......for our first trip was today. Tomorrow we have court at 11 am, 4am EST. Assuming everything goes well in court, we will take the 4 1/2 hour train back to the capitol tomorrow night. Our embassy appointment is on Tuesday. And very early Wednesday morning we fly home. We have booked our flight to return on Sunday, August 26.
Steve stayed back at the apartment today, while Kacey and I made the orphanage visit. Kacey and I were playing with stickers with Avery and two other girls. One little girl stuck about 30 stickers all over my shirt. Avery was sticking the stickers on her own shirt. All of the sudden, Avery got up, walked away, paced a bit, and then started her yelling/crying outburst. When she saw me get up towards her, she ran to where we usually start our walk by the road. She looked back at me and held her hand out. She was letting me know she wanted to go on a walk. I told Kacey I would be back and off we walked up the road, around the corner and up another road. We turned around and walked the same path back. The whole time, she simply held my hand and walked very calmly and easily with me. Once in a while, she would point to something and speak some unintelligible one syllable sound. I responded by naming whatever it was she was pointing to. She does her best to mimic.
At the same point we had stopped on our last walk, she started looking worried and began to cry/yell. Then she sat down on the grass by the side of the road like we did before. She motioned for me to sit down next to her. As I sat, she immediately started ripping off every single sticker the other girl had put on my shirt. Now before we left for our walk, I started getting the feeling that these outbursts may have something to do with jealousy over the fact that Kacey and I were sharing our attention with two other girls. By the time we sat down on the side of the road and was very purposely taking the stickers off me that the other girl had put on me, I was more convinced that this may be her problem.
When we returned back to the groupa, she ran around and began crying again. I quickly picked her up and took her to an area where we were alone, so she wouldn't feel she needed to compete for attention. Meanwhile, the nannies were gathering up the other children to go inside for lunch. Kacey packed up our toys and brought them over to us. She immediately ran into Kacey's arms. Jealousy is our only guess at this point. Interestingly, she does not react by lashing out at the other children. If jealousy is the issue, this is why it is hard to be sure this is the case. The only other clue we have to go on is what ultimately soothes her.
Everyday brings about different thought processes as to how Avery is going to acclimate to our family and what we can do to head off or make things easier in this adjustment for all of us. Today had us wondering how she will feel about the other siblings she will ultimately have at home! She certainly will have to adjust to sharing my attention there. We hope that as she feels the love of being a permanent part of our family and where many more of her physical and emotional needs are met, that no matter what the issue, these outbursts will diminish or disappear. It will be interesting, but we gladly welcome the challenge!
When it was time to take her in for her lunch, we asked Tatiana if we could go inside to show Kacey where Aaron used to eat, play, and sleep. The nanny obliged and we were led into a room where the little ones where all sitting on small plastic potty seats. My guess is they have to go potty before they are able to eat. In the next room is where all the beds and cribs are. It looks like a room from "Snow White and the Seven Dwarfs." The beds are so narrow and short. They are very cute. I showed Kacey which bed used to be Aaron's and the nanny showed us where Avery sleeps.
It was time for me to say goodbye for a few weeks, and Kacey a bit longer. Tatiana spoke with the nannies briefly as to my question of whether they think Avery will understand my absence for a couple of weeks. They said they think she will. Tatiana spoke to Avery about this, but her lunch had been placed in front of her. She was much more focused on wanting to eat. The nanny spoke a brief instruction to Avery and she promptly nodded to Tatiana and said, "Da." Whether she truly understands or not, the nannies expect her to politely acknowledge when being spoken to. Kacey and I said our goodbyes. Now we look forward to court tomorrow!