We had a pretty good day today. She still scowled and sulked and pouted but she came down this morning from her room and she went out with me and Laima, a Latvian chaperone, and spent time at the lake today. Progress.
Laima was gracious enough to spend the day with us and it was a tremendous help today. Little did we realize that God’s plan had us helping each other. Turns out she had a rough morning with her host family and needed to get out of the house. Meanwhile Daniela had someone to talk to and Laima coaxed her along throughout the day. Hmmm, imagine that!
Eileen hooked up with us at the end of the day at her mom’s house. My nieces Irina and Nadia and nephew Vitaly were also there. Laima showed Eileen how to make a traditional Latvian headdress out of daisies while Irina had the idea that I needed my toenails painted. I had nothing to lose by trying to get Daniela to smile (she had been extremely rude to our friends and family throughout here visit and that continued today- more later) so it was on. By the end of the session my toenails were painted, I had a floral wreath in my hair and a bouquet in my hands. It worked.
Daniela continued to “spar” with Eileen once we got home. Eileen had to get after her about being rude to people and especially to me; to which she received some choice remarks. Then it turned to food – at first claiming that our food is sickening and then asking Eileen to call me on the phone and have me bring home sausage and potatoes. She would walk away and minutes later would reconnect with us.
Last night she had told us that her ‘friend’ in Latvia was dying of leukemia and dropped a hint of other personal things. Eileen pointed asked her a few questions tonight about it all of which went unanswered. She spoke to her chaperone Dace today and Dace later related to us that Daniela was puzzled as she did not get the response she expected when she hinted at the personal things – we did not yell at her. We also learned that her ‘friend’ is in fact her boyfriend is is as fit as a fiddle.
What have we learned about this girl so far is this: she is smart and crafty; she can be moody; she is constantly TESTING, TESTING, TESTING to see if we really mean it when we tell her that we love her. It’s like she’s saying, “You say you love me. Let’s see if you still love me if I am rude to you and to your friends and family. Let’s see if you still love me when I shut you out completely. Let’s see if you still love me when I am acting like an emotional lunatic”
Dace asked if we were “ok” with Daniela; do we need to switch her to another family. We explained to Dace that we understand that she is a teenage girl and teenage girls are horrible; we also know that Daniela has had a rough time viz. her father; we understand that she is stubborn and doesn’t like being told what to do; we are not giving up on Daniela.