Thursday, May 26, 2011

Our First 24 Hours Together

Well, I hate to jinx myself...but this baby is amazing. The first hour was rough. Not gonna lie. She took one look at me and the tears started flowing. She screamed bloody murder so loudly our guide rushed me through the paperwork in about 2 minutes. No exaggeration. I signed my name so fast it was crazy. Because none of the other babies cried at the hand off and the guide wanted us out of there and FAST so as to not get the other babies going.

It wasn't how I envisioned the moment I would meet my daughter. But that's motherhood, right? Adjusting expectations. We received the babies in a conference room at our hotel. The babies had arrived to us after a 4 hour bus ride. So our guide sent us upstairs to feed Mia because the babies were hungry. But the orphanage hadn't sent any formula...which I kind of thought they would. So we only had a little American formula. It took several tries by my sister to get the nipple the right size, the mixture right, and the temperature to her liking. Because I was busy trying to console the screaming banshee who wanted nothing to do with me. Finally, as a last resort we added some sugar because we knew the Chinese formula Mia was used to was much sweeter. That did the trick. She sucked down the bottle with a quickness. The nipple was no sooner outta her mouth and she was a totally different baby. Calm, smiling. Carla and I were a little shell shocked like "what just happened?"

It's been wonderful since then. I keep waiting for the other shoe to drop but this kid is absolutely phenomenal. She makes great eye contact. I know it's way too soon to say we've bonded but when our guide tried to hold her for a few minutes last night so I could make a plate at the dinner buffet ...Mia wanted no part of it. As soon as I took her back, no more crying. Again this morning. Our guide said she's never had this happen so fast before. Normally the babies love her. And our two guides have been carting some of the other babies around. But not mine. Carla is the only one that can hold Mia besides me. I'm not sure if it's because she's getting used to us so fast or because our guides are Chinese women. I've heard others say their babies refused everything Chinese for awhile after being handed to their new non-Chinese parents. Not sure why.
Mia is a great baby. And so easy. Lord... I hope I don't regret saying that out loud. But she is so far. She just goes with the flow. She loves the bath and had so much fun kicking her chubby little legs in the water.
She takes her bottle no matter how we fix it now that we have her back on the Chinese formula she's used to. She's not picky about the temp or the flow of the nipple. I'm already learning her sleepy signals. Normally she's very active...kicking her legs, moving, cooing, babbling. When she starts slowing down that's when she's sleepy. She'll also start scratching her forearms, legs, head or pulling her hair to try to keep herself awake. I just start rocking her and she nods off. I'll hold her arms and legs so she can't kick or scratch so then she starts her sleepy song.  
She'll sing trying to keep herself awake. But so far the rocking puts her out. She went right down at 8:30pm last night after her bath and bottle. And slept until 3am. She was up until about 5am but I finally got her rocked back to sleep where she stayed until 8am. She's such a happy girl. This is how she woke up this morning. All smiles.
She hates laying on her back. She wants to be sitting up so every diaper change she does these crunches. She's not able to roll over yet but with those strong ab muscles I don't think it'll be long. She cooperates for diaper changes as long as I talk to her and keep her entertained. She even had her first poop only a few hours after we met and gave me another one first thing this morning. TMI, I know. But a really big deal in the adoption world because so many babies get really constipated with all the stress.
She's busting out of her 9 mth clothes. I brought a few 12 mth size.. thank goodness. Cuz this girl has a Buddha belly. We had to go to the market today and move her up to size 4 diapers! Her little butt crack was hanging out in the size 3. LOL!
I couldn't resist the big obnoxious bow. It's too dang cute. She wore it all morning. But managed to get her hands on it when she got fussy and wanted it off...right now! LOL!
She's very strong. Not sitting on her own yet. But it won't be long. She tries to roll over but only gets about halfway. She loves tummy time and holds her head up like a trooper.
She really just has the best disposition. She's very outgoing. She only fusses when she's pissed off about something. I hear another baby down the hall as I sit here typing just screaming her head off. So far so good with Mia. She only did that once when we were in the market because she was overstimulated with too much noise, needed a diaper change, was ready for a bottle and nap. She only cries when she's trying to get a point across. Generally, I get it right away and then she's all good. She loves the Ergo. Which I'm so grateful for because this 22 lb girl gets heavy real quick. But with the Ergo ..carrying her is easy.
She's got an olive complexion. I think her foster parents may have had her outside a lot because she has a tan line on the back of her neck in one of the rolls. She's also really hairy. Her arm, legs, and back have a lot of black peach fuzz.
We were Skyping with Grandma right before I put her down for a nap. This afternoon we're just hanging out in the room getting to know each other, playing and having some down time after the craziness of yesterday.
She's napping right now. We'll head down to dinner in a couple hours.
Any fears I had are gone. She's strong, healthy, and pretty close on target developmentally. She has the absolute BEST personality. She's just a very relaxed baby. Yesterday was a little touch and go for me but today was easier. It's already starting to come naturally. Figuring out what she needs and when and how to do that. We'll keep getting to know each other more and more during our stay in China.

