Monday, December 27, 2004

Hanging in and waiting for a New Year

Makala will start Day Treatment on the 5th!!!!

We are feeling great peace about this step and ready to start a NEW program. It has been nice the past few weeks not being worried about what I might hear at the end of the day....... Makala is doing very well at home now we see less and less attachment related behaviors. Our Attachment therapists is on board with the day treatment and sad that public school didn't work. It is become an issue of the behaviors bleeding out of the home and happening at school. She needs direct and constant supervision at all times....we cannot get that at school we will have it at day treatment.

Thanks everyone who is supporting us in all the different ways they have....I will update later.

Thursday, December 09, 2004

Answering some Questions My Support System Has....

Friend #1 Asked if we have addressed the 'feelings' Makala has during her Treatment?-- We have done a lot of work on the feelings during the therapy. The great thing about Makala is that she never shuts her mouth and has been really able to express her feelings this was true even before therapy started. Makala has written her own book with me and the therapist and it is pretty thick. She is a wonderful artist and she has drawn so many vivid issues of herself and her art work is very expressive of her pain.

She has 'remembered' a lot of abuse and this pictures are very sad---most often she draws her birthmother the same size as herself --and many times they are both babies crying. We have cried together about the things that have happened to little Makala and her little girl mommy..... We have addressd the times when the boyfriend hit Makala and pushed a table on top of her---and broke all of her toys....we have addressed and reinacted HOW she made herself comfie in a shopping cart and what she did when it rained... We have talked a lot about feelings which is wonderful......

Lately we have focused on the fact that mommies and daddies need to be the big people and they need to make sure the kids are safe and not getting hurt by anyone.... We have been talking a lot about the fact that mommies and daddies are supposed to be helping kids grow up to know how to be healthy people so that when they have kids they get to keep them....and they know how to take good care of their kids...

We have talked about how sad it is that birthmom was told she had to go away from her home when she was only 12 and that she needed to live at a Foster Home too...and that it is sad no one could abopt her mother so she would learn to be a healthy mom... We have focused on Breaking the cycle...and making sure that Makala is able to be a great grwon up when the time is right and that her adoptive mom and dad are never going to make her go away--and that no matter what she will have us and her big sister and brother to be an aunt and uncle for her children...

Makala has talked about having dreams that her birthmom is smiling because her bad kids are all gone and now she can adopt good ones---we have been really clear that her birthmother will not be able to adopt any kids and that people who let their kids get hurt do not get to adopt....And that her birthmother did not WANT good kids--she needed to make herself a good mom to the kids she had... We have talked about ALL the things her adoptive mom and dad needed to do so we could adopt her--and that we picked her and so did some other moms and dads--but everyone decided that we were the best mom and dad for her to have....because we love her so much--and that all the kid helpers (caseowrkers) just knew we were the right people to give Makala all she needs to be a great person.

We have worked on grieving and done some 'riturals' both privately and in Church. We have a special day when we break the law and send ballons up in the air with paryers and notes to help birthmom get better.... She has done prayer requests in her church groups for birthmom.... and she is working on doing the things she needs to do to be baptised (Catholic--not my first choice but that is the family I am in and as a Baptist I allow my husband to be the spiritual leader and leave the rest in the hands of the man above...) We have paryed about breaking the cycle and putting a cover over the beautiful babies so that they can find a different life.

The state made the children Lifebooks with every rotten detail in them.... Including the older brother with a picture... (sad but there is a baby picture of him but not one of her). Adoption is a VERY NORMAL thing in our family.... She watched the vedio of one of my Uncles sermons about adoption and his life story and she like the rest of the world feels she knows Uncle Eddie and that he is here with us all the time and that HE knows how she feels...My cousine Julie just reunited with her bio brother and both of them are very positive. Makala knows that my oldest son and Tori's daddy is adopted and that he spends a lot of time looking for his birthmom but hasn't found her.... My oldest son and Tori know what it feels like to be missing big chunks of their own family hisotires... Aunt Laura was adopted at 9 and she is a real part of Makala's life--She is very well adjusted and has never wanted to look for her family--Right now Aunt Laura is looking for an expert who can take Makala and her picture and MAKE a PREtend one of what they looked like when they were new babies...

