We just finished 16 hours of parenting classes in two days. If every parent, biological or not, had to take these we would have a totally different world, for the better! We learned how to bond and form attachment, how to answer the tough questions about birth families, the best discipline principles and, perhaps the most interesting, brain development.
Here is an image from class:
What is it? A to scale brain scan of a normal 3 year old boy and a to scale brain scan of a boy who was neglected. Now, the neglected boy was almost feral for his first few years, and I don't imagine Sara and Nahlya are that bad off looking at their pictures (please God don't let them be!), but I don't believe they are constantly cuddled and nourished either. It is freightening to see the results of neglect!
The good news is a child of neglect can have much of the damage reversed with attention, love and sheer patient will-power from the parents. I look at the road we will have to travel once home and wonder if we are strong enough to pull this off. I feel as ready as I can be knowing I will never really be ready. BUT, I want them here like yesterday and know we will do everything we can and more to see the survival and health of the girls flourish. Someday we will be amazed how strong we were and how far we came...
Now, I may start looking into getting my own brain scan, and Matt's and Mystic's and .... doesn't it make you wonder???