Thursday, June 3, 2010

How Did The Hubby and Kids React To Adopting??

Well, as I promised...another post in my series!!! If you are keeping track or want to scroll back #1. Why did we adopt, #2. Excuses We All Make #3. The Wait #4. Bonding and Attachment to LL ...AND #5 is " How the Hubby and Kids Dealt With It All":I'll start this post off by telling you that the hubby and kids and I were driving down the road the other day when I looked at hubby and said, "Hey, my next post is going to be about HOW you and the kids handled the adoption!" He said, "Wow, that will be a boring post!" :) So, I'm here to post the TRUTH..and the TRUTH is that IT WAS COMPLETELY EASY, NATURAL AND UNEVENTFUL!!! There you have it....POST OVER!!! :) Ok, so I could end there...but I know yall like more here goes:

ummmm...I think because it was our #5 and I think that all the kids were used to having another sibling come into the home by #5.... There was LOTS of anticipation and excitement about bringing LL home finally....and well..they just simply loved and adored her from DAY ONE!!
Another REASON....because I think kids (and hubby) play off HOW MOM IS FEELING!! AND, I felt GREAT!! I wasn't recovering from a c-section, I wasn't hormonal, I wasn't having to lose like 80lbs., I wasn't nursing, I wasn't telling everyone to be careful and quiet because there was a newborn baby in the house. LL came from an orphanage with 70 other children WERE HER THING!!! She LOVED and ADORED her siblings from day one!! She could smile and interact and laugh at the drop of a hat....AND the kids ATE THIS UP!! She was like having a REAL LIVE DOLL to them!! The point here: The kids saw ME relaxed and enjoying baby #5 which in return MAKES them feel relaxed and capable of loving and embracing her.

Another REASON....because I was careful to tell the kids over and over again that SHE WAS THEIR BABY!! THEY HAD TO HELP TAKE CARE OF HER!! They were feeding her bottles from day #2 of being home (because they were begging to, not because I wanted them to :). I was nervous about them holding her..but I let them anyways because I wanted them to bond with her. So...they rolled on the floor with her, dressed her up, fed her, carried her around, and fell in love with her more and more every day!!!

Another REASON....because their world didn't change! We didn't stay home..they still were involved and active in all their activities...They LOVED showing her off to their friends from day one!! Even George's world didn't change (which is why I think he has NEVER been jealous of her) He looked at her like, "Cool..i have a friend my size" I still carried George around everywhere...I just had Lucy in the sling on one hip..and George on the other. He kissed and hugged on her from day one...and well....he is STILL completely in love and CRAZY about his baby sister to this day:
They seriously are BEST FRIENDS!! My sister, Kasey, was carrying LL outside yesterday and walking towards her car..and I thought George was going to have a panic attack..He just kept crying and fussing telling me to GO AND GET HER!! He, from the day she came home, would look at strangers in the grocery store that were looking at her and say, "NO, she's MY baby!!" and he'd put a protective arm over her...simply precious!!! I was co-sleeping with George up until the day she came home...and well...he NOW sleeps on ONE side of me..and LL sleeps on the other!! He didn't even lose his sleeping spot!! :)

I have a sensitive bio child....My Hal was jealous when his baby brother George entered his world...He used to yell at me to, "PUT THE BABY DOWN" !! Well, I knew when LL came home that HE'D NEED TO FEEL SPECIAL TOO!! Thank goodness the first night home, Lucy Lane LAUGHED and SMILED at Hal!! Then he walked by again, and she giggled!! We ran with it!! We started saying things to Hal like, "Hal, she really likes you" and "Hal, she really thinks you're funny" AND, HIS FACE LIT UP..AND THE REST IS HISTORY!! He looked at us and said, "MOM, I think she likes me the BEST!!" We'd say, "Oh, I think you're right, Hal!" :) So, almost 365 days later....Our Adoption was the BEST thing to EVER happen to Hal!! He shows a love for LL like i've never seen before!! He adores her!! He says out of the clear blue sky, "Mom, I just LOVE her so much!" It warms our heart in a way that I just can't explain. My hubby and I have both said MANY times that we think Lucy Lane was a little gift sent from heaven JUST FOR OUR HAL!! She is the first and last thing he thinks of each day. They truly have a special bond that I thank God for each and every day!!!