In therapy we have talked about how she will remember her birthmother but Jeremiah will not. And that he was hurt too in different ways.... We have NOT disclosed the birth of the two new brothers.... Everyone agrees that this is not the time for this and the family who has accepted the brothers is NOT interested in any contact at this time....Both of the new babies were hurt even more then Jeremiah.... The older of the two has had three different opperations to fix sever internal damage and lack of development physically.... The newest baby is most liekly not going to do well at all... He was born about 7-weeks early and addicted to herion like Jeremiah was at birth.... So everyone involved feels it is best not to tell Makala yet--

We have talked about how SAD it is that her birthmother didn't know who the dads are--and how it is Kinda an interesting thing that both her and Jereimah were DNA proven to be full siblings but that no one can find the birth dad. We have joked about how funny it is that Makala's new birth certificate says mommies old name because daddy and mommy were not married when she was born and how funny that is.... But that when she was born mammy and daddy were planning to get married and adopt a little girl...and it was our promise before we got married and that Only a few days after she was born daddy and mommy set our wedding date and made our plan.... And that on the day Jeremiah was born Mommy and daddy were at DisneyWorld and all we could talk about was how it would be when we got to take our kids there--and that while we were their mommy told daddy he needed to think about having a little boy too...and like magice Jeremiah was being born and how sometimes God is working when we are not looking....

Feelings have been the easier side with this little girl. She is creative and dramatic and expressive. She often sings her own songs about her feelings and real tears have come more then once--Lately Makala has talked about her birth grandparents and why did they do mean stuff to her birthmother--and how did her birthmother have any chance to be a great mom when she didn't have a great mom to keep her safe....and how that STOPS with Makala and Jeremiah.... Because God is sick of this and wants the children Makala and Jeremiah have to be safe forever and he is fixing the problems in their history so that happens....

Makala is a very boy crazy gilr and I know what that is like--from my first memeory all I wanted was to be a mom--I just didn't have the details she has... During therapy we have talked about what can happen to girls who try to be moms too fast...and how her adoptive mom made a mistake and tried to make a man who didnt' want to be a daddy have kids and thats why I had to make a different plan....

The terapist has guided some of the talk about my own history as a battered wife and a girl who was hurt by sexual abuse--That was difficult for me and put me back in my shrinks office and on Prozac and redealing with the 15 years of domestic violence i expereinced.... my oldest son and Tori have been involved in some of the support therapy because they also personally know what it feels like to be children who do not always feel safe and what it is like to see their mommy get hurt. The therapists has used my life history to help Makala see that lots of little girls are hurt and have bad things happen to them and are able to get help and do what it takes to keep their kids safe.

I guess most people here do not know my life history or the history of my oldest children and the horrors they witnessed and things I had to do to make a change for them. The therapist has talked about how good it was that I was a mom who was able to do so many hard things to keep her children safe and not let them get put into Foster Care.... Even though we had to eat mac and cheese for a long time and that the three of us had to get a lot of help to feel better about the things that happened to us.... So that I could be healed in my heart and make a better choice and then I met daddy.... I was not happy that the therapist used my ex-husband as an example of a person who was adopted and didn't get the kind of help he needed...It has become very clear my ex has RAD and his life is not okay because no one helpped him.... I was not comfprtable with this direction at all because "uncle Tom" does come around now and then and will be a part of the future as we interact at futre weddings and births of our grandchildren.

