Friday, April 23, 2010

A Hug is Worth a Thousand Words!

While the old saying "a picture is worth a thousand words" is true, I have recently discovered that a hug is truly worth a thousand words.

The past couple of months have been incredible for Zachary and me. I learned about deep pressure hugs from Zachary's occupational therapist at school and started applying deep pressure to Zachary whenever I hugged him. The results? Amazing!! Zachary now wants to snuggle with me in bed in the morning, asks for hugs throughout the day and says "I love you mommy" so many more times now. It is a wonderful feeling and the level of our love for each other has really blossomed.

I tried to figure out why this simple act of a deep pressure hug would make such a difference. (Over the past 2 1/2 years since he has been my son I certainly hugged Zachary throughout the day, but with "normal" pressure. He accepted my hugs but he is the one initiating the hugs. ) So I have been paying attention to moms with their babies/ toddlers and I noticed that quite often they snuggle with their moms, or bury their heads into their mother's shoulders and there is a such great communication and love between the two of them. The "dance" between mother and child seems so natural and automatic.

When I see other moms with their babies or toddlers, I am sad when I see how much I missed out during Zachary's almost first four years of life. How many times in the orphanage did he want to reach out, only to have one of his deepest needs unmet. How many times in his little heart did he want someone to snuggle with who loved him with all that they can? I am sure during his first seven months with his birth family that deep need was met. But what happened to his little heart when they had to walk away, not able to care for him anymore... My heart breaks when I think of how deep the emotions go for both his birth parents who must have loved him with the depths of their heart to let him go because he wasn't healthy to the depths of emptiness that Zachary must have felt in his little heart who couldn't, at seven months, understand why the ones he so badly needed weren't able to be there for him...

So much he must have been loved during the first months of his life or else he wouldn't be able to reach out and trust me to be his mommy. So much is my love for him that I want to burst when he comes up to me and gives me a really big hug! The meaning behind his hugs and him wanting to snuggle with me is priceless. Zachary, I am truly grateful to be your mommy. I love you!!

Tuesday, May 05, 2009

Fun on Anna Maria Island

Tuesday, November 04, 2008

Stacie just adores her "big" brother.

Ryan, Zachary and Stacie are U of M fans!!

Sarah, Stacie and Zachary ready to go out for candy!

Stephanie and Stacie find the right pumpkin.

Wow! Zachary has been in our family for over a year now. We love him so very much! He is growing and changing all of the time. His command of the english language keeps amazing me. He and Stacie are such little buddies - which I am thrilled. They play all day long together and they sure do have the imagination - especially when they are together.

On Halloween Zachary and Stacie went trick or treating with their older sister Sarah. Zachary was dressed as a Michigan football player and Stacie was a Michigan cheerleader. They looked adorable together. And since the weather was warm they didn't have to wear a coat so people could actually see what they were dressed as.


Sunday, October 05, 2008

Apple picking as a family

Zachary likes being on daddy's shoulders. Let's see...Gord is 6'7"...which makes Zachary VERY tall up there!

Zachary's first time picking apples. (One of our family traditions)
How is it that one year is already coming upon us?

A year ago today we were in Shanghai sightseeing and taking in China. Soon, October 8th will be Zachary's forever family day. What an amazing little guy we have been blessed with. His cute, witty personality certainly does keep amazing us.

His lip is looking better. I keep forgetting that his surgery was only three weeks ago. I need to be a little better at protecting the delicate surgery that was performed. But how do you keep an active little four year old still? My answer? You can't. But Zach does a pretty good job at "self-protecting" his lip. Speech therapy is still a couple of weeks away but we can already tell that his speech is improving. Yeah! I don't know if it is because of being three weeks older or because of the surgery but it sure is nice.

Zachary has physical therapy and occupational therapy evaluations from our school district pretty soon and so we might be going to PT, OT and Speech at our school. I am very thankful that the millage passed for special education in our county this past year! If Zachary is in need of PT and OT they will be able to provide that for him. Zachary has come a long way this past year (physically and geographically: ))!


Wednesday, September 17, 2008

A Beautiful New Day!!

What a beautiful day! As I was making coffee for myself and french toast for all of the kids before school I heard the little patter of feet coming towards me in the kitchen. With a big hug around my right leg I looked down to see my little guy sleepily rubbing his eyes and saying "hi mommy". Boy does that ever warm my heart. He and I snuggled for a big hug and then he was off and running.

I am grateful for his successful (3 1/2 long) surgery. Right now the two little kiddos are playing mommy and daddy. Stacie has her new pink, flowing Easter dress for next year (two sizes bigger than she normally wears) with a princess crown on. The music is playing to a kids praise and worship CD and they are dancing and she is twirling around with Zach. They have set up their house in our living room complete with a baby and all they need for a happy play time. They pause to dance together again. How sweet! He holds her hand so sweetly as she twirls and twirls.

Oh to be a kid again. They sure do know how to live life. It is sometimes hard being 45 years old (how did I get to be that age???) with five kids including two little ones (my energy isn't always there) but it is also a high I wouldn't want to trade. I heard a radio show yesterday about empty nesters and I thought "Yikes - that would have been me in 5 years if we hadn't adopted these two sweeties!". Now I won't be an empty nester for hmmmmmm about 14 more years! That is just fine with me. By then my older kids might be having their own kids so I get to have little kids around me for a very long time! : )

I love hearing the things that four year olds say. They are so observant and honest. Like the fascination that Stacie had just this morning when she said - wow the sun and moon are both out!

It certainly is a beautiful day! By the way...the Happy Song is playing right now on the CD! The some of the words to the Happy Song playing now is....

"Everybody's singing now 'cause we're so happy
Everybody's dancing now, 'cause we're so happy
If only we could see Your face
And see You smiling over us
And unseen angels celebrate, hey!
For joy is in this place"


This was taken after we hiked up to Alberta Falls in Rocky National Park in Colorado

Steven Curtis Chapman - When Love Takes You In