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Wednesday, June 19, 2013


     Holden got a new scooter yesterday, and he is absolutely loving it!  Putting together the scooter was also this Mama's first time at playing Handyman with Chris away.  Success on both fronts!

     Here's Holden having a blast on his scooter.

Here's what Holden does when he wipes out. 

He laughs, and right after this video was taken, he got right back on that scooter.


And the scooter doesn't have breaks, so he balances and maneuvers onto it while it wiggles around.  Then he picks his legs up one by one and places them on the scooter.  And he is off!

I haven't seen too many other two year-olds who respond like this when they wipe out. 
Goodness, I've seen plenty of five year-olds who whine or have tears over events like this. 

Not my Holden. 

He's tough.  Tougher than most kids I know.

Recently, I was a bit insulted by some individuals implying that Holden is coddled or over-protected or that it's hilarious that he needs knee-pads at the playground.  There is nothing that makes me more angry than people implying that Holden is not tough.  Spend a day with this little guy, and he'll put you to shame.  Most of the grown-ups I know could learn a lot from him (myself included).

Here are all the ways my little guy is incredibly tough.  Tougher than you, and tougher than me.

He has never cried more than 5 minutes at a time since we became his parents on April 5th.  On average, he cries once or twice a week tops.  How many other parents can say that about their two year-olds?

We have never seen him throw a temper tantrum.  Whining is very minimal, and it is immediately addressed by us.  We stop the whining, make him take a deep breath, and use his big boy voice to explain what he wants.  How many parents are that diligent about addressing whining in their own kids?

Holden rarely ever heard an English word while in India.  Since coming home, he has learned over 100 words.  He repeats EVERYTHING and wants to practice his English all the time.  He never gives up on trying to pronounce new words.  He constantly asks for his books so he can learn more words.  That is mental toughness, my friends.

On our trip home, we flew 13 hours straight from Delhi to Newark.  Then we immediately grabbed a rental car and drove 12 more hours home to South Carolina.  Holden whined and/or cried 15 minutes tops during that entire 25 hour period.  I don't know many grown-ups who would tolerate a trip like that so well, let alone a two year-old. 

Holden starting sleeping in his own bed in his own room ALL BY HIMSELF (after being used to co-sleeping his entire life) after less than 2 weeks home.

Holden made it in the church nursery all on his own the second time we took him to church. 

Some of this might seem like we have a child who shows no emotion or has attachment issues.  That couldn't be further from truth.  Holden is the most joyful child I know.  He shows us affection, laughs and jokes constantly, and accepts our love, affection, and comfort freely. 

The only explanation I have for all of this is that our little boy is one of the toughest, most resilient people I know.

No one is more acutely aware of the need to foster independence in their child than we are.  It is constantly on our minds.  We are always trying to balance showing Holden love and affection with pushing him past his limits and teaching him not to give up.

If anyone EVER wants to imply my child is not tough or that we coddle him, how about I inject your legs with lidocaine and succinylcholine so they're numb and paralyzed, and we'll see how you get around and cope with that...

THEN we'll talk. 

I'm fairly certain that what we'll discover is that you--dear, sweet, supposed grown-up, are not nearly as tough as you might have thought. 


  1. You go, Mama Bear! I love your fierce advocating for your child and all the strengths you see in him and bring out in him. And that scooter is brilliant! I had such a smile on my face watching him cruise on that thing. I'm so glad your little man is such a trooper! --Jen T.

    1. Thanks, Jen T! He is in love with this thing. In one day, he has learned how to maneuver it around the dining room table, kitchen, coffee table... it's incredible. I can't wait for Chris to see him on this thing in two days. Holden wanted me to try the scooter, so I did. It's pretty fun for any kid, and only $40. I think I might buy another so his friends can race around on one too. I probably sounded like a smart alec in this post, but you're so right... the Mama Bear just comes out!

  2. That is a great post! And yes our kids are tough, being whisked away to another country, away from everything they know and still they make the best of it. They are keen to learn, eager to fit in, make progress in months where other kids take years. So from one proud momma to another: well done you and Holden! I love reading your blog as our boys come from the same orphanage.

  3. I agree with Jen - you go Momma Bear!! :-) You are right to point out his strengths and mental toughness!!! Good job Holden!!! So glad to see you enjoying your scooter. :-)

  4. Hello! I'm Heather and I was hoping you could answer a quick question about your blog! My email is