Our therapy seeisons for the past 6-months have not been a simple hour long--most have been two or three hours insensively... Jeremiah has been included every other session for the past few months. Makala has been involved in learning about the things that Jeremiah is dealing with.... And part of his attachment process...It has been a great opportunity to re-parent her because she has been permitted to expeerience the things she sees us working on with him....herself.... At home we have used his expereinces in development as a jumping point to give her the same expereince along with some conversations about just in case she never got to do this or have that--now she can.... Our night time ritutal has been consistantly the SAME for both of them... Including things that the NORMAL world would find upsetting... Her size is sometimes an is difficult to execute some of the things J gets and that she is simply too big to get now--so we have talked about what a bigger person can have that is like what he gets.... Horse rides on dads back are just not the same for her bacuse her legs are too long....

Attachment therapy seems to be running its course and now our sessions really boil down to my demonstrating what we have been doing.... It kinda feels pontless to sit in an office and hold her and read---or play because the reactive nature is changed and she is not displying attachment problems with me in the office. She has NOT kept our private hell private and is now reating to other important people the same ways she was with me in the past.... She has no problem being rude to gandma's and aunts and teachers--in fact at this point my feeling is that the OTHER people in her life are receiving MORE reative behaviors then I am.... She was with Grandma on Sunday for a few hours and felt perfectly free to go ahead and have one heck of a rage there.... She has been doing reative behavior with the other people way more then with me now.... Daddy is now having a few more issues then I am with reacitve behaviors... He now appears to be getting mor of the 'set up' behaviors to illistrate that he is often a bad-guy...

She is no longer telling wild sotries about me being a mean mom... The teacher says that often Makala says things like My mommy said I should do it this way--My mommie says she is your boss you are not her boss... For a long time M had a problem figuring out which adults were in charge of her more then the other adults....It seems to be solid now that she knows that Mom and Dad are the only ones in chagre...

No one is our boss now. We saw her caseworker a few months back and she asked him when he was going to come and check us again and he was wonderful in that he said he cannot now because we adopted her and he is not in charge anymore--that we are.I have been able to get family members on board with not undermining things. Grandmas and aunts have become great about asking me if they can give M a hug today--asking me if she can come over for awhile--and making it real clear to M that we are in charge of EVERYTHING. Our local police department has spent a great deal of time with her and taling to her about the fact that unless we do a really bad thing then we are her parents and they will NEVER come and get her because they think we are great parents and don't see a reason for us to get even a parking ticket....

Tori is in her thrid year of college with her plan to get a PHD in child mental health. Tori is already starting her Thisis for her whatever comes later project. Her main research gold is to study the children of adoptees since no one ever has--and to identify the issues the children of adoptees have--since no one thinks they have issues.... Tori was just accepted in a two year research project on Emotional Neuroligical Brian Function whatever that means...but apparently is is a new study that will use brain scans for deep resaerch on how emotional isses chance the brian function...I give my oldest children a lot of heat on this site--but the turth is they are great people.

Friend #2 Asked if we have considered Homeschooling?-- we have talked about homeschooling. While we know that we have what it would take to teach her we are still not sure we would be able to manange as consitatnly as we feel homeschool parents should. The bigggest issue is addressing Jeremiahs needs and how much time he takes to parent. He is non-stop and he demands 100% of one adults attention at all times.... We have an evaluation later today because his issues have become more identifiable and he is seriouly Sensory Disordered it has become very clear. He is requireing so much effort and attention from us this was the reason we decided to have a live in mothers helper....because I cannot even find the time to clean our house and deal with the needs of the household.

He is also going to undergo medical testing as he has dropped from the 70's% in height and weight ot the 20's since we have had him.... Right now we have to feed him pedisure just to keep his weight on...He will be three and he is in size 24 mos...and in the pst few weeks has lost wieght again.... We have frequent fevers with unknown causes....and after he is tested for diabeates and the other known mdeical reasons that might cause his issues if he is not found to have a medical cause we will look into genetic or other possible issues... Right now he does not sleep at night much.... The past five or six weeks he has slept only for two to three hours a night and then is UP and busy.... I am not getting any sleep either because he distroyed the crib tent and now he has a bed.... The past three nights I have been up mearly all night with him.... Last night we fell asleep at 4 am... Andy and I have not slept together for the at least three weeks because we are not allowing him to sleep in our bed until the morning hours.... He is starting to have tantrums--and unable to communicate his needs to us.... I am personally completely out of energy right now... and personally do not see how I could possibly even focus on Makala's needs if we did attempt to homeschool....

