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

Dr. Ben Carson on Katya Dueck

Saturday, January 26, 2013

Blessings Part 1

Things have been rather challenging the last while for our family, for various reasons. Today was a nice break . . . a day full of blessings! First of all, it was my official "Day of Peace And Quiet". This is a tradition we started a few years ago when there was no loose money for celebration of my birthday. I suggested that Paul take the kiddos for the day and give me peace and quiet and a chance to work on my projects. He did--brave guy that he is--and thus a new tradition was born that I do believe is quite nice! So, since it was my day for peace (oh wonderful peace!) everyone got shooed out this morning with a packed lunch and snacks. Todd wanted to stay in town to job hunt and work on his college assignments, but Paul took the kiddos to pick up Charity from her violin lesson, and then they went on to spend their day. I had tried to explain ahead of time to Katya that she would first get Charity from her violin lesson, then go to see flowers, and that she could smell the flowers, but not pick them. She seemed really excited here at home, and even in the car, she seemed amazingly happy! When her "rival" lovingly offered her his hand, she actually took it and held it for a little bit. (Please note that the ackward angle her arm is bent at comes from her dislocated elbows limiting her range of motion).

When Katya is happy, we all feel happy!

At the botanical garden, Katya was so happy to see the flowers!

And smelling them was even better!

And then she wanted to walk around and smell the leaves too!

Time to chill out for a bit . . . 

And then while they were standing there watching the trains . .  . Kristina heard people speaking Russian!

And lo and behold, here were two ladies from Russia, and one from Ukraine at the gardens with their children!

Lo and behold . . . when Paul began talking to them . . . it turns out that the one young lady had been reading Katya's blog over the time we were adopting Katya. She burst into tears, and hugged Paul with great emotion when she realized she had just met Katya in person!

With their permission, Charity took some photos to post on the blog.

The lady on the left of the photo is the one who had been reading Katya's blog and was so happy to meet her in person. The middle lady was also from Russia, and the lady on the far right was from Ukraine. Katya seemed quite skeptical especially of her--we are guessing that it was because she looked a fair bit like some of the caretakers in her orphanage looked.

When something like this happens, you definitely realize that your child's story can have a far broader reach than you realized . . . and we felt that we were seeing God's hand in how our path crossed with theirs!

The next thing Paul knew, the ladies told him that he was to take the kiddos to the cafeteria because they were paying for lunch! WOW! What a sweet gesture!

Katya chose a big salad, and ate it with gusto!

Chad chose a peanut butter sandwich that delighted him fully!

My family parted ways with our new friends after exchanging contact info. I think we will be having more to do with them in the future! Looking forward to it!

Katya enjoyed the gardens. And in an clear step of forward progress, she actually was calm and happy about the Koi fish! She watched them a long time, pointing and evidently counting them, the way she was acting. Charity explained to her that they were like our gold fish at home--just bigger.

Katya used to be horridly upset about even fish. To have her calm and happy about them was so nice!

And the blessings went on the rest of the day  . . . but I will need to continue the blog post another day. Now my little gal wants her Mommy to rock her before tucking her into bed, and yes, that is a very important nightly ritual!


Milena said...

What a delight to read about such a happy day of yours! I'm so happy that they had such a nice outing together!

Hevel said...

I'm so happy for all of you, including the lady that got to meet Katya! I hope your day will be good today now that you had at least a little time to relax and that Katya continues to be in a good mood.

Anonymous said...

I read your blog frequently but haven't commented...reading about explaining a day's schedule to Katya struck a chord with me. I am a teacher, and one of my students has some undiagnosed unusual behaviors. When, at the school osychologist's suggestion, I made a picture schedule for her the difference was astonishing! It was fairly easy to make, and if you put the individual activities on separate cards or strips of paper (either on something she could keep with her, on a door, on the fridge, etc.) they can be easily rearranged when needed. It's just an idea....one that I had never tried but that had quick, lasting impact on a struggling student!