On June 6, I completed the squishing and flipping and baking project that is Amish Friendship Bread–which I know for a fact is slowly conquering the country, and may be nothing more than a ploy to get us all to buy at least one package of vanilla pudding this year–baked my two loaves, and froze one.
June 6 was just a few days after we got our travel dates. Rory was still pictures and an idea. We were thinking packing, Lily’s birthday, school ending. And I was freezing this cakey bread thing.
Every time I’ve been pregnant, there’s been this moment–this moment when I looked at the milk in the fridge and realized it would still be there when we came home–with a baby. Today was that moment in reverse, when I pulled out that loaf of bread and realized–when I baked this, I had no clue. A lifetime ago. And the bread tasted fine, which is to say, none of us really like it still, and I baked some banana bread instead.
I doubt Rob would agree, but I’d take quarantine again over that first week home without hesitation. That was hard, it was ridiculously hard, it was madness. I’ve been so caught up in it–so caught up in myself and my reactions, in Wyatt, in everything–that I haven’t been able to see past it. Finally, with a couple of nights of real sleep under my belt, I might be regaining a tiny bit of perspective–enough to see that it’s enough just to roll along with this, and breathe.
We’re noticing Rory mostly parallel plays with the three, and with others. She saves most of her interaction–most of her energy, I’d guess–for adults, or older kids if there are any. I know that wasn’t true of her before. I’m suspecting a lot of what we’re seeing now isn’t what was true of her before. She seems so ok–ok in a weird 2-year-old screechy touchy sort of way–that I think I keep forgetting that what we’re seeing isn’t just Rory, but Rory after her whole world flipped over like a pancake. Rory who can never be sure, when we leave “home my house” that we will come back. Rory who can never be sure, when I leave, when Rob leaves, when Sam or Lily or Wy leaves, that we’ll come back, or that one of all these friendly adults who talk to her won’t just scoop her up and haul her away.
I am not the most empathetic person in the world, but I can get that. I can’t always promise I’ll temper my reactions to her based on it, but I can try. Things are better, indeed better, and I am gradually doing less wishing we could fast forward to a time of more normalcy. ALthough I did do one thing today that reminds me that we’ll get there.
I baked two loaves of banana bread and put one in the freezer.
I realized how precarious my daughter’s life must feel to her right now after we went out to dinner last night. We took her to a friend of our’s restaurant. He is a caucasian who speaks fluent Chinese and he has a Chinese woman who works for him. The minute we entered the restaurant, they both started speaking to her in Chinese. The look on her face broke my heart. She looked like “Oh, no. It’s all over. They’ve come to take me back.” You could see the broken heart in her expression. She totally froze up until I told them to tell her that she was with us forever and that she was going nowhere. Then, she was okay.
I think we all forget that our kids are in a very uncertain position at present because we are in our familiar comfort zone. Last night taught me a good lesson. While we thought we were doing something that she might enjoy (speaking in Chinese), it was something that was not good for her sense of stability. You’d think after adopting 3 times, I would have it all figured out….
Mary in Denver
The statement–one day at a time–is soooo true. You seem to be coming out of the fog. Eventually she will too. It’s just going to take her longer than everyone else. You left chaos (China) to return to normal (home sweet home). She left normal (her China) to walk into chaos (home my house). Give it time. It will come.
I am so happy to hear you are getting (some) sleep and perspective back. It’s always darkest when you’re EXHAUSTED.
Oh, N aka MWH had actually wondered if you’d liked quarantine better than so far home, and now we know.