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Tuesday, February 5, 2008

I'm not sleeping well.
Since returning from Ukraine four days ago I've been waking up around 3 a.m. and falling asleep just after 7 at night.
I've tried taking a mid-afternoon nap to try to stretch my bedtime to at least 9 p.m., but so far it hasn't worked (I'll keep trying ;). I have tried taking Melatonin...but I can't stay awake long enough to take it at the right time. I don't drink coffee, pop or anything else containing caffeine...and I've cut back on my chocolate intake.
Nothing is working.
Maddie has been able to sleep since day one. No issues whatsoever.
I'm so jealous.
Other than my sleep issues, we're settling into our new normal pretty well.
The kids LOVE Maddie and Maddie loves the kids. It doesn't get much better than that. Yes, I know it's more than likely our honeymoon period, but I'll take it.
With our last three adoptions the adjustments were immediate and incredibly difficult. So far this one has been pretty smooth.
The only issues we are having so far is the no fear of strangers thing.
Maddie loves people.
Any people.
All people.
The more people the better.

And we're learning the hard way to keep a tight rein on our little girl.
Do you know how hard it is to carry an almost four year old around with you wherever you go?! My back is screaming from the extra strain, although there's good news. The flab on my arms is starting to disappear.
I have a feeling by the time Maddie has made the adjustment, my arms will look like something off of Muscle and Fitness magazine. (I just need to find a way to make it translate to my waist!)
I forgot to tell you about our experience at O'Hare.
My girl can charm your socks off...and she has the candy bars and wrist watches to prove it.
We were sitting at our gate during our five hour wait in O'Hare and I had just called Shad to let him know we had arrived and were waiting at our gate. While we were discussing the finer points of international travel with a preschooler, she was making eyes at the man behind us. Unbeknownst to me she had charmed this man silly. So silly, he interrupted my conversation to ask if it would be alright for him to give her his candy bar.
Later, in the bathroom, we were washing our hands and I turned my back for one second to grab some paper towls. Before I turned back around I could hear her 'talking' to her latest victim. She was admiring the woman's watch, and when the woman learned why Maddie wasn't responding to her questions, she offered Maddie her watch on the spot. We didn't take it.
She tried the same trick on another person at the gate, but thankfully that person was too attached to her plastic armbands to become Maddie's next victim.
I need to put sunglasses on the girl to keep people from falling prey to her charms.
So that brings us back to Monday.
Maddie was scheduled for her first U.S. haircut. The girl needed a trim...she had a pretty choppy orphanage cut going on.
Shad had Monday and Tuesday off to help me with all the little stuff, so he came along. Unfortunately, he must have missed the memo on taking Maddie places, because he let her down when we walked in the door. Before he could get a death grip on her hand she took off, running around the room and giving everyone she came upon a big hug and two hands to the face.
This is going to be hard work.
Thankfully, this is our little town. We know these ladies pretty well...and they were very understanding and cooperative. Unfortunately, it was only the tip of the iceberg.
You would think after the beautyshop incident, Shad would have learned his lesson...but I learned with Shad a long time ago that there's no telling the man what to do. He's got to learn the lessons on his own.
Shad decided to take Maddie down to the clinic to show her off.
It didn't go any better. In fact the more he tried to keep a firm hand on her, the worse it got.
So we've decided that something's gotta give...and it's going to be Maddie's world.
She's going to find the next several weeks and months pretty boring, because her world is going to get incredibly small. While we will start going to church again next Sunday, we won't be doing much of anything else.
It will be pretty boring for a four year old who has just discovered this big, beautiful world around her...and for her 30-something year old mother who has just returned to her big, beautiful world.
No Kohls spending sprees.
No Panera's bagel runs.
And very limited Wal-Mart excursions.
Maybe it will give me a chance to catch up on my sleep.

15 salty messages:

kate February 6, 2008 at 8:45 AM  

You can always have someone BRING you Panera bagels (think how long it's been since I've had a bagel...it will make you weep). ;> I think a small world is just what Maddie needs. Have fun in your little cocoon. I can't wait to go into mine!