I have however become invloved with a unique situation I am investigating. There is a Co-Op homeschool group here with a wonderful group of familes who have rented space to use as a homeschool center... Each family is there at the ceter at all times but each parent is sharing a special skill and they have developed a program that is providing the other things that homeschool often lacks... Several of the families are parentling kids like ours...and We are considering this as a possible choice for our kids... I am actually pretty impressed with the way they have organized and with the dedication I see in these families... We are also checking into the charter schools that have been appearing in our area...Not sure how those are working at this point.

Either way we have decided that for the near future we will be drwing the circle in tighter around our family. We have stopped being concerned about the things most familes are with first graders.... We are not worried that she is not in Soccer or taking dance classes... We are not doing the Play Date thing at all and we are making ourselves and our family the only priority.

We are considering the move to our last house and deciding if we should do so sooner then we had planned. We have found the 25 acears of property on the river in the Gorge where we plan to build the house we will retire.... We are talking about breaking ground in the spring. This area is rural and the schools are very small.... We have decided to keep my old house and fixing it up as our vacation house in the city.... We are thinking that the move to our property in the wildreness might be our best next step and that daddy's commute to work would go from 45 miles one way to 5 mile one way and his stress level would decrease with our move closer to work...Right now EVERYONE in the family lives within two block of each other and we are like Ramonds family with the interaction.... Our move to the Gorge would make that much different and isolate our family but we are starting to view this as a better choice then the constant nearly daily involvements with everyone.... We have spent the past year looking to buy a duplex as an investment and made eight offers which have all fallen thorugh--so we are starting to wonder if the man upstairs isn't trying to tell us something....We think that if we break ground in spring the house would be move in ready by the time M is out of day treatment.... this is sort of new thinking in the house as we had planned not to build for another five or six years in orcer to pad the retirement....but now we are looking at different options. Mialy the schools and the lifestyle that we would have where the property is located... The expereince for the children would be awesome and our life would be what we picture we want... horses to ride and our fake vinyard to pretend we make some wine--A river to raft and fish on and enough lant to run free with the wind.... It is a beautiful location and the view is so awesome... We camped a night there this past summer and everyone was happy. Keeping my house means we would have a place to stay for medical and other reasons for services--and it would mean that we would not always have to drive home to the country after appointments with experts and after family visits... We would have so many options... and be out of the rat race and the influences of one of the most liberal cities in htis country... Makala would be less likely to see pierced up protesters on the drive home...and less exposed to the cultrue here which is pretty wild and crazy. In this city you are the weirdo if you do not have your tounge pierced! And overall it is a radical center--with less focus on family values... Drag Queens are a normal site here--and there is a cluture of children having personal rights that is impossible to aviod....There are attempted abductions of children nearly every singel day and right now there are at least five missing woman in the area...last year we had two dead girls to deal with...and this is impossible to escape the information Makala gets with billobards on the freeway and pretty faces of lost little girls posted on every door you walk our house in the country is seeming like a locgical move......

