I have my laptop back and have a few minutes to sit and write about how things are going. I know it has been a long time since I have updated the blog, for which I do apologize. Life gets very busy around here and I lose track of how much time has gone by.
I know the question on every body's mind is "how is Misha doing?" He is doing wonderful. He is a great fit for our family and is adjusting to life here even better than I expected. He just belongs here, and it feels like he has always been here. I know it is hard for some of you to understand having never experienced adoption. It is kind of like having a new baby. Before the baby is born you can't imagine what life is going to really be like with the baby. You don't know if the baby is going to be a screamer or quiet, sleep well or up all night, mild-tempered or easily agitated, or anything else. But then, after you have the baby, you can't imagine life without him or her. It is your new life and you wouldn't have it any other way. That is how it is with adoption, even with teenagers. You don't know what their personality is, what their issues are, what they will like or dislike about your home and family, or anything else. But then, you get them home and you can't imagine life without them. God supernaturally gives a mom and dad that parental love for an adopted child the same as he gives it to the biological mom and dad when their baby is born. Just like our adoption into the heavenly kingdom. God takes us from where we are when we accept him as our Lord and loves us with a love that is greater and deeper than we can ever comprehend. I love my children so much it takes my breath away to think about trying to express how much. But I know God loves them even more than I do. What an amazing God!!
Now, back to Misha. We have taken him for a few more doctor's appointments, which he hates. Ukraine has a lot more Tuberculosis than we do here in America so we had a TB skin test for Misha before school, which tested positive. After blood work and a chest x-ray they have decided that Misha does not have Tuberculosis but has been exposed to it and carries the "TB germ". So, we are giving him a medication that will kill any dormant germ in his system just make sure he can't develop TB at some point in the future from a past exposure. During the process of checking all of this out the doctor noticed that Misha has a pocket of air in his abdomen. According to the doctor, he has more air in his abdomen than he has in his lungs. He has built up this pocket of air slowly over a number of years. If someone were to have this much air collect over a short time they would be laying on the floor screaming in pain. But because Misha has built it up slowly over a number of years he does not feel pain, he is acclimated to having that air there. He just doesn't know how much better he is going to feel when that air is gone!! What this means is the surgery he had as an infant did not remove all of the defective part of his colon and he will have surgery to remove the remaining non-functioning part. I am waiting for a call from the gastroenterologist he has been referred to so we can schedule an office visit and begin this process. We were expecting to have food problems since Misha has a history of stomach discomfort but we really haven't had the problems we expected. He eats pretty much anything I cook and has only told me his stomach hurt a couple of times. He prefers Ukrainian bread over American bread, which is expected since the texture of their bread is so different than the texture of our bread. He also misses the great soups he had in Ukraine, which I just can't seem to cook just right. I have made Borscht, which I thought was good but it just wasn't as good as what they made at the center.
School has started. Misha seems to have a great group of teachers. They have all expressed an interest in making sure Misha is comfortable and able to learn in their class. The homework is going pretty well. I have only had to turn away one assignment so far, which is really great. We will be doing homework again a little bit later today. We have to write a letter so we will have to see how that goes. Nobody enjoys homework, but Misha seems to understand that he must do the homework and doesn't fight me over it. That makes things so much easier.
The language is coming along pretty well. Misha has learned enough words now to start putting sentences together. He can definitely make himself understood when he needs to, even if he has to look things up in his translation dictionary or on Google Translate. Being in school will help his language skills progress even more quickly now than during the summer when he was home most of the time. Josh helps with the translation on rare occasion when we really need something important translated and make sure he understands. Otherwise, we communicate directly with Misha and work on his (and our) communication skills.
Soccer practices should be starting soon. Misha is looking forward to playing soccer. He is concerned about having enough time to play soccer and keep up with his homework. Imagine that!! I told him that they practice for only a couple of hours a week and only play games on Saturdays so it should not interfere too much. I think it will be good for him to have a physical outlet to help keep his stress level down. One can drop a lot of stress running around kicking a ball with a group of friends.
We did manage to get the bats out of the house. Praising Jesus for that!! There are some animals we just aren't meant to share our home with. I am happy know they are gone.
All in all, I just want to say that we are incredibly blessed. God has melded us together so well it is as if the family has always been structured like this. The attitudes within the family and from others with strong influence in the family are positive and encouraging. I can't ask for things to go better. God has been good to us!! I am praying that Misha will make friends with godly boys and girls at school and at church. I am also praying that God's healing touch will be on Misha as we work towards getting his intestinal issues resolved. Please keep praying for us as we continue our journey that God has laid before us. God bless you all.