Carter has been talking about “ki ki” and his coming home for a while now. He gets that Coen is a “baby” but old enough to play with, hence constantly talking about wanting to play golf with him. He knows that Coen is in Africa. He knows that it takes an airplane to get there. He has even offered to go get him “Caca help. Caca go Apica. Kiki home.” He’s excited. I want to keep his excitement up, but at the same time, I know that Coen’s transition will likely be a hard one. What DO you say to your 2 1/2 year old to prepare them?

The past week I’ve been easing him into understanding that Coen might not be as happy to see Carter as Carter is to see him.
First, Carter and I were talking about Coen and I mentioned “Coen might not be happy when he gets here. He might be a little scared and sad.” That was all it took for my extremely sensitive little man. Tears. Instant painful crying. Not whining, but real PAINful crying. It broke my heart. I calmed him down quickly and we talked about how we can make Coen happy if he is sad. Immediate response from Carter: cocoa! I agreed and told him how proud I am that he is going to help his brother be happy – what a good big brother he will be. He was very pleased with himself.
Tonight it came up again. Carter has been asking for 2 babies a LOT lately. Tonight, he randomly looked at me and said “no babies.”
What? So I asked, “no babies? Do you not want Kiki either?”
He thought for a second and said “Kiki yes. 1 baby.”
I decided to push a little, “Even if he’s sad when he comes?”
“Kiki cocoa mom!”
And just like that, his little 2 1/2 year old self solved all the problems of the world. He already loves Coen and Coen doesn’t even know that Carter exists. I can’t help but think of the future and wonder if Coen will realize how much he was loved by complete strangers before he even left his native country. I pray that his transition will be smooth for him, for us, but mostly for my sensitive little man who will surely feel all of Coen’s pain right along with him. I can only hope that Coen will be as attached to Carter as Carter already is to his little brother.


  1. It's great how your son has already bonded with his brother. My son, age 6 told everyone at school he is getting a twin from Africa. It was the sweetest thing, as he would mention him casually in conversations as my brother or my twin. When we met our son in Ghana, my husband and I came to the conclusion that the boys are very close in age indeed. So he may get a twin after all!!!

  2. I'm sure that Carter will help Coen in his transition, little kids always do well with little kids! We are here in Bulgaria with another family who adopted a 4 year old little boy and they brought their 9 year old daughter with them. It really helped to break the ice for the little guy and he is changing in leaps and bounds in just 2.5 half days away from the orphanage! Lots of love for Coen and Carter, lots of hugs, lots of kisses, lots of rocking and lots of snuggles! Coen has missed out on that for so long.

  3. Bet it'll be Carter taking care of Coen for the first week or so. You'll probably have to share Coen more than you anticipated. Yep, Mr C wears his heart on his sleeve and I love that about him.

  4. What a sweet little man you have! I think you'd best be shopping for a double carrier, or some uber-strong duct tape so that you can wear BOTH of them around the house at the same time. Looks like there might be lots of brotherly love–they might not want to be separated!

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