My GIRLS....Well, my big girls have been crazy about her from day one!! They are like "little moms" to her. They carry her around and argue over WHO gets to sit on the couch next to her..and who's turn it is to sit next to her in the car!! I've been very careful to NEVER ask my girls to "help out" with the responsibilities of having a baby in the home. I never wanted them to resent having a big family because they were asked to "help" with the baby all the time...So...this ends up having the opposite results: They ALWAYS WANT TO HELP WITH THE BABY!!! Today, I found Julia changing her diaper (which she knows she's not suppose to do..that is a Mommy job). She just smiled and said, "but I really want to learn how to do it"!! At field day, they want to carry her around themselves...they LOVE to all dress alike, they want me to bring her up to eat lunch with them at school because they are instant super stars when LL is around. They kiss and hug on her CONSTANTLY. It just truly couldn't have gone any better....There was SERIOUSLY never ONE hiccup!! Everyone LOVED their new baby sister and she loved them...that's the WHOLE story!!! :)

THE HUBBY...Well, the hubby instantly loved and bonded with her too. I called him from Africa saying, "Well, she's not going to go to you...we've really bonded here and be prepared when she cries when you hold her." Well, the hubby's one request was that HE wanted to carry her through the gates to the family at the airport since he didn't go on the trip to get her....Well, she WENT RIGHT TO HIM and SMILED AT HIM!! WHAT!!!!! Ok, and she has seriously LOVED him from that day!! She has ALWAYS lit up when he entered the room....AND, NOW she screams and runs straight for him when he comes home from work in the afternoon. She reaches for him and smiles from ear to ear when he's holding her.....AGAIN...uneventful!! Our lives were already busy with 4 little ones...and well...going to #5 just didn't make a difference. LL has always gone to bed early, George stays up late..and well, Daddy and I go on NO SLEEP at all!! We are some SERIOUS night owls and we can spend 3 or 4 hours a night AWAKE with out kids AWAKE!! We go on VERY little sleep...drink lots of coffee together..and well, smile and embrace a new day!!! That's how we make it work!!! :)
So...there you have it....I represent the family that LOVED our international adoption and had an EASY and SMOOTH experience with it. With all the negative stories you can find out there..I want to be the POSITIVE ONE!! I want people to know that IT CAN BE EASY...and YES, you can LOVE your adopted child the same as your bio kids..and YES, you can spread the love and attention equally between 5 little ones and make them ALL feel special...and YES, at the end of every day, we PRAISE and THANK GOD for sending us down this road...because it was the BEST thing to happen to us all....IN THE END...ONE YEAR LATER....WE'VE ALL WON HERE!!!

Happy Thursday to you all (and post in the series..the one i've been asked the most...HOW DO I SUCCESSFULLY PARENT 5 CHILDREN AT ONCE..WHAT ARE YOUR TRICKS.....just an fyi) kj


  1. so when i got to the "one year later we've won!" statement, there was a BIG drumroll in the kutless song. i thought that was so neat! :D

  2. This is exactly how I expect it to me with mine. Totally.

    Except Ike's (3) way of treating people normally is to steamroll them and, well, try to beat them up. It's just his love language. I'm sure she'll understand.

  3. love all the details. your posts are so passionate and filled with joy at getting to be a mom. i only wish i could hear your posts in your cute little accent.

  4. I told my husband that you have been co-sleeping w/ LL for a year (I didn't realize at the time that you had 2 sleeping with you,) and he was like, "how does her husband feel about this???" Seriously, more power to you, but that would NEVER happen in our home. Okay, not to be crass here, but how in the heck do you ever have sex??? We've had other friends who let their young children sleep w/ them, and I just can't figure out how they are able to make more children when there's 3 in the bed w/ them already??? Okay, I'm done. I'm not trying to be rude, here, I just can't wrap my head around this!
    So excited for you and your family w/ your one year adoption day coming up. (You are very close to ours: June 22nd.) I know that adoption completely enriches the life of everyone involved!

  5. WHOO HOOO!!! Glad to see what's coming. ;) Loved this post as well.

  6. Loved this post Kristi. I'm expecting two little ones. . . one from adoption from Ethiopia, and I'm always concerned about spreading the love between two children. But I see how well you do it between 5, so I know it can be done. :)

  7. Very encouraging! I can't wait for the next post. Please include LOTS of tips and how you balance housework (laudrey, cooking etc.) with giving each child the attention they need. I need all the tips I can get as we go from 3 to 5 :-)

  8. This was such a blessing to read, and makes me so eager to get our little one home!! Thank you!

  9. Oh, this post just makes me sooooo excited!!! I just pray that our adoption of our little girl goes just as great as ya'lls did with LL! These posts have helped me so much to get prepared for what's ahead! I can't wait!! Thanks for sharing your experience, your life and your heart!!

  10. What are truly an inspiration to all your readers!
    Keep it up!
    Cannot wait to see you next month!
    Love & Blessings from Hong Kong,

  11. Lovelovelove this series of posts! I stumbled upon your blog and I know it was no "accident!" You have answered so many of my questions. Thank you!

