I’ve read so many places that you shouldn’t evaluate anything about your new family for six months, that now I have no idea who said it first. Was it a professional? I sure hope so, because I am taking those words to heart a lot of the time now. And using them as a reminder, really. On days like today, in particular. Zinashi was asked to share her toys at home today, and it didn’t go well. She, um, threw a magnetic hippo photo holder. Not at someone, thank heaven, but in frustration that another kid was touching her stuff. My friend, who was here with her son, assures me that it’s common at Zinashi’s age, and of course I wonder what effect suddenly having your own things has on a small person who has had nothing of her own before now. Do you think it might make the possessiveness a bit more intense? Will I ever stop wondering if what she is experiencing is typical or due mostly to her recent trauma or due entirely to her life circumstances? Probably not.
And right now, honestly, we’ve not yet made it to the three-months-as-family/two-months-home mark. It’s all still so new. Should I expect so much of her so soon? Or, honestly, of myself and Jarod as fledgling parents? I think no. Which is not to say that we don’t make clear how we behave in our family, and that we don’t, as Zinashi’s parents, strive to be respectful and gentle in all our dealings with our little lovely, but just that maybe I could be gentler in my assessment of how it’s going. It’s going fine for two months in. So she doesn’t understand that no one will take her toys from her house without her permission; okay, fine. It’s understandable. So she is having a harder time behaving herself these days; also, fine. We are overwhelmed by the holidays, even though there hasn’t been a ton to do. Well, scratch that. Three holiday gatherings last weekend alone is a ton to do. And we’ll have the same this weekend. That’s a lot of extra stimulation for our small girl. It will do me good to remember that, and to be gentler, and to be kinder, and to hold her tighter when she asks me to rock her to sleep.
These months will pass, and all too quickly. As much as I wish us on the other side of Christmas, not to mention on the other side of our first six months, there is a lot to savor now. Especially the aforementioned rocking her to sleep. I have a feeling that will disappear long before I’m ready. Long, long before I’m ready.