At one year, A can read a beginning chapter book with little help, swim the length of a pool, dive, ride a bike with one hand, play baseball, use a computer, explain adoption, offer opinions on a wide variety of topics, and make friends with anything that moves. What can he not do?
1. Admit a mistake. I'd read in all the adoption books how hard it is for many adopted children to admit to mistakes; to do so would be to give up control, and control is everything. Here's an idea of how that looks in real life:
Parent: The charger only holds four batteries, so you have to wait to charge the fifth one.
A: No, it holds five.
Parent: It only holds four batteries.
A: It holds five.
Parent: Look, here's the charger. Count how many batteries it holds.
A (counts 1, 2, 3, 4): Five.
Parent: OK, try putting five batteries in.
A (puts four batteries in, is left holding one): Five.
Parent: How many batteries are in the charger?
A: (counts 1, 2, 3, 4): Five.
Parent: It's OK to say you made a mistake.
A: But there's five.
2. Entertain himself. He has always been around other children. First in Burjii, where first he played all day and later helped herd cows with the kids in the village. Then in the orphanages where he wasn't ever alone for a second. Here in the U.S. he loves school, organized activities, and playing at the park with the neighborhood kids. But sometimes those things aren't available, and a kid has to play alone. Most children can create an imaginary world, sitting in a corner with a stick or a plastic dinosaur or a toy car talking to themselves and having a grand old time. A can not do this. He can do imaginative play, but he needs other kids around to do it. Alone he clings and hangs on us and sticks his hands in whatever task we might be trying to complete. Forget checking an email or emptying the dishwasher when A has no one to play with.
(And it almost goes without saying that to have been through everything A has experienced and have these be your biggest challenges is truly amazing.)