Jet recently climbed on to my lap and whispered in my ear--
"I know why Mama and Daddy brought me to America. To help Bug pick up his bedroom."
I about died laughing!! Jet was mostly kidding.
Naturally I did reassure him we brought him here to be our son. It was God's plan and we loved him, plain and simple.
We have had to reinforce to Jet our love is unconditional. As expected for a child raised in an orphanage for the first 8 years of his life, grasping the concept of family has been an ongoing one. In a way similar to a toddler, we need to list all the members or our family including his name. We can't just assume he knows he is included or say "you".
Shortly after returning from Thailand, we had the "issue" of going back to Thailand arise. After much discussion, we realized Jet didn't understand we were referring to taking a vacation there and he assumed it was him going back. We addressed the fact he was our son and would always return to America with us. (Unless he chose differently when he was old enough.) No matter where we went.
It is so matter of fact for us, no question, not on our minds..... Not so for him.
We have been home 7 months and 2 days.
At dinner tonight with tears in his eyes, Jet asked me--
"Do you know if I will have to go back to Thailand?" What?
After many tears and much talk back and forth it came out. He still questions the permanency of his new family. I know it has only been 7 months. Versus 8 years. I still wonder how long his sweet mind has to be tortured with these thoughts. The last few nights he has had bad dreams. I am guessing we have the cause of them. Will he ever be assured of his place in our family?
Much reassurance was made to Jet by myself, Peanut and Bug. (Papa was working at the time) It is so encouraging to see our other 2 kiddos react to such agony on their brother's part. The squabbles and struggles of every day life melt away, leaving a brother and sister grieving for their brother. They want to make him feel loved, special, part of our family in every way possible. Their compassion and tenderness astound me. Just some of the many wonderful things adoption has given us all.
After we had talked a few minutes, my sweet Bug lovingly rubbed Jet's cheek with his hand. And said "you have to stay here.....who else would help me clean my bedroom?!!"
A shot of humor at just the right time.
We continue to plug along grafting a new member into our family unit. Life can get busy, Jet seems to have so much English learned, it is easy to slip into a comfortable place, forgetting there is still so much to work through. We need to take the time to make the reassurances a regular part of our daily/weekly routine so we don't fall into an assumed, take for granted mode and leave the older adopted child behind.
Still living, loving and learning....