelled. I truly thought I was ready, but I suppose I was not. Future APs who are reading, please be prepared. Don't think your child will be immune from grieving, loss and attachment issues. I know that we are going to be ok, because I know that time will heal a lot of this and what it doesn't, we will work through as a family. But I will admit I was totally freaked out Wednesday night.

Thank you to ALL who made comments and suggestions. I read everyone as soon as I could (in the middle of the night on the way to the bathroom, even) and felt comforted by the fact that others have gone through similar situations and were willing to share in order to help us. What a great support system I have. Thank you so much!!

And, a sweet Joshua note that I've forgotten to post. As I was leaving, he made me 14 sheets of paper, each telling me a number of how many days it will be until I return and each having a sweet little message on it. We now have nine days until we get home. YAY!!

So, for the faithful, here are photos. Yes, they are all taken on the same day as she does have on three outfits. We have gone through all her sleepers, which all have poo on them now. *sigh* The life of a princess with diarrhea.

Blowout -- yuk. I was christened with this one as well.

Fascinated with the fingers and hands. This is what she uses to self-soothe.

This is a 3-6 month coat -- WAY too big.
Thank you for the prayers. We ALL definitely feel them. We will continue to update as we can.


Elizabeth and Bill said...

Soooo glad she slept, I hope you did too. I've been wanting to check in but I've been afraid to call and I have my hands full too! I am so proud of you and Jennifer!

Lori said...

Glad thinhgs seem a bit easier...bless your hearts! Here's hoping for clean, sweet dreams!

Christina said...

Glad to see things are getting a little better. She is way too cute!!

Kelli said...

I am so happy relieved to hear things are getting easier. Ellie is such an adorable little princess!

Jackie S said...

I'm so glad things are settling in for you all. I love all the pics...especially the one where she is looking at her fingers. Noli was so obsessed with her fingers and hands when I picked her up as well.

Be well and thanks for such great updates. Jackie

VonneBarnett said...

Sometimes a frozen bagel or frozen roll is supposed to help with teething. A frozen wet dishcloth can be comforting as well. We would try to take Vonne Mei outside or in the hallway to distract her from her angst. I always try to blow babies hair and then my hair to make them laugh. I think that the hotel beds are often weird for the babies as well. We took Vonne Mei in with us and she was more relaxed. Vonne Barnett

Mala said...

She's just beautiful. Glad to hear things are getting better.
Keep those pictures coming (and yes, I DO read the text first. It's a struggle to not just rush to the cutie patootie pictures!)

Anonymous said...

I am so happy to see that Ellie is doing better and I am so thankful to you for sharing your experience. You have helped me through this process more than you know. My mom and I have been sitting on my couch crying our happy tears for days.

Ellie is absolutely beautiful! (but you already know that =) I hope she continues to eat well, sleep well, and adjust smoothly to her mama!! Here's to some mama sleep too!!

Anonymous said...

She is beautiful! BTW, Caleb has the green striped sleeper and I know why you have it! Ellie-phant! Kisses to the princess (& Queen Mother!)