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OK - here goes. We're adopting a daughter and she needs prayers. - Page 4

post #91 of 414
Whew! That's absolutely terrific news!
post #92 of 414
I was holding my breath when I entered this thread.... I can't start to say what a sigh of relief I have felt.

Laurie, do not think you and Gary are not angels... you are. You are angels, you are heroes, you are everything good there can be on this earth. All the medals and prizes in the world, would not be enough for what you are doing here.
post #93 of 414
What great news! That's wonderful. Here's hoping she really does call the detox place. Congratulations on your new daughter!
post #94 of 414
I AM SOOOOOOOOOOO happy for you all! I just hope that she takes this new lease on life and uses it!

I'll be following this thread until the end...and praying along the way!
--Love, Lacey
post #95 of 414
Originally Posted by yoviher
I was holding my breath when I entered this thread.... I can't start to say what a sigh of relief I have felt.

Laurie, do not think you and Gary are not angels... you are. You are angels, you are heroes, you are everything good there can be on this earth. All the medals and prizes in the world, would not be enough for what you are doing here.
Victor has summed up what I've been feeling about you and Gary for helping Naomi.

I'm soooo happy to hear the tests came back negative!!! You 3 are still in my thoughts and I will continue to send out those mega vibes as she takes the next step towards getting better.
post #96 of 414
Laurie, I will keep praying for you and your new "daughter". Even if she isn't "officially yours yet, in your hearts you belong to each other. I hope with your love and support she is able to clean up and move forward toward a positive life!
post #97 of 414
Laurie is there any more news? Has Naomi checked into detox?
post #98 of 414
Thread Starter 
First of all, let me thank you all again so much for your continued good wishes and good will - for all of us, but especially for Naomi (who is just a fabulous and incredible person, BTW )

OK - let me see if I can get the timeline straight here. A week ago Wed we got the test results - she's healthy. Well - as healthy as a heroine addict can be. Caught up on some sleep, had dinner with friends - dropped her off in the City. She wanted a few days - which stretched (of course) into a few more. I'm sure it can be hard to hook up with other junkies to get them DVDs that belong to them, to pick up a book that belongs to you, etc. We spoke to her at agreed upon intervals - and as on time as she could be, she was never more than an hour or two off (spent with us sweating and worrying - not that we weren't just about every minute otherwise....). I'm skipping a lot, because we actually spent hours a day on the phone with her, talking through a lot of this stuff, a lot of her fears, etc.

Saturday night she said she agreed to let us pick her up Sunday. Sunday she said she had one last thing to take care of, and she wanted to get her mail on Monday, so could we call her at 12:00 on Monday, and she'd be ready to come out to NJ that afternoon - and not go back to the City.

We didn't get a hold of her at noon, but as we're going back to work at our old firm, Gary figured he'd head into the city, not leave till he talked to her, and swing by the office. So in he headed.

He finally spoke to her at 4:00. She was at one of her places - this one in Brooklyn. She was terrified, and said "Dad, will you come get me?" Of course, that's exactly what he did. The psych has said she would test us over and over again, farther and farther, and we have not failed her yet.

He picked her and her stuff up, and Naomi came home. Still a heroine addict, but home. We're working with our Doctor, who, amazingly enough, used to run the Detox program for a local hospital out here. She's on supervised medications that keep her high and fight the symptoms - this we're doing until she's ready to go into Detox, which I think will be tomorrow or Friday. We're driving down this afternoon for a tour of the facility.

We have spent a really intense few days together, and it's been an incredible experience for all of us. What Gary and I realized is that Naomi has had to be very, very strong to be who she is and live the life she has. What she needs now is to trust that she can be as needy as it gets. That no matter how awful she feels, no matter how angry she feels, no matter how ugly and disgusting she feels (going through detox) that we will be there for her. This is what she has never had in her life, and it is terrifying to her to be that vulnerable. So we have been working on building that trust, and I think we're getting there.

