Saturday, June 4, 2011

Gabe's life

Today's visit with Gabe went fairly well.  He started to get tired at the end and began to cry. He then snuggled his face right against my chest and for the first time he stopped doing all of his nervous behaviors.

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I didn't want to let him go. I hate that we only get one hour twice a day with him.

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When we came for the second visit I decided that we should attempt to bring him outside. For him to get used to it and for us because sitting in the lobby is not enjoyable at all. The smell of urine and vomit is overwhelming and the constant screaming and moaning of the kids locked in their cribs is heart wrenching. 

I took Gabe in my arms and quickly walked outside as the Nannie was rambling off something in Russian. He of course was crying and panicked.  He will cry with the simplest movement, forget trying to stand up and walk with him. I don't know if he feels like he is going to fall, he doesn't like the change, I don't know but I sure wish I could help him. 

He continued to cry while clinging tightly to me, burying his face in my chest.  A few minutes later the Nannie came out with a bottle of what looked like tea. Gabe refused to take it. This is the second time he refused the bottle when it was just a liquid. It has me concerned about him getting dehydrated. 
The nanny kept rambling on about who knows what and then she took Gabe from me and put him in his stroller. She buckled him in and motioned for us to push him back and forth. All the while of course Gabe is upset. We kept shaking our heads no, knowing that the last thing he needs is fast movement. 
The nanny then takes Gabe and pushes him inside. She takes him out of the stroller and says, paka paka paka. I recognized that word meaning goodbye. We had only visited at this point for maybe 10 minutes. I looked at her, shook my head and said "nyet!" I took Gabe out of her arms and sat on the bench with him.  After several minutes he calmed down. He ended up in Daddy's arms and by the end of the visit I had to get up and walk out (we were past due for our visit with Levi) to get Guy to hand him back to the nannies. 

We have a hard time keeping ourselves from being angry. We look at our 6 year old and wonder how anyone can allow such trauma.

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We feel his spine and hip bones poking out and want so badly to feed him. It's all we can do to sit there and not get up with Gabe in our arms and run out of that place to freedom. I can't imagine having to spend my life in the condition that he has. Starving, scared, dirty. Hours and hours enduring the wails and cries of the other children in his room. 

Soon Gabe.

Soon you will know what a full tummy feels like. 

Soon you will sleep in a comfy,clean bed of your own.

Soon you will feel safe in YOUR HOME that is filled with laughter, and fun. 

You will soon know the love of family and friends. 

Soon. 

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It shouldn't have taken 6 years for you to experience this. We are so sorry.

This is what a visit can look like. He actually calmed down really fast here. Typically it takes longer to get him to relax. We found that if we sit him facing out and don't put our arms around him right away, giving him space, he will eventually feel safe.



This is his reaction every time we move him. And yes, his Daddy thinks he is a comedian. We take Gabe's condition very seriously but we found that we have to laugh or we would go mad



His food. 6 years old and this is it.

26 comments:

Stephanie @ Ralphcrew June 4, 2011 at 3:28 PM  

You guys are doing really great. I know it's hard to hand him back to those people every time, but it's not much longer.

Jenny June 4, 2011 at 4:19 PM  

I can't imagine how heartbreaking it must be to hand him back every day - but hang in there, you'll be breaking him out of there very soon. He is just too adorable, and he will blossom once you get him home !!

Jennifer June 4, 2011 at 4:48 PM  

Praying so very hard for your sweet Gabe! Praying also for strength, for both you and your husband!!! Hang in there! :)

Becca June 4, 2011 at 4:52 PM  

Oh Lindy! I can just feel your pain in handing him back over. The only thing I can say to encourage you is that at least you don't have to leave the country and come back, right?? (I mean, I think that's the case, right?) There are many adoptive families who have to leave for several months. God is answering our prayers about him finding his peace in you -- and sometimes I just think that when Levi and Gabe get together -- along with those two cuties at home -- combined with the gentle love of mom, dad, and big sis -- miracles are gonna happen for Gabe!!!

Leah June 4, 2011 at 5:11 PM  

Praying for you & Gabe! My heart breaks for him.

The Monier Family June 4, 2011 at 5:26 PM  

Keep up the awesome work! You, Guy & Genesis are doing so extremely well with Gabe! Before you know it he will SMILE as soon as he sees you!! We will continue to lift you all up in prayer. LOVE IS WINNING!!!!!!!

christinascott23 June 4, 2011 at 5:30 PM  

He seems to be doing much better. Hang in there.

