GUESS WHO IS STANDING BY HERSELF? Maria is such a cutie ... she has learned how to stand by herself, and she'll get up and throw her hands up, as if saying "look at me!!" She just gets the biggest grin on her face and loves it when we clap for her. Any day now we expect her to actually take a step and keep going, just like Maya did. Right now she just stands there and then lets herself back down to the floor to crawl wherever she wants to go. So, so cute!
Maria has come so very far in just a few short months. When we picked her up February 13, she could not even turn herself over in her crib at 11 months old. She could not get to a sitting position by herself, and she made no attempt to reach for her own food. She hated tummy time and didn't seem to be able to hold her head back for very long. You can kind of tell in the pictures we had made with her and Maya that she is not comfortable on Maya's back, and her head is sort of at a strange angle. But before we left Guatemala, she was reaching for her Gerber puffs and was starting to figure out the pincher grasp. When we visited the doctor for her first post-placement well check, he referred us to Babynet for their early intervention services. He thought, as we did, that her slow gross motor development was because of her environment and not a medical issue. But we certainly wanted to do all we could for her, so we signed her up. Now, in a very short 4 months later, she has already met all of the goals we set with her EI, and she does not qualify for physical therapy at all ... I took her last week for an appointment that we had set with the PT when we first met with the EI, and while I knew she wouldn't qualify, I did want to get her checked out just in case I was missing anything. The PT was very helpful and had some great advice on how to help her develop even further, and some milestones to try to hit as she ages. Maria is simply amazing, and such a smart, smart girl. I could just squish those little cheek of hers!
Mommy decided she didn't have enough pictures of herself with her adorable girls. I tried on Mother's Day to get one, but it just didn't work out so good. So this one starts off my campaign to get lots of pics! I am one that definitely does NOT like to have my photo taken, but I know the girls won't care how I look and will appreciate the pictures one day. At least, I HOPE they do! I just love them so much and want them to see that in our pictures. Of course, this one is already outdated, as I have had my hair cut since then, and it now just reaches my shoulder. But there will be more!
I'll post more pictures later, but right now a certain little GuatAmerican needs some kisses! Today is our family court day for Maria!! She officially becomes Maria Bishop Lawson today, and I can send her paperwork off to get her revised birth certificate with her new name on it! Woohoo!! It's strange how this system works ... if you visited your child before the pickup trip, you came home with one type of visa for her and would automatically receive a certificate of citizenship in the mail. We didn't visit first, so we came home with a different type of visa, and while I believe she IS an American citizen now, we have nothing to prove that, and nothing to prove her new name. So we have to go through this convoluted process of family court, DHEC birth certificates, getting a passport for her, and THEN going back to the Social Security office to have her card reissued with her new name on it ... we need the birth certificate for proof of identity with the new name and the passport for proof of identification. Crazy, huh? But we do what we must do for our babies!