Elisabeth had her first pediatric appointment 5 days after we arrived home. She was a real trooper. Their scales also said that she weighed 17 ½ pounds. (We can't wait to see how much she has gained when we have her follow-up apt on 9/24!) After having LOTS of tests run on the blood they drew from Elisabeth, things look good for the most part. She does have elevated lead levels (not uncommon for children coming from Chinese orphanages) and will be retested soon. The doctor also recommends that we start from scratch on Elisabeth's immunizations (some test gave conflicting results, and other tests showed she doesn't have immunity to viruses that her Chinese immunization record shows she should have).
Elisabeth is so much more stable when holding our fingers and walking, and she has even started "cruising" a little. And she can "drag" herself (you can't really call it crawling) across the floor, especially if bribed with Cheerios (thanks for the tip, Brandy!). And while she can't walk by herself, we discovered last week that she can ride her horsie that is on wheels (thanks, Joann!) all by herself (which appears to indicate that she spent time in a walker in China). She will ride it all the way across the room, again, if bribed with Cheerios!
Elisabeth is such a joy. She starts smiling and laughing before she even gets out of the crib in the morning and doesn't stop until she goes back down at night. I (Joli) knew that it was the Lord's will that we become parents, specifically to a little girl that we adopted from China – but I didn't know just how incredible, and how wonderful, and how much FUN it would prove to be! The Lord's will and the Lord's timing are perfect. If I ever doubted that before, I never will again. It is so obvious to us (and to everyone else) that Elisabeth is the child that the Lord always, from the beginning of time, intended for us to parent. The way we have bonded, and fallen so naturally into life as a family of three, is truly a praise!
So much has happened since we have been home. Most of it wonderful, but some of it sad. Unfortunately, Elisabeth has attended two funerals in the past three weeks. The first funeral was for her Great Great Uncle Estes. The second funeral was for her Great Grandmother Lillian (affectionately known to all her grandchildren as "Mema"). As cliché as it sounds, we truly know that Mema is in a better place and is no longer in any pain. Her passing is another testament to the Lord's perfect timing. When Mema was diagnosed with cancer one year ago, we thought she wouldn't live for two more months. Well, she lived for almost one year, and she lived just long enough to meet her newest Great Granddaughter, Elisabeth. We arrived home late Wednesday night (actually Thursday morning) and Elisabeth and Mema got to meet on Thursday. Mema was re-hospitalized for the last time on Friday. After being brought home on Saturday, Mema and Elisabeth got to visit for a little each day until Mema passed away a week and a half later. The Lord cares about each and every detail in our lives, and in His divine and loving providence arranged it so that Mema could meet Elisabeth. The time that Elisabeth has been able to spend with all of our family (cousins, aunts and uncles, grandparents, great grandparents) over the past three weeks (HOURS each day) simply would not have happened if the Lord hadn't worked the timing out just this way. What a great and loving God we serve!
|Elisabeth with her buddy, Papa|
|"Give up that cake, Gran Gran!"|
|Feeding Papa some cheerios|
|Elisabeth's first solo bath|
|No more bottle for this big girl!|
|"Look at me cruising around!"|