Cocoon Update

Hey Y’all. Your prayers and words of encouragement have meant so much to us as we hide ourselves away in the cocoon with the girls! Thanks for taking time to lift us up in prayer and reach out to us.
Just a couple days ago I posted about how things were going with the girls’ transition, and it’s an understatement to say that it’s HARD. But I’m also thankful to say that we are seeing improvements every day. Some big, some small, and sometimes even some regression in other areas. But praise the Lord, it is mostly positive progress! In fact we have seen such specific answers to prayers that I just had to blog about it to let you guys know and to give glory to God!

In the last blog, our greatest prayer request was about the girls attaching to Blake. Even though we still have a long way to go, it is so clear that HUGE steps have been made in 2 days’ time. Yesterday, the girls were more open to playing with him (as opposed to shutting down when he entered the room), and throughout the day, they showed less and less fear. Yesterday they even allowed him to touch them a little bit! Today, they even didn’t mind BEING HELD and willingly climbed up on him for piggyback rides and being carried in the pool (briefly). They definitely still don’t fully trust him (or me, for that matter), and still refuse to let him meet their needs for them, but in just 2 days, there has been such progress that it can only be attributed to your prayers.

We’ve also seen progress with meltdowns. On Tuesday, we’d had about 4 combined meltdowns before 10 AM, then another 3 later on in the day. On Wednesday, we had none in the morning, and then 3 later on, including a whopper of a meltdown from Noella that lasted 2.5 hours. Today, Thursday, we had NO meltdowns until the very end of the day at bedtime when Mercy had the scariest one ever (more details on that below). Y’all hear that!? From 7 meltdowns to 1 in only 2 days! I know it might not be the same tomorrow, and we might go backwards, but for now I’m celebrating.

(Quick Side note about these “meltdowns”: I know when most people see that term they imagine a kid lying on the floor of the cereal aisle screaming about Cocoa Puffs, or they think of a child who is just all around misbehaving, not listening, or being stubborn. These meltdowns are not that. That is typical toddler behavior, and yeah sometimes they have tantrums like that too when they don’t get their way. But when I say “meltdown”, that is totally different. These meltdowns are grief-fueled and fear-driven. It is an episode of terror as a result of PTSD where the survival portion of their brain kicks in and they do not have the ability to think rationally or calm themselves. I just wanted to make that clear for the sake of clarity and also for the sake of not giving the wrong impression about the girls and their behavior).

This morning, we had a GREAT time (other than waking up at 3:50) playing together and going to the pool! Then after sufficiently wearing them out at the pool, they went down for their naps the EASIEST they ever have! Like, within 30 minutes, and only a little crying instead of a meltdown. It was heavenly. Oh, it was so glorious! We had more great playtime this afternoon and evening, everyone did well with eating their dinner, and it was just a really encouraging day all around…until bedtime.

As we started our nightly routine after bath, Mercy devolved into a massive 10/10 meltdown. This time, more so than others, it was SCARY. Like, her eyes were so dilated that her whole eyes were black (horror movie style), her lips turned white as she screamed at the top of her lungs, and she kept clutching me as tightly as possible. Her body was convulsing as she was drenched in sweat. She kept clawing at the air and screaming “MAMA!”. I swear y’all, it was like she was set on fire. She finally calmed down 40 minutes later as I was walking her around. She then kept pointing to her room and whining, and when I tried to walk in, she death-gripped the door frame to keep from going in. I don’t know what she saw, but I was praying over my girl for the spirit of fear to leave her in Jesus’ name. It truly was like she was possessed, the way her body contorted and she was screaming in agony. I’m so glad it didn’t last hours like a couple of other meltdowns, but I have no doubt in my mind that her little body was being attacked in a spiritual battle. Thank goodness we can claim the power of Jesus over ALL the rulers, authorities, and powers of this present darkness.

I share that with y’all just so that you can know how real the fear is for kids from hard places. Those kids grow up to be adults, and they need loving, patient influences in their life to help them understand those feelings and handle them in a healthy way. It is no wonder so many adopted youth commit suicide. I don’t have all the answers, but I know that I can love my girls through their pain and fear and hopefully lead them to the cross, where all of their pain and fear was conquered once and for all.

Prayer Requests
Please pray for continued progress with attaching to Blake! Please pray for continued progress with fewer meltdowns. Please pray for everyone to get sleep, whether at bedtime or naptime. We need everyone to be adjusted to the Central Time Zone and to not be cranky! Please pray for wisdom for us to love the girls well through the difficulties and know what they need from us Please pray for my health. My illness has turned into a terrible cough that keeps me up at night, and like I said, we need sleep!