But we'll do great together. I have no doubts now. I feel so incredibly blessed, so grateful, and so very very indescribably happy. This is the baby that was meant for me. She is my daughter and somehow the universe just knew to put us together.

40 comments:

Kelli Collier said...

Aww, this whole blog made me cry a bit. The whole thing is just so awesome! She's adorable and you look and sound so at peace. I've never known anyone that adopted a baby, let alone gone through the changes you had to. It looks like all your struggles led you right to where you're supposed to be. I appreciate you sharing your experience and wish you all the best.

K said...

I am soooo happy for you and Mia. Congratulations! Mia looks so happy and relaxed. It's nice to hear that you are finding your groove so early on.

I am stunned at Mia's size. I cannot believe those thighs; they are scrumptious! If I didn't know better, I'd think someone was feeding her breastmilk.

I still miss China! I'm sure I left a bit of myself there.

dreamer said...

It was all very well written and I could picture when I went through some of the same moments, sames thoughts and same smiles. seeing the pictures of her sleeping reminded me of the ones that I love so much with Ming.

Keep all the great photos and moments coming. I am so very happy for you.

dawn said...

I have never soon a baby smile so much so fast.
We are so happy for you.
Ain't LOVE grand

Traci said...

This all sounds wonderful!!! Don't worry about jinxing yourself because Ju was the same; content, happy, easy, laughing and smiling, and it's never changed. You and your girl have been blessed and I'm so happy for you both!!! Congratulations, Krista!!

Anonymous said...

I knew you would be fine and I'm so glad everything is going so well! So glad everything I worried about didn't happen and you two are bonding already!! Her smile is so infectious! I just love it! Keep the updates and pictures coming! Love seeing them and reading about what is happening. Carla is doing a great job with the pics!! So glad you two are there together. Love ya, cuz Debbie

Catherine said...

Oh friend! You are beyond blessed as is your sweet, happy, amazing baby girl! Love seeing you together and seeing how well she is doing. You're doing the right thing in keeping the holding to only you and your sister. It gives Mia the security she needs right now.

Mia is so precious and I love to see her so happy and content. Ah, sleep, glorious sleep! So glad she's doing that for you as truly it makes everything so much easier!

Blessings friend and...

CONGRATULATIONS!!!

Half Gaelic, Half Garlic! said...

These photos just melt my heart...... look at that happy, smiling, beautiful baby girl!!

Krista, I am so happy that she is transitioning so well. Yes, she was meant to be your daughter!!

LOL about her busting out of the 9 month clothes....I am so glad I waited on the outfit. After I saw your post yesterday, I finally ordered it and felt confident about the size I ordered:)

Have a wonderful time in China! Believe it or not, the two weeks goes by so quickly. Before you know it, you will be heading home.

Best Wishes~

xoxo,

Lisa

Fliss and Mike Adventures said...

