Checking in on Sarah

As you may recall, we are required to complete three visits with our caseworker in the first six months that Sarah is with us (after which we can move toward finalizing the adoption).

Since our caseworker (Cindy) is in Carlisle, we made plans to connect on our way home from the Bishop’s Retreat yesterday afternoon. We only had a few minutes to visit (and will continue the visit over the phone in the days ahead), but it was good to update Cindy on Sarah’s progress.

Cindy was particularly interested in three things: (1) Sarah’s health and physical development, (2) our back-to-work adjustment, and (3) Ethan’s adjustment to Sarah’s arrival.

At our first visit, we reported the pediatrician’s concern that Sarah’s physical development (i.e., motor skills) was a bit delayed. We were glad to report that those concerns no longer exist. Sarah has (at least) caught up. It wasn’t something we, or our caseworker, were really concerned about, knowing that, because Koreans hold their babies more in the early months, that their physical development schedule is simply different than ours.

It was also good to hear Cindy’s observations on Sarah’s emotional well-being. She noticed that Sarah was very observant, looking around the restaurant where we were meeting with no signs of fear (especially after coming directly from the Bishop’s Retreat where we had been around lots of people in an unfamiliar environment for the past 48 hours). Cindy said that’s simply not the case with some adoptees, at this early stage.

Cindy was also interested in know how Ethan was coming along in his adjustment in this new family situation. Joleen points to a time about three weeks before we returned to work where Ethan seemed to have turned a corner. I also mentioned last week’s experience.

Speaking of emotional well-being and adjustment, a book that has been on my reading pile for a long time (I actually read it many years ago) is John Gottman’s Raising an Emotionally-Intelligent Child. We need to read it mainly our benefit. I’ve always said, with Ethan, and now with Sarah, our main goal is not to mess them up too bad! 😀

Well, it’s hard to believe that today marks three months since we met Sarah in her foster home (and brought her into our lives the following day). It’s also hard to believe that we’ll soon be celebrating two other milestones — Ethan’s second “gotcha day” (February) and Sarah’s first birthday (March).

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