Tuesday, December 21, 2010

Life is Not Always Smooth Sailing

Okay, so our puppy won't eat. She throws up her water and she is lethargic beyond belief for a puppy. Then my uncle mentioned parvo, and I am now incredibly worried. I called the vet, but there is no cure-- just iv fluids and such. Our friends who we got the puppy from is worried too and I mentioned that I think the puppy has parvo and that is when she told me that the puppy has already had two sets of shots including the parvo vaccine. Thank goodness. Now I can breathe a little. Maybe she will be alright after all. Maybe we can nurse her back to health. She is walking around a little bit more and she loves drinking the rain water when we let her out to go potty. At least she is not getting worse. And she doesn't have diarrhea which is a good thing for all of us.

Another good thing out of all this is that Annalyn, Sveta, Anna, and G have stepped up and become Connie's personal little Mamas-- and they are learning a lot. Anna had her so bundled up with her head leaning over Connie that I thought something was wrong. "Nothing is wrong Mom, I'm just singing "Away in a Manger" to her." Precious, I know. They can predict when Connie is going to throw up, and when she needs to go potty. They keep her bundled up and cozy. They are dedicated to caring for her no matter what the outcome is going to be. We keep praying that little Connie will be up and about by Christmas.

Wouldn't that be an awesome gift?
The rain keeps on coming in epic proportions that Sveta and I nearly drowned on our drive home last night. I am so thankful that John and I decided to get rain gutters a few weeks ago. The kids are going bonkers-- and I have resorted to letting them watch movie after movie. Thankfully for Rachel's birthday coming up-- we are going roller skating in two days. That should use up some of their stored up energy. Meanwhile, making cinnamon popcorn, playing hide and go seek, and running to the mailbox daily will have to suffice.

Still... what do you think about all this rain? I hear it's everywhere.
G is doing well. My intention for blogging about doing respite is to let her family see how she is doing through regular updates, and to hopefully be an encouragement to others who are struggling with their kids or are thinking of providing respite sometime. It is still an amazement to me how kids can act one way for their family and be completely different in another. Not to say that the adoptive family is lying, but rather how a child will go on with the same behaviors for so long with that family that for the most part they don't know how to change. Tantruming, lying, manipulation, threatening to hurt siblings, having little self-control-- and then being a complete angel for everyone else. Sometimes respite breaks that cycle. Hopefully it will this time.

But that "angelic behavior" is a lie and so I try to get to a point where they are forced to be real and show their true colors. So I asked G to sweep because afterall she is going to be here awhile and needs to chip in. And she did without a peep of displeasure at first. But like one of my other girls, she didn't do a very good job. A part of me just wanted to do it myself and avoid conflict, but I called her back and showed her where she missed. A hint of displeasure was noted by me this time. Good, her true colors-- I think she will get there before her time here is over. She went back and did a much better job-- I think she saw through watching me with my other girls that I wouldn't accept anything less.
Here are a few other things worth mentioning.

Anastasia (12 years old) asked to watch Cinderella.

Anastasia is proud that she can now pray at dinner, "Dear Jesus, Thank you for this food. Amen."

Not all homeless people are like Ben. We went to drop off some food, shoes, and rain jackets for him and met up with some other guy who was in his spot. I guess many homeless people live in that area-- and this one was not anything like Ben. Sadly, this guy was a complete nut case, a real weirdo, and told me that Ben doesn't need anything and I should give it to him instead. Since he wouldn't go under the bridge to get Ben, I wasn't about to leave anything but the food with him. His response to the food we gave him-- The world is coming to an end. You watch. Harry Christmas-- not Merry Christmas. Okaaaay.. time to go now. It was broad daylight, and I had both Adam and Caleb in the car with me so I wasn't scared or sad for my safety-- I was just sad that we didn't get to give Ben his shoes. As we drove home, I contemplated never sharing this because of all the told you sos I am sure I will get. Well, if that is how you choose to respond, well I can't help that. And to tell you the truth, I will probably not encounter Ben again because of what happened this last time. I just know that meeting Ben on that one day was something that I hadn't really planned on but by listening to God, I allowed him to minister to Ben through me. Maybe it was only supposed to be that one time.


  1. In the Bible, Philip met the Ethiopian Eunich only ONE time...but it changed that Ethiopian's life for all eternity. Philip responded to the leading of the Holy Spirit in his life...and so did you. God bless you for that! And Merry Christmas to your whole family! Jennifer

  2. In the Bible, Philip met the Ethiopian Eunich only ONE time...but it changed that Ethiopian's life for all eternity. Philip responded to the leading of the Holy Spirit in his life...and so did you. God bless you for that! And Merry Christmas to your whole family! Jennifer

  3. Please take your puppy to the vet. He could have worms, which for a young puppy can be dangerous, or an infection of some sort that is probably treatable if not allowed to progress. If he's vomiting, he may be getting dehydrated, so give him lots of water and a mild diet: rice, boiled hamburger or chicken and/or cottage cheese. It's not wise to just wait out a sickness with a young fragile pup.