Finally, I have to tell you what happened when she came inside her/our home for the first time. Spooky has been stressed out - the new home, Ming Loy, Tuxedo's aggressiveness - and had some problems peeing outside the box which then turned into some obsessive licking. During many hours of phone calls with Naomi and lots of waiting, I spent a lot of time with Spooky, just being with her - whatever her mood - playing, petting, etc. I explained to her that her big sister was coming home, and she was going to be just as needy as Spook, and maybe they could help each other.

Naomi and Gary came in the front door, not the garage door. Shel and Flowerbelle bolted (though Shel usually comes back out pretty quickly). Spooky and Lazlo always hide. My parents and Gary's mom were visiting - each for about two weeks - and they only saw Lazlo or Spook poke their head around into the living room from the stairs and then bolt back upstairs.

We took Naomi around downstairs - the kitchen, the living room - and Ming Loy was all over her (outgoing little rabbit-like kitty she is), and Tux has become our official greeter, LOL!

We then went to go upstairs - I headed up first, Naomi followed, and then Gary. Spooky came out of the bedroom when she heard me coming up, and she sat at the top of the stairs. We all stopped - and I said, "Hey Spook! This is Naomi, the one I've been telling you about." Spook looked up at me, and then looked at Naomi, and continued to sit there. Gary said, just keep going up the stairs, but move slowly. (We'd already prepped Naomi on how to initially interact with the cats). Naomi walked up very slowly, back of her hand outstretched. She stopped near the top of the stairs, and Spooky leaned out to sniff her hand. I continued up, and walked over to what was the "cat room" and what is becoming Naomi's room. Naomi, Gary and Spooky followed. The three of us were standing in there talking, and Spooky walked in, walked straight up to Naomi, turned her but to her and started rubbing all over her legs, arching her back. Gary and I were flabbergasted. I mean - without words.

We then finished upstairs, and headed down to the kitchen to get something to eat. Lazlo was laying on the couch downstairs, and we said "Hey Laz, here's your big sis!" He looked up at us lazily, and again, Naomi walked over cautiously, back of hand outstreched. Laz looked totally unconcerned. He reached out his head to sniff her hand - and rubbed his cheek on the side of her hand!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!! Gary was in tears, and even I got all choked up.

So we head into the kitchen - Ming Loy bouncing around. We made some dinner, and Flowerbelle comes in. Not slinking in, not cautiously peering around the corner - walked in, tail up - like "what's up?" Naomi didn't notice her, and Flowerbelle walked straight up to her. I didn't say anything - Naomi was totally engrossed in conversation with Gary. Flowerbelle stood up on her hind legs, "gophered" at her, and barked! Naomi looked down, reached out her hand - Flowerbelle rubbed her cheeck on Naomi's hand, licked her (Flowerbelle prefers to pet others as opposed to being petted), and flopped over on her side, rolling around on her back, stretching and posing - "aren't I cute?" Naomi was laughing, Flowerbelle was being so funny. Gary put some food down on the table, and Flowerbelle ran under the table, leapt up on the chair next to Naomi, and tried to get into her lap.

Sheldon then decided to join the fray. He came prancing into the kitchen, big proud boy that he is - strutted right up to Naomi and started MEOWING for attention. He does that sometimes, but not often. He was making such a racket! He wouldn't leave her alone. Was rubbing on her legs, arching his back, turning his butt to her, standing up on his hind legs with his front legs on her legs - and she was just giggling.

Gary and I tried not to make too much of a big deal about it, but I cannot tell you how all of that alone was more than enough confirmation for me that we made the right decision and are doing the right thing. That may sound crazy, but I don't care.

It is bad luck in Jewish tradition to prepare a baby's room before the baby is born and comes home. So we did not order a bed or having anything ready for her. (Besides, we figured it'd be nicer if she got to decorate her room with us instead of having it done for her). So Naomi and I slept in the bed, and Gary pulled in an armchair.

