When we birth children, or adopt them as infants, a first birthday is such a big milestone.
We plan for months. We celebrate all the firsts that have happened over that year. We are in awe of how that newborn has changed from such a helpless being to a one year old covered in cake!
When you adopt a child at EIGHT, you don’t get that 1-year-old birthday party. You don’t see first steps, first teeth or first of ALL those things that make it so much fun getting to know your baby.
You can’t look back on newborn photos and remember tiny toes.
Sometimes you can’t look back on ANY photos.
BUT, you DO get a first birthday HOME, no matter the age!
And while Syler might not have understood as the day started what it was all about, by the end he knew HE was being celebrated!
My sweet friend Kathy had sent him a build a bear gift card so that was first on our agenda today. Overall we have not been going many places. Of course they get to ride in the car a lot as I taxi kids all over creation. But I try to avoid going in. Till we can communicate better on some things, it is just easier to NOT go in many stores.
Seriously had an outing to Wal mart this week ALONE and I was giddy. That is really sad. Sad that my time alone was spent at Wal mart for one, but REALLY sad how excited I was to go!
Anyways, we ventured to Build a Bear and it was GOOD.
Mercie now rides in a stroller, HAPPILY. Miracles do happen! That makes life much easier. Will have to do a blog on her, so much change! Sweet change in our girl.
We were bummed that Build a Bear was out of super hero bears! But Syler found one he liked & quickly caught on to the concept and seemed to enjoy the fun of building his first bear!
I try to remember; I did not get first of MANY things, but I DO get to enjoy these firsts through his eyes!
He did so well at Build a Bear we tried the lego store. After asking for every set in the store (I can’t believe some of those are $400!!) we decided we should probably move on.
We had Chick Filet for lunch our first week home and Syler, for whatever reason, was not happy with me there.
This is the fun of no language. He pouts, and I get to guess why, but of course even guessing I really have no idea.
Are you mad because you thought we were going out for Chinese food?
Are you mad because there is a picture of a cow and you are eating chicken?
Are you mad because I am eating a chicken sandwich and you have nuggets?
Are you mad because you don't like Chick Filet because honestly that is going to be an issue if that is why.
Are you even mad or just in the mood to pout?
So I was not sure if showing him Chick Filet would result in a glare down contest or what. Thankfully he was excited about chicken, we ate and headed home.
For dinner we decided on a Chinese Restaurant that reminds us a bit more of China than most places. Especially because the tables spin in the center and really, that makes dinner with 9 pretty fun AND way more like China than a buffet!
BUT if you have less than 9 don’t think you will get a spinning table, you will not. I tried it last summer and they told me that is only for a big party and I only had 7.
Syler SCARFED down the food. He eats well here, but apparently nothing is as good as some Chinese Food. We love talking to the staff there. They tried to talk to Syler and while you can tell he understands, he does not talk. It is interesting but we have heard him attempting to speak in English to us more than we have EVER heard him speak to anyone Chinese. IN china or here.
We came home and had cake and ice cream. He acted a bit shy but he seemed to have fun blowing out his candles!
He was so cute opening up all his gifts and VERY excited about his FIRST bike! He had learned to ride a bike right after getting home that first week, but was riding a pink hello kitty bike.
Tonight putting him to bed was the FIRST time he actually kissed me! He is always snuggly and lets us hug and kiss on him, but it was good to have it returned.
Things are going good with our sweet boy. Really he is just an easy kid. He is calm and quiet and very laid back. He gets along well with everyone here and seems happy. He is definitely happiest when the girls come home from school and LOVES to be outside playing with them. He loves wrestling with Sawyer, and WOW are 2 boys together LOUD.(especially on top of 5 girls!) J
The times when we both have frustration it is always because of communication. And I get that. I can’t explain WHY I am saying no, he can’t explain WHY he thinks he should be able to do something. So there might be pouting or tears, (on both of our sides!) but that is improving.
Language really is going well. It is funny, every Chinese person we have talked to laughs at me when I say we need a tutor to teach him English. They all tell me, “He will learn listening to all of you, no tutor needed.” And we are finding that to be true. Though it can still overwhelm me when I work so hard on ABC every day and pull out a flash card of A and he says B. To imagine him READING like the girls anytime soon seems impossible.
But then again, I look back at a month ago, and how far he has come. (can you believe it has been a whole month, WOW!) and why do I even worry? Every day we see change.
It kind of goes back to that whole newborn thing. We miss out on those firsts, and that first year when they change SOOO quickly. BUT we are LIVING his first year home and seeing those amazing changes daily. It is different; he is no baby for sure. But he is learning and exploring and trying hard to adapt in this new world.
We may have missed almost 9 years with Syler, but we are so thankful that he is now home. That we will celebrate every birthday with him forever!