  4. Christine, don't give up on Ben. Just leave the shoes in your car and one of these days you might see him again! Perhaps you were only to see him once, if so, then that must have been all God wanted for you and Ben. You are smart and careful, trust your gut and the Lord will lead!

  5. My Grand Puppy had Coccidia when we got her from the pound. She was lethargic & wouldn't eat or drink. She had diarrhea too. The Dr 1st thought Parvo then Said Coccidia.
    She was hospitalized with IVs for her 1st 3 days & PTL she was alive the Monday after adoption.
    You might check about this too. Darla is now 7 yrs old.

  6. I wouldn't have ever said " I told you so." I wonder at being so negative to your readers though. That seems a bit superfluous.

  7. No I told you so's from me. I just would have told the other guy he could have half the food when he went and got Ben.

  8. Christine, I loved this post for so many reasons! My favorite part, honestly, was Anna singing " away in a Manger" to Connie...gave me a smile ANd a lmp in my throat at the same time! I'm praying for Connie..AND for G. You always inspire me to be a better mom and to be honest about the good and the bad in my own blog. Merryiest of Christmases to you all!

    Love Keri

  9. Julie, I had to look up superfluous. You are right-- I probably should have left that sentence out. I am sorry to imply that some of you would comment to me that way. It's just that I get so many mean "told you so" comments that I have to delete that I wanted to protect myself. Sorry again.

  10. Please don't give up on Ben so easily! Just try some other day.

  11. Hi Christine,
    Good evening. I am an avid follower of your blog and wonderful family. A quick note though -not to be mean at all- but these are serious symptoms for sweet little Connie, even if it is not Parvo. I did have a puppy with Parvo once and the IV Fluids did save his life. Take care and happy holidays to all of you.

    --Debbie Connelly

  12. I loved this honest post. It just flowed right out - and, it seemed to me that that little "people will say 'I told you so'" bit was the most honest thing of all! And not negative to your readers, just truthful (some of your readers ARE occasionally critical, perhaps I have been)....but it showed the "real" cost of charity. To be real, we have to admit that a) therer are crazies; there are even users and b) we have to risk making fools of ourselves, in all sorts of ways.

    I hear that a huge percentage of kids succeed in their second adoptive homes. Having run across a few adoptive parents who seemed pretty odd themselves, it may just be that the fit was not right and mostly the parent's issue. Possibly the initial parents take the brunt of the anger and pain at having lost so much (language, culture, "home" such as it was); the new family is at one-remove. It may also be that a family taking a child from a disruption has a much greater awareness of the child's fragility and challenges, whereas for the original parents, the child was more of a dream than a full-blown reality. Who knows? But, I also think, as I mentioned before, that in a big family there is a lessening of the pressure that might come if one were the "apple" of someone's eye. Or, the only adopted child.

  13. PRAY that Connie gets better. Life isn't always smooth, but always interesting and crazy! Pray you have a very BLESSED CHRISTMAS :) !!!

  14. Poor puppy! How wonderful to see such fruit in the lives of your girls though.

    What a blessing for G's family to have this time to rest and heal as they parent their daughter.

    The guy does sound like he was scary but even that brief interaction you had with him can be used by God to touch him.. Praying that God brings Ben across your path again.

  15. PLEASE, PLEASE take the dog to the vet!!!!!!!! She really sounds like she needs some medical attention!!

  16. PLEASE TAKE YOUR PUPPY TO THE VET. SHE NEEDS PROPER CARE, TREATMENT AND MEDICATION. We cannot judge what is wrong - that's why people go to vet school for many years. I treat my dogs to the same medical care that I have for myself.

  17. Christine,
    I'm praying that you will see Ben again and that he will get his shoes. I love that your heart has been touched by him and I am most certain his heart has been touched by your generosity!!

    YOU are an incredible blessing and are doing more than most people ever even think about!

    Prayers said for your sweet pup and rejoicing over your precious family!
    Merry Christmas friend!
    Much love!

  18. "I expect to pass through this world but once. Any good therefore that I can do, or any kindness that I can show to any fellow-creature, let me do it now. Let me not defer or neglect it, for I shall not pass this way again." Quote from Steven Grellet. God depends on us to fulfill the prayers of others. You rock!!

