This first semester of school has been a blur considering all of the above. The girls have done GREAT so far this school year, in large part due to our friend and tutor who comes to our house two days a week and helps keep school crazy sane. I couldn't have done it without her. We've had some huge adjustments with having two middle schoolers and Mei Mei requiring extra therapy this year for a learning issue we found at the end of last year. Did you know adopted children have a 50% higher likelihood of having some kind of learning difference? Yea, well, we are 3/3. We make it work and do what's necessary but it does take a ton of extra energy and effort both on the teachers part and the child's part. I am VERY grateful for patient teachers! Blondie played volleyball and basketball for our school this fall. In January she begins club volleyball season for the first time. Nature Girl continues to volunteer at our local Science Center and LOVES being able to show her knowledge to the young kids that come through each week. Mei Mei is still training gymnastics and whenever she happens to have a day off guess where you can find her? Yep! Upside down. It's in her blood. Her birth family must have been a traveling acrobat group or something. Heh.
Christmas is in FOUR DAYS!! So hard to believe! We are knee deep in preparations and some much needed FUN! Cleaning up my mom's estate during all this has been something not so pleasant yet necessary. Much of my time this semester has gone to decisions, lawyers, more decisions and yes....grieving. This Christmas is definitely not going to be the same without her presence or her 1000 questions about what to get everyone for Christmas. Not gonna lie....this year is hard.
By far the biggest adjustment in the last two months is my recovery from the car accident. It is a SLOW process...and is cramping my style. Although Mei Mei and I walked away from the accident (the other driver was cited for negligence and taken to the hospital with injuries sustained from the accident).... we both had concussions and I have ongoing back/neck chronic pain issues. My car was totaled (a Suburban), with the bright spot being I am now driving a brand-spanking new one. Again....grateful. I am currently in rehab working to regain use caused muscle/tendon/ligament damage of my entire back. Because my job at the school required much physical strength, I will not be returning this year. This makes me really sad....but at the same time to be honest just getting through the days now requires a fortitude I have never had to rely upon. Everyday I am realizing how God protected both Mei Mei and I and how I can choose joy in spite of constant pain and what is not turning out to be a quick recovery. Joy is a choice. I will even go on to say that it can be used as a weapon to fight against despair when your body just wants to quit. This mom will not give up. This mom is grateful to be able to fight knowing the accident could've been so much worse.
Mei Mei is FINALLY doing better. This was hard y'all. It was hard watching her struggle with concussion issues, mental and physical fatigue and almost a depression. She is back now full force and for that we give thanks. The Doc has been my hero through all of this. He has stepped up to the plate when I just couldn't. In fact....just yesterday he pushed me through DisneyWorld in a wheelchair so we could continue our traditions knowing I would be unable to hold up an entire day walking.
Here are a few pics of our last few days. Fighting for joy....and WINNING the battle!
|Cinderella's Castle during Christmas. Disney is truly a magical place and the nighttime shows are not to be missed during the season. The girls had fun seeing Anna and Elsa turn the castle into a frozen fairytale!|
|We were able to go to the beach an entire week during Thanksgiving. This was a turning point for me for my recovery. The beach has a way of doing that.|
|She can't sit still. Ever. Here we are waiting in line. This is Mei Mei 's first year competing as an optional gymnast with a trip to Las Vegas to compete in January.|
|Tonight's fun isn't shopping or wrapping (or cleaning....haha.)We are celebrating Christmas and NO SCHOOL by having a sleepover for six. They get along so well. Right now they are into Jedi swords and Minecraft. And food. Lots and lots of food.|