Gorgeous... gorgeous... gorgeous... I am glad all is going so well... love those rolls... as much as I loved Shauna's... once she started walking and moving around.. away they went... wahh... she STILL eats like a horse... I love it when Mia is sleeping and smiling ;) Hugs to you all...

Debberoo said...

Gorgeous, gorgeous, gorgeous! Its clear she has been so well loved already - and lets face it who wouldn't love that bundle of deliciousness! Love the way she cuddles her blankie. Your daughter is just beautiful!

Michal said...

Oh Krista. I am so relieved to see how smiley and healthy she is. You are already learning her signals! I am so happy for you. Enjoy your time in China.

Anonymous said...

Oh my goodness, the cuteness factor is overflowing! She looks so happy to be with you and seems already to love her mommy! Congratulations!
Melanie from KY

Kim said...

Some children never have the grieving period and Mia may be one of them. Our son, adopted at 27 months, screamed bloody murder for the first 3 hours we had him at the Civil Affairs office. No one else's child cried. Once we got back to hotel, bathed, fed and let him have a nap, he woke up a new child. Never looked back, never grieved. Praying the same for you and Mia.

chris said...

i've been following your blog for years after i found the link on a friends blog. as a solo mom to 2 from china, i am reliving my china experiences, and enjoying the sweet memories. i am so thrilled for you and mia that you are finally together! she is adorable .motherhood really is an amazing adventure. enjoy your time in china with her.

Masha said...

She is an adorable baby and looks so happy! I found your blog through another for singles and have to see I am SOOOOO thrilled for you and happy you finally got your little girl. I unfortunately missed the cut for China with single women and have not had a good experience with trying to adopt from Russia but it is refreshing when I see happy endings. Congrats on a beautiful little girl!

Amy said...

So wonderful!! Congratulations again. She is beautiful!

Jannine said...

Sounds like she is adjusting well! The close-up of her sleeping looks like she has a little smile on her face. She is precious! Thanks for sharing your journey.

foodiechickie said...

I am just very happy for you. The both of you. What a journey and what an incredible baby.

delmy said...

Hi to you all...I'm sure you've heard this too in the past 24 hours but...Mia looks like you Krista!!! It's amazing...your smiles are the same and so are your eyes. the pic of you holding her on your lap on the bed just stopped me in my tracks...she IS your daughter!! The red thread is amazing! On the first day that Ava and I were together I noticed she had a reddish color to her hair...it was the solid confirmation that she was MINE since I have red hair! Only later did I learn that the reddish color is due to malnutrition but it didn't matter in my heart it was the confirmation I needed in those first hours that all was well and meant to be...I still carry that sense of peace with me. Have a great time getting to know each other. What a blessing to have Carla sharing this with you...it will also be a forever bond that the three of you will share. MaryB

Kayce said...

This post makes me so very happy! I am so glad she is in good health and doing so good! I know you prepared yourself for the opposite and I'm so glad your fears are no longer!! :) I just love her smile and that picture of her sleeping with a little grin on her face...priceless!!!

Kelli said...

Yahoo for poop! :) Maddie was the first to poop in our travel group too- funny but it's definitely somethign to be excited about! My goodness you have got one HAPPY HAPPY girl on your hands! What a lucky Mama you are! I adore the pics of her doing tummy time with her little arms tucked under her! She is just so adorable!! Can't believe ALL the smiles!!! So happy that it's going so well!
One thing we did when we were out (with the ergo) if she started to get over stimulated, is I took the blanket I always had with us and wrapped it around her back and tucked the sides under my arms- if she got overstimulated, I would raise the blanket "up" so it made almost a wall around the back of her head- so she could look up and see my face or the ceiling or sky, but couldn't see out the side of the blanket- it usually would Calm Maddie right down becuase suddenly she coudln't see all of the movment & colors etc that were causing the overstimulation, and she would basically conk out immediately! hope that explanation makes sense... ??? :)
Can't wait to read more! Keep those beautiful pics and stories coming!!!
Kelli

Wendy said...