Friend #3 asked if we have any charts or tools for behavior modification and education, and if she has any of this in her class room because their child seems to be doing well with this kind of planning at school? I would love to see your chart. But personally have decided that when winter break starts that will be her last day at the school she attends now. I am tired of the BS and had enough to deal with 15 years ago with my older children to know that this is like fighting a battle that will never end. Public schools are trained to act like every issue is the fault of the parent and that if only we did our job correctly then the child would be just fine. After spending time in the classromm I can see that there are at least three other children in her class with as manyif not more issues then she demonstartes. The minapulation she has mastered is not going to ever be really seen by these educators... No matter how much assistance I have offered or ideas or proof that their plan is not the plan she needs this school is unwieilding and will NOT deviate from what they have decided is the ONLY way they can or will deal with problems. They still do not feel there is even a reason for an IEP.... and they have told me too many times that unless they see something WAY beyond the normal they see no reason to provide her with any special services at all... They do not understand RAD--or the issue that Makala is dealing with and they seem to idealize us as people doing such a wonderful thing for theses poor children--I guess we are supposed to be satisifed with our noble act and call it a day.... There are 750 children in the grade school! This is the same disrict that refused to allow Makala to use our last name until the adoption was legal! They seem to have all the answers and simply want to praise us for doing such a great thing--that is not helping anyone.

They do not understand and are not willing to educated themselves on any of the issues... They refused to use the state created Adoptin sensitivity taining for the staff... They refused to recognise National Adoption Month in anyway. There are no books in the school library that talk about older child adoption and only two that even talk about adoption at all. They seem to think that with time things will be great.... They do not seem to think it is a horrible thing that Makalas behavior has resulted in the little boy being hurt and in Makala learning more...and they seem to think we are over medicating her and that if we just relaxed she would love us and behave well.... I am done beating my head up on that wall....

I wish there was a different choice then the day treatment.... I am scared to death that if we wait we would need and even more disruptive option. I feel she is at such a great risk of continuing to exhibot these behaviors outside of our control... and it seems the tighter we get the more she acts out in areas we have no control over.... I do not see that sitting alone on the bus solves her inablity to interact properly... Short of going with her and spending the whole time at her side I cannot seem to get any other idea about how to help her. i see other children in her class with full time assistants every moment of every day--and for the life of me I cannot see what has made that child qualify for this and Makala gets a Happy face chart and prizes for acting the way she should? Other children are not rewarded for normal expectations...shy should she be?

..........anyway---a talk too much....and know that....but, it is a relief sometimes to dump this stuff here. I think I am hopefull that with all the efforts being isolated in one place maybe we can see changes in these behaviors...? I could be wrong I don't know. It just seems like I am tired of cathing all the people up with all the advice the other expert has and then hearing something contradictory.... I don't feel like anyone is coming up with services that make things more consistant. Half my time seems to be spent educating one side of the system about the other side and trying to see if any two experts will ever agree on one thing... I feel like putting school and therapy together and my being involved will at the least give me a chance to catch my breath and not spend hours trying to keep all the people on the same page.... That has cost so much time and energy I honestly don't think I can deal with it much more... Right now my own health and my own needs have become so unimportant that sometimes I cannot even remember how long it has been since I took a bath! Everytime I think I have one kid set in the right direction the other one has a blow out...and then I have to scramble to figure out and deal with the new situations....get it on track and wake up the next morning to a new blow out... I honestly do NOT know how people deal with more then two children at one time... I admire those of you who do...I simply could never add one more kid to my pile of kids... And just when things feel good with M and J the older children have a crisis!

All I need now is a wedding or grand child to plan for! Andy and I have decided that 2005 is the year we focus on OUR family and OUR personal health and that we make changes to the areas that we have ignored for the past two or more years...

Wednesday, December 08, 2004

A Decision has been made.....

It has been difficult and painful to make such a major decision for Makala..... But recent events and situations which have left both Makala and other children at risk has caused us to make the decision to accept the January spot in the Day treatment program.

We (mom and dad) have a meeting this week to help dad over come some of his anxiety.... We are both so tired--the teacher is tired and the behaviors we deal with appear to be under control at home--and are now manifesting outside of our home.

Last week a mother of boy on the bus called....(same boy we had issues with at the end of last year).... And apparently HE has really been enjoying the NEW Makala--was thrilled she trick or treated at his house--and he likes her very much enough that he has been sitting next to her on the bus Until last week when Makala told him they should get married and then twiddle with each others privates and make babies.....

