baby development

Thursday, March 29, 2007

My Silly Cookie

Cookie was 15 months old on the 20th, so I figured I'd post here some of the funnier (or just plain cool) things she does.

She takes our keys and runs to the front door and tries to put one (or more) keys into the doorknob - then turns around and says "Bye bye" or "Byyyeeeeee" over and over again.

She loves being naughty, and if she is caught being naughty, she does whatever she is doing with rapid-fire pace and much gusto and laughter until you come and sweep her up and away from the scene of the crime (like splashing in the cat's water bowl, or pulling the TP off the roll).

She loves reading books, and every night after bathtime, she goes over to the bookcase in our bedroom where her books are kept, and she "selects" a few by then coming over and throwing them onto our bed. When she has "selected" enough, she puts her arms up to be picked up for story time. If said book is not as scintilating and she thought it might have been, she'll wriggle down off the bed and go get a different book. This process can go on for a long time every night until her father or I have to cut off story time.

She has a few favorite books like "Hello Peter Rabbit" and Baby Animals - all of which are touch-and-feel books, as well as a few other books with pictures of real animals. Her favorite animals are the cow and the duck. At the cow picture, she will say "Moooooo", but not "cow", and she can correctly identify "duck", but not the sound yet. Mooing at the picture of the cow seems to bring her much joy.

Speaking of joy, Cookie has a new word. When she gets REALLY excited about something she or someone/something else does that amazes her, she proclaims loudly…“Ohwowyay” – all one word – but clearly a combination of OH! WOW! YAY! But it comes out as “Ohwowyay” every single time. I, of course, think it is the coolest word ever.

Some words that she knows very, very well are mama and dada (or Da-Doo, depending on her mood), cat or kittty-kitty (also depending on her mood), dog, duck, bah-baah (basketball), baby, ball, bah-bah, hi, bye-bye, night-night, uh-oh, and "ohwowyay". She has also recently learned "no-no" which she only says when she does something wrong - like when I had told her not to put something in her mouth and she then did it quickly and shook her head back and forth and said "no-no" (grinning the entire time, of course).

The body part she loves the most is "belly button" - which she will gladly point to (and stick her finger in) if you ask her "Where's Cookie's belly button?"

If you ask her to do something, she will invariably do it with a great deal of understanding. For example, if she drops her sippy cup, I can say "Cookie, pick up your cup please" and she'll stop and go back and pick it up and bring it to me. I can also ask her to bring me something or come over to me, and she'll understand and comply.

When she gets very excited (which is often) she stomps her feet and flaps her arms and looks like she is about to take off in flight. She's got a fabulous grin, and all 4 molars now, and facial expressions that are over-the-top on the dramatic scale.

She's got a great sense of humor, and loves to play peek-a-boo with the shower curtain or anything else she can find. She plays basketball with her daddy, and he picks her up so she can "dunk" the ball (she prefers the huge full-size basketball to her little ones).

She eats anything - and doesn't pass up food very often. She loves yogurt, ham, turkey, all kinds of cheese, crackers, spaghetti, rice, all kinds of veggies (especially brocolli), and would fight you for your Chinese food.

Any box or package that comes to the house is HERS - by her own definition. SHE gets to open it and then deem it worthy or unworthy of her attention (even if it is clearly something for Michael or I like a book or CD, or organic sunflower seeds. The box is usually way more cool than the contents.

At her doctor visit last week, she was just over 30 inches tall, and a little over 24 pounds. She's right at the 50th percentile, so she's doing great. So far, ear infections are the most dreadful thing we've had to deal with health-wise, so we really can't complain.

15 months *deep sigh*

I can't believe it's gone so quickly.

She loves with great passion and enthusiasm, and acts just like her mommy and daddy.

Just the the other day, I was talking to Michael and pretending to choke someone, and she saw me do that and laughed and made the exact same gesture.

And THIS is just the beginning.

Wednesday, March 28, 2007


In our house, Chinese takeout is a staple. It is as common as milk, bread, and cereal. The best part of this is that all three of us love it - and Cookie perhaps loves it the most. When the brown paper sack comes into the house, Cookie wants to be the one to tear it open where they have stapled it shut. She then takes the various bags and boxes and sauces and places each one on the coffee table (where, of course, all good Chinese food is meant to be eaten - while watching Jeopardy).

