For instance, take Leza. I had really hoped to be able to communicate with her more. She's still basically nonverbal, and honestly she may well be for a long time. I hope and pray not, but the reality is, you can't undo 4 years with little to no therapy over night. That being said, she has made great strides figuratively and literally. When she came home she could neither feed herself or walk without assistance. She can now use a fork and spoon, she can chew her food, something she did not do when she came home, and she can walk fairly well. We do think some of her delays are due to strabismus, or crossed eyes, and that the knee cap on her left leg will slip completely off to either side of her knee making her gate somewhat awkward. Both her eyes and her knee are now being considered for surgery since glasses and physical therapy have remedied neither. She just had a well baby checkup and the doctor reports that she is growing well and looks great!
Nico too has grown quite a bit since coming home. He was 17 pounds last year and he's now 25 pounds. He's gone from size 6-12 months to size 18-24 months. He's leaning sign language and can sign "more please" and "thirsty". His only consistent spoken word is "eat" and the boy does love his food. Although Nico can feed himself and chew, he has a hard time keeping the food in his mouth when he's chewing. We recently requested feeding therapy for him and speech for him and Leza. We're hopeful that it will help. Since coming home Nico too has learned to walk. He does really well.
Misha has grown by leaps and bounds. For a baby who could not crawl, walk or feed himself one year ago, Misha has amazed us all. He can now run, climb up the 5 foot ladder to our playground fort, hold his own cup and feed himself with little assistance. His arms and hands continue to be strengthened and more mobile. His core strength is amazing, and I do believe he could be a gymnast with the ability and agility he demonstrates. Although his vocabulary is not as developed as I had hoped, he does understand everything we tell him. He is currently getting PT and OT once a week, and we're hoping to add speech therapy to help him catch up developmentally. Misha is also scheduled to go to Shriners Hospital in February. He's going to need to have his feet, which are clubbed (yes he's running on clubbed feet!) fixed either through surgery or serial casting. I'm hoping for the later. His right wrist and elbow will also need to be straightened and I'm hoping that too can be done in the least invasive manner. We shall see.
So, we really have made great strides although they do not appear as I originally imagined. God has a plan and He's in control. I trust Him to put all the details in place and as you can see in the picture below, part of the plan was to bring home two more girls. But that's anther post to be updated at a future date =)