momentary truce

Oh the fighting.

There were a number of things we knew to expect ~ and dread ~ as our family grew.  Frustration over language barriers, some jealousy from older siblings over the attention demanded from the newest addition, lack of sleep, 'unlearning' orphanage behaviors, endless appointments as we get in with specialists are some of them.

But the fighting amongst all my kids...specifically between the two youngest?

Don't ask me how, but I was blindsided.

And you say, "Blindsided?  Really, Kristi, you've done this a time or two.  Did you actually expect that the two youngest would just magically get along?"

Yes.  Well, in my magic little dream world.  You know, the one where I was glad that Daniel didn't make the cut off date to start school so he and his little sister could have a year at home together so they could become best friends like the three big kids are?  You should join me here.  My dream world is a nice place to live.

And fair enough...I guess I wasn't blindsided.

Actually I suspect it was just survival mode that made me suppress how bad it was between my oldest two when Caleb first came home.  I hadn't really dwelled upon those days for some time until a dear friend reminded me the other day.  When I went back and checked the blog archives for November and December of 2008 it all came flooding back.  So I keep giving myself the pep talk, "We survived the RAVs (random acts of violence) in 2008, this too shall pass, this too shall pass!"

At any rate, Daniel and Natalie are public enemy #1 in each other's eyes about 93% of the time.  He holds her responsible for losing the baby crown and she sees him as the biggest threat to getting Mommy's attention.

Some days amid the battlefield of their war zone, I wonder if I'm going to make it to the other side with my sanity.  And then something like this happens...

We were on our way home from yet another initial medical visit for Natalie that had us out past nap time (because those initial visits always take longer than they are supposed to take...).  They had been at each other's throats the entire way home and I found myself wishing for a partition to put up between them in the van because they were purposely going out of their way to 'look' at each other and taunt one another.  When we pulled up they began fighting over who was going to get out of the van first and which side it was they were going to get out on.

Discouraged, I headed on before them and nearly dropped my teeth when I looked back over my shoulder.  She had managed to get out first, but instead of shutting the automatic door on him like I expected, she stood in the light drizzle and held up her umbrella for him.  And while I missed the candid moment as I scrambled inside for the camera, I caught a few shots to remind me of the promise to come.

Yes, since this sweet moment we've had more fights again that I can count.

But I'm holding on to the promise...


Grandma Shultz said...

I'll be praying that this time will pass quickly and they will start to enjoy each other. You are an amazing young woman and I know that you will handle this with grace. Look where the three "bigs" have friends....most of the time!

Laurie said...

Holding on to the promise. I love that! I, too, have selective memory about issues that have happened in the past.... and I think that's a good thing. :) I have not given up hope that my 2 will one day be friends, but for now, not so much. :(

Kelleyn Rothaermel said...

Hang in there ! Thanks for keeping it real!

Traci Cline said...

Ha. I had forgotten about the random acts of violence. Praying that this transition will go be fast and ... I think you have the furious part covered. ;)

Courtney said...

Praying for peace. I am sure it will come. I think God gives us selective memory so we can move forward and carry out his plan. You may not have went back to China if you had remembered what it was like the first time.

Kathy said...

I know you treasure these special moments as they are a blessing. May they become more frequent. You have managed so well with the 'bigs' that I am sure you can weather this. I remember the RAVs of 2008 so know what you are going through.
Love, Kathy

Peggy said...

I have been going through the million videos we have of Rachel's first days home. I stand amazed at how far God has brought her and changed her in the last 2 years. I don't think anyone would even believe the difference 2 years home can make! I'm looking forward to your future post that reveals that you have all but forgotten these difficult days.