Saturday, April 30, 2011

We Really Are Alive...Just Quiet!

Sigh....I cannot believe I am actually sitting with my computer on my lap after 11:00 pm with some remaining daily allotted brain cells! I will probably regret my late hours tomorrow, but it really feels great right now! :-)

Life has been more exhausting than I ever could have dreamed! Our sweet Selah has turned our worlds upside down :-) When I look at her cute little face with those round little cheeks, big black eyes, and all 34 pounds (she has already gained 4 pounds with us!) just does not seem possible that she could run the Schumaker house hands down! her own little way, she surely does!

She has come so far in the last 25 days. Each day I see the little girl she was meant to be coming out from behind the fear a little more. Each day I see her walls fall down a little more. And each day, we see her turning to one of us just a little bit more instead of one of her learned orphanage behaviors when she is facing a moment of rage, pain, or stress.

Has it been rough? Yes. Definitely. But honestly, I think that the hardest part comes from inside myself. I look at this little girl and I want to do her so much justice. I want to be the Mommy that can kiss all the hurt away. I want to fix her world for her. The yuck that creeps up in me, though, way too often, is the yuck that says "you are not equipped". Those are the darkest moments. It's the ones where I sit in a heap and cry because I just witnessed an ache so big inside a little girl so small and I was unable to make it better.Those are the moments I cry and beg God for the equip me to be the Mommy she needs. In those moments I am so aware of my glaring inadequacies and I am evermore aware of how the healing power of God works. It does not work because of me, but in spite of me. I try so hard to hear Him and follow His guidance. I want so desperately to be the conduit He uses to heal every little emotional and physical ache our baby feels, but the truth is that I am not always able to even be that. Messing up is part of being human and part of being a Mommy, but this time around, I feel the pressure is at another level. She has been failed over and over again in her 4 little years of life and even if my failures are not even similar to the failures she has endured, my heart can often not bear to think of failing her in any way.

I know...heavy stuff. That is why it has taken so long for me to write. I always fear putting the heavy stuff out there because I would never ever want anyone to fear adoption or turn away from a calling on their life to adopt. I also would never want anyone to ever think we have regrets. We don't. Selah is our precious treasure. She is such a blessing and I thank God for giving her to us...for allowing me to be her mommy!

On a happy note, we have just had two nights where she actually fell asleep laying flat! She needed to rock for a couple of minutes, but we have been trying to put pressure on her back with our hand while she rocks (which really annoys her), and then these last two nights, she simply flopped back laid flat, and looked at me like I was super annoying, but, praise God, went to sleep! It is so amazingly wonderful! This is the same little girl that stayed awake for almost 48 hours straight.. rocking many of them. The same little girl that rocked for 12 hours straight and if we tried to touch her, screamed as if we were causing her physical pain. It is also the same little girl who progressed from that to sleeping but only when rocking herself to sleep and then remaining in an upright position the entire night. That same little girl has gone from that in gradual steps to the going to sleep while flat on her back and my arm gently touching her. I call that amazing progress! I call that our amazing God! It leaves me so encouraged for what is to come!

There are so many other happy moments and great things, too. She is understanding so much English. She is speaking a few isolated words and phrases, but her comprehension is amazing! She has really warmed up to the boys and doesn't seem to fear them anymore (or our dog!). She looks to Zach as her protective "big" brother and is allowing him to care for her a little rather than just play. He loves that! She is also connecting with Landon much better, as well.

She is still an adventurous little soul and it makes us smile so big! I have to be very careful though, because too much could cause a huge meltdown. I am getting better at reading her signals better though and I can tell when something is not comfortable for her.

On a funny note, she likes to touch everything...including people. All people. We might be walking by someone and she sees bling on the back end of someones jeans and she hesitates not a second to go see exactly what that bling feels like! Hmm...there is an embarrassingly funny story that goes with that one! ;-)

Also, I feel we have really been blessed with the doctors that God has placed in our lives. Our pediatrician and her whole office staff is amazing! They have also connected us with the best of specialists for all the areas we need to focus and we have appointments lined up. We also have been seeing an absolutely amazing Children's Trauma therapist who works almost exclusively with adoptive and foster children. She is an amazing Christian woman and has been such a blessing in our life.

All in all...we serve an amazing God Who is walking us through each little step and we are so thankful to Him for our little treasure. We see Him working miracles each day and we feel Him comfort us in each moment of despair. God with us...Emmanuel.

Isaiah 61:1-3 The Spirit of the Sovereign Lord is on me because the Lord has anointed me to preach Good News to the poor. He has sent me to bind up the brokenhearted, to proclaim freedom for the captives and release from darkness for prisoners, to proclaim the year of the Lord’s favor and the day of vengeance of our God, to comfort all who mourn, and provide for those who grieve in Zion-to bestow on them a crown of beauty instead of ashes, the oil of gladness instead of mourning, and a garment of praise instead of a spirit of despair.
We started swimming lessons for therapy and she did great!

Hmmm.I'm thinking she has stolen the hearts of Grandma and Grandpa!

Big Brother Zach. A precious moment.

Love for Daddy while coloring Easter eggs.

Lovin' the Easter Egg hunt we made in our backyard!

Our family of 5! Easter Sunday at Church.

Landon and Selah...melt my heart!

Our little KU fan! Aunt Denise sent her this cute dress just 'cuz she knows how much Daddy loves KU!


  1. Lori,

    Thanks for this update. It's been less than a month at home in a family and I can see Selah's progress. It may not seem like it right now, but I believe that mothers do have healing powers when it comes to their children, so don't be too hard on yourself. You and your love are just what Selah needs. You are doing great!

  2. The pictures are wonderful. Thanks for your honesty and for sharing. I would be scared if my child had orphanage behaviours and others weren't talking about it with thier kids. Will continue to pray for your family.

  3. I agree to all the above!:) God knew just who Selah needed to be her Momma and Daddy!;) Praying for continued improvement and blessings on you all!(((HUGS)))

  4. In less than a month...what great progress. It's so great to hear how you are all doing. Be encouraged that she is making progress because she has exactly what she needs...a family that loves her. God will use you as a vessel to pour His love into her life and make her whole. Keep looking up!

  5. So happy for you and praying all continues in a forward motion. Loved lunch with you both last week and time continues to heal that sweet little girl.