Tuesday, May 06, 2008

Follow up

I thought I would let everyone know how we are doing post the " I want to go back to Ethiopia" statement of last week. We were driving to the Circus Days last Friday and all three little girls are sitting in the back of the Expedition when I heard Jameson say, "That's me. That's my picture in Ethiopia." That caught my attention. Upon further investigation, I found that all three of them were going through my wallet. Credit cards, insurance cards and permanent resident cards were being thrown around like rice at a wedding. I explained that they were not allowed to go through my wallet, instructed them to put everything back where they found it, and HAND IT OVER NOW!

I explained to Jameson that the card she had gave her permission to be a resident of the United States. I tried to tell her how important that card was. (I had it in my wallet because I needed it when I got their SS cards... and never put it back in the "important paper" place).

I had to laugh. I know it's not funny. But with a very suspicious tone, she replied, "I lose this. I go back to Ethiopia?" Jordan and I both looked at each other and burst out laughing because I think we both saw the same mental image of Jameson going through all my papers trying to light her green card on fire or flush it down the toilet.

I may be wrong. She may have thought that SHE needed to protect it because she didn't really want to go back to Ethiopia. Maybe SHE thought that could actually happen... I'm not sure. I did try to explain that we could get it replaced and that she WAS NOT going back to Ethiopia, even if she lost the card. We continue to have some struggles with her. While we are happy that she has so much pride in her country, and we have attempted to instill that in her, it gets old playing the "my country is better than your country" game. Just about everything fun that we did this week was answered with, "We have this in Ethiopia, but it's better/bigger/nicer etc."

Josh is so much more quiet than Jameson, I felt I needed to talk to him to make sure he was not feeling the same way since I'm sure he wouldn't come right out and say it like Jameson. I asked him what he thought about America etc. He indicated that he was very happy here. When I asked him whether he missed Ethiopia, he kind of shrugged his shoulders and said, "A little, I guess." I asked him about Jameson wanting to go back to Ethiopia, to see if he could enlighten me any on her behavior these last few weeks. He said, "I don't know. Maybe she crazy."

I know that on the outside, it probably appears that Jameson is more attached/happier/secure than Josh, but I believe it to be the other way around. Jameson is so clingy to me. She is almost overly affectionate... like she doesn't want to let go. It's hard to get her to even go play with the girls a lot of times because she won't leave my side. When she meets new people, she initially plays the shy game and will literally crawl under me to protect her, but then within minutes, she will be all over them; kissing them, crawling on them, hugging and hanging on them... Then there's other times she won't have anything to do with me. No eye contact, no verbal contact, nothing. Just a flat affect. I know she's got to have some attachment issues, and we are dealing with those. I think we can just continue to show her unconditional love, be consistent with our discipline, and make sure that she knows that we're not going anywhere.

Josh, on the other hand, is quiet and more of a thinker. He is affectionate and will come and hug us, but he has his limits, which I see as being really healthy. He definitely needs his personal space and is able to do that when he needs to. Sometimes he will just go downstairs and play, then a little while later, he will join the family again. He is definitely becoming more of a story teller and talking so much more. His stories are great and really entertaining. Maybe I just can relate to him more because I tend to be more quiet and need personal space more than the average person. I can see where he's coming from.

We continue to make it day by day. I think we're making progress a little at a time, and will continue to grow in our love and respect for one another while developing healthy boundaries and coping mechanisms.

No comments: