Tuesday, July 28, 2009

Bare Ne-sesames

(In the words of my 4 year-old after watching The Jungle Book.)

I won't lie. This has been a very challenging summer. My husband is still without work and we're unsure of just when things will improve. We've been surviving by the grace of God and the kindness of family and friends...and some creative living. (ex. Paying for our camping trip with literally the leftover change from the adoption!) I have been learning some significant truths in a whole new way.

For example, Matthew 6:25-30, 33-34: "Therefore I tell you, do not be anxious about your life, what you will eat or what you will drink, nor about your body, what you will put on. Is not life more than food, and the body more than clothing? Look at the birds of the air: they neither sow nor reap nor gather into barns, and yet your heavenly Father feeds them. Are you not of more value than they? And which of you by being anxious can add a single hour to his span of life? And why are you anxious about clothing? Consider the lilies of the field, how they grow: they neither toil nor spin, yet I tell you, even Solomon in all his glory was not arrayed like one of these. But if God clothes the grass of the field, which today is alive and tomorrow is thrown into the oven, will he not much more clothe you, O you of little faith?...But seek first the kingdom of God and his righteousness, and all these things will be added to you. Therefore do not be anxious about tomorrow, for tomorrow will be anxious for itself. Sufficient for the day is its own trouble. (ESV)"

I've known this passage since childhood and have relied on it many a time in regards to general anxiety about the future. But, for the first time in my life, thank God, I find myself applying it in a very specific way. As I wander WalMart looking for the best deal on lunch meat -- no more organic here! -- I see the aisles and aisles of school supplies and clothes and I wonder just how we're going to buy those things in the coming month. I praise God for His mercy in the past, for the times when I never had to worry about whether or not we'd have food in the house. And I look to those promises and remind myself that if my treasure is truly laid up in heaven, if I'm seeking His Kingdom, then we're going to be just fine.


I apologize for the lack of posts lately. For one thing, our camera has died. This greatly limits the amount of cuteness I can publish. We've also been remarkably busy the past two weeks.

After surviving Allan's business trip, we spent several days just trying to get our home back together again. Allan and I also got to go out alone -- for his birthday -- for the first time since having Melat home.

Speaking of having Melat home, one of the most precious times we've had was the annual picnic last weekend for those in our area who have adopted through our adoption agency. (We borrowed a camera and took a few photos, but they all have other people's children in them and I don't feel comfortable making them public without their parent's permission. You'll just have to trust me that we were swamped with sweet and adorable little ones from Ethiopia and Guatemala!) It was such a blessing and encouragement to be surrounded by other adoptive families, even for just one afternoon. I wish we could do it more often!

Right now I'm still trying to coerce our 4 year-old into using the potty, with very little success. Just this afternoon he had an accident on the couch, while I was rocking Melat to sleep, waking her up with his announcement of said accident. So, I had a wet couch, a wet boy, and a screaming baby. Good times. Not being motivated by any form of reward -- including preschool -- he just plain doesn't care. He also doesn't mind being wet or sitting in his...well, you know...whether in a diaper, a swim-diaper (now that's nasty!) or underwear. I've tried training diapers that make it uncomfortable to be wet -- like being in a wet regular diaper isn't uncomfortable enough! -- and, in my less than stellar moments, reminding him that he is the ONLY 4 year-old we know that still wears baby diapers. Our pediatrician half-jokingly mentioned putting him in pink pull-ups, something my husband seriously considered, but I just don't know how we could afford the therapy bills when he's a teenager. Preschool starts in just over a month and I'm just not sure what to try next. If he weren't so dang indifferent to it all, I'd worry that there might be some sort of physical issue here, but he is literally untroubled by accidents. I'm all for not pushing them if they aren't ready, but at 4?? He will go in the toilet and recognizes when he needs to poop, at least -- though that doesn't mean he won't just go in his diaper or underwear -- but will only pee in the toilet if he's on there for another reason. Any advice??


Paul and DeeDee said...

Well Jackson isn't exactly telling me he needs to go yet but I took him to the fruit snack isle at Walmart and let him choose whatever he wanted if he would pee in the potty. He chose John Deere Tractor fruit snacks which he calls his tractor yummies and went for the first time right when we got home. I know you said he is unphased by rewards but have you tried taking him to the store, actually picking it out, letting him hold it until you get home, then not letting him have it until the desired result is accomplished? I could promise Jackson the moon but unless he was actually holding it all wrapped up in plastic and me not letting him open it, he would not care one bit. Let me know what you think!

Michelle said...

I'm sorry you're having a hard time with the potty training. I just wanted to let you know that you're not alone. Neither of my boys ever cared if they had a wet or messy diaper. Jonathan currently knows how to go in the toilet, but most of the time chooses not to. Hang in there Sarah! This too shall pass!

Anonymous said...

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Maria and Family said...

I have a friend of 8 kiddos and 2 of them both a boy and a girl..do not seem to realize when they pee...one is now 10 and the other is 5 ....very frustrating. the older boy does have medical issues cant remember the name, and the little girl now has the ped. worried that testing may be necessary to rule out an issue. so all that said to say if you feel he really doesnt know when he pees maybe it can be checked out. if not he may just be a stubborn little guy :)

jody said...

ok, i am not sure how you feel about this, or even how i feel about it!!, but my friend had a son with similar issues and she made him pretty much clean up himself in the least comfortable manner possible when he had an accident, as in he had to get his own poopy pants off and "taken care of" and he had to wash himself off (using not warm water, either) so he could see firsthand that he was making a mess that didn't need to be made b/c he knew how to go on the potty, he just chose not to and it was driving my friend crazy (he was also somewhere around 4). he was NOT a fan of the clean up, which prompted her to remind him that neither was she, especially since they were not "accidents" but stubbornness. she was not mean about it, just that was the deal-he eventually got it, btw!!! but she was SUPER frustrated, which I understand b/c I have an approaching-three year old who is refusing to use the potty when she knows how and I am getting T.I.R.E.D. already!!! hang in there-I pray for you lots and hope you got my email!!

Kristi J said...

I've potty trained 3 with success and still haven't been successful with GEorge who is 2 and 3 months...My only suggestion (which might just be miserable) would be to throw all his diapers of ANY SORT away and give him only underwear day and night and say "poop and pp on yourself the rest of your life, but you're never going in a diaper again" and see if it finally gets old after a couple of weeks...I did that with my 2 year old daughter and she finally gave in and decided to go after sitting inmess for 3 days, but it is really gross to clean up all the time, so I wish you the BEST...I have no idea HOW to get George my 4th baby to poop on the potty...I'm getting ready to go cold turky AGAIN and see what happens...good luck and God bless...potty training is awful, kj

Anonymous said...

I've been reading your blog as we're thinking about adoption. But as a mom of three little boys, we're in the middle of potty training too. The thing that finally helped our oldest was to make him clean up the messes he made. If he pooped in his pants, he had to wipe up the whole gross mess. Do the laundry. Clean up the mess on the floor. And then wash his hands. He realized it was seriously yucky and decided to potty train (at least during the day...not yet at night).