Tuesday, November 17, 2009


Annie 321/365

Lucy 321/365

Today I am thankful for the way that my girls dance. I love watching children dance. There is no right or wrong way to do it. They just shake it however they see fit. That makes me happy. The other night at the rodeo/concert both girls were dancing away. Lucy loves it when I tell her to "get funky!" She is always asking us to turn on some music and then she does these hilariously precious dances and says, "Mom, do you like this new dance of mine?" Of course, I always love her moves. And Annie kind of just bounces to the music still. I can't find our video camera, but I will try and catch Lucy's moves when I do.

I wanted to clarify on something about how we think that Annie's experience in the orphanage was because a commenter asked why they would be mean to her. Very good question if you aren't familiar with our story. It is not that we think that anyone was mean to her, per se. We are guessing that she was mostly left alone in her crib instead of having a lot of interaction and attention on her. Our guess as to why is because she had a whole slew of digestive issues before we were able to get them under control with medicine. She had horrible acid reflux. She would spit up massive amounts of the stinkiest spit up minutes after she would eat. The milk would have only been in her tummy for one or two minutes and it would come back up curdled. It would make Justin gag because he is a wuss! :) It was nasty spit up but Justin was so dramatic about it. Ha. She also was severely constipated. This was awful because it was so clearly painful for her. Anyway, the combination of all of this most likely made her an extremely difficult baby since she had no access to the medical attention that she needed. So, we are guessing that she was not a favorite of the nannies because she was a lot of work and she was probably very fussy. Again, we are guessing here, but she showed all of the classic signs of neglect. She was uncomfortable being held. It was awkward for all of us, like she didn't know how to be held. She would arch away from us. I mean really, really arch away making it scary that she could be dropped. She had ZERO tone in her legs and arms. In fact, she would not bear weight on her legs until she was probably 9 or 10 months old. She did not know how to use her hands. She was interested in holding nothing. She simply wouldn't use her hands for anything. We could be sitting at a dinner table with 100 things on it right at her grasp and she never once tried to even touch anything. Despite all of these things, she showed some very promising signs that I held onto tightly while I was so scared of what the future would hold and her ability to attach to us and ours to her. She would hold eye contact with me. She was very receptive to me wearing her in the Ergo. When she was wrapped in tightly to my body, she could somewhat relax. The eye contact was especially important to me. I would have been a million times more worried if she wouldn't have engaged me when I fed her or talked to her.

Jo Ellen - the pics are for you. Lucy completely forgave me for having another photo shoot when I came home with gifts, especially baked gift. I know the pictures of the girls are not too great today, but it was late and pitch black outside and I had of course not done my project pics yet. I had a fun session tonight with one of my all time favorite families. Only 2 more to go!! Woot, woot!!


Anonymous said...

Kelly, that is one of the saddest things I've read in a long time. The thought of a baby not being held...chilling. You and Annie are so lucky to have found each other. It's like she was always your baby, just waiting for you thousands of miles away.

Would you be willing to share an update about how she is doing today in terms of developmental milestones, etc? Based on the pictures, she is a happy, thriving, beloved child...I'm just curious about how she has progressed.

Mom said...

Hey Poopsie! Love the antlers!!! Christmas is coming!! The weather feels like it--cold! Sounds like you had a busy day--glad it all went well. Send me the jar info, PLEASE!!!

Will call Holly tomorrow and see how the boys are feeling. Hopefully we're on the road to recovery.

Love and kisses to all, LeeLee

Anonymous said...

I just have to tell you I had a moment of shock when I went over to the we picture {this} site (first time) and I "knew" the kid in the opening! I'm so happy for you with all your success in photography, and well, life, too, as the progress with Annie shows. God bless!

Mom said...

Where is the dancing video?????? Lee

Kristi said...


I applaud your honesty in talking about Annie's rough start. I don't think any of us can comprehend what our children -- or any children who are in an orphanage -- go through before they come home.

I believe that even the most well-intentioned nanny can't even begin to provide the care that a small baby needs and deserves.

Annie looks so incredibly happy and loved. She seems to be thriving, growing and developing at light speed.

Congratulations on this special day.