Welcome to the Corrigan Clan Crazy, Beautiful Mess
Hello friends!
I'm so glad you made it here, however that came to pass. :)
Let me tell you a little about myself. That way you can decide if you'd like to come along this ride with me. :)

I'm Amy. I'm 44 years young. I've been happily married to Doug for 22 years and counting. Doug and I have two biological children, Kyra and Isaac. Kyra is my mini-me, and is 19 years old.  Isaac is Doug's clone, and is 16 years old. We were also blessed 12 and 8 years ago, to travel to China and adopt our two precious daughters. Ada is 14, and was adopted at age 2. Nora is 12, and was adopted at age 3 1/2.

Both of our daughters were Special Needs adoptions from China. We adopted Ada in 2007, and Nora in 2010.
Ada's Special Need was 'severe developmental delay'. She was a preemie, and was only 3 pounds when she was found at approximately one week old. We believe that she was a disrupted adoption (meaning that a family came to China before us to adopt her, and left her after being uncertain of her medical future), and that she was then placed in a very bad environment  and was very neglected from age 11 months to age 2. She only weighed 13 pounds when we picked her up at the 2.
When we got her back to America, her therapists diagnosed her as 'severely autistic' and warned us that it was very possible that she might not ever talk or even walk. She spent 4+ years in 5 days/week therapy , and with a lot of hard work, began walking around age 3 1/2, and talking around age 4. She attends mainstream classroom, and is only one year behind her peers. Ada works very hard and has overcome so much. She is a true blessing to everyone who meets her, and we are blessed to be her parents. :)

Nora's special need was multiple severe Congenital Heart Defects. Her main heart defect is Tricuspid Atresia. When we adopted her at age 3 1/2, we didn't know if she would be able to be helped by conventional heart surgery, of if she would have to be placed on the heart transplant list. Nora was in a medical 'foster home' in China, that was run by an Australian Medical Doctor and her husband, so she was well cared for, but very weak when we adopted her. She also had trouble walking, and from the first day we got her, we knew that she suffered from some very serious emotional and developmental issues. As is common with children who are adopted at an older age, she had symptoms of RAD (Reactive Attachment Disorder). We believe that her symptoms were compounded by the lack of oxygen that she was experiencing from her heart disorder. She had to grow until her chest cavity was a certain size before the doctors at Duke could perform her heart surgery successfully and safely. So, her oxygen levels went from around 80% when we first brought her home, and plummeted to around 65% when she was about 5 years old (which is common with this age's common growth spurt). Right before her surgery, we had to carry her up the steps of our home to her bedroom at night, because she was too weak to climb them herself. :( She had major heart reconstruction surgery (The Fontan Procedure) in March of 2012.
Nora's heart reconstruction surgery was successful, and she has been relatively healthy since then. Her oxygen levels rounded out to around 90% after she had her main surgery, and a subsequent smaller surgery in 2018. Her RAD symptoms, however, did not completely disappear with the surge in her oxygen levels. She continued to struggle with relationships (especially with me, her mother, which is very common in children with RAD), with controlling her emotions, and with memory and learning skills.
After a LONG process of trial and error, testing, and placement, Nora began attending school as a part of North Carolina's Exceptional Children's program in 2017. This has been a godsend for her, and we are so thankful for being led to this program.
Nora is one of the strongest little people I know. She has overcome so much in her short life, and she is a fighter. It breaks my heart to watch her be afraid to form bonds with her loved ones for fear of losing them :(, but she makes progress in that area, slowly but surely.

For years now, ever since we adopted Ada in 2007, I have felt it on my heart that I should speak out for adopted children, and for their adoptive parents. I have neglected to do this, and have decided that the best time is the present.
I would love for you to join me on this journey. I will be blogging about out daily life. I will include the blessings and the struggles. There are many of both. Adoption is beautiful. Adoption is hard. Very hard.
If you are an adoptive parent, if you are thinking about adopting, or if you just want to understand and appreciate your friends who are adoptive parents (or children), please join me.
We will explore our (crazy) daily life. We will talk about things (including essential oils) that we use to cope with  our (crazy) daily life. We will talk about ugly things, and about beautiful things.
Welcome. Thanks for being here.
Amy




2 Comments

  1. I know you love those chirrens something fierce. Thank you for including me! I love you! <3
  2. So many ups and downs. Thank you for sharing! I always learn so much from those who go before me!!

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