Tuesday, September 25, 2012

India journal writings - Sept. 8, 2012

For the faithful readers - just a few days left in India -- and some exciting events on the horizon :)

Saturday – September 8, 2012

This morning we got up early and got ready to go to Anjali’s doctor appointment. She sat in a high chair at breakfast! She ate well and drank more apple juice; we are stilling working on our little “project” to get some relief. TMI!! :)   I’m dreading her doctor’s appointment because she gets a needle stick for her TB test. As I was holding her in the room after breakfast I could feel her grunt and yippee – just what we were praying for! She pointed to the bathroom. Seriously! Got her all cleaned up and not long after the flood gates were open. :) So happy we don’t have to talk about this issue at the doctor’s office now. She got her shower and all cleaned up and Brad and I got ready and we waited for Madu to pick us up. Brad got our bags ready and even made lunch for Anjali – he’s so thoughtful. We bring bottled water wherever we go – it’s hot here and you have to keep yourself hydrated. Given she’s on a strict schedule – we also have learned to have food available at the right time. She will tolerate her Dora sippy cup – we use to avoid water being spilled everywhere :). In hindsight – with an older child I’d bring a water bottle with a built-in straw. (now that she's home - she's WAY too big of a girl to use that sippy cup!)... but she will use the water bottle with the straw.

Off through the traffic to the hospital / clinic. People were everywhere, and once again I’m reminded how happy I am that we left Joshua at home. The crowds and chaos would be too much for all of us keeping track of each other, etc. People standing in the hallways, sitting in chairs, literally everywhere! The elevator held about 4 people (almost on top of each other) Hallways are narrow, rooms are small…. personal space is a challenge. All the while, people seeming to admire little Anjali and wondering why she’s clinging to me (not crying – just looking around and holding on for her life) – if I could only read their minds. Most were smiling, others seemed to have a look of concern like, “what wrong with this little girl”… I wanted to say – “she’s fine – she’s just experiencing new things and is a little timid”. Anjali did great at the appointment. She cried a bit but mostly because I had to sit her on the nurse’s table, not because of the needle. I honestly don't think she realized they put the needle in, they did it so quick and she wanted me to pick her up so bad her focus was there. Then we waited to see the doctor – finally got called to his office.

The doctor asked me, “does she walk?” – I put her down in his office and she quickly ran to me – “yep, she walks”… he was a nice man – but seemed a bit stoic – very serious about his job. He asked if we had anything “significant” from the orphanage – I wasn’t sure what this meant – so I looked to Madu – she said, he’s wondering if you have your medical records with you – of course I did – it’s hard to navigate – why not say, “did the orphanage give you her medical records??” LOL – I handed over the thick chart that Bal Asha gave us – and he paged through and transferred important notes to his record. We don’t get this record – I believe that is probably part of what goes in the TOP SECRET package that goes to the US Embassy – that we are not allowed to open. :) So who knows what’s in her documents – but he returned her medical record to us that we received from Bal Asha – and listened to her chest real quick. I told him we had been giving her an antibiotic – he said abruptly, “what for”… I said, “well, when we first got her – she had very green mucas from her nose – and seemed to have a fever” – he huffed a bit and said, “ok, continue to give her that”… with a bit of resolve and a bit of unbelief – I really couldn’t read him- was he on our side or not?? We are there – all excited – holding our girl – going through the process – at this point you want to say – “hey everybody – she’s all mine!” – and then you get this stoic, serious doctor – that writes on documents more than he looks you in the eye – or even looks at your daughter. Oh well…. We got through it; maybe I’m looking too much for the love pats we get from pediatricians here at home.

Check out her sleeve rolled up - her needle stick bled a bit - and the clinic didn't have a bandaid - so gave us cotton.  We came right to restaurant for dinner - it was done bleeding by then... but she kept looking at it with those sad eyes - and we continued to love on it :) 

Brad continues to hand feed her as much as she will tolerate.  She's beginning to become more independent and wants to feed herself.  She does still take from his hand - and I know this persistence with pay off and they continue to bond. 