  12. Thanks for that post Kristi. I have been getting all kinds of nervous feelings about when our baby comes home. This just helps ease my mind and I love hearing about how everyone handled her and how Lucy loved everyone. :)

  13. Amy M.,
    I will leave some things private since most of our life is RIGHT OUT IN THE OPEN here in blog land..but I tried to mention the 3 or 4 hrs. a night we spend together WHILE the kids are sleeping...I don't go to sleep with the kids...It is HOURS after they go to bed that I go to bed (and my hubby too..) as I said, we're both night owls so I do think we spend more time together ONE on ONE probably than the normal couple cause we stay up so late...We only physically sleep about 4 or 5 hrs. a night and those few hours have nothing to do with our LOVE LIFE if ya know what I mean :) Co-sleeping just always has worked for our family...we wouldn't have it any other way for us...Hope this answers your question :) kj
    ps..Lindsay left a great comment that summed it up too BUT she left it under our last post accidentally...check it out, kj

  14. Thanks for sharing Kristi, I love hearing adoption stories. My boys felt kind of weird at the thought of having a sister but they fell in love with her immediately when they held her at the airport. I had to move her car seat to the middle cause the 2 younger boys fought over who would sit next to her, my 3rd son even had me bring her to school for a show and tell project!
    At first she was afraid of my hubby and older son, I think cause they're so tall, but now her dad walks in and she runs right to his arms screaming and she adores her 19 year old brother, he just took her to see the Shrek movie just the 2 of them, it melts me.
    So happy everything has gone smoothly for you, your family is beautiful

  15. Thank you for sharing your heart and being honest. Your posts seem to bring happy tears to me many times. Yes you are a positive story and so are we. I hope to also share our personal experience through our adoption as well one of these weeks. I think it is important for people to hear all these details. For every family it is different, but our stories are very similar! I love your heart my friend, you inspire me so much, and I enjoy following your journey. When I grow up I want to be like you. LOL!
    Have a great weekend,

  16. Very encouraging to hear of your family's easy transition. Also, I'm so glad you shared how easy it is to love so many children and be involved in all of their lives. Satan works overtime convincing parents that they can't handle more than the average 2.5 kids. What a lie..... God equipped us to be capable of loving and caring for more babies than that. You do a beautiful job of it : )
    Blessings to you,

  17. Kristi, Thanks for this post series. It has been so encouraging and straight forward and real=) God used LL to confirm Ethiopia in our hearts and to lead us 2 AGCI. Thank you for living lives that change the world!

  18. There's so much to learn from this post. One of the biggest is that you're happy - you choose it....and what a good Mommy it makes you. It resonates to those you love. God must be very proud how beautifully you followed His will.

  19. WOW. Your video was one of the first ones that I watched when we first started considering adoption! ET was already on our hearts, and it was like your video confirmed it further! I was in tears! Now, this post, encourages me, yet again! :o)

    My husband, Jeff, and I are nearing the end of the paperchase (awaiting on USCIS before we are DTE!), and we are excited to one day be going over to ET to bring our little boy home as well!

    I thank you for sharing your video so that I could be moved so deeply last Fall, and I thank you for this post too, as it just builds on my ever-present excitement to adopt! I was wondering.....I am going to write a post that talks about things that helped guide us toward adoption. Given the impact your video of first meeting LL had on us, would you mind if I copy it to my post the day I mention it? (just don't want to do so without your permission).

    Either way, thanks for sharing your story ~ and continuing to! Such a blessing to so many! Glad I am one of them! Blessings to you and yours!

  20. you are a blessing of inspiration, faith & joy!!!

  21. LOVE this post Kristi, thanks for sharing! I have a question about that just during naps or are you talking about at night too? So is there four people in your bed at night, LL, you, george and your hubby? How exactly does that work, and how has it helped your relationship with each kid and has it taken anything away from relationship with hubby? just curious about this co-sleeping thing! Thanks girl!

  22. kristi! i love this and seriously think i could have spoken the whole post. we live our lives so similar...EVEN down to the night owl with hubby/co-sleeping/quality time issues. also? i'm proud to be another super positive experience as far as international adoption goes. it has been seamless and wonderful. thanks for taking the time to type it out and share. you are a blessing to so many!!!

  23. Loved your video, loved your posts and as a Mom who also cosleeps with 2 kids, I think its funny how people can´t "wrap their brain" around that! We did it with our first cuz we "had to" (bad sleeper) and with our second cuz we WANTED TO cuz we realized just what an amazing thing it can be....Kudos to you!


Thank you for your kind words!!