Sadly, the mother called AFTER the kids went to school the next morning.... And I feeling responsible for the 'VERBAL SEXUAL ABUSE' her son experienced I called the school....without talking to my OWN child first--without hearing her side of anything--without giving her the benifit of any doubt....and Makala was brought to the office, talked to about appropriate behavior and assigned a seat by herself on the bus for the remander of the year.

When my little girl came home--I talked with her. And, was completely devastated to learn that my abusive daughter had learned NEW IMPORTANT AND COMPLETE DETAILS about what Twiddling with each other's privates really means....and this information came from the little boy--who has a high school aged brother that has nasty magazines in his room...according to Makala the boy saw the pictures and told my daughter MORE then she had known before.

I should call the other mom as she has been so great to communicate with us---but, I feel I just am not able to do it and tell her that her son is eaqually responsible and well....personally, I am too emotionally worn to handle that kind of call in a good way and boys will be boys...not my issue I have my issues and the other family will survive.

BUT--I realize something in this whole mess. As much as I worry about ALL the other children my little girl is an open target for rape or a boy taking her up on her offer... EVEN if my daughter started the conversation--Even if she was not appropriate--her knowledge and behavior is placing her in great danger....

After these events I talkd to the teacher---and learned that Makala had been held in from recess for TWO WEEKS! for chasing and grabbing boys at recess.... NO ONE EVEN CALLED ME!!! I was also told that Makala was finding and bringing odd things to school --broken glass, dads tools, baby brothers toys ect... to school apparently in her underware as I check her...and the teacher has been taking things away.... NO CONTACT to me at all!

I have emailed a WEEKLY update every week since school started to the teacher, princapal, and email back would have been nice at least.... I guess I expect too much.

Anyway--yesterday we saw the shrink and his action was to change her meds and up one change another and blah blah blah... and he wrote a note to the school....saying Makala should not be isolated on the bus--she schould not be held in from recess and the school should Find a way to help her develop social skills if possible..... Today she was back on the Happy Face plan with three warnings before a frown ( I can tell not one person involved has bothered to read my e-letters) ONE WARNING is what we stressed and begged for....but she gets three and when she gets four out of eight happy faces she wins a PRIZE---huh?

Then the shrink went on to tell me that Bi-polar can cause these kinds of sexual awareness issues---I have not researched this proclaimation yet--but can say that this notion is a new one to me... The shrink said I need to TREAT Makala as if she has already sexually abused Jeremiah and assume he has been...and talk to Makala about it often (?).....I am not feeling real great about him any more....He seems to be acting like her issues are all about Bi=polar and ADHD....YEAH that's it...

Then attachment therapy--well I honestly think that has worked. I am really not to sure what more we can expect from this. The last several appointments have basically consisted of playing, reading with her and chit-chat...I don't think that other then seeing Makala can read that we have learned much new in the past few months.... The therapists isn't really giving me anymore exercises....or ideas....or lessons to IMPROVE anything....The relationship between Makala and me seems to be really nice now... Her Thanksgiving project was "I am Thankful for...." She wrote "That my mom and dad wanted to adopt me and love me"

The other day we were watching the sunset and she reached over and pet my cheek--I et hers right back and she stayed in my arms....for a long time. She is not pulling away--she is looking me in the eyes--and we do not appear to be having REACTIVE behaviors much anymore. She will now tell me the truth n the first serious request knowin the truth might cause a problem but the lie will end the day....she hugs me when she leaves...when she comes home....and her class work has a lot of mention about her parents....and it s generlly positive.....I FEEL like we are attached much better and that she trusts me and is talking freely and .... Not sure what more we need to do about attachment? Except to keep working on what we have been.

so--the day treatment is TWO adults for each child at all times. There are eight student accepted and the children are NEVER out of an adults sight or ear shot. She will have a direct therapist--and a teacher assigned to her at all times. The program is a little shorted day the regular school.... Parents are required to invest four hours at the program each week....Two in conference with the staff and counselors....and two in dircet interaction with the child and staff---so they can help build my skills and language in dealing with issue. The program is 100% theraputic and EVERYTHNG is designed around the childs specific needs, including the math and reading and educational elements...