We met another JOH family, her name is Colleen and she’s adopted Meena who is deaf. We had dinner last night and plan to meet them again maybe today. Colleen and Meena are really interesting to watch as they communicate together so well through sign language. Colleen is quite proficient at signing. Anjali seemed to enjoy being around them, and cried each time we left them or they left our hotel room. We were really blessed to share several meals with her and compare stories -- it's wonderful talking with someone right there who knows what you are experiencing.  (sure hope Colleen doesn't mind her precious daughter on our blog :)

Of course I can't sleep, it is the afternoon nap that is throwing me off but this is a great time to journal in the middle of the night. Anjali continues to warm up to Brad - he is basically the only person hand feeding her during most meals. She has taken two bottles from me and given me those “big bright eyes, as Dr. P says” - which is great!!! Prayers are being answered and we are making our way through the challenges. God-given instincts continue to kick in and we are getting better and better at reading her needs. She works hard to please and we affirm her actions with responses from all our Dr. Purvis training. Thankful for all training requirements!!!  I just wonder if this little girl is happy (or if she trusts us enough to open up just yet??) - she hasn't really smiled or laughed yet.......hmmmm? Stay tuned!

Daily Trip must haves:

Apple juice :)

Dr. Brown bottle – just one and a bit of formula – it’s awesome getting that first gaze into her eyes. (We used gentle start – because it’s easy to digest). She struggled with it a bit and I continued to cut the end open more and more.  Such a sweet fragile little child - submitting to taking a bottle - was an amazing sight.

Take medical records (and a bandaid) with you to doctor never know when you need something and believe me you don’t want to have to turn around and go back to make a second trip in this traffic.

Bottled water – plenty available in the hotel room for free – take several with you wherever you go – I think water was one of those things that kept us going!

Child’s water bottle with built-in straw

Daily Lessons:

Comfortable shoes – for when you are trekking down the street making your way from the driver and his car into the medical clinic. Parking is a challenge.

Remember to breathe – when you are carrying your precious bundle through the crowds because she won’t go to anyone other than you – remember to breathe :)
The Lord will give you all the strength you need for this moment.


  1. I am taking notes here! Even though we did this once already, there are new things under the new guidelines (such as taking her to the doctor!) that we didn't have to do for Anya Rashi. And I love that your mama friend already knew sign language so she could talk to her daughter . . . *sniff*. Thanks for sharing your tips!

  2. Seriously...I love how you put at the end "must haves." I have to read all these again before we go. :)

  3. Just spent a few minutes catching up on your last few posts. They bring back so many memories of being there a year a half ago. Seeing Meenal again, reminded me of how helpful she was. Also, we must have seen the same doctor as I too, struggled with his stoic nature, feeling like I needed to fill in the silence with words, but not quite knowing what to say! Anjali is going great. She seems to be settling right in. It is so interesting to read how each family learns about their child's needs, wants etc. It is such an empowering journey.


  4. Renae,
    I just want to thank you for taking the time to write about your experiences. We are waiting for our travel call to go and get our daughter from India. I am trying to mentally prepare for what it will be like, and your posts have helped tremendously.
    Amy G

  5. I feel like I've been stalking your blog just waiting for another update. Sorry for not commenting. Just have had a hard time taking that step. We are in the early stages of adopting from the same country. We're registered and waiting to hear which orphanage we'll be working with. I must start blogging again! Anyway, your sweet little girl is beautiful. You are blessed!! I've been taking notes and hanging onto every step of your way.

  6. I, too, am stalking your blog! And I too, want to thank you for sharing your experiences. They are helping me mentally prep and will come in so very handy when we travel!

  7. I love your list of must haves! I will be back going through all of these tips when our time to travel comes :) Thanks for sharing!