Two months ago we were in China.
We had just arrived in Guangzhou with a wheezy, vomiting, rash-covered little girl.
Clementine started physical therapy this month and has just mastered pulling up to stand. On her own, y’all. We want her to learn how to crawl before she learns to walk, but Clementine isn’t convinced.
(She did a 180 turn, ending with her back to our PT, in response to her trying to encourage Clementine to crawl. We died.)
On the 12th of January Clementine had surgery to have tubes placed and her adenoids removed, as well as a bronchoscopy and laryngoscopy to get the lowdown on her airway. It was a long week of recovery afterward, but she’s finally back to herself.
On the subject of eating, Clementine has gained three pounds since that saddening weigh-in at the medical in China. She’s up to 20.6 pounds of sweetness.
Our pediatrician feels like she’s on a very healthy growth curve, considering children with Down syndrome are typically on the small side.
Clementine is learning more signs. In addition to being able to sign more, she now signs (and says) dada. She doesn’t have the sign *exactly* right, but what she she lacks in technique she more than makes up for in enthusiasm.
She currently has zero interest in saying mama, though. And that’s okay. Clementine knew that word well before she ever met me.
Despite not having a name for me, she and I are thick as thieves. Our time together at the hospital – rocking, snuggling, watching Despicable Me 2 for the third time – served as a chance for her to lean on me a little more deeply.
And things have been different ever since. A few nights ago she actually chose to fall asleep on me – a big, beautiful leap from not being able to tolerate any skin to skin at bedtime. And I cannot tell you how fun this little bug is to snuggle.
We might be facing an additional, much more significant surgery for Clementine in the coming months. The ENT discovered a very rare congenital defect in Clementine’s trachea. She will be undergoing additional testing next week to help determine exactly what the best next steps will be.
In the meantime, we will continue to trust in the One who leveled mountains to bring her home.
And we will continue to be crazy grateful to have her here. Where we can love her. Protect her. Comfort her.
I’m not her first mama. I’m not her second mama. But, by God’s grace, I get to be her forever mama.