"We are going to focus on LIFE for Katya. I believe, one day, she will amaze the world."

Dr. Ben Carson on Katya Dueck

Tuesday, May 24, 2011

Updating . . . .

Today was our 4th visit with Katya. She was quickly responsive to both of us, but made it clear she wasn't comfortable (at first) with Papa walking around with her without Mama. By the end of the visit, she was a lot more comfy with him again. She also came up to him when it was time to walk back with her group and when he asked her if he was supposed to carry her again she was ready to go right into his arms. She fussed a tiny little bit when she had to go in to the building but it was pretty subdued so it seems we have hit on a transition plan for her where she realizes she will have to part from us but it's not a shock to her system so she copes with it better.

So far we know that she can make a very angry noise, a startled noise, and a giggle for when she's happy. Those are the only three sounds we have heard her make, but we are glad for those three! She imitates us VERY quickly and we have started having her do the ASL sign for "more" when she wants another bite of the snacks we are bringing in. She obediently imitates us. I don't know if she knows really what it means, but she does imitate, and hopefully with time she will get it.

She will need massive help to get her body straightened back out I think, and it would appear that she also needs some dental help . . . she seems to be in some pain with her teeth or jaw .  . and on Day 3 her one side of the lower jaw was swollen.

Since we gave her the juice and snack early on today, hoping that she would have time to get it out of her system enough to be ready to enjoy lunch, I think I also saw her "I need to go to the bathroom" signals today shortly before the play time was done, as well  . . . that consisted of pulling up her dress and clutching . . . so I'm thinking we'll have to work on teaching Katya some new signals! But at least she has something that I can interpret for starters! (I'm thinking that the capri leggings for under her dresses we were talking about sound more and more like a good idea too. ;-) )

Getting to learn to know our daughter-to-be (God willing) in the "comfort" of her orphanage routine and life is interesting to say the least. When we adopted Kristina, we only had a total of four hours with her, and ALL of those were separated from her playmates in a room she normally did not go in. By now, we have spent way more time with Katya than we had with Kristina when she was moved in with us immediately after court! While this process is hard because it requires so much time in country, I'm also glad for the chance for Katya to get to learn to know us much more gradually . . . I think it's healthier for her in so many ways. Yes, I want to scoop her out NOW and get her the help she needs NOW but that would be too traumatic for her. She seems really fragile in her body AND spirit  . . . and I know a gentle, slow approach all the way around for every thing right now is what she needs.

Now, I know you are dying for pictures  . . . at least, some of you are . .  So . . .

The interesting front of a store we walk by each day on our way to "our" little market

 A little further down the street is a bath store . . . this toliet gives new meaning to the phrase, "sitting on the throne", doesn't it?! Also check out the corner of the SINK with a world map on it on the lower right hand side.

Front lobby area of the orphanage

Katya seems to very much enjoy her juice and snack time. Today about 45 min. after we gave it to her, she finally seemed to have some energy and got up and began running around and playing a bit on the play equpment instead of just being fairly listless.

Here she is hopping around in the small play area they are allowed to be in. (Large play area is divided into sections, and they are to stay in their section.)

She likes to keep something in her hands . . .

Today she spent a lot of time making eye contact and searching Daddy's face .. . also she held his finger for awhile similar to what a new born baby would do. We rejoice in each sign of her wanting to connect with us!


The Annessa Family said...

Its such a blessing to see your daughter bloom!

Brooke Annessa

Milena said...

Happy to hear about the progress!

Rachal said...

These updates and pictures make me cry...so precious to see you reunited with Katya!

Nan and Dan said...

Hope Anne these pictures are SO amazing! To watch her come out of her shell little by little :)
Glad to see her drinking the juice and then moving around!! It is only going to get better!!!

Missy said...

Wow, I am LOVING every bit of info and every picture you share, Hope Anne!! I've been watching your love of Katya for such a long time now (on RR) and it's such a joy to see you finally getting to have her for your OWN!! :o) Please keep sharing with us!! It truly makes me happy to see beautiful Katya's story unfold. :o)

mom to Erik (formerly "Simon" on RR)

Sandie Flannery said...

That's great that she picked up the sign for 'more' so fast. Caution with using the ASL sign for 'toilet' as it is an obscene gesture in Russian. Could get a few people upset.