The day treatment is for EMOTIONAL Disturbed children. Makala was accepted based on her history and the reports from her hospitalization this summer.... as well as the parent interview with me....They skipped the part where thier shrink evaluates as they felts she was a qualified candidate without seeing her. Acceptance is based on the vote of a 9 member board of mental health professionals....Makala's vote was 9 of 9 for acceptance....The program is funded by both the State education dollars her district would recieve for normal schooling--and by the state health insurance she is entitled to. Transportation is provided by the school district...all year round including summer.

The day treatment is part of Oregon Health Science University and is NOT a Teaching unit of the school it is a professional service and all the players have completed their education. Interns and students do serve in support measures but the children are not used as learning tools to experiment with---they are part of a long effort to meet the needs of emotionally disturbed children...Everyone is in a paid postion....

Could this really be a wrong choice?

Saturday, November 20, 2004

RAD--an interesting part of a daily life...

The thing about actually doing the Attachment Therapy is that some of the issues we might have calked up to skill and ability really boils down the RAD!!!!

you see, I would have been going nuts trying everything I possible could in order to 'HELP' the sweet little girl catch on and learn how to read....... IF, she hadn't so brilliantly displayed the fact that SHE IS DOING JUST FINE! Of course, you would NEVER think so if you were in our home at reading time...and tried to indure the painful sounding out of each and every letter written on the page--or the fact that on one page she gets the word which on the next page seems to be so painfully difficult....

in this case it really honestly is RAD Minipulation and boy does it look and sound and feel soooooo sincere. On onlooker would actually wonder if she wasn't retarted! And it became such a painful ordeal that it was simply hard not to mack her.... ....Ma...K.....a....L.....a....... g..g...g...g...i?..i?...E...t ....ready foooooooor .... b...b...d...b...ed! Painfull

but with the therapists she read a Dr. Suse book with great ease with hardly a moment of sounding out any single letter--as if she read the book ten times before!

so the Reading Problems are not really as bad as we were thinking--it is the RAD problem that made the whole thing so painful. By not playing this game for awhile--it won't be a game to be we will simply focuse on some more creative ways to try to learn reading....and support her

We play MEMORY with her sight words.... And a Scavenger Hunt in the house for the next clue....with written instructions.... CAR BINGO is fun and we expanded that to spell words.... and now Daddy is playing Hang Man and it has gone over pretty well.

Thursday, November 18, 2004

RAD and Reading--what a SCAM!

WE JUST got home from Therapy!!!!! Very fun morning to say the least!

Today we talked about school and the fact that daddy and I are having a terrible time with the READING homework and it seems like she is simply NOT learning to do it....or something??? WELL--the therapists pulled out a book and guess what???? Makala can read just fine so long as it is not mom or dad trying to HELP her!!!! HOW RADISH IS THAT!!!!!

Not sure how I feel about the advice we have to work with the next few weeks but, have to trust the therapist a little on this.... She suggests that we give it a try every night with our job in the area of reading--BUT that if Makala is not interested in doing her best we can quit trying and tell her that she can learn at school....then make sure we spend time reading to Jeremiah and teaching him his ABC's.... and wait for Makala to get envious... because she will..... At the same time therapists suggest we play some games like Hang Man and Scavenger hut with words for clues.... trick her into learning to read but not make it so obvious that we are doing something we have to do because the school says we have to....????

anyway an interesting point of view... Makala knows we are supposed to be responsible EVERYNIGHT to spend 20 mins reading with her.....and it has become one of the most painful 20 mins of our lives.... Trying to help her is literally PAINFUL to our ears......and it is so hard not to mock or get angry when she actually tries to convince us she does not know what the simply letters "A" is.... I am 'A' Fool!

