Today's morning visit with Alex did not go well.
What makes it worse is that I didn't even see it coming. I was too excited at all the "trash to treasure" I had collected for the children in his groupa. All of the toys that we give the groupa ends up on a shelf (and I am not kidding-- they are for show only) so I thought I would bring them things that are considered trash, but I know the kids will have a ball playing with. So I lugged a good size bag of egg cartons, empty cereal boxes, different kind of bags, cups, and spoons.
And I was right! The kids were so excited-- and the caretakers actually looked at me and showed me with their eyes that I had done a good thing-- which I was glad to see because I was half expecting them to look at me like I was crazy. It was fun to see the kids playing-- and it made it easier for us to take Alex for a walk while he ate the ripe, yummy pear that we brought. As the juicy fruit dripped down his arm and onto his thighs, I tried to teach him to wrap a napkin around the fruit, but he wouldn't have it. Okay-- so forget the napkin-- I'll just clean him up once he is done. That too, he didn't want any part of but I got the job done, no big deal. We got to check up on the hardworking men who have been laying brick since we first got here. John-- they are still not done-- but they continue to engage Alex and he is more talkative with them. After walking around for about twenty minutes playing hide and go seek with Julia, we went and saw Simon's group and gave them their usual tickle fest that each of the boys so love. It has been amazing to see them all transition before my eyes-- each of the boys look healthier and happier-- they have better color, and respond to Julia and I immediately-- which is amazing because they all have moderate special needs (outside of Simon). Word of advice to anyone going to an orphanage soon-- spend time with the other kids-- rub their back-- talk to them--- bring them treats--- tickle them--- it may be the only real highlight of their day... week... month... or even year.
We all went to the sport room---- Alex was not cooperative getting out of the stroller. The room had the director's wife sitting in it doing paperwork-- so of course I talked with her a bit while Julia played with Alex. Alex came over to me, so I picked him up. He didn't like that--- he wanted to look through the drawer she had open. As I tried to parent him and lead him back to the ball pit, he dashed out to swing open the door-- something he has been told many times not to do. So I picked him up and now he has the director's wife scolding him too. Okay, I thought-- he'll listen to her. NOPE. He stared grabbing my glasses which he also knows is a big no-no. You can imagine how awkward the situation was for me as he continued to deliberately disobey. I gave him the benefit of the doubt that he was acting up because there was other women around-- but I still had to stay firm. So I did what I did a few days ago--- I took him back to his groupa.
Ugh--- it was not one of my finer moments---- yet again.
One caretaker got him to apologize and give me an I am sorry kiss which was really nice--- but I can't wait till he is my child in my custody and learns to respond to me in the same way. Only five more days for that. The plan is for us to be on a train the night of the 4th.
Before I forget I wanted to tell you how impressed I am with the caretakers handiwork. Nearly a week ago, one of the front wheels on Alex's stroller broke-- I most certainly would have thrown the whole thing away. But not at Antoshka-- the women got out some thin wire and fixed it-- and now it stronger than ever!
However, our afternoon visit went well! We had fun with the kids outside!
2 years ago