About a month ago, we were finished eating and Cookie was still gnawing on half an eggroll and running around the livingroom with it. I announced it was bathtime, and she eagerly went over to climb the stairs (eggroll still in hand). Since this was not unusual, I allowed her to carry her precious eggroll into the bathroom.

I turned on the water in the tub, and she began ceremoniously throwing her tub toys into the water one by one. So, there she was finally - naked and gnawing on an eggroll waiting for the tub to fill up. I turned my back for a few seconds to grab a towel and washcloth from underneath the sink when all of a sudden Cookie let out a blood-curdling scream. As I spun around I found she was standing right where she had been, but was peering hoplessly into the tub and crying. Why, you might ask?

Well, there, floating in the middle of the tub with her toys amidst the bubbles was...

her eggroll.

Apparently in her haste to throw her toys into the tub, she also threw in the eggroll amidst the joy.

The soggy yellow lump floated in the bubbles and fragments of cabbage and pork bits bobbed about as a fine oil slick covered the water.

I fished out the soggy eggroll and threw it in the trashcan next to the toilet as Cookie walked over to it and appropriately mourned the loss of her eggroll. I had to tell her it was garbage now because she had thrown it into the tub. She was sad, but in some way satisfied that it did not die a horrible death drowing in the tub.

And, yes, she bathed that night in eggroll-tainted water which I tried to mask with more bubble bath. Far be it from me to waste a tub full of warm water.

Saturday, March 17, 2007

Doing Better

Ah, home alone for a few minutes while Michael is out with Cookie picking up something for what he calls "Anniversa-palooza" weekend. Too cute I tell ya.

I feel good - posted 20 NWT 0-6 month old baby outfits on my yahoo cheapcycle - all outfits I bought for Cookie and she never even got to wear. I'm only asking $5 an outfit - these are like top, pants, and sweater sets - or pants and top together. I think that's a pretty good deal considering most were at least triple that price and e-bay shipping charges would be at least $5 alone. I'm sure hoping someone just decides to take it all. I offered all 20 outfits for $75. Man, I could use the money - and I'm hoping someone in the area decides it's a good chance to stock up. If you have a yahoo cheapcycle group in your area, I strongly encourage you to join. It's like an on-line yard ale, and I've been able to be pretty efficient selling Cookie's infant items - even a whole box of bottles. Every time I get rid of something, it's a cool feeling getting the extra space as well as a few extra bucks. There is also a yahoo group called freecycle - everything offered has to be free - mostly it's junk, but I've found people often want what you plan to take to donation-ville. Last week, I gave away 2 huge bags of various cooking magazines I'd been storing up for goodness-only-knows what reason. Viola! Instant space, and someone got some great magazines for free.

I'm going to take a couple of days off work next week - prob. Thurs. and Fri. and just spend some much needed time to myself. Then Fri. afternoon, we'll go get our taxes done. Hopefully, with having a foster child all year as well as having just bought the house at the beginning of 06, we'll be in great shape. We still haven't received any adoption subsidy for Mia yet, and whenever that starts, it will be a big help. We're not suffering, but I'm trying to be careful nonetheless.

Oh, speaking of being careful...I turned down an opportunity to teach a class over the May term - I would have made about 2500, but it would have meant I'd be teaching M-Th nights for a month (6-8:30 each night). That would have me leaving home every morning at 8, and not getting home until at least 9. Missing my newly-adopted daughter for a month? Um, not worth the money. Michael said it was fine with him, and that it would be no problem for him to do the evening routine alone. That's probably what made it so easy - with him, I have nothing to prove, and I rarely get an argument. That's pretty nice.

Well, the dynamic duo are home now - ya'll have a great weekend.

Thursday, March 15, 2007

Back on the Wagon

Two weeks ago, I got my 20 pound star at Weight Watchers (meaning: that's how many pounds I had lost). Then, life hit hard with the adoption and celebrating, my big fat ugly sinus infection, Cookie's latest ear infection, and my post-adoption/March Madness blues. I've been eating more than usual, not "counting my points", and just not caring much about the end result. I haven't even been to a meeting in two weeks.

That all ends tonight - I'm going to the WW meeting and facing the music. Hey - I couldn't have gained all 20 pounds back in 2 weeks! Besides, I've come too far on this journey to give up. I've also continued to try to carry out the other 2 resolutions I made at the beginning of the year - I look better when I come to work, and I've been getting rid of clutter and excess "stuff" in my home.

