Just a few things we have learned along the way. Chronologically, this post should have been a couple back. I just found time to finish and post. Hope it's not too dry...
These are things we have learned because we took more time to find history, meet with relatives and tour home towns. We have taken everything with a grain of salt and a lot doesn't make sense to us still as we continue to piece the puzzle together. We have learned that Lydia was not born with a lazy eye but it was a result of a trauma. What we were told is she was alone and "family" came back or into the room and she had hit something and that's when her eye became lazy. So we suspect some muscle tearing. Daniel just recently told us as well, that she was 2 or 3 at the time and that she ran into a corner. They never took her to a doctor. Today we went out for lunch and Monique asked about an inch and half scar over Daniels right eye. Karen talked with Daniel about it and found out that his mother had cut him with a knife while she was drunk. According to him she did not remember doing it after she woke up. I am sure the stories will continue to come out as the days, months and years go by.
Today Monique mentioned how nice it is to have a little helper around the house and Daniel proudly said He knows how to do it all because he did it all in his house. Karen being our interpreter asked more questions about this and I asked what his mom did and He without a second thought said she just drank. We are finding more and more that though we still believe he was loved by his mom, she was not a good parent. So it sounds like she drank a lot and he took care of himself and his sister and the house. Dad was absent.
We now also know that before they were separated and sent to two different orphanages, they also spent time at the towns shelter. How long i don't know yet. We found this out while walking in their town and Daniel took off to say hi to an older lady. With the help of our translator she told us how special these two kids were when they were under her care. Come to find out she was the director of shelter. She also said Daniel was a hard worker, gentleman and took care of his sister while Lydia was, in my words, more of a princess and needed looking out for and taking care of.
Daniel is an amazing worker. I haven't grasped the whole picture yet or understand the why but he is intense! When their is a project to be done, put together or fixed, he becomes so enthusiastic and intense that it borders on crazed. I can hardly communicate to him or bring him back from his drive toward completion of the project. I seem to be having a slow but steady progress in controlling his almost panicky enthusiasm but it's a slow process. He is a boy full of joy and happiness and an intense energy level.
In Ukraine the men are often absent from children's lives, either physically or by alcohol. So I suspect some of the meltdowns our kids have had, are related to me being a male authority figure and them not knowing how to deal with that. So far I have caused or been involved in both melt downs the kids have had. Tonight I put the kids to bed before mamma came into read a story and for whatever reason, something triggered our happy boy to shut completely down and roll away and get quietly mad. Nothing worked in pulling him out of this. His body didn't respond to tickles or any of my hilarious humor and so I said good night and went to talk with Monique and Karen. After explaining what happened, Karen asked if she could try and find out what was wrong and of course I said yes. After talking with him for awhile, she said he didn't know what he was feeling or why he was feeling the way he did. He said nothing happened to trigger the response. So Karen lovingly comforted him and told him to pray and talk to God. Monique came in and read and cuddled with him and things improved. I latter came in and spent a little time with him and he was back to his usual self. We are now wondering if he might have had some sort of sensory overload. Time will tell.
That's just the beginning but this is the end of this post for me...
Thursday, July 21, 2011
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