So thankfully Zoey and I survived Eric being gone. The first night was ROUGH! Poor Zoey stayed up all night calling DaDa. It was too sweet…but tiring. But after a long skype session the next day Zoey was back to her normal self and we made it. She was TOO happy waking up from her nap in the car to see Daddy driving. Thanks to all of you for your thoughts and prayers. We needed it for sure! Just keep the prayers coming because Eric will unfortunately be gone a lot over the next month.
So that leads us to what happened today…Zoey started school!!!! After weeks of thinking about it we decided to enroll Zoey in a school for a couple hours per week since she loves kids so much. She really, really enjoys playing with kids so when “THE” school we had been on a waiting list for since before we got the referral called and said a slot opened up we figured we would try it out. It will give her time to play with kids and Eric more time for work. We have quickly come to find out it is pretty hard to run a website with a one year old in your lap!
But you see for the past eight week Zoey has not left mine and Eric’s side. She has been with either of us at all times. We did go to two movies while Eric’s mom came and watched her but Zoey was already put to bed and sleeping so she didn’t really know. So at the meet the teacher day when the teacher said “How does she do with other sitters?” I said she never has. The teacher was like “I mean grandparents, aunts, etc?” Again I was like you will be the first. You should have seen her face. I know she was probably thinking crazy lady you think the first should be me!?!?! But we thought long and hard and we think having her left for the first time with lots of kids and fun things to do will be a lot easier for Zoey than having someone come over here why we leave her.
We prayed lots about this decision and after taking Zoey for a tour and she about had a come-a-part she loved it so much we decided to go for it. So after days of dread (on my part) this day arrived. I felt like I was like a little kid again. I was up ALL night with butterflies, woke up super early, got Zoey up and ready and cried all the way to the place. (Of course I didn’t let Zoey see me cry). By the time we got out of the car I was acting cheerful and kept telling her how it was a great place…which it is and how much fun she was going to have with her friends.
We walked into her classroom and sat her down at the table…the cool things was she set right next to a previous client of mines daughter. The two started babbling away and shared their cheese toast. Both Eric and I hung out in the room for for about 15 minutes stocking up her cubby, organizing her diapers, filling out last minute paperwork, etc. The entire time we were in there Zoey didn’t call for us at all. She was TOO entertained with the kids! So Eric and I told her bye and that we loved her. She just waved bye-bye and went right back to playing. So we left!
We stayed in the hall a while and peeked back in and every time she was FINE! I could not believe it. So we left…it was a VERY strange feeling. Driving home it felt so surreal and sad and proud of our little girl all at the same time. Once home we both went our separate ways for work. I was on the road today so that kept me pretty busy. Zoey’s teacher promised to call if Zoey cried for more than 20 minutes. So…when 11:30 rolled around and my phone rang I about lost my mind. It was her teacher calling to tell us Zoey had done great all morning but was tired and having a hard time going down for a nap. The teacher wanted a little longer to rock her so we agreed and baby girl went to sleep!
Once Zoey woke up she was in a good mood and they went to the activity room to play on the mats and other gymboree type activities and she did good there but when she came back to the room she fell apart again so I got one more phone call. By that point we were already SO proud of how good she had done. We were fully expecting to pick her up after just an hour. So we rushed out the door to get her. Once there she was not crying just rocking at taking her bottle. Her sweet smile and reach for me when going in the room was AMAZING! I was SO incredibly happy to have her back in my arms!
The teacher was so kind to laminate nine pictures from Zoey that day. We took it home with us along with her report card to show her Daddy. Once home Zoey kept looking and pointing at all the pictures from her day. Just smiling at all the kids in the pics. She looked very, very happy in the pics too! I know that she had a couple of hard moments but all in all I think it was a great day for her.
Once home is was some major reward time for Zoey. We gave her her favorite gummies one at a time after telling her how proud we were of her in each picture. Then we did lots of snuggling tonight…I mean hours taking it easy on the couch snuggling (she was VERY worn out from today) and fun long bath bonding time. We kept things really low key and tried our best to reassure her that mommy and daddy love her and will always come back for her.
So this leads to the hard part for me…when the is the entire “adopted issue” or “parenting issue” comes in my mind. I was warned that for the rest of our lives we will always wonder if she is acting certain ways because she is dealing with being adopted or because she is a typical child. And this scenario is for sure playing in my mind tonight. Did she feel abandoned? Did she worry that we were just like her time with her foster mom and was being passed along again? Or was this a typical parenting issue where Zoey was just sad to see mom and dad go but no hard adoption issues were even at play today? I guess only God knows. All I can really do is be the best parent I know to be and love her as much as humanly possibly and just continue to pray for her little heart!
So we will see how long it takes her to fully adjust to her school but we can already tell that she loved it with the kids.
But I must show you some pics we took as we were heading out the door this morning. Take a look at her feet. She is wearing SHOES! I have not wanted to put shoes on her yet because she looks so old with shoes on but school requires them so we have started practicing wearing shoes this weekend and she LOVES them. She points to them and actually WANTS to put them on. After looking at the pics you will see what a little heartbreaker I have…she is growing up SO fast!!!!