Adopting Ian

This blog's purpose is to document and celebrate the adoption of our son from Taiwan. His name is Ian James and we want to share this experience with our friends and family, and to encourage others to consider adoption as well. Please visit often and feel free to post comments or contact us!

Name: James & Heather Woosley
Location: Alabama, United States
Email: adoption@jameswoosley.com

Tuesday, April 19, 2005

An Update (Finally!)

I'm way overdue in writing, and I'm sure a lot of you are wondering exactly what's been happening. There are two main reasons I haven't written: Time and Length. But in short, things have gone very well.

Bringing Ian home was very demanding physically and mentally. I was very tired when we finally got home, and Ian didn't want anyone but Daddy at first. He also didn't want to give up the Taiwan time zone! For the first few days, nights were very much play time for our little angel. But after a week or so (and some days forced to stay awake), he finally started sleeping better at night. Now he wakes up once or twice if at all, and often goes back to sleep on his own. But the change in our sleep patterns has also added to the exhaustion. Now we're starting to catch up a bit and doing better. (And I'm only writing now because I've gone back to work and am alone in a hotel room!)

Length has been the other reason. Whenever I did have time and thought about writing, I just didn't know where to begin and couldn't possibly get it all in before I'd have to quit. I wanted to do it all at once. Well, sorry, but I've given up on that! I'll write for a bit tonight, but hope to add bits and pieces as I have time and can remember.

So, back to where I left off...

We had just gotten into the Mobile airport and were waiting for our luggage when I sent my last pager update. We were greeted by Heather and Anna, and Heather's Mom and Dad. Anna even made a sign to welcome us home. After waiting and waiting, I realized that they luggage hadn't made it from LA. We had a very short turnaround in Atlanta, and from a big plane to a small plane (and several people were asked to delay travel due to the plane's weight). So if our six bags made it from one plane to the other, I'm sure they decided not to load them. Fortunately, the trip was over and we could stand to wait. The airline brought them by the house around 11 PM.

Ian was pretty clingy to me at first. He had slept a good bit on the flight from LA, and didn't wake up once walking though the terminal or getting on the flight to Mobile. I think he finally woke up just before we landed (I honestly don't remember much of that flight, including take-off as I was asleep too!). He cried when Heather first held him, but settled down a bit later. He actually did better with Heather's dad, and later with her brother, so he must have a preference for men for some reason.

The drive home was his first time in a car seat (that we know of) and he didn't like it one bit. He cried halfway home then fell asleep. Anna was thrilled to be a big sister, but I don't think she cared for all the screaming. Once when he was quiet though, she said the cutest thing: "I'm so happy. Now I'm a parent too!" We had a quick talk about the importance of being a Big Sister and left it at that. :)

The rest of the first week was spent visiting family and friends, and trying to deal with the time zone difference. He had his first doctor's visit, and the next Saturday we felt he was doing so well with us that we went to a birthday party for one of Anna's friends. It was held at a small farm where the kids can see and pet some of the animals. We all had a great time, including Ian. He loves to be outside and it was a beautiful though windy day.

We've been doing all the normal family stuff, including going to the grocery store and church, but also the extra-ordinary like visiting a urologist (circumcision and vasectomy--only one for Ian) and an adoption lawyer. The dreaded tax day also came and went, so that stole a good chunk of time too.

Yesterday I had to end my four weeks off of work and get on a plane for Baltimore. Faced with the exhaustion from the last few weeks, I'd really been looking forward to getting back on the road. But when the day actually came, I didn't want to leave. Now I've got to get used to an empty hotel room and no baby monitor, and Heather's a single mom of two for four days a week. It suits her nature better than mine, but I still feel for her and wish I could be home more. We're looking at job and location options, but for now this is the life we lead. I've been on the road for four years, and that's not going to change overnight. So we'll either get used to it again, or we'll accelerate the change. We just don't know which way yet.

I'll leave you with something light that I found in Taiwan. I didn't have my camera at the time, so I couldn't take a picture. Just as we were leaving the hotel, I noticed a sign at the hotel desk. Item #2 said: "To suffer from an infectious disease, please contact the service staff." I don't know which disease, but I'm glad I didn't get serviced!

More later! Thanks for all your prayers, support and emails. I'll be answering them as soon as I can.

James