She is just about as cute as they come. I love the photos of her on her tummy! So precious!!! I love these updates. Every night I keep thinking about what your day has in store for you and Mia!

myminivanrocks said...

She is beautiful! I love every little roll on her! I'm so glad things are going well!

The H Family said...

Oh Krista! She is PERFECT and such a cutie pie! Looking at her pictures just makes me want to kiss her through the computer. I am just so incredibly happy for you - that your dream has come true. The both of you were meant to be together - that is for sure - all of this is very magical - it wasn't just "luck." I am so happy you are a Mommy now - you are just perfect and meant to be a Mommy! You enjoy that beautiful baby of yours! XXX those are for Mia!

Carrie said...

I love the picture of Mia holding her blanket as she sleeps! How adorable! We have a little one attached to a blanket....that picture reached out to me! Thank you for sharing your precious journey!

Hope said...

Krista, she is absolutely precious!!!! We are all so happy for you and little Mia. I'd say the wait was worth it. Can't wait till we can see her and cuddle her ourselves. Treasure and enjoy every moment. Hope to see you soon.

Miche said...

God knows exactly what He is doing :) I am SO happy for you both and so glad Mia has adjusted so well so far. Thanks for sharing such wonderful moments with us all; many hugs!!!

Donna said...

So much of this reminds me of our first days with Gwenny! Almost six years later, she's still the happiest little girl I've ever known! You are blessed, my friend! Motherhood is hard work but the fringe benefits are amazing. I'm thrilled for you!

Donna

Jen said...

Awesome news. I'm so glad she's doing so well. And you are right about the Ergo - it makes the load much lighter!

Aus said...

HOORAH - I just played a bunch of catch-up - I'm at a conference and your blog was passed along onto me - no going into a lot of detail because aside from you name you haven't put a lot of unique identifiers in there - help you stay that way!

We've adopted 3 -one from Korea and two from China - we've been home about 14 months - and from our last China trip - you're already on the home stretch - sorry to get in so late on this trip! Look forward to your time on Shaimain Island - take in Lucy's - they have the coldest TsingDao (if you are a beer drinker) anywhere in China!

Looks like your initial transition has been great - and well - we couldn't be any happier for you guys!

Great joy for y'all in cincy - if you need anythign feel free to e-mail aussie at fuse dot net!

hugs - aus and co.

Anonymous said...

Blogger still won't let me comment as me? Am loving watching you and your sweet Mia become a family :)
Jenny www.waiting4abby.blogspot.com

Abby's Mom said...

Now I can comment :) Is one of your guides name Sissy? She was Abby and My guide. She was wonderful! If you think of it tell her Abby and Jenny said Hello and give her a big HUG from us! She may remember us as her small 2 family group in which both babies were named Abby.

Joannah said...

I have been so busy with Michaela's arrival this past week that this is my first opportunity to visit your beautiful blog! Krista, Mia is absolutely adorable. I'm so glad you've connected so quickly and that she is comfortable with you and your sister. I hope things will just get better and better for you both. :)

M3 said...

LOVE all the info and pics, but I have to chortle with glee and say that the tan line in one of her neck rolls is The Best!! Oh that is precious.

(PS: I kept waiting for the other shoe -- well shoes in our case -- to drop too, and they never did. Enjoy!)

Elle said...

Here from Catherine and Hannah's blog. Congratulations, Mom!

Mia is just simply gorgeous! What an added bonus that she has adjusted so quickly and already is showing off her wonderful disposition. So very happy for you.

cougchick said...

I am so happy for you. Such a match made in Heaven!

Isabel said...

She is cute as a button. So very glad you found each other! Congratulations.

XOXOXO

MotherMotherOcean said...

Your pictures and tales have made my day. Kiss her for me.

kitchu said...

speechless. so ABSOLUTELY happy for you. you are doing it. you are already such a great mom. isn't it amazing how those instincts just kick in? it is mind blowing to me. I KNEW she'd be a chunk!! love her little rolls!!

China Dreams said...

Wow-what a great personality!

Ruby

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