Monday night, Sheldon slept on her legs, Spooky curled up inbetween Naomi and I (which she usually does for pets with Gary and I, but she doesn't stay to sleep), Flowerbelle slept curled up to my knees (which happens pretty frequently) - but with a twist. She had her butt to me and her neck stretched out and her head next to Naomi's knees - and she was purring up a storm, just lying there (but she is the ulimate purr baby when she's happy). Tuxedo - who loves to sleep on the bed when we're not in it, and comes by once a night to hop up on the edge of the bed (not on the blanket), say a quick "hi," checks to see that everything's in order as he expects and then bounces back out of the room - popped up onto the bed, walked around Naomi sniffing her completely, walked across her back, down her body, and then leapt off the bed. Gary was starting to get really jealous at that point, LOL!

Ming Loy, as always, slept on the Sheepskin next to the bed. And even Lazlo, who occassionally sleeps at the foot of the bed, stopped by for a visit, and then decided to sleep on the cat tree to keep an eye on Naomi.

Naomi was getting sick, with the flu, actually, which is part of why we didn't go to Carrier Clinic the next day - but it was also in the cards, I think, that things play out the way they are. There was a huge snowstorm up here yesterday, and she had wanted to visit the place first. That just couldn't happen under the circumstances. But we did get her to our Doc, and then back in bed. She got to spend the day being sick, literally (not from withdrawal), and I really think that these few days of her having the flu on top of everything was just what we all need to reinforce that we'll be her for her, and that she can be needy as she wants to be with us.

Ming Loy has become her favorite kitty - but that's because Ming Loy is the most visibly tragic of the bunch. She's being so good with Spooky - I explained what's been up with Spook, and that she needs a lot of love and attention, and Naomi's helping provide it. Spook stretches out on her lap, lays her head down and just purrs while Naomi strokes and pets her.

....and I think seeing how we care for our cats, interact with them - and that they have more furniture than we do is all very comforting to Naomi, quite frankly! If we'll do all this for cats, what would we do for her, LOL!

So..... Naomi's up, I need to roll. Hopefully we're heading down to Carrier, but it's raining and icy, and she's still got a temperature, though it's better. We'll see. We're not pushing. But she's happy and comfortable here, and we are spending hours talking about what needs to be done.

Last year Gary and I officially filed corporation papers for the Feline Assistance Network, with which she really wants to get involved, and we've all been brainstorming (she wants to be a writer), and we're discussing starting the Homeless Assistance Network. She wants to write up her experiences as a help book for homeless girls - so they can avoid what happened to her. Distribution, obviously, to the people who need something like that is the issue, which would be part of the Homeless Assistance Network's mission.

Anyway, that's the short version, and I have GOT to run!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!

LOVE YOU ALL AND THANK YOU SO, SO, SO, SO MUCH!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!

post #99 of 414
Laurie, things sound like they are going wonderfully--better than you could have asked even. Still praying for you, Gary and Naomi. A huge hug for all of you!
post #100 of 414
Thanks for the update.
post #101 of 414
What a reception! You know, after hearing how FERALS reacted to Naomi, I have to say she must be a pretty special girl. Good luck, as always, with the next steps. Those will of course be the hardest. I'm always here for you Laurie.
post #102 of 414
Just remaining in awe,smiling for the steps she's taking....you all remain in my prayers.
post #103 of 414
Wow--every time I read your posts in this thread, my heart melts. I hope that Naomi continues on the path she has taken and becomes very successful! Let her know that we are her friends too! Good luck Laurie--and please continue to keep us updated!
post #104 of 414
I am so glad that the kitties have taken to her. I am sure they will do alot to ease her fears and to help her adjust. Nothing is as calming as a purring kitty on your lap! I am sure as ferals they sense a kindred spirit!
post #105 of 414
I'm so happy things are going well. I agree that the cats liking her is a wonderful sign. I'm always wary of people my cats don't like!