Even tonight after the meeting, someone is coming by the house to get a box of Cookie's clothes I sold for $15. Hey - that's a partial payment for swimming classes this summer! And it gives the kid more space in her room to run around and not trip over boxes of stuff. Two days ago, I gave away an enormous comforter-sized bag of assorted kid stuff - from infant to toddler sizes. I guess I had been saving things "just in case" we got another child. But we're definately going to wait a while, and we've decided to part with her clothes and buy new ones in the event another child comes along. We can't put our names on the list for a newborn until at least June 5th when Michael is out for the summer and could take care of the baby while I work. We really would have a tough time otherwise with no daycare that could take the child until its about 2 months old anyway.

I'm looking forward to eating better again. I always feel better when I'm on track. And...the thing that perhaps set me off most (and, contrary to logic, sent me in the wrong direction) was that my mom was diagnosed with adult onset diabetes. It is particularly bad, and she's doing testing now to establish a baseline and trying to control it with diet as much as possible to limit the medication she will have to take. She also had a bad EKG, and will have to undergo further testing as well. Add to that...she just got back from testing and is now 2 years cancer free after having survived breast cancer, a lumpectomy, and massive radiation treatments.

And, she's not the image you might see of a woman with these problems. She's only 59. She's petite, only slightly overweight, doesn't drink or smoke, and leads a life with what I would consider to have moderate levels of stress - though in the past 5 years, it's been a doozy. My gradmother (her mother) died about 5 years ago, and things with mom just went from bad to worse. I think Cookie is the best thing that could have happened to her - I just wish they were closer so she could see her.

I know I need to do all I can to make sure that I at least lessen my chances of developing diabetes. Getting back on the wagon is the first step, really. The next is that I've got to lessen my sugar intake. See, I'm pretty bad about using my points on things that as high in sugar (in addition to the fruits and veggies and lean meats). I'm brilliant at staying exactly on the program and loosing weight and still eating chocolate and sherbet and a few cookies each day. That's really got to stop if I am to be as healthy for my Cookie as I can be.

I don't want to loose my mom at an early age. We've had our problems, but more than I need her, I think my dad does. I really hope she's got good doctors.

They are coming up the weekend of April 15th for Cookie's baptism. I think she'll be delighted to see them again.

Wednesday, March 14, 2007

Post-Adoption Depression

Though I didn't give birth, I'm certain now that there exists a post-adoption depression. I'm not sure it is a parallel to post-partum depression, but it's there and I recognize it. I feel it in my inability to sleep (hence, I'm at the computer at midnight while hubby and Cookie sleep soundly). I feel it in my lethargy, my desire to eat everything in sight, my irritability, my complexion, and my scattered thoughts.

The build-up to this point has been monumental to say the least. Getting here took more work than any college degree I've earned (and I've earned 3). But in spite of it all, I'm still the same person - but with the overwhelming sense that I should somehow be...better. I wish I were more savvy, more in touch with the world, more energetic, and happier. I also wish I had the sense of contentment I thought I would feel.

Even thought I knew that having (getting, rather) a child would not complete my world and make everything sunny, I don't think I could have fully escaped the trappings of the messages that say otherwise. And the process in and of itself lures you into feeling that way - like if you run the race and are ragged and beat up that in the end you''ll emerge with this perfect family and you will smile that Crest smile and look like a family in a magazine.

I don't look anything like a magazine ad. In fact, I just returned my hair to it's quasi-original color after making it more-or-less the color of a nectarine.

I am exhausted, and yet I cannot sleep.

Cookie...God bless her...STILL does not sleep through the night at 15 months. She wakes up around 2 am with a very wet diaper and wants a drink. I could deny her the drink after the diaper change, but that won't change the fact that she still has a wet diaper that ticks her off. To top it off, the love of co-sleeping is beginning to fade. She's no longer the sweet baby that doesn't move sleeping in her nest at the head of the bed. She's a big toddler who thrashes about in her sleep and likes to kick you in the ribs or wake up and throw her entire chubby body over your head and shoulders while she whimpers in her sleep. It's going to have to change, but it seems there is always something preventing it from being a "good time" - like cutting yet another dozen teeth (it seems), or another ear infection. At the moment, we have both, which lead to her standing up in the tub during her entire bath and crying very loudly while big fat tears streamed down her cheeks and snot streamed down past her lips. Eeww.

