Join Angela, Axel, Abel and Asher as they welcome their new sibling home.

Saturday, April 13, 2013

Day 2 visit

Here's a summary of today's visit.

Oh the tears! Not from us, but from B. Oh my word does this child cry easily. Children do what works for them, and if crying works to get what they want, then that is what they do. Clearly the water works have been successful for him, because he can turn them on and off at at will. 

When we arrived he was eating his snack. A clear broth with bread soaked in it. He cried when he saw us because he thought his food would get taken away. When he realized he could still eat we were able to see HOW he eats. (this info is for our feeding and speech therapists. ;-) He closes his lips on the spoon, but does have a tongue thrust when swallowing. I have seen him do some great lateral movements with his tongue. (he licks food off the corners of his mouth.) His tongue is in when he's drinking and is not sticking out inside the cup. He is able to drink thin liquids (we've seen water and juice) without any problems. 

When the caregiver told him he was going outside he cried. It was not part of his routine and he likes routine. When she told him to wash his hands he cried for 1/10 of a second then did it. When she told him to change his shoes he cried for 1/10 of a second then did it. (removed inside shoes, put on outside shoes, all independently) When she told him to get a jacket he cried for just one second but still did it. He went with us nicely to the elevator and I had high hopes. 

Apparently too high.

When we got out to the playground he wanted to see what was in the bag. Knowing he likes to drink, I had a sport bottle of juice. I gave him a few sips and he signed "more" right away. He did this twice, then the third time he put his hand on the bottom off the bottle so I couldn't take it away. LOL When the juice was all gone I had a pouch of pureed fruit. He was able to suck from the top like a straw without any problem at all. Here's a quick video. At first he didn't want to sign "more" like he knows is what we want. He wanted to do it HIS way but I didn't respond. Darn! Then he quickly signed  "more" spontaneously while also attempting to say it, then imitating "all done" and attempting to say it making two syllable sounds like I did. 

That was the best 5 minutes of the visit. The rest of the time was spent with him crying because he couldn't do what he wanted. When he is not crying he is throwing toys. And then he is crying because we won't let him throw the toys. I'm not talking small toys, I'm talking about big ride-on toys like the rocking boats and similar things that are on the playground. 

After 90 minutes of this both he and we were exhausted. We only have a very short time to get his behavior turned around so we can bring him into the airports to get him home. That means we have to start out from the very first moments letting him know that this is not acceptable behavior. We won't tolerate it. We can have great fun, but only when the behavior is good. After today I am going to guess that when he sees us again tomorrow he's not going to be very excited! He will cry...again. Today when we brought him back to the caregivers I explained that he cried the entire time and was tired. They nodded "he is always crying." When I described the behavior we'd seen they nodded, "He is a bad boy always." they said. I replied "But he is very smart! He catches on quickly, this is just very difficult for him." and they agreed. I asked if the social worker was around. I wanted to talk with her about getting custody of him as soon as possible. The institution he associates with all the behavior he has been allowed to get away with for 10 years. Getting out of there, into a new environment he is unfamiliar with will help him learn what is expected of him. 

Honestly it is very difficult to see the real little boy behind all the behaviors. We get glimpses like in the video above. He is a very intelligent little boy, which is exactly why he's behaving the way he is. He has good problem solving skills, so he knows how to get whatever he wants. 


  1. wow. You guys are really fantastic. You should be child psychologists! Thanks so much for sharing.

  2. I just want to jump in here quick and say how amazing my mom and Dean are. The things they do for these kids blow my mind. This all started almost seventeen years ago when my mom sat all of us boys down on the bed in the big boys room while we lived in Lester Prairie in the big house and explained that she was pregnant and we were going to be getting a new baby sister."Angela". That was the first time I ever herd the word "Downsyndrome". She told us that things might get a little difficult. It's the difficult times that I cherish. She said she would be just like you and I. I have that memory because I think it means something. Something great. We have had that conversation for times now in a round about way. I love my mom, Dean, Angela, Axel,and Monkey boy."Asher" and I'm excited to get to love this new addition to our family. ........Thank you mom for starting this journey. You're the best. ......Thank you Dean for everything you do. You help alot of people, sometimes without even knowing it......Now get home safe.

  3. Aw thank you Tyler! That means a lot to hear from you. One thing though, and you were only 7 when this conversation took place, but Angela was already born by the time we had this conversation. Angela was already born but she was in the NICU (intensive care unit) at the hospital 70 miles away so you couldn't see her yet. The rest of the conversation was just as you remember it though. Love you son!