We are excited to meet family and friends at the airport (our airport party). We welcome anyone who wants to be there! “Welcome Home” signs, taking pictures and making video would be a great blessing to us!
Our approach to the first few months home:
We do ask that you don't ask to hold her or give her anything at the airport. If you have special gifts, we can save those for later. Her brothers will have a gift for her. And she will have a gift for her new brothers. Other than that, we feel that it would be best to wait for other gifts (or give them to us, and we will give them to Eliana once we are home).
We understand that this is going to be hard for you guys and for us. However, we are trusting all of the attachment/adoption experts on this. We will focus our time on connecting as a family of five.
What do we mean by attachment? There are many articles and studies and professionals who can speak to this; but for a child who has experienced loss, finding a secure place is very important. Even if she is very happy and energetic, at the core she is still not sure what is going on yet. For her to thrive she needs to know that we will take care of her. She needs to know that she doesn't have to charm her way into being fed or getting a toy or being held. She needs to know that she can give up her survival mode.
Well, with adoption, it's backwards.
So, we don't want anyone to have their feelings hurt or feel that we are keeping her from all of you. Everyone in our family & community has been a huge part of this journey! From helping us financially and physically to helping us emotionally and spiritually, we are grateful for you. So, we are asking you to join us on the second part of this journey. This isn't the glamorous part. This is when we parent and love and grow into a forever family with a new child who has come from a hard place. The reality of her past doesn't go away, even when she maintains a playful disposition.
What you can do:
*Please pay special attention to our boys. They will need lots of extra attention. Their world is changing too!
We know that this is a lot to ask. And we know this is going to be hard for the first few months. We've always worked very hard for our boys to connect and have special relationships with family & friends, and we want the same for Eliana. However, it's going to have to come at a slower pace. We have been taught that if a child connects more with someone else, rather than the parents, in the first few months, it can delay their attachment by months. So, we are grateful that you all understand and are going to allow us to have a different approach for a few months.
We don't know exactly how long this will take; but we've been advised to cocoon (lay low) for the first three months home. So, that's where we will start. It is really going to depend on Eliana, and how she adapts. We will be following her queues. Please keep praying for us! We will be posting updates on the blog and sharing on Facebook.
Please feel free to message us or ask us if you have any questions on attachment or cocooning. We aren't sure how crazy things will be; but we promise to be open and honest. We appreciate all of your grace during this next phase.
Living in a hotel with Eliana as an only child for 2 weeks has been a great opportunity for us to bond! But when we get home, it will get real! We say, bring it on!