Anonymous,  February 6, 2008 at 9:20 AM  

How thrilled I was to find a blog entry already here!

Hopefully, your mixed up internal clock will soon be adjusted to this time zone and you will be getting plenty of zzzzzz's - sounds like you will need plenty of energy to keep up with the newest member of the clan. :-)

Have fun! --Melinda H.

Troy and Rachel February 6, 2008 at 9:53 AM  

Love the new blog and I will enjoy following her progress. She does sound like a real charmer!! Hope you get your schedule back on track soon.

Tina in CT February 6, 2008 at 10:29 AM  

Just think of all the extra time you'll have to blog and maybe start your book.

Debbie February 6, 2008 at 11:10 AM  

And so it begins! Thank you for sharing Maddie's adjustment with us prospective adoptive parents. We'll be sure to pray for you while you're in self-imposed exclusion.

I hope you get back on Kansas time soon. Sleep issues are no fun! You've been through a lot, so give yourself time to adjust. Can't wait to see those buff arms! ;-)

Mark and Courtney February 6, 2008 at 11:50 AM  

I'm betting that nice, small world will do the trick. Maddie sounds a lot like Dima. He has improved SO MUCH over the past few weeks, and I know Maddie will be there shortly too!

Anonymous,  February 6, 2008 at 11:55 AM  

I have been reading your blog since early December and am so happy for you; words can't communicate the joy we feel for you and your whole family. We adopted a son in Ukraine in early 2005 (coming up on 3 years now, wow! All is well) and can relate to some of your experiences...just look what God has done for you and Maddie! Thanks for your painfully honest blogging and for sharing your lives with us!

Ashley February 6, 2008 at 12:41 PM  

This lady at my church swears by chamomile tea. Maybe that will help you sleep better. I haven't tried that, but it sure couldn't hurt.

It will be good for Maddie to adjust at home for awhile. It was nice reading the first post since you've been home. :)

Auntie G February 6, 2008 at 1:28 PM  

I will have to get up your way someday to meet Maddie.
Have you seen those adorable toddler harnesses with the animals that go on their backs? Might give your arms a break.

Anonymous,  February 6, 2008 at 3:48 PM  

For problems sleeping, I can vouch for the remedy suggested by Ashley - chamomile tea. Put some milk in it, too, and it will put you to sleep pronto! If it's a really tough case of insomnia, take a couple aspirins along with the tea. It works!! - Melinda H.

teresa February 6, 2008 at 4:56 PM  

How fun to be home and able to surround your little one with the world that is now hers. We have been through this adjustment seven times, and it is so good that her world is you and Shad. It is incredibly hard sometimes, so we will be praying for you. It is so worth it though. This year we will celebrate 10 years since our first adoption of our three oldest. I felt like I didn't leave the house for five months, but it wasn't that bad. Looking back, it was so worth it; they are so attached to us that it is sometimes scarey. We are all praying for you here at 'home'. Love you guys.

adoptedthree February 7, 2008 at 5:45 AM  

It seriously took me about six months to feel normal again after the last adoption. I was exhausted, ill and just couldn't figure it out.

I did go to my Doctor to have myself checked out just in case I had some funky bug. Might be a good idea.

Excercise might help too.

Maddie is adorable.

Anonymous,  February 7, 2008 at 8:30 AM  

Thanks for sharing your story... It really helps us understand international adoption.. Can't wait to see that new hair cut on Maddie!

Hope you are sleeping well soon!!

Nataliya February 7, 2008 at 9:17 AM  

I can certainly understand about not sleeping well - it takes time go adjust to a different time zone and to your normal life.

I think it's a very good idea to keep Maddie's world small for a while - it should do the trick!

Relax and take your time to get back to normal. I'm still adjusting to my new normal :)

Christine February 7, 2008 at 9:52 AM  

Tami, you will all get into a routine very soon. Your sleep will improve as will her understanding of how to not go around talking to strangers all the time and you will soon be able to go out and do all the things you used to do. I remember feeling the same way when I first got home with my girls. Everything just gradually fell into place. This is exactly like a mom with a newborn taking her out for the first time. {hugs}

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