New list at Small World

Small World has a new list of 19 children that need to find forever families. Visit the Small World site to learn more about them!

Whatever Wednesdays

Each Wednesday we post links from the previous week that touch on special needs adoption. Our hope is that these small snapshots provide you with a glimpse of life after adopting through China’s waiting child program… both the long-term blessings and the challenges that come with parenting a child with special needs. We also hope to raise awareness about a variety of special needs.

Reese’s 10th Laser Treatment
adoptive momma (China) Monica at Journey With Reese… describing a laser treatment on her daughter’s face and leg

Progress and Pez!adoptive momma (China) Chelsea at Gour Family Adventures… details (and video) of her daughter’s recent physical therapy session

Meeting Maisey Graceadoptive momma (domestic) Julie Martindale at Not just an Ordinary Life… in the process of deciding about adopting once more

Emotions Muse by Dianeadoptive momma (China) Diane at the group blog An-Ya… details about her daughter’s emotions relating to her adoption as an older child

A Does of Realityan adoptive momma (China) at Room for At Least One More… struggles they face six months after adopting a child with cleft lip/ cleft palate

Hello to the World of Sound!!!adoptive momma (China) Melissa at Wen Love Calls… about her son’s recent fittings for hearing aids

Homeland’s XingFu Program

Homeland Adoption Services has just received an invitation to place a large number of waiting children from Shanghai. Homeland’s clinical director, Nancy Reffsin, will be traveling there in a few weeks to see the children and gather information. Once she returns, the matching will begin.

Families who wish to be considered for the children must have a home study completed, and be ready to submit a dossier within 90 days.

Anyone wishing to receive an info pack and application should send an email to: homelandadoption@aol.com or call Pam Thomas at 845-727-0500.

HAS is Hague accredited through the Council on Accreditation, a member of Joint Council on International Children’s Services, RESOLVE and NYSCCCC.

New list posted

Bay Area Adoption Services (BAAS) has a new list of children posted on the Children Who Wait page.

Whatever Wednesdays

Each Wednesday we post links from the previous week that touch on special needs adoption. Our hope is that these small snapshots provide you with a glimpse of life after adopting through China’s waiting child program… both the long-term blessings and the challenges that come with parenting a child with special needs. We also hope to raise awareness about a variety of special needs.


walking the line
adoptive momma (China) mama d at zarfing sunshine… a thoughtful post about advocacy and where to draw the line

Somewhere In Between
pharmacist turned stay at home mom Michelle, who regularly blogs at In the Life of a Child, at 5 Minutes for Special Needs… adjusting to life with a special needs child when crisis no longer looms on the horizon

A Little More About SuSuadoptive momma (China) Wuxi Mommy at Our Wuxi Girl… one three-year-old’s initial adjustment after adoption, while the family is still in China

They’re Off! adoptive momma (China) Mandi at The Journey Continues… her daughter Mylee’s tenth casts finally came off (club foot)

Cleft Exchange Day One
the team at Love Without Boundaries… a volunteer team arrived in China and began performing multiple cleft surgeries

Choosing Among Children
foster momma (India) Sarah Bess at Sarah’s Covenant Home… feeling pulled in so many directions because the needs are so great

There’s no such thing as a bad egg
momma to a special needs child Heather at The Extraordinary Ordinary… a high school parenting experiment foreshadows her future motherhood

Speech Frustrationsadoptive momma (China) Cheri at Infinite Love… about her daughter’s significant speech delays, possibly apraxia of speech or dysarthria

Whatever Wednesdays

Each Wednesday we post links from the previous week that touch on special needs adoption. Our hope is that these small snapshots provide you with a glimpse of life after adopting through China’s waiting child program… both the long-term blessings and the challenges that come with parenting a child with special needs. We also hope to raise awareness about a variety of special needs.

Owen Updateadoptive momma (China) Melissa at Wen Love Calls… thoughts after one month home, plus some information about his medical evaluations

Home Sweet Home
adoptive momma (China) Heather at Dragons and Elephants… describing her son Kai’s last day in the hospital and his first two weeks home after major surgery

Victoria’s Fingersfoster momma (India) Sarah Bess, co-founder of India Christian Ministries, at Sarah’s Covenant Homes… describing Victoria’s clinodactyly of the index fingers and either that or kirner’s deformity of the pinky fingers

Cardiologist check-up adoptive parents (China) Aaron and Erica at Praying for You You… her first check-up with the cardiologist after major surgery

Monday Morning Confessional: I need to get out. Often.
momma of a child who has special needs (infant strokes) Ellen at To The Max… leaving a child with special needs with a babysitter

I knew this day would come adoptive momma (China) Living4Him5at My Four Blessings… an emotional conversation with her daughter about her daughter’s arthrogryposis

If you know one kid with autism…adoptive momma (domestic) Julie Martindale at Not Just An Ordinary Life… exploring her feelings about her son’s recent autism diagnosis

Lifeline’s current list

Lifeline’s current list, with many new children, has just been posted over on the Children Who Wait page. Lifeline has 30 little ones on their list, contact karla@lifelineadoption.org if you’d like any more info :)

Shared list

A new list of children was released last night on the shared listing!