Claire June 4, 2011 at 5:45 PM  

Hey Guy and Lindy!
I think its amazing the condition that Gabe and Levi are in. It takes Strong people with Faith to go in and do what you are doing! I hope you get your little guys back to Florida sooon.
Much Love,
Claire Walker

Emi June 4, 2011 at 6:08 PM  

It's not much longer until you can take him home! I'm praying for you and for little Gabe and also for Levi.
PS: Genesis looks like the sweetest older sister! so tender and mature

Brandee June 4, 2011 at 7:28 PM  

Oh sweet Gabe! I know it is hard and your try to make the most of it! Bless him and his self stimulating, you can just see his need to slow down and relax and he doesn't have the skills to handle things. I cannot wait for you to get that sweet boy home. I look forward to the change that I know God wants to make in him through HIS family. You and he will make great strides I just know it. Many blessings to ALL of you! Lifting Gabe, Levi and their future family to the Father, in Jesus name, Amen!

Gwen S June 4, 2011 at 7:47 PM  

Praying for you!!!!! I have been praying for you since Christmas with Julia's blog.

RichFam June 4, 2011 at 7:55 PM  

So completely heartbreaking to watch! But even still... it is encouraging to see that he is warming up to you, even ever so slowly. :o)

David and Carolyn June 4, 2011 at 9:10 PM  

Your love and determination shines through even when the nannies are yelling at you. I can relate Lindy. I've been scolded a few times too but just stand my ground :)
May you always remember the great journey of faith the Lord is taking you through.

liz kulp June 4, 2011 at 9:57 PM  

he doesn't like movement transitions... when home I would consider getting him checked for inner ear dysfunction, does he also fuss when his body is still but his head is moved?...I think you said he has rapid eye movement too? He could have some sort of vertigo which makes him feel sick/dizzy/etc when he's not still?? just an idea...might be way off... could just be that he's not used to the stimulation. liz also in U, kulpinchina@yahoo.com

Erin June 5, 2011 at 7:21 AM  

I don't know you all personally but I am praying for your family as you go through this!

Gretchen June 5, 2011 at 8:33 AM  

God bless you for this rescue, it was obviously the eleventh hour, hang in there, he is already doing so good with you and to think, he has never had this kind of attention in his entire life, I think he's doing AMAZING.

Gwen S June 5, 2011 at 9:06 AM  

I've been praying for your family ever since Julia posted about Gabe in December. It is heartbreaking to see his situation, but even in a few days it seems like he is getting used to you. I will pray fervently today that he be protected until you can get him home!
I have a bio son w/DS and also another 2 kids, one adopted. Blessings to you and your family!

Tesney June 5, 2011 at 10:07 AM  

Lindy...watching these videos is just like watching Kirill. When we all get home, I really want to talk to you. It's amazing how much their mannerisms and reactions are alike. When they are loved and fed, it's going to be amazing to watch them blossom! I cannot wait!

Rochelle June 5, 2011 at 11:06 AM  

Praying for you guys, so thankful he has warmed up to you. Praying for his transition to home! I know it can't come soon enough.

Anonymous June 5, 2011 at 11:28 AM  

Praying for you and your little sons-to-be...you are on a mission, absolutely, and your tenderness and intuitive loving care for Gabe are exactly what he needs. I'm sorry one of his caregivers was "difficult", but it's good to see others who are affectionate with him - that's a start, at least. How this little boy's world is going to open up - and you'll provide the security and assurance he needs to explore it.

Blessings to you..

Susan in Ky
Cousin to 2 once from U....

Loving the Mommy Life June 5, 2011 at 11:56 AM  

Praying for you all. Praying for his health and for him to feel that safety of home soon.

Nan and Dan June 5, 2011 at 6:58 PM  

you are doing great!! you are learning what he likes and doesn't like, how to calm him and love him :) thank god for you guys :)
soon little one!!
hugs!

Lisa (DanielsMommy) June 6, 2011 at 6:18 AM  

My heart is in a million pieces. My son (with Ds) will be 6 tomorrow. I can't imagine what this poor child has endured. I wanted you to know we are praying for your sweet dear Gabe.

Kelly June 7, 2011 at 10:50 PM  

Oh sweet boy... You are adorable! I am so sorry you are scared, but you are about to experience the total love of mom and dad!

*** On a postive note, my Yana, who we adopted at age 7 1/2 years still is bottle fed. She is a mess with it, a lot of the food comes out. Her suck and swallow are poor. Your little guy actually looks very promising on his ability to eat! She's been home almost a year, and no progress yet on anything other than her bottle!~ :)

Hope Harder June 11, 2011 at 3:36 AM  

"I will not leave you comfortless, I will come to you." (Jesus)
Thankyou for putting skin on who Jesus is and being his hands and feet.

Anonymous June 21, 2011 at 1:46 AM  

Poor Gabe.
Judging by his behavior, I'm guessing that it will be an extremely long and stressful ride home. Poor thing is apt to lose it with all the new and unfamiliar sights, sounds and sensations.

I wonder if there's a way to medicate him for the travel home? I'm not a big proponent of medicating kids, but it seems like this would be more than appropriate. I know I'd pick sedation drugs or anti-anxiety meds over terror any day.

I will pray for you -- it looks like you're definitely going to need all the help you can get. It's so sad to see how profoundly damaged and traumatized he is.
Best,
Ellie C.

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