Thursday, March 26, 2009

Princess Puppy-Cat!

As Abby becomes more and more comfortable with us, more and more of her little personality emerges... Some things are frustrating, she's learning the American way of "me, me, me" but she is also incredibly creative and funny...just a bit precocious!

The other night I was putting her to bed and reminding her and Mackenzie that they needed to clean their room the next day... Abby looked at me and said, "I NOT Abby... I Princess Puppy-Cat!"

Stifling a giggle, I said, "Ok Princess Puppy-Cat, tomorrow you have to clean your room." "But I not want to clean my room." We are still in the mode of teaching her what it means to be a family so I reminded her that as a family, we take care of our chores. To which she said, "I not a member of this family." "Ok, but you sleep in this room, so you have to help keep it clean." To which she responded, "I not have to do this in China." Now that one I have a hard time believing since I have a picture of her sweeping!

More and more I'm hearing, "In China..." "In China, I not cough like this..." "In China, I not have to clean..."

I'm sure she's still processing a lot of what it means to be leave her country...her culture...her language...everything that is familiar to her and begin life in a family that is nothing like her. I guess I'd be wondering if this was all it was cracked up to be too.

She's doing amazingly well...we've not had any significant adjustment/attachment issues, but we are clearly not there all the way. I still sense this wall, almost like a veil, that we just can't seem to get through. It's as if she's just not willing to really let go and just trust herself to us...letting herself really love us. I'm trusting that this will come in time... She let's me hug her, although she doesn't hug me back the way I wish she would...but a step is a step. She will not let us give her a kiss, even just on the top of her head, but it's clear that she is becoming more and more dependent on having us around.

She doesn't like it when she doesn't know where any of us are... She gets frustrated with me if I have to go somewhere, she has this fear that I'm going to leave her alone... If I have to go somewhere and Zack is staying with the girls, she'll look at me confused for a minute and say, "You leave Abby alone?" "No honey, I would NEVER leave you alone..."

We've been blessed not to have to really deal with tantrums and some of the other things that I know other families live through, but there are so many subtleties that we have to be watching for, things that I would normally breeze by, but I know I just can't with her...

She is such an amazing little girl... we are so blessed to have her in our family... I pray that someday soon, she will let down her walls and fully immerse herself in our family....she'll be amazed at how much she's loved!

I was looking at a friend's blog the other afternoon and Abby asked who they were... when I told her it was a friend, she said, " have LOTS of friends. I not have so many friends." At that point, I started typing a list of everyone who loves her... I had about 3 columns full of names... I said, "Abby, look at how loved you are...all of those people love you!" Her little face lit up and she said, " print for me?" Sweet assurance for a precious little girl!

So to leave on a funny, last night as I was putting her to bed, I told her "Goodnight 'babycakes." I tend to call her different pet names and it drives her crazy! She looked at me and asked, "You not remember my name?"

"Yes, Princess Puppy-Cat... I remember, I remember!"


Chris said...

You wonder if she will/can tell you one day about the fears and the past that make her ask "Momma, you leave me alone?" Makes me want to cry.

Mike and Barb said...

What a brave little girl!
It'll be a glorious day when you realize how far she has come to love and to trust. So many times change came slowly and quietly with our daughter, and I didn't realize the changes right away.
You are so intuned to Abby, and that is wonderful!
As for pet names - Nina hates pet names, too. I think she is just getting used to having a new name, and doesn't even want to risk getting yet another one :-))

April Isaacs said...

Oh Princess Puppy-Cat! What a name!

I just can't imagine how confusing this must be for our little adopted ones, especially when they are older like Abby. Her walls are coming down though, don't you think? Compared to where she was 6 months ago? I understand what you mean though, sometimes I feel like there is just something more I need to feel from Emme. I can't figure it out. It used to drive us crazy because she couldn't laugh. She really couldn't. We would tickle her and she would just scream. It was a happy scream but we wanted that belly giggle.

And, I am sure for Abby having really been abandoned twice, there is the real fear that you just might leave too! That breaks my heart. But, at least she doesn't want you to leave:-)

Big hugs... for Abby too!