Yesterday marked five weeks home, and it seems like we turned a corner. A gentle corner, but a corner nevertheless. Zinashi decided to sit in her own chair at lunch and has done so for every meal since. I managed to get the laundry done and the house tidied by the time we went to pick up Jarod from work. Our last meal from friends was delivered, and it seemed just about right. I feel like I can do this now, like I can manage our home life and whatever else comes along. And clearly, Zinashi is doing very well. Better bedtimes, more confidence playing when I need to do other things, a testing of boundaries that indicates that she feels secure. We will still have challenges, sure, but I feel like we are settled. The holidays are coming, but I don’t feel stressed out about them. I know that when we set boundaries with friends and family, they are respected. There’s no more inner argument when someone wants to do something that involves Zinashi; I can do what is right without my jet-lag addled brain getting confused. The familiar ebb and flow of life has returned. I don’t feel anymore as if I am rushing to get everything done or just to manage. So there you have it. Five weeks. That’s not too shabby.

And now I want to freeze our lives in this moment. Our daughter knows now how to say I need and all done and HUG! and I’m not sure what else we need to teach her, really. How much more language will she learn before she starts losing her accent? How many times can we ask her to count to three in Amharic and have sost come out as goat? I know there is much good to come, and so many things that will become easier and better as she gains proficiency in language and motor skills, but for now I will savor the malapropisms and tiny shuffle steps she takes when going down stairs. How can you blame me? I’m sure you can’t find a way.



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3 responses to “Settled

  1. inventingliz

    Well, if it makes you feel any better, Elfe still has a bit of an accent after almost a year home, even though she is basically fluent in all other ways…

    Congrats on being settled!

  2. findingmagnolia

    It DOES make me feel better! I just love that little accent so much; I should probably take more video so I can reminisce and embarrass her when she is a teenager.

  3. Liz

    Elfe even kept a few words in her first language (non Amharic, she’s from Sidama) up until pretty recently. The only one left now is “oonoona” – as in “the baby drinks milk from the mommy’s oonoonas” – which makes it so much less embarrassing when we are out in public and she says stuff like “mommy, why does that MAN have such big oonoonas?” 😉

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