Tuesday, October 9, 2007

My Little Tiger Lili...

I know I haven't posted too much about Miss Tiger Lili lately so I thought I would devote this post to her.

My oh My ... it is amazing to see the difference in one child over the course of 10 months. We adopted Lili this past December 18th and the changes in her since then are nothing short of miraculous!! Besides David and myself, I guess our friend Babs is the only one who REALLY knows the REAL Lili that came to us on that day in Nanchang last December. When the Orphanage director and her nannies came in the room with her, she was beaming. They handed her to me and she continued to smile, she went to David with no fussing and kept on grinning. She and David had an instant connection...everyone there felt it.
(December 18th, 2006 Lakeview Hotel, Nanchang, Jiangxi, China)
All was right with the world...that precious little smiling face. Her skin so pale and porcelain, her lips so full of color and tiny like a little bird. We exchanged smiles with the orphanage staff and tried to exchange a few words across the language barrier. We made plans to meet them at Civil Affairs in two hours and then they left...


Then the screaming began!!!!!! The screaming that went on for the better part of six months!!!! No...I'm not kidding!!!!!! When I had her in the hip carrier she was okay and would be quiet for the most part, but other than that she was totally over everyone and everything!!! It wasn't a scared cry or a lonely cry or a hurt cry...it was totally a "I want it (whatever it was at the moment) now and I am going to scream like a wild woman until I get it!!!" We soon realized that she had been totally catered to by her foster family (we met them at civil affairs and saw it first hand) and she was nothing short of totally spoiled rotten. I must pause here and say that I am thankful that she wasn't suffering from neglect, but from being spoiled. Spoiled we can work with...neglect is a whole other nightmare!!!

Well, the bonding did finally begin for us all and we spent those months trying to help her to overcome her issues and become a part of our family. It was hard and David and I shed many tears as well!! Now, here we are 10 months later. Lili still throws a temper tantrum or two when she doesn't get her way. They take on a different form now as she is able to stomp her foot or throw herself on the floor or hit us with her fist. Sometimes she will yell and say, "Mad" or something sort of like that. We continue to talk with her and tell her it is okay to be mad and not like what she is told to do, but that she doesn't get to hit us or scream that ungodly high pitched scream she does when she isn't getting her way. She is learning. She is also not *quite* as sensitive as she used to be although that seems to just be a part of her personality. When you correct her, she doesn't go into a 30 minute crying session like she used to, she recovers in a couple of minutes now.
She loves life so much now. She has an infectious laugh that brings a smile to your face!! She loves to dance and sing and play play play with her big sister. She is a little mimic and loves to be doing whatever Aly is doing. She is totally in love with her Papa and must have a regular dose of him. She still has a strong connection to her Daddy. She would rather be with him than just about anywhere.
We were at the park a few weeks ago and Lili is usually afraid of everything..swings, slides, you name it. Well, she was sitting next to me watching Aly go down the slide over and over and all of a sudden she got down off of the bench and headed for Aly. I went after her, but David made me stop and let her go. She climbed up the ladder all by herself, sat down at the top of the slide and took off!!! We didn't even have the camera to catch the occasion!! She was so proud of herself!! Such a HUGE step for this little girl!!

So, to all of our friends who thought we were just making it all up and were just horrible to our precious Lili, let me assure you that she is fine and is doing wonderfully!!!!! Here are some pictures to prove it!!! :-)

I'm so stinkin cute...and I KNOW IT!!!!

You can put a bathing suit on me, but I'm not going in the pool. I'm just going to sit here and EAT!!!

What chocolate cookie? I didn't eat any cookies...you must be crazy. I don't eat chocolate cookies! What ever made you think I ate a chocolate cookie???

Go ahead...tell me how cute I am!!! It's okay...I can take it!!

Sisters...sisters...there were never such devoted sisters!!!


Anonymous said...

THANKS again and again for sharing!!!


Blessing on each of you!


John & Dawn said...

It seems like just yesterday when we were meeting Lili while we were all over in China. :)

I remember being in the next room praying for her and for you guys - and then you in turn doing the same for us.

I cherish those times we were able to spend with you all while on our journey - and pray that sometime soon we can reunite.

Please give Tiger Lili and Princess Aly a great big hug and kiss for us. We miss you guys!!

sarahb said...

Oh, Just love, love, love hearing the update on Lili. I know this has been a trying year but I also know that you all are so aware of your amazing blessings also.
It has been wonderful to watch your journey, though now we are ready to watch it get a little easier!

Shelley said...

John and Dawn,
thanks for stopping by. Please send me your email address... I can't find it. I do so want to keep in touch...we shared a special event in our lives and we MUST keep in touch!!!!

Shelley said...

Hey Sarah,
I have a video I am trying to upload. It is precious...stay tuned...I'll have it up soon!!!
Love to the Barton clan!!

Anonymous said...

Hi Shelley,

So glad to hear ya'll are getting used to the new place and that Lili is doing so well! I don't think anyone can ever say they truely know how a child reacts-unless it's you, David, Aly and of course God! Anyone else can't possibly know...but they can give lots of support & love to the ones who do!

Take care-we still have pictures for you...maybe I can send them your way!

Greg & Wendy in TN

Shelley said...

Hey Wendy
Good to hear from you. You can send the pictures or just come visit us...everyone needs a trip to Florida!!