I think I see how Eli sees our world...busy and fast-paced, on the go all the time. He asked me if all of America only talks about food and money? I said, "no. I don't think so, why?" He pointed to the radio where a financial planning commercial was playing, right into a food ad, back into a "make more money!" ad, returning to a "eat this and save money" ad...oh, boy. I turned to my favorite Christian station.
We find ourselves apologizing for the way we do things all the time. Yet, we are proud of our country and feel blessed to live here. I describe living with Eli like this...you know how you always say "well, when we were kids, we were more respectful and obedient, thrifty, not wasteful and way more considerate...and, with not the conveniences or technology. That's the world he is from. There is no explaining a punishment or over-praising of accomplishments. There is no baby-ing, coddling or passivity. This child understands and respects authority, discipline and hard-work.
We turned a milestone in the past couple of weeks. The honeymoon was over...for both of us...and reality set in. Mom and dad mean what we say and there is no room for argument...just like the good ole' days. And guess what? He gets it. Now, we are a family! During the adoption process, one AGCI family said to me, "parent like you did your own." Even with an adopted child, we learned that kids are kids and some behaviors across the world are equally unacceptable. It was great advice for this transition period.
We love this little boy, who keeps us running and is so full of wide-eyed excitement. We took him to the Minnesota State Fair this week, where we thought the abundance of food would be a turn-off to him, but it turned out to be women smoking cigarettes...everywhere! He tried deep fried cheese curds and had his first sno-cone. He rode the giant slide and won a basketball at the basketball throw! This typically winds down a Minnesota summer for us. Very soon, we will be bundled up for cold fall nights and football!
We are nearing two months home in just 4 more days! It's so hard to believe all we have taken in and how much he has learned in that amount of time. Fall soccer is underway and he is loving it! He now understands most everything we say and is able to communicate in sentences of three to four words. He knows colors, shapes, his full name and various vocabulary words.
Finally, yes. Eli will start school September 8th in the 4th grade and is both excited and apprehensive. Grandma and Grandpa, from California, will visit this weekend and meet Eli for the first time, and be here for the first day of school! It was a tough decision, but he is very social and needs to start making friends. We pray that all goes well!
Big Round World, Small Square Box
5 months ago