Monday, July 06, 2009

The Power of the Pouch!

As I have been preparing for Hannah to come home I have been researching the importance of Attachment and some of the things that I can do to help Hannah learn to trust me. By the time we meet she will have lost her birth mother, her nannies/foster mother and now I'm on the scene and her heart will require a lot of healing to learn to trust again. How does she know that I'm not going to leave her too? I know this, but she doesn't.

This article is SO well written and helps adults understand a little of what Hannah will be feeling and experiencing. Please take the time to read it if you are adopting or, if you are family or friend of someone adopting. It will help you understand why parents MUST parent their adopted child differently than a birth child. There will be times I'm sure that people won't agree with my choices but all I ask is that you please respect my choices. I'm doing what I feel will be best for my baby girl and myself. I know I'll make tons of mistakes but want to do what I can to meet her special emotional needs.

One of the things I will do is carry Hannah as much as my body will allow me to. My cousin bought a Baby Hawk as a gift for Hannah and I and I know that it will get a ton of use. I've been convinced of the benefits of carrying her for quite a while now but my time in CA visiting M3 and the girls reaffirmed this more than any book or CD possibly could.

M3 was showing me the Ergo that she and Tuba Dad used in China when they met the girls. It's now almost 3 years later and the girls are busy, fun, active and love to move, move, move! When M3 brought the Ergo out and I started to put in on, Ro immediately asked if she could go in it? That was fun and she was quite content to be in it. What surprised me, gave me goosebumps and brought tears to my eyes was when not once or twice but THREE TIMES (over the course of wearing it on two different occasions, 2 different days) little Ro reached up and calmly placed her hand on the side of my face and gazed into my eyes!!! If I had any questions about how much good wearing Hannah would be, those questions were washed away with the tears that filled my eyes as Ro and I shared these precious moments together.

Another great attachment resource that comes highly recommended from many, many friends who are home with their children is Nancy Thomas' 'Taming the Tile While It's a Kitten' CD series. I've listened to it once and will listen to it a few more times before travelling to China. Nancy recommends wearing our children a minimum of 6 hours a day for the first 6 weeks that we're home. Yes - the Baby Hawk will get a lot of use as will the sling I'm also hoping to have for Hannah. I'm pretty sure Grandma has this one taken care of. ;o) Thanks Mom and Bridget! Your gifts to Hannah will be precious parts of our initial bonding time and they are gifts that will produce a lifetime investment!!

Wow! After years of reading and learning it's so neat to think of how close my sweet baby girl is! I was at the doctor today and he asked when I thought I'd be in China and my answer was 10 weeks from now. TEN WEEKS!!!! Wheee!!!


  1. I loved my carrier, in China and when we came home, I carried Adia as much as possible.

  2. I love seeing Ro in that carrier and the picture of her touching your check is just beautiful. Soon my friend you will have Hannah in your pouch and she will be looking up to you and touching you as well. I can't wait to see that picture!!

    Thanks for posting the article for family...we brought up the attachment stuff with our families this last weekend and everyone was eager to learn more. I'll be emailing that bit of info off to them. Thanks!!!

    Hope your week is going good.

  3. Wonderful! I carried the Tongginator exclusively for the first six months home, but that was pretty easy since she didn't learn to walk until that point. Heh.

    I love my Ergo, but have heard GREAT things about the Baby Hawk. Maybe you could review it at some point?

  4. I have a carrier and am goingto get one in a cute color before going...
    As for the attachment books and the cd .. I have to get those.. hopefully soon. so I can read and get the knowledge I need..
    get ready girly..
    you are sooo close...

  5. I'm getting so excited for you. Imagine - 10 weeks!

    You're going to be such a great Mommy.


  6. I'm convinced you are right about the baby carrier's. I just need to decided which type I would like to get. Are there any things you like more about the babyhawk than the ergo?

  7. That's a gorgeous picture of you and Ro!

  8. I wore my kid everywhere. It works if the kid is into it.It is a great way to keep you close.

  9. Goosebumps when I read 10 weeks!!!

    "Wearing" Hannah sounds great! I hope your friends and family DO read what you have posted so that they can understand why you are going to be doing what you are doing - whether they agree or not - they should understand and respect "why" you will be making the rules that you do.

    Also - it is good that you are educating everyone BEFORE you go so they have time to ask questions and absorb before Hannah comes home.

  10. Attachment is something I think about a lot and have been reading a lot on. We have 3 carriers and I still want an is a serious matte and requires the proper tools. I have been meaning to break out the Baby Hawk and stick Miss D in it to see.

    Keep smilin!

  11. P.S. 10 WEEEEEEEEEEKS!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!

  12. I love that picture of you and Ro.

    I also love that you are so great at absorbing all of this information and putting it to use in your own life. Hannah will know that she can trust you and the Baby Hawk will help that process along, for sure.

  13. I wish they had these things when my 21 year old son was a baby! We used ours almost constantly in China when we adopted Gwen. She was older -- 15 months -- so I opted for the Playtex Hip Hammock (we loaned it to M3 for her China trip). We actually used it again last week in England! Maddy still fits and she's nearly 5!

    I can hardly wait to see Hannah all tucked in cozy and content and nestled against your heart (where she's been for so many years already).

    Our blog: Double Happiness!

