Jacob:18 months old
26.45 pounds (CHUNK!)
Sits, crawls, and stands while holding on to furniture
Says Mama and Baba
Ready to laugh
He looks so handsome--like a little prince.
Julia Mei16 months old
44.09 pounds (hmmm looks like a translation error there)
Sits, pulls up to stand, walks while pushing a cart, and tries to run
Says Mama, Baba, Jie Jie, and I want when she sees food
She shares her food with her foster mother first
She likes to clap, greet people, and wave goodbye
She likes to eat. A lot.
Well, they shaved her head--but she has a beautiful smile!
I've been getting a lot of questions about what their disabilities are since it's not a secret that we have chosen the special needs program in China. When I tell people they appear quite uncomfortable and not quite sure what to say. Let me start by saying that these two kids will be able in every way--I have no doubt.
When I adopted Christian, I wasn't sure how to explain to people that I don't see often about his limb difference. And so, this is the Christmas card picture that we used:
It's a straight, to the point--look at me picture with my siblings! Oh, and by the way--don't act strange when you see me because this limb difference?
See? It's no big deal.
Our new children also have limb differences. I'm relieved because it's a need that I know that I can handle, even if it will be challenging at times. We were open to many special needs--some more severe than others. You might consider a limb difference a deal breaker--and that's OK. It's not for everybody. But please consider...if your biological child was born with a limb difference...would you love that child any less? Of course not.
Since these differences will be clearly obvious, here ya go!
Jacob is missing a hand, just like Christian. His arm is a little longer. He is also missing part of his leg. We were thrilled to see on his update that he has a knee joint, as we did not think this was the case. We will be heading to Shriner's as soon as we get home to get him fitted for his first prosthetic leg. We also found out on his update that he has a few cute tiny toes.
Julia Mei appears to have Amniotic Banding Syndrome on her leg. This likely means that she will need a leg amputation below the knee and also a prosthetic leg. We won't know for sure until she is evaluated by her new doctors about how to proceed, but we are expecting an amputation. If that is not the case--great! She also has some finger differences that does not impact her hand use and likely will not in the future.
Please don't be shocked or think we are amazing people or feel bad for our kids. We are honored to be able to do this. After all, their greatest disability is their need for a family.