Whatever Wednesdays

Each Wednesday we post links from the previous week that touch on special needs adoption. Our hope is that these small snapshots provide you with a glimpse of life after adopting through China’s waiting child program… both the long-term blessings and the challenges that come with parenting a child with special needs. We also hope to raise awareness about a variety of special needs.

First Day of Schooladoptive momma (Ethiopia) Carey at The Real Drew Carey Show… her daughter’s first day of school (the fourth grade), less than a month after adoption

looking for spring
adoptive momma (Taiwan) Sarah at Journey to Taiwan for Hannah Claire… a little about treatment options for her daughter’s hemangiomas

Cerebral Palsy Awareness Day adoptive momma (China) Cheri at Infinite Love… basic facts about cerebral palsy on its awareness day, from a momma whose daughter has mild cerebral palsy due to an in utero stroke

Home From Surgery!adoptive momma (China) Jenn at Love Like Crazy!!!… about her daughter’s recent eyelid surgery

Special Needsmomma Kate, who regularly blogs at The Big Piece of Cake, featured at Blog Nosh Magazine… describing her son, who has sensory-seeking sensory processing disorder

Our red thread journey adoptive momma (China) Nicole at The Baker’s Sweets… one family’s journey from sponsorship to the adoption of a little girl with congenital nevus

Bringing Katelynn Home
adoptive momma (China) Chelsea at Gour Family Adoption … their and their travel group’s experiences with older child adoption

Links and Resources by Tracyadoptive momma (China) Tracy at the group blog An-Ya… a list of links for attachment and adoptive parenting

nurturing attachment

I recently was referred to this article by Deborah Gray and found it very helpful as we adjust to life with our newly adopted toddler.

Top Ten Tips For the First Year Of Placement

For those who are adopting an older child (2+ years), Susan Ward has also offered ten suggestions to assist you during the adjustment period with your child:

1. Reduce Sensory Overload

Usually, we’re so excited to have our child, our dream fulfilled, that we want to do all the things we’ve imagined. To the park, out to dinner, to visit grandparents, to birthday parties, to the neighborhood barbecue.

STOP!

Just being in your home is sensory overload for your child. New food, new smells, new rules, and if they’re from another country – new language, new customs. Keep their lives boring for the first few weeks, if not months.

2. Create Structure and Routine

Your child needs to wake up each day and know that certain things happen every day: mom wakes me up with a song, breakfast is at 6:30, we read books before bed. And they need to know that there are weekly regular activities: we have dinner at Grandma’s on Tuesday, we eat pizza and watch a video every Friday night.

3. Assume Your Child is Younger Than They Are

Until you know your child, assume they are several years younger than they are. Limit their choices, restrict their freedoms, play little kid games. Whether they came from foster care or an orphanage, there may be developmental, social, and psychological “steps” that they missed. By treating them a few years younger for a time, you reduce any pressures they’re feeling and allow them to live and learn from the stages they missed.

4. Re-Parent

You and your new child have missed out on the baby and toddler interactions that occur between parent and child. To help facilitate bonding, and to allow your child to enjoy these phases, re-parent your child. Rock them, sing lullabies, read nursery rhymes, feed them baby food, and give them a bottle. Even much older children often have a need to pass through these stages with their new parents.

5. Assume Your Child Has Attachment Issues

Attachment issues can be connected to in-utero issues, disruptions in caregiving, or multiple placements. Until you know otherwise, treat your child as if they have some level of attachment issues. Read Daniel Hughes’ book, Building the Bonds of Attachment, and implement his strategies. In the end, if your child does not have attachment issues, you still will have facilitated a smooth integration into your home, and have secured a tight attachment between the two of you.

6. Give Your Child Chores

Within a few days of being home, give your child appropriate regular chores. This helps them to feel needed, gives you something to compliment them on, helps them to learn that everyone in a family has responsibilities, and adds to the structure in their daily lives.

7. Implement Consequences For Their Actions

Depending on your child’s personality, temperament, and background, they will test you a little or a lot. It’s their way of learning where the boundaries are, as well as confirming that your commitment is real. Teach them the rules and the related consequences, and be consistent about implementation. Whether you use timeout, removal of privileges, or extra chores as consequences, stick to them for each and every infraction.

8. Have Fun

If everything is going smoothly, it’s easy to have fun with your child. If, however, they’re over-stimulated, acting horribly, refusing to follow the rules, and have attachment issues, it’s hard to like your child, let alone have fun with them. Do everything possible to find moments to laugh together, share a giggle, or play a game. It will remind you of your child’s great qualities, and help your child to understand that life is a blending of varying emotions and different activities.

9. Time For You

We forget. We’re excited to spend time with our new child. Their behavior is so horrible we can’t leave them with a babysitter. Remind yourself that you have to have time to yourself. If you’re not rested, positive, and strong, it’s impossible to be a good parent. Take a walk. Soak in the tub. Go out to dinner. Spend the night in a hotel. Just do it!

10. Time

Your adjustment period with your child may last a month, six months, or a couple of years. Unfortunately, many things relating to becoming a new family just take time. Your child arrived with years of experiences, good and bad, before they entered your life. And you joined your child after years of your own experiences, again good and bad. It takes time to blend and mesh your personalities, interests, and expectations. Be patient!


© 1999, Susan M. Ward