  14. You look SO good wearing that carrier! You look like a total natural!

  15. I hope you have coupons for frequent visits to the chiropractor! Those pictures made my back ache!


  16. Stalking the blog to hear the good news!!!!

  17. I really want a Baby Hawk! Let us know how you like it!

    I LOVE to carry my babies in a sling or other kind of carrier! It's so much easier then a stroller and is just such a nice way to have a constant cuddle! I think you have made a great choice for you and Hannah! I can't wait to see pictures of Hannah in there with you! Not long now!!!


  18. Great post Catherine. You've definitely done your research! You already know my thoughts on all of this and how much we carried Samara around in China and when we were home. We NEVER used the stroller and I think it really helped. We plan to do the same thing with Denver (even though he looks to be about twice the size at half her age!!!) Thanks for posting all this great info!


  19. I know what a wonderful Mom you will be... I can't wait for the first pictures of you together.. The carrier is a wonderful thing,I see on all the blogs how helpful it is. The children need to learn trust and how hard is it for them when they have had so much trauma in their lives. Lauren is a wonderful little girl with so much spirit and such a happy smile, much like Ree & Ro.. she is now playing like every other 2 yr old, and it makes me feel so happy.
    Waiting with prayers for you to get referral soon. Linda

  20. I loved our carrier, too! I can't believe it is almost YOUR turn. Wahoo!

  21. Yup, yup! Carrier all the way. We didn't even have a stroller in China, but you know that. And my fave carrier was the Playtex Hip Hammock (the one Donna mentioned above). That little device just rocked.

    CAN. NOT. WAIT. till you get your referral. Seriously can't wait. Am dying over here just anticipating the moment!

  22. Catherine,

    I wanted to point you to a website that is all about babywearing. It is a wealth of information and was invaluable for me.

    Can't wait to see pictures of Hannah!

  23. I plan on getting an Ergo and wearing my girl, too. I guess that's another blessing in the wait, right? We'll be so much better prepared now than we would have back then....

  24. you got ME choked up reading about Ro in the Ergo and it made me feel really encouraged that MAYBE I can get Gao Mei into one- I have one that was handed on to me (for the life of me still can't figure out how to strap the darn thing on)- and haven't decided about bringing it to China as she's never been carried like that and being 3.5 years old, may really resist us initially so we don't want to force ourselves, you know? But, glad to know it takes that much weight and once she gets more comfortable, we can start using it- wow, that photo of you and Ro? Priceless...

    Not long before I'll be shedding big FAT tears because it will be HANNAH in there!!!

  25. I loved my BabyHawk - it was a real lifesaver and helped with the bonding!! Naomi would fall asleep in it and I liked the fact they were cotton so I didn't get too sweaty! It's been pased on to Doris - I am sure she will make good use of it!

    Talking about carriers, yesterday I found one of those metal frame "hiking" carriers - it was put out with a neighbour's garbage. Not sure if Naomi will fit in it but it might come in handy on our next hike!

  26. What a precious picture of Ro with her little hand caressing your cheek! I carried Hannah all the time in the, she is a big ol' three year old (snivel)

    Cannot wait to see your sweet Hannah in your arms!!

    Have a blessed week.

  27. I ordered a Babyhawk, and it just came in the mail, I LOVE it. I also made one while I was waiting for it to come, I figured I needed more than one in case there were times when one needed washing. I also hope to get the Scootababy, it's a hip carrier.
    You're so close now!!!

  28. This is adorable...her touching your cheek! Made me tear up too!!!

  29. I agree, carry your daughter as close to you as possible for as long as you can stand it! I had swollen ankles to prove it! Make sure you are taking your multi-vitamins!
    I tell AA every day that I see her for the first time, whether getting out of bed or when I arrive home from work, I pick her up, I look into her eyes, asking "Where are Mommy's eyes?". She looks right at me and points and then we hug! It's a beautiful thing!

    Alyzabeth's Mommy for Almost Ten Months!

  30. Catherine-
    Just a note to tell you that I am so excited for your upcoming referral. I have followed your blog for a very very long time. I check in a couple times a month and update myself on what's going on. Over the course of years you have always held fast to your faith and your gentle spirit shines through on your blog. My daughter's name is Hannah Gabrielle and I of course love the name Hannah. I am so excited to follow you on your journey as you get to see her sweet face! I love how you continue to educate and inspire others just by being you. Thanks so much for sharing your story and allowing me to come along!
    Jenny V

  31. Hey Catherine :)
    Same as the poster above I've been following your blog for years - (not sure if I've ever commented before though).
    Excitement is building on this side of the world too (NZ) as I'm anticpating your referral! It's a Global thing! :D
    Heartfelt thanks for sharing your journey. I thought I'd better chime in and say "Hi" now before things get insanely exciting for you and words swim before your eyes! ;)
    You're goig to be the *most wonderful* Mum Catherine.
    Anne (and Family)

  32. I am so glad that you have done the research required to make Hannah's transition and bonding go the best they can. You know first hand that I LOVE my ERGO and so does Emerson. I can not recommend it enough and I know first hand that all the carrying that I am doing will pay off in the future. Emerson's emotional status is more important to me than anything and I will never look back and regret the days of back aches and things that could've been done if only I weren't carrying the ergo with a full load in it. Get ready girl, you are so close. Don't forget to start lifting weights as well! =0)


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