Great day! We finally met with the school psychologist who decides if Karen is ready for first grade. She got 2 thumbs up both for her cognitive abilities, as well as significantly improved behavior. Her teacher told us that she doesn’t have attention problems, except once she gets bored with something, or has it figured out in her head. Sometimes she doesn’t complete her work if she feels she already “gets it”. We also heard that on Family Day, when children discuss their home life, she proudly told the entire class that she was born in Ukraine and that she didn’t come out of her mother’s tummy. According to the teacher, she shared her family story with confidence and in a positive light. I’m really, really proud of her! The teacher told me how she made a big deal about how Karen was “chosen” by her parents. Nice try, but today, adoption professionals advise against this “chosen” concept because it leads the child to question whether we would still love her and have chosen her is she wasn’t so special, cute, pretty, smart, or whatever. In addition, it isn’t true. Truth is crucial to maintaining trust with children who only began to learn to trust after we adopted them. Our story to the children is that we were looking for our daughter/son, and that there were people who helped us locate them so we could adopt them. Which is all true.

Today Matan had an occupational therapy session combined with a speech therapist. The occupational therapist has great chemistry with Matan. It’s been two weeks since she saw him, and she was really impressed with his significantly improved level of play and speech. The slow increase in Matan’s repertoire of words is no thanks to the speech therapist, and mostly due to work I do with him or stuff he learns from other kids at preschool. I’m trying to get us transferred to a different speech therapist since this one has zero chemistry with Matan. I’m thrilled to hear him say new words almost every day now, but he still seems to lack motivation to speak. The occupational therapist is absolutely wonderful, and has had a great influence on Matan, and on how I play with both children.