I'm sending more prayers your way!! Keep us updated!
post #106 of 414
oh, yay!! evertything sounds so good!! Tell her I hope she feels better (from the flu) soon! They're awful this year What's her favorite color?
post #107 of 414
I'm without words, Laurie. This is all just so awesome. You guys -- all three of you -- are so awesome. How about that feline reception!! Kitties do not BS on important things. Continued prayers and thoughts. Thanks for the update, and of course we'll be eagerly awaiting the next -- whenever you can spring a few moments from your very full life.
post #108 of 414
Sounds like things are going really great!

As I started reading your post I was stuck by something. Occasionally you'll read about these children (or teenagers usually) who were, for some reason or another, abandoned by their parents - maybe they did drugs, maybe they stole, whatever. While you and Gary consider Naomi your daughter, in all actuality I don't think you've known her THAT long... and yet you both are so supportive, you don't hestitate to go get her when she asks for you, and you respect her wishes - even when she tests you (subconsciously or not). That's so great that you both are there for her and I hope she realizes how lucky she is to have found the both of you!

I'm also glad the cats responded so well to her! Anyway, good luck with everything you all have in the works!
post #109 of 414
Thanks for the update! All I can say is "WOW !"
post #110 of 414
Keeping you and your family in my thoughts and prayers.
post #111 of 414
post #112 of 414
Wow... amazing how the kitts know what a special person Naomi is, giving her love and such. They really are amazing critters.

I'm so happy to hear that things are going well, other than Naomi having the flu. I hope she gets better quickly, so she can start on the road to recovery from her addiction.

She sounds like an amazing person, from what you've written. And her new parents are truly amazing people as well!!
post #113 of 414
Thread Starter 
Wow, you guys are really just too kind. I guess it may sound extraordinary, but it so doesn't feel like it. I am SO amazed at how natural this all feels.

I did forget to mention something. Sometimes in life - especially when he was younger, Gary would, upon occasion, have dreams that came true. One dream he had 13 or 14 (before we'd gotten back together) years ago he told me about 11 years ago (when we got back together). It was that he was married to me (which came true), and we were going someplace with our daughter (which we never thought would come true as we decided not to have children). She had brown hair, and a very specific tatoo. It was "to be" in hebrew, written upside down on her back. It was the same tatoo a friend of his had (even though Jews are forbidden to have tatoos). In his dream, the writing in Hebrew was upside down, and even though the proper translation was "to be," in his dream, our daughter had it tatooed because she thought it meant "rebirth," which made no sense to Gary. We were aware of three tatoos Naomi has. I think I already mentioned that "Live Free" is tatooed across her fingers. She also has an angel (a really nice one, I think) tatooed on her left arm, and an "Earth Goddess" (pregnant with the earth) on her right arm. Well, last night we found out she's got the tatoo from Gary's dream - upside down - on her back. She thought it meant "rebirth," and the tatoo artist, not knowing hebrew, accidentally tatooed it upside down. Kind of wild, hunh? Gary was a bit freaked out for a while.

I know things are going to be really difficult. She is stubborn and opinionated - but finally feels comfortable enough to really just be herself, and that is SO COOL that it is happening so quickly. And she is that way in such a great and kind way. I'm so glad she's not turning out to be some beaten down, so "thankfully greatful" carpet. She's grown in her confidence and trust, and is really allowing herself to be vulnerable.

She was feeling much better today. We let her sleep in until noon. Then we visited Carrier. It turns out that the typical medication they use at Carrier is something she's been on in the past and had a very bad reaction to. They gave us a list of other clinics that use medication, but not methodone, to help "large" heroine users to come down over a period of time. (They also didn't have a bed open today anyway, and probably won't until next week sometime).

Gary's nick-name for her is Sunshine, so the first one we called together was the Sunrise House. Turns out they're 3 1/2 miles from us. It's not the "glamorous" spa facility that Carrier is, but the people were SO nice. They may have a bed open tomorrow (no guarantees), but should within the next few days. We're going to visit them tomorrow.

