I seem to be on a roll of updating about every 3 months. The days just seem to fly by until I look up and so much time has passed. But my mind has been on many things these past few months, but one thing in particular.....the art and design of and need for......communication. As human beings, I believe we crave connection with another person....or I used to believe it until I met our son. He truly seems to have no desire to communicate his own thoughts, opinions, or feelings. True...this still is a great deal of China-raising, but after almost two years, it is clear being a loner is also just a facet of his personality. Communication with him still remains an issue, verbal speech still elusive for unknown reasons. Recently, we advocated strongly to have him tested at our school to look for underlying issues (not adoption-related) contributing to this and other issues.....we failed in our efforts. Is it enough to say you tried? When you tried hard enough to make yourself a nuisance that no one wants to see you coming, even if you feel you are trying to move mountains to help your child? What if the child themselves doesn't want your help either?
Since our piano debacle in January, Ning has decided having a mom who cares enough to make waves and "meddle" in his life isn't what he wants. He's civil to me (pushes it sometimes), but wants no real connection with me. That is probably the hardest thing for me to deal with, but as my husband said, we did tell ourselves something of this sort could happen, especially with a boy. Reality bites.
In retrospect, and this is for those considering adopting an older child, we should not have started him in school so soon after coming home. We should have kept him home at least a little longer to build some sort of attachment to us. Instead, he formed his early attachments to people at school instead of us. Lessons learned too late. He does well with our younger girls, and he and James are finally beginning to find some common ground with the Xbox, so that's great to see. In truth, Ning may just see us as "temporary", as all the other grownups in his life have been. After all, even he's with us the next 10 years, he will eventually move on. As with all our children, our only hope is that he's able to live a full and happy, independent life with love included.
On the homefront, the last 3 months have been busy as always. James finished up basketball and the team did great! James won several awards and can't wait for next season, though that will be bittersweet as it is his senior year. Jazmin and Judi finished basketball, we had a short break, and then softball began. Jazmin is playing on a recreational and competitive league (her choice) and is handling that and dance with grace and aplomb as always. Judi like softball, but loves basketball, so she may stick to that in later years.
James started baseball, then decided his heart just wasn't in it; now he's looking for a job to keep him busy this summer, as is Jessica, who will arrive home May 17th. With 5 kids in the house again, it will be back to noisy!
NingNing is taking Taekwondo and seems to be enjoying it. He's moved up a belt already and is working on the next level. It helps him work off some frustrations, I think, as it's fairly physical and constant movement....he gets bored very quickly. For summer, he will continue Math and Science tutoring with a Chinese friend, English tutoring through our library, and speech therapy again through our local college. Sounds like a lot, but it will keep him out of bed and off the iPod. Along with Taekwondo continuing, we did not want a repeat of last summer, where all the kids got used to being a little too lazy :). That's it for now; I will post some pics soon.....