OK, this might get to the "real" reason I'm depressed, so I'll just get it out there since I'm already up and typing away:

It's 5 days (or 6 depending on what you count - long story) away from my (our) 3rd wedding anniversary. And yes, it's March F-in Madness. And yes, I am as bitter about it as I have been for the last 3 years. Yes, I spent most of my wedding nights watching basketball. Yes, it will be the same this year. I hate March. I hate it only slightly more than opening week of baseball, which is then closely followed by the insanely long baseball playoffs to get to the World Series.

Yes, I am a sports widow. In every sense of the word.

And we never had a honeymoon, and we've never taken a vacation that did not involve saying with family or a business conference. And it pisses me off. And March makes me think about it...again.

I'll get through this month, and Cookie will get over her latest ear infection and yeast rash caused by the antibiotics...and life will go on.

And I feel guilty even writing such trivial, selfish things. I mean, Lisa's down near K-town still grieving, and many of my IF blogger buddies would give everything to have a perfect little daughter like I have - even if it meant taking the crap-ola of sports. I know I'm lucky, and blessed, and that I should be sleeping soundly. But I still wish "things" were better.

Maybe next March I'll just have to go to come visit some of ya'll instead of sittin' here waiting for the madness to end.


I'm not spell-checking. I'm too tired. I'm gonna go see if the Tylenol PM has worked yet. I think I have restless leg syndrome. Of course, every commercial I see makes me think in some way "hey - I think I have that". Maybe I really DO have an enlarged prostate...


Monday, March 12, 2007

another test post

again, I am posting this from home on Thursday, May 17th at 7:48 pm, but I will post it as a fictitious time and date to illustrate blogger's abilities

Thursday, March 08, 2007


Cookie has become fascinated with her “bits and pieces” while in the bathtub – frequently just “making sure it’s still there”, patting it, etc.

Well, last night when naming body parts, she poked her belly button and I said “belly button” and then she poked her “bits and pieces”…so I said…


To which she happily replied…


I said, no honey, it’s not a papaya. It’s a “va-gine-ah”.

To which she laughed LOUDLY and happily proclaimed


She was pleased she had named her papaya.

Tuesday, March 06, 2007

Do We Dare?

Warning: long post ahead filled with many often incomplete thoughts. Sorry friends...if I loose you, I understand.

I've got to get this out. I've got to get to a place where I don't think about it every day. I've got to stop bringing it up so much with Michael. I've got to have peace about it.

The "it" is this: Do we foster to adopt again? If so, when?

Michael and I have agreed on this much: If we decide we want another child, we want to get that child by fostering to adopt - not by private domestic or international adoption. We have also agreed that if we did this, that we would request an infant, and not request a specific gender. Michael said he does not have his heart set on needing to have a son. In addition, I keep having this thought about requesting to be put on the list to take another baby born cocaine addicted.

It feels crazy.

Cookie is all ours now. Why on earth would a sane person knowingly put themselves right back in the insanity of the foster care system - again - after they were finished?

Cookie's case was EASY. I cannot emphasize that enough. She came into care with every red flag imaginable - drug addicted mother who had been an addict for 8 years minimum, an incarcerated father who would be there for 9 years minimum, no family members without history with CPS themselves, prior adoptions of siblings who had been adopted from foster care after involuntary TPR, and a history of abuse so bad I cannot even put it into words. Cookie was born and placed with us at 2 days old. The goal was always adoption and not reunification. There were 2 visits with her birthmom. TPR was in the process by the time she was 6 months old. It would have gone faster had her birthmom gone AWOL from drug treatment and could not be served papers - bringing in the need for a warning lawyer and months more holdup. TPR was official October 31st. Before the end of the year, we had an adoption worker. We had a lawyer and a GAL with lightening speed, and a court date in a very short amount of time. She was adopted before she was 15 months old. This is relatively unheard of without voluntary TPR from both parents.

I know we would most likely not have this same ease again. I know we would have visits with birthparents, and even relationships with them to navigate. I know we would probably have children come and go before another child stayed. I know this is the job of foster parents.

While we hurt each time a child left our house, it was bearable. The pain of all that has vanished for me - completely. I wonder where they are and how they are doing, and I pray they are safe and happy and healthy - but I do not grieve. The grief was short-lived each time. That I know we can survive as long as we have each other and our daughter.

I worry about the effect on Cookie, and how she would deal with children coming and then leaving. She would miss them. At this age, she would not understand. I know adults who grew up having foster kids coming and going while they were growing up, and they seem better people for having had the experience. But still I worry. I don't want anything that I do intentionally to inflict hurt on my daughter. If I can prevent unnecessary pain, I will.

