Tuesday, November 9, 2010

National Adoption Month - Will

Will post
(Will - age 2.5, taken within the first 10 days we were home).

"We can see clearly with our hearts.
What matters is invisible to the eye."

~ Le Petite Prince
Antoine de Saint - Exupery

Will post1

He was such a little guy then,
you can really see it from these first pictures in my post.
Will has grown in all ways,
physically, emotionally and socially.
Will post2

I'm not going to pretend everything was sunshine and rainbows that first year.
We had a rough start.
It was hard. And when I remember some of those hard times I still cry.
I cry for him and all that he lost,
and I keep in mind what he had gone through.
His entire world was turned upside down.
And maybe I cry for us (some) too with the transitions and chaos our family went through.

me Will portrait

Through it all we loved him.
Fiercely and stubbornly. We would never give up.
Eventually we got help with therapy and had him evaluated for a few things.
Beyond that wall of anger was a sweet and loving little boy with a caring heart.
We also found out that attachment wise he was doing extremely well,
but he had something called a Sensory Processing Disorder(SPD).
Will post3

Will has the medical special need of a repaired cleft lip and palate (Grade 3 bilateral).
His cleft issues have been virtually non existent, other than he gets speech therapy.
After 18 mos. of speech therapy, his speech and language have progressed to where he's easily understood by most people.
He's followed by the cleft team here in Madison
and will require another surgery on his palate probably around the age of 6-7.
What has been more of an issue is his SPD and figuring out how to help him the best we can.
Will is what's called a 'sensory seeker.'
He's a jumper, a mover and a crasher and needs the heavy work of lifting, pushing, pulling, playing and moving to calm and organize his nervous system.

Will post4

I have to talk about the most incredible people who've been placed into our lives for Will.
His teachers at his first school.
And now Karen, the head teacher of his class. She is truly an angel on earth who 'gets' him.
Karen also happens to be an adoptive mom to 2 young sons.
With Karen's guidance, his Speech therapist, Occupational therapist and several others who love and and care about our son dearly,
William is a shining star in school.

He's a happy, joyful little boy now.
Who loves life to it's fullest and all that it offers.

Will post5

Will is funny, loving, caring, empathetic and delightful.
He's an interesting little boy in that emotionally he's a bit immature,
but intellectually is gifted. Scary smart, he gets subtleties in humor,
and understands abstract ideas.
 He asks complex questions about life and death, science and God. He loves to learn.
When you meet him in person it's his larger than life personality that stands out. :)

We love this little guy to pieces.
I can't believe how far he's come in the almost 2 and a half years he's been with us.
This experience has made Dan and I stronger in our marriage and our commitment to our children.
We're the kind of people that can always see the big picture.
Not perfect parents, we are problem solvers and ones who ask for help.
We're also hands on parents and have a lot of fun with our kids.

William's full name is William Michael (Michael is his foster dad's name) Yousheng.
You Sheng means 'gift from above.'
William was born on Christmas Day.
And he surely is a gift to us!

Fall portrait WM
(Taken last week of my handsome little man).

I have another adoption month post coming(next week for sure)...just some thoughts.

17 kind words:

Debbie said...

So happy that Will has made so much progress! He certainly looks happy and healthy in his photos. Thanks for sharing this story too!

Jboo said...

Oh my - he was a little guy when you met him, wasn't he! Sometimes we parents really need some help to figure out how best to parent our kiddos. Yay for you and your family for figuring out the very best way to parent Will and loving him fiercly throughout. He is so adorable! You are blessed.


Laurie said...

This was a beautiful post! I enjoyed reading all about Will- especially how far he's come and how much he means to your family. God bless!

Love Letters To China said...

What a special little boy you have on your hands. It shows in your photos how happy he is and full of life. I think you and Dan are amazing parents. It takes a lot of love to parent a child with SPD. You should be so proud of yourselves. Can't wait to read more of your adoption posts. They are very inspiring.


Laura L. said...

What a wonderful post. So glad you have your wonderful little man. I know you are blessed beyond words.

China Dreams said...

What a great story!

Our four year old grandson has SPD-the extra sensitive type-and his little brother has adaptive behaviors (sensory seeking) as a result of big brother's condition. The four year old goes to an O.T. once a week and he loves it! I think it not an uncommon thing, and only now are we starting to find people who really understand it and know how to work with it.

Will has always captured my heart through your photographs. He just seems like such a full steam ahead little guy. I know that we adoptive parents are lucky, but he is lucky too, to have parents who didn't give up on him!

Kim said...

I am crying...
and you know why...
You keep me going in this long road to Isabella..
You are an AMAZING family and you have such BEAUTIFUL children..
Thanks for sharing..
Have a great week..

Number 6 and no more counting! said...

your "hands on parenting" shines through this little boy. The pictures of you and Dan with him show you glowing with happiness and pride.

My hat is off to you my friend. You are just a lovely Mommy!


Chasing Dreams Photography said...

wonderful post and so full of truth...the pictures are beautiful but my favorite is the last one...it is gorgeous!!! Will has come a long ways : ) SPD is not easy that I know...he is such a handsome little man!!!

Alyson and Ford said...

Wonderful story of Will. We have watched as he has grown and blossom into the funny and active child. You made me think of the first year with AA; we look back and realize how tough it can be; those adopting need to read the truth and you have helped others understand with this story. It is heart wrenching for the child and the parents. But what a wonderful sweet surprise when time heals and the child can really laugh and giggle.....Great post.

Alyzabeth's Mommy

Casey said...

what a joy!!! He is such a cutie!

Colin and Jill Canada said...

He is SUCH a sweetie. I just want to eat him up.

You are indeed blessed. And what incredible parents he has.


Wanda said...

Another beautiful post Gail. So honest and real and generous. It's easy to think that our kids are all sunshine and roses and there's some merit to keeping things positive but the truth helps and heals. Thank you for being the courageous parents in sharing this and for the incredible job you've done in meeting the needs of one very special soul.

Looking forward to the next in this series.!

Oh, and the last shot is perfect!!!I love it.

Kayce said...

The meaning of his name is so, so true! Love the picture of him with his daddy! He was such a little bit when he came home and look how he's blossomed! He is such a treasure!!

a Tonggu Momma said...

He is an amazing little boy. I loved reading every word of this. So many things I read about him reminds me of my Tongginator.

PletcherFamily said...

I just wanted to write and say we hear you! We also adopted a little boy from China with grade 3 cleft lip and palate, but he has many more needs beyond that. It has been a learning curve, but through it all, we have grown in our love for him. We are so proud of everything he has accomplished in the 3 years we have had him, and it is nice to see other families thriving the same way.

Truly Blessed said...

Oh, these kids...they are such fighters (and they are SO worth fighting for!).

Thank you for being true to Will, how blessed he is to have parents who are willing to fight for him. At some point in his life, he will rise up and call you "Blessed" - and you are!

Thank you for sharing Will's unfolding story.

© Aging with Grace and strong Will
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