Wednesday, February 10, 2010

Glimpses of trust.

We have held up on posting about a development in SS's sleep. Come on, you know as soon as we hit publish, all that progress will vanish. SS has been spending more time in her crib and has had some solid 12 hours of sleep. It did come at a price, getting kicked, head butted and breached upon for 18 months. We are relieved that we are witnessing some glimpses of trust and we know we have a long road ahead of us. But for now, we are very happy that SS seems to be finally trusting that we will be there the next day.

Naturally, we have been talking about how we handled SS's need to be with us, and we still stand behind over indulging her. Would we have done it if she was with us from day one? Seriously doubt it. Parenthood is not for wimps, but IA takes a little more effort and sacrifice. But oh so well worth it. We have not always been paragons of virtue about SS's needs, we both have had our moments. Lucky for us, we made a deal when we began co parenting 14 years ago. We can't both go crazy at the same time, or we lose the battle right there. So we take turns being the cranky, self righteous one. There have been times when one of us just wants to drop SS's cute behind in her crib and let her cry. I know that it has been more difficult for P, because there is that implication that he is not tough enough to let SS cry it out. I am grateful that he has been able to trust his gut, and realize that no one but the three of us have insight into SS's needs. Never mind the emotional investment and obligation to give her what she deserves, our love, time and patience. Speaking of moments, P was aghast that I had SS in bed after the surgery. So I took a few kicks to the gut, no biggie. Because now we are seeing those glimpses that give us hope, and not only in the bedroom.

SS has been playing on her own more, does not need us by her side when we take her to the playground. Last time we went to the Mall P and I sat down and watched SS play, a first. One of us is always next to her, or she won't maintain. Also, SS, the child unable to miss out on a shower or bath (even if she just had one) has declined to join me in the shower at least three times. It still stuns me, but she was more interested in cooking in her room and stayed there.

When SS had her two year check up last year, Dr. S was not pleased about us regressing SS and was blunt about it. Great, make sure not to do it with your children or grandchildren. She was especially upset about us feeding SS. Again, a tough decision and everyone has their take on what is healthy. SS was not attending preschool and had a stay at home parent. P and I felt confident that she would be feeding herself by the time he walked her down the aisle. SS has always enjoyed when we feed her. It is a bonding thing for us, something no one else does for her, a way of teaching her about what a family is. By the time he was 16 months, JJ would not allow me to feed him. I remember those "how dare you" daggers he would shoot at me through his beautiful eyes. Different kids, different needs. We are happy to report that SS is feeding herself more, asserting her independence. Do most kids her age have it down? Yes they do, but SS is not most kids.

Another point of contention with Dr. S was us dressing SS. Another instance when we knew it was not going to hurt her overall development to help her. SS can dress herself, including her slip on shoes, when she feels like it. The more we see her taking the initiative to be self sufficient, the more grateful we are for that baby time she allowed us. It does go against almost every parenting tenet one has with previous children, but it works.

A big part of our ability to allow SS time "to be fully cooked" (like P refers to it) is the support we received from JJ. Poor guy had to be offended and puzzled when I (P fought me on that one, felt JJ had to be included) decided that SS needed serious only Mama and Baba attention. The guy is good enough to take over parenting if we croak, but for a while he could not hold her or meet her needs. It was a tough time for both JJ and P, but both knew it was not about them. It may seem impossible but I love them even more for that. Now we are right on target to drop SS at his doorstep as soon as she hits puberty. No way are we going to stick around for the wrath of mini Kahn. :)

We'll see what SS's three year old check up brings our way. For now, we are hopeful and enjoying this new side of our unpredictable daughter.

SS requested her "pretty jacket" this morning. Another change in our little control freak is that she can now sometimes stand long sleeves. As usual, on her terms, not ours. Her sippy cup is as much a security blanket as D-O-G.

When I saw her pants at Gymb0ree, I immediately thought about this blose. See P, sometimes I get the color thing right. :)

The C Scowl, the Universal cue to drop the camera and not tee her off.

Still loving getting the mail.

Because mail is such a rare thing, SS insisted that we drive to Baba's work and share our finding.

The problem with teaching your child to throw stones in the river. The only casualty will be our cars.


Michelle said...

Don't let anyone ever tell you that the things you are doing aren't "right". Unless they have walked the path of IA, they don't know. Everything you are doing is ensuring that SS grows up to be a confidant, well adjusted little girl. You are doing a fabulous job. You should be proud.

P.S. she looks so big in these pictures. *sob*. I swear she's going to be 12 by the time her China sister Sophie gets to meet her. Sigh.

2china4S said...

Thanks Michelle, we can always count on your support. And you are so right about having to walk this path, as you have.

And although she will always be petite, she is growing up too fast for our liking. :) We find ourselves looking at her pictures and just getting all silly about what a long way she has come.

Don't worry, by the time Sophie comes home SS will only be five, and she will have plenty of outfits to pass on to her sister. :)