We had our 1 month post-placement visit today. All interaction with our case worker, Cathy, from An Open Door has been over the phone, with the exception of a brief moment at our Welcome Home Rally at the airport. So, we enjoyed spending time with her in person today.
It's hard to believe that it has already been a month since we brought our son home. Our time in Bulgaria seems like a distant memory. And who was that child we had with us?
Our Sashko has decided that he now enjoys being called Andrew. Jen would ask him (in Bulgarian) what his name was and he would answer, "Sashko". Then she would ask him again and then answer for him, "Andrew?". Every time she did this he would giggle and smile. She did this a few times about a week and a half ago and let it be. The next day at lunch he pointed to himself and told his siblings "Andrew!". So we decided we would start to call him Andrew. Almost immediately we noticed an overall improvement in his attitude.
While we will not keep him from his Bulgarian roots, it seems that a "clean break" for the moment is better during this time of transition. Even pictures from Bulgaria or speaking too much Bulgarian seems to confuse him and cause him to disengage from us. We do have tons of mementos from the country and orphanage that we will tuck away for now and save for a more appropriate time.
Fits and tantrums have completely subsided. Meal time is no longer a hassle. As a matter of fact, when we sit down to dinner, Andrew will push his milk aside and start eating immediately. He will actually ask for permission before he takes a sip.
While Andrew is not at all shy (in fact he's quite a flirt!), he now looks to us before greeting extended family members and friends.
It's amazing how quickly Andrew has learned English. He does understand most everything we say. We will ask him a question in English and often he will respond in Bulgarian. When he hears us say certain words in English, like "more", he repeats the word in Bulgarian, "oshti". He has been using many English words and phrases; he copies us all the time.
We have decided to re-adopt Andrew stateside while everything is fresh in our memory and paperwork has not been lost. We have a court date set for December 13th. It has been a little tricky trying to get insurance coverage for him due to the specific documents they are looking for. We figure there will only be more headaches in the future and re-adopting will eliminate those.
We did the math before we started the adoption, but didn't realize how big a family of 7 was until we got them all together! Or how fun!
When we realized that we would be bringing him home soon, we made preparations to have many of our responsibilities delegated out until after Christmas. It really has been one of the best things we did for our family. Nightly wrestle matches, story times, and horsey rides have been great not only for Andrew but also for our other 4. They have done remarkable during this time of adjustment as well. We are so proud of their sacrifice, prayer, faith, and hard work throughout this entire adoption journey. Now that Andrew is home we are amazed at their selflessness, care and love. There is no difference to them, Andrew has always been one of us.