  19. Hi! I see as the economy gets worse and there is less county human service base funding for human service projects that many more persons who are mentally ill may find themselves on the street and homeless- without a job and good community supports some mentally ill individuals can not afford to pay for very expensive medications that are needed to treat their mental illness.These medications may help to keep them stable and coherent.It may be a little scary to a mentally ill person who has been off their medication for awhile and they know that they are not acting the same way they do when they do take their medication.It maybe just as scary to the person in the community who may see the mentally ill person not acting the same way as he \she does when he\she is on his\her medication.Without the medication a mentally ill persons behavior may change. But medications are very expensive and in this hard times in this country funding is getting tighter and tighter when it comes to funding programs for the mentally ill.Thanks for bringing this issue to light and caring. With proper treatment a person who has mental illness can lead a productive life,Pat

  20. Hello. I'm a veterinarian and I'd like to help. There is a cure i parvovirosis - it's serum with antibodies. In Poland it's expensive 100-200 zloty = 25-50 dollars. It must be given in the first 24 hours. But Your Connie doesn't have bloody diarrhea - it's a good thing, because the virus destroys the intestines.
    So I think it's not parvo (although we had in our clinic dogs after vaccinations and with parvo)
    There are studies on dogs, that show immunity for 5-8 years after one vaccination.
    The other thing is stress - often the puppy carries a virus/bacteria and when it goes to a new home it's so stressed, that it's immunity failes and it goes sick.

    Keep an eye on the puppy. You can prepare linseed - it often helps - it covers the intestines and helps get rid of the toxins - a teaspoon of the linseed - pour hot (not boiling) water -half a glass- wait 15 minutes - give this jelly to the dog - just a little to not get him vomit - half a glass on a whole day.
    (it will help if Your kids are not feeling ok with their tommys)
    Hope Connie will get better soon.

  21. Sorry. I have words that come to mind in certain situations because my oldest son has a thing for words. LOL He has Asperger's and he is fascinated with how some words sound and uses them all of the time. It's been a blessing for my younger children though. You should see people when my 6 yo uses indubitably correctly in a sentence!

    I have a blog and I don't like to link to it because I know the critics do come out in droves and I know it can be exhausting. I read so several blogs and inevitably they get tired and address the negative. Every time I have the same reaction and it might be my burden to carry, but ti seems as if when you address the negative you are discounting the positive and giving the enemy an ego stroke. Kind of like giving attention to negative attention in a child. My Pastor told us once, "Satan doesn't know what works until we tell him." He can't read our minds. He can throw arrows at us but until we respond he doesn't know which ones stick.

    You are doing a lot of incredible things for the Kingdom. I think what you are doing for Ben is incredible. Satan is going to do whatever he can to frustrate you and make you second guess yourself. Keep your chin up, your back straight, and let him know you are not going to take it. Keep doing what you do unless God or your husband ask you not to.

  22. My father is veterinarian. He said your puppy should go to a vet ASAP. Otherwise, chances are not very good for Connie.

  23. I agree, our oldest son adopted from Ukraine (he's almost 17) is living with friends of ours because he was physically and emotionally abusive to his bio brothers and myself. He is doing wonderfully. He has been there 1.5 years and is a totally different kid. Cara ps he was adopted at age 14

  24. Cottage cheese will help settle the puppys stomach and is good for them. Believe it or not it may be allergies or anxiety making her sick too. When we have to leave our dog home with a sitter she refuses to eat, lays around, won't play and worries until she is sick and throwing up. She has known her sitter all her life too, because that is who we got her from. If she is not improving I would go to the vet though. Stacie

  25. Oh Christine, how can anyone say I told you so! I think you were incredibly brave to help Ben and to go back again....And like someone said, leave the shoes in your car..maybe one day you will see him again!

    Hugs and I hope Connie gets well soon...

  26. I hope your puppy gets better quickly! Sounds like he has loads of love there!

    Just wanted to quickly visit to wish you and your family a very Happy Christmas!

  27. You did your best to help Ben.

    How about Connie. Is she better? Did she go to the vet?

  28. Oh I do hope Connie is doing better! Please update on her health when you get the chance. So precious how your girls are caring for her.

    I also just love seeing pics of Anastasia and Paul and reading about them. How wonderful for them to finally get to have Christmas with a family.

    Bless you for caring for G as her family needs respite. You are wise to understand that those true colors aren't far below the surface.

    Merry Christmas to you and your family!

    Much Love,

  29. Wishing you all a very merry Christmas!!! Hope puppy is okay and that "G" is well also! Have a wonderful first Christmas in your new home!

  30. I'm glad to hear that your pup has had the Parvo Vac. I was pretty worried that was what it was. In the mean time, to help get some calories in her, if she is still only drinking, you can give her meat broth, no onions or garlic though. Sometimes plain meat based baby food is another way to coax them to eat. Plain canned pumpkin, a tablespoon or so, with white rice and boiled chicken is another good plain meal for dogs with GI issues. Have you taken her temp?


I find your comments so inspiring! Thanks for visiting our family blog, and sharing your thoughts.