I worry about caring for two children, and how exhausted we are sometimes with just one. Cookie is a demanding and brilliant little girl. She plays hard, and investigates everything. She engages us in her play and needs a great deal of social interaction. From the time we get home at 5:30 on weekdays until we go to bed, she is non-stop action (or cuddling). I don't know how having two children would change that. How would we even have time to make dinner, pee, take a shower, or talk to each other. Would we risk loosing our marriage relationship in light of addressing the needs of two children?

Now, I realize in writing this that it is funny. My parents had two children. My in-laws had 3. Heck, Julie has two foster daughters under the age of 2 - and she is a single mom and doesn't even gripe about it!! The people adopting right before us in court have a total of 7 children in various stages of TPR and adoption from foster care - and they had to order and drive a 10-passenger van. This all makes my worry about two children seem silly. But I think I worry for good reason.

Michael and I had a vision of the life we wanted for ourselves, and frankly even the life we have now doesn't look anything like what we imagined (and this is very good on many levels). The life I imagined was with a fairly affluent white man with a career as a doctor, lawyer, etc., an upper class lifestyle, and two lovely biological children that would attend private school and go on to accomplish great things. I would have my career as a professor and writer and my research would be cited around the world.

Michael envisioned a life of solitude and great success. He saw himself remaining single, and writing a great deal. He saw limited interaction with friends and colleages, and being a "rock star" in his field. He did not want children, and had a difficult time comprehending why anyone would want children (and that is stating it nicely). We fought and argued over this a lot before we married, and even after we married. Michael believed that family obligations would prevent him from accomplishing all he wanted to do in his career. Which brings me to the next worry...

Tenure and promotion will be rearing its ugly head soon. How soon is yet to be determined as Michael has retained the option to use years toward tenure from his time as a professor at Ohio University. He could go up as soon as 2008, or as late as 2009 with decisions coming then as late as 2010. To a woman who is soon to be 36, that seems like an eternity for the 'ol biological clock. I really don't want to be over 40 and adopting another child. It's not that 40 is that old, or that many women don't birth children at that age, it's just something I'd try actively to avoid. It's a preference. My mother isn't even 60 yet, and is a breast cancer survivor, recently diagnosed with adult onset diabetes, a degenerative problem with her feet, and now a bad EKG. Give me a break! I really don't want to be dealing with health problems and a kid going through college angst at the same time. Yeah, I know there are no guarantees, but that doesn't mean I don't want to do everything possible to prevent that.

So, Michael really would want to wait until he has tenure and promotion somewhere before we go through this again. And I understand why. It's time consuming and tiring to the point of exhaustion. It's political and stressful and inherently personal. It's a necessary evil in what he does for a living. Yet, other people somehow manage. He has a colleague here who is having his second child in May and will be going up for tenure this fall. Obviously, people do it somehow. And they end up seemingly OK.

Money's not really an issue. We have Cookie's adoption subsidy that helps out a lot. Michael got a salary increase, and we both make a decent living. Our foster care supports here are tremendous, and we would once again have daycare paid for as well as WIC for formula, and the per diem that actually helps you pay for clothing, diapers, and toys. There is no reason we could not afford another child. And space is not an issue either. Our home is a 3 br, 2.5 bath - and Cookie's room is big enough for two small children. If we happened to get a boy, in a pinch Michael could give up his bedroom being his home office and move the computer desk into our huge bedroom. When kids got old enough to need their own rooms, we'll have enough to buy a bigger house at that point.

Obviously, our life will be full and complete and happy if it ends up being just the three of us. Still, I wonder about Cookie growing up an only child - especially given that we have absolutely no family anywhere near us. Even having a brother or sister seems better than just having the two of us all the time - and no one children to play with at home.

*sigh* I just don't know. It seems like every day I want to put our home back on the list for calls, but every day there seems to be so many worries.

I just feel like we have such a good life, and so much to give - and I see and hear about the hundreds of children coming into care every day, about half of whom will never be able to go back home or even to relatives.

I want another child.

But do I want to endure what I know full well I would have to in order to get there?

And is there enough of Michael and I to go around?

I don't feel like I have forever to decide.

My parents would think I was absolutely nuts. Knowing that makes it seem worth it right there (evil snicker).

I hope I get more clarity soon.

Saturday, March 03, 2007

A Family Forever

As of yesterday at about 4:30, the three of us were declared a forever family. While it felt great, and we were all smiles, there was nothing that suddenly washed over any of us. Judge Wonderful simply declared to the world what we have been all along.

