Has it seriously been 11 months home for Sofie? Is my next post on her going to be the one year mark?! I’m having a hard time wrapping my head around that. It has gone by so fast, yet she seems like she has always been here. She just fits. I can’t imagine what our life would have been if we had waited to adopt. I’m thankful there was a plan bigger than us.
This has been another big month for Sofie. She is still flourishing. This month Sofie has been popping out more words and even some two syllable words. You can hear her yelling “Karkar No!” (“Parker no!” our cat) along with the rest of us 🙂 She doesn’t like speaking on command or when you ask her a question. She will use her signs then, but we frequently overhear her practicing her words.
The biggest thrill for us this month was when we saw Sofie lining up her toys while playing appropriately. I was in tears of joy. I’m getting teary just writing this. When she first came home, Sofie didn’t know how to play. She threw EVERYTHING. Banging, crashing and throwing was all she knew how to do. She slowly started exploring household items and eventually started playing with some toys appropriately. She even has her favorites now. This month, while seeming to do some imagination play with some little farm and zoo animals, she laid them and stood them in a line. This is HUGELY significant for a child who has been traumatized.
My limited understanding is that children who have experienced trauma frequently re-enact those events in their play. Throwing and crashing everything can be signs that the child is feeling chaos, tension and out of control. In Sofie’s case she banged and threw everything she could. We did see her clapping the hands of some dolls sweetly but she would also hit those dolls and bang them on things. We even witnessed some other disturbing signs of other types of abuse. When we looked at how Livi would play, she was mostly gentle with everything. She played with toys appropriately and we are always finding her toys left around the house in single file lines. These are play signs that Livi feels order and security in her world. Sofie is showing this too us through her play now too.Amazing.
We were also given a second hand doll house for the girls this month. Instead of Sofie being rough with the furniture and figurines, I watched her gently feed the dolls at the table, tuck them all in to bed and kiss them good night. She has come so far. I am just in awe of her.
She still throws and hits far more than I am at all comfortable with but she is getting there. She is learning. She is growing. She is losing her own independent survival skills and realizing we are here to take care of her with love. Did I mention she told me she loved me this month?! She copied me saying it, so it wasn’t unprompted, but it still felt pretty good to hear.
We’ve kicked up Sofie’s diet this month. She was already on a high fat diet… now she is on a super high fat diet. She is still not growing but I think we’ve finally got her up a pound this month. 27 pounds! We basically look at her plate before we give it too her and ask ourselves what we can do to add calories and fat too it. We add butter to her macaroni and cheese. She has pudding made with half whole goats milk and half whip cream each day. She even drinks half goats milk and half whip cream. I do try to give her lighter foods occasionally but we need to fatten her up to hopefully get her growing! She is still sitting at 34 inches.
Livi has developed a nickname for Sofie and calls her “Sofa” quite frequently. I didn’t think anything of it at first but now I think it is sticking. It’s been around for a few weeks. I tried explaining to Livi that a sofa is a couch, but she assured me that it “is just Sofie!”
It has almost been an entire year that Sofie has been home. We are so thankful for her. She amazes us everyday.