So we stopped to see our Doctor on the way home. I might have mentioned this before, but he ran a detox program for a local hospital. He counceled Naomi today, and prescribed some heavy morphine-like drug so she doesn't have to go back to the city. It won't be like heroine, but it will prevent her from going through withdrawal. he also prescribed several things to help fight withdrawal symptoms. She's handling all of this amazing well, and I really don't know how to explain it. She believes, very much like Gary and I do, that some things were meant to be, and she agrees that this is one of those things. She doesn't leave the room any more to have her conversations with friends - and they're amazingly intelligent conversations about their relationships and drugs, and she's really standing up for herself and her decision to go through detox, and getting mad at her "friends" for not being supportive - I mean, not just telling us, but having conversations with them about it.

We've been talking with her about how she needs to be comfortable being needy and being vulnerable, and she said she'd like to start at about age 13. She said she had to act like she was in her 20s for the past five years, and now she'd like to start over and be a teen. She feels comfortable calling Gary dad already, and though she kept asking if everything was OK Monday night, ("can I go to the kitchen to get some juice?"), she already acts like this is her home, and we just couldn't be happier.

We stopped to look at furniture on the way home. She picked out a mattress - not a bed yet.

So - tomorrow we go visit the Sunrise House. If they have a bed, she'll probably go in. If not, we'll go shopping to get her some comfortable clothes, a few sets of pajamas and stuff, and they expect they'll have a bed open before the end of the weekend at the latest.

Because of the level of her habit, we already know she'll be on the 28-day program. And it turns out that friends of ours (the ones who own the furniture store) are affiliated with Canyon Ranch, and there's a facility in upstate NY. They're making plans for us to use their family discount, so once she's out of detox, I think we'll all head up there for 10 days. It'll help us all get exercise, focus on getting healthy, continue healing - and all get on a schedule (which we DON'T have right now!!! - As Gary puts it, we're living on "Naomi time," LOL).

Our friends and family are being so supportive, and she's already said "hey" to quite a few people on the phone - because Gary is SO proud of his daughter!!!!!!!!!!

So ..... thank you all again for all of your amazing support and considerations and thoughts. But things really do seem to be going so well, and she remains committed to doing this. We're not on the schedule we expected (surprise, surprise), but it really could be any day now.

Gary and I feel SO blessed to have this incredible woman in our lives.

I guess we do have the touch with ferals - and the cats just sense she's one of them?

Here's a pick from today: (Doesn't she look so much better already? Amazing what a little food and sleep can do!)

Dad and his daughter:
post #114 of 414
Thread Starter 
One more quick pic - can't resist!
post #115 of 414
Well, I have to say that you are a more patient person than I. It is amazing that you are doing this for this woman and I hope that she is able to pull through. As many other people have mentioned addicts are a tough breed of person and more often than not those who love them or try to help them get hurt.

I wish you all the best.

I do have one question though, why take out her piercings for the photo?
post #116 of 414
I am glad things are still going good. The part about the tat kinda gave me the chills. Yeah some things were meant to be. Definately.
post #117 of 414
AW Laurie...this is just so awesome! (Am I repeating myself?) Well, whatever! It sounds like things are going remarkably well, and you three are making an amazing connection. I hope your visit to Sunrise House goes well, and Naomi can get started on this next phase.

That's pretty spooky about the dreams and the tattoos but sounds as if this is just meant to be, eh??

Continued and renewed prayers and vibes...
post #118 of 414
BTW Jews are NOT forbidden to have tattoos.

post #119 of 414
I have read this thread several times and I have learned to get the kleenex before I start now. I can relate to Naomi in a few ways. I was a drug addict until a wonderful family opened up their home and hearts to me. Although circumstances were different I would like to share one thing with you....Some of us go through life guarding ourselves, our hearts until one day someone stands beside us and loves us. They do not mind loving from a distance to allow us time to adjust to this new found treasure. That in itself is what draws us closer,...the ability to make our own decision. I love and respect my parents dearly for what they did for me (as they adopted me 18 years ago).
My hats off to you and your husband. The gift of love is the greatest gift you can give and the most costly. I wish you and your family all the best. Thank you so much for sharing your story with us!!!!
post #120 of 414
Laurie thanks for the pictures--Naomi definitely does look better already!
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