Judge Wonderful asked if we truly understood our responsibilities and that this was forever - never to be undone. "Absolutely!" we replied. She asked if we were requesting to change her name, and at the very end she declared us parents of Mia Elizabeth Ourlastname. We waited for a few minutes for our lawyer to get the final paperwork, and we got our copy of the declaration and went to celebrate with friends over dinner, drinks, and a Happy Adoption Day cake. It was a very nice afternoon.

The photos aren't splendid, as Mia is cutting 2 molars and 2 other teeth as well , and was actually running a pretty high fever. She was pretty full of baby Advil, and took the day like a champ. She came alive in court, and entertained everyone by standing on my lap and trying to climb onto the Plaintiff's table. We did get to take a picture with Judge Wonderful, which we were grateful for.

We're all pretty tired today, and Mia is racked out in the bed with gums freshly coated with Ora-jel. There are snow flurries outside as I type - which seems wrong for March 3rd just about anywhere.

To add to our joy, and clench our decision about where to live, Michael's current department managed to come up with a $7500 raise to his current salary. That would make it pretty silly of us to leave, even if George Mason was offering tenure and promotion. This morning, Michael announced to me that he decided to turn down their offer and stay right here for at least another year. I'll admit, I am relieved. We still have student loans to pay off, and other assorted younger-and-less-responsible debt to pay off, so staying here with that much boost in income would put us in a much better position a year from now (assuming we remain fiscally responsible). I would have gone with him if he had decided to go, but it would have been with a heavy heart. I know it hurts him to turn down the offer - tenure and promotion being the big hurt, I think. But he'll get T&P here, too, and I'll help out wherever I can to make that happen.

Life looks pretty stable right now. Tonight we're going to shop for an entertainment center for the livingroom. Since we moved, the TV's been sitting on top of a hope chest and everything is prefectly at toddler-level. As much as I despise the look of most TV cabinets, I must admit most anything will look better than what we have right now.

The next big projects will be to clean up Michael's home office and try to make space for him to work with graduate students here in the evenings and on weekends. We'll also try to get Mia's room in better shape.

So, I'll bet you want to see pictures, right?

Getting ready to leave the house...

Before court... (Cindy would be proud of the attempt at a head-bow...which she kept on for all of 3.8 seconds.)

Adoption complete!!

The evening comes to an end...

I think this last picture shows it all pretty well. We all all simply...relieved.

Love to all of you!
Michael, Tamara, and Mia (Cookie)

Thursday, March 01, 2007


There just aren't words to say how I feel. I've fancied myself a decent writer, but these days are different. The emotions and thoughts are indescribable. Language is insufficient.

I've been a mother for over a year and a half. I've been a foster mother to a total of 5 children. I've been Cookie's mother for 14 1/2 months.

It won't all be different tomorrow. I won't be suddenly and completely changed.

The changes have all been slow. Each of the 400 +/- days we've spent with Cookie we've grown into our roles with her. Each time the social worker visited, each time a month went by with no word from her Biomom, each time a new development brought us closer to this point, we became her parents just a little bit more.

There have been many nights that I held her as she slept and thought to myself "I can't love this little girl any more than I do RIGHT NOW." Of course, I've thought that most every night, and every night I feel more love for her, and more awareness of myself as mother.

Some parents who have adopted from foster care talk about how they discovered after adoption that there was a piece of their hearts that they had kept guarded - a bit of themselves that they had held back. I don't know if that is there for us. I sense it may be.

A lot of that disappeared this summer when Biomom left treatment and went missing, never to be found. I knew it was the beginning of the end.

I'm thinking about J. (Biomom) today and hoping she is alive. I still hope there is life for her, and that somewhere there is healing. If she is ever found, she will go to jail. But in jail, she can be free of drugs. I just wish she could know that this child she neglected and filled with drugs to the point that no normal baby could have survived - is walking, talking miracle. I wish that alone were sufficient to change anyone's life for the better.

I wish she could know that Cookie is running, climbing, eating Chinese food with great gusto, and playing with such joy. I wish she could see her climb up onto her rocking horse all by herself, put the right shaped blocks into the holes in her shape sorter, or hear her read "Teddy Bear, Teddy Bear" out loud (in only a way that mommy and daddy can understand, of course).

It's a great day today. Tomorrow will be great, too.

I wish all of you could meet this little girl who's stolen our hearts (and our wallets). :)