Some discussion on neurological delays and its effects helped me today...and learning that MANY RAD kids are Kinetic learners has given me a road to research... We have also discussed the option of holding her back a year which truthfully I am not crazy over---

We did have the chance to have her admitted to day treatment...I had thought we had lost this option a month or two ago but found out we have not...And because we have found a good doctor the day treatment center is keeping her on the list....because they will hold her spot to see how medications are doing.... Then last week I thought again I had to decide once and for all....but, no we have until January to make our last choice---if meds keep working then we won't go that route--however we do have a few more months to see.... I think if it comes down to holding her back first grade we will go for the day treatment as they do school work and would transition her back into school 24 months later...I would rather not have her held back...she is so tall already and would tower over everyone even more then she does today!

Monday, November 08, 2004

Learning to Read.

I know that I didn't read in the first grade---but my oldest son and Tori did....

As for why I am concerned EVERY day she brings a small 'READER' home from school and is supposed to read it with us.... and the teacher has a list of about 25 words that are 'sight words' and feels by this time Makala should have all of these words mastered because supposedly they learned the same sight words last year.... Makala can only read 2-3 of them and usually guesses and is mostly wrong.....

I have not become over concerned at this point because I know how hard it was for me to learn to read---but, I also know the school is expecting this.....and she is now in the slow reading group or whatever the PC word for that group is today...

The thing I am most concerned about with her is that she does not believe that things are consistent... She does not trust that Tuesday always comes after Monday--or that 11 is after 10 or that the word 'THE' is always 'THE'. That is the part that is bugging me the most----no matter how often I tell her the days of the week NEVER change she does not trust it---No matter how often we tell her that bedtime is 8:00 and that is after 7:59 she seems to think that something magic will change it?

We attended her first grade Sunday School event two weeks ago and all the children in her class were supposed to read a passage and she was the only child who could not?

so again I have no idea if I am expecting too much or if I am judging too hard or if she is still falling in the low normal or what? Time for another meeting I suppose!

Sunday, November 07, 2004

A Nice time in our home.

Well--overall we are still seeing great improvements in most every way.... Attachment therapy has expanded and Jeremiah is attending every other week.... Everyone involved with Makala is feeling that the RAD is improving and that the medications are helping her greatly.

Overall I am feeling more attached and more emotionally connected to her. Recently I have expereinced several moments of what I call the hot flash of love wash over me--which is something I had not been expereincing even though I completely love her.

We have been refered to a Neirological (sp?) Specialist for a battery of testing to be done. Everyone always seems to "think" Makala must have a hearing problem is it may be some form of audio deslexia actually. She is having a very difficult time learning to read--and seems to think that things might not always be the same one day to the next--she simply is not catching on... So we are going to investigate the possible learning issues, and other things that may be causing her problems.

Tuesday, October 12, 2004

60 days on medication and Now everyone thinks RAD is not the issue?

Well--it has been only 60-days since medication has really been in full use and both the therapists and the psychiatrist have backed off the RAD Diagnosis.

We have been in intensive Attachment Therapy since June and been seeing the psychiatrist since August and as of this week both have informed me that they do NOT feel we are dealing with Reactive Attachment Disorder as the big problem at all.......

Makala is severely ADHD and suffers from strong Anxiety with clear reason to suspect bi-polar. However they also agree that Makala has been exhibiting attachment with most of it appearing to be rather healthy. Personally, I don't think this is ADHD at all!

The FACT is that since Risperdal (more information about Risperdal )has been used we have not had a single RAGE lasting more then a few minutes and her overall mood has been consistant and stable. The school is NOT reporting any abnormal behaviors and feel my concern is over-reactive and that 99% of her behavior at school falls within normal expectations.

She is NOT having problems sitting in her seat during class since we have added Ridlin.... and she is not having problems on the bus.

The psychiatrist feels that in most ways the stealing is still within age and experience history and that she did NOT appear to completely understand that stealing is WRONG. In therapy she talked about this being what birth mom did in order to get food and milk....and that Makala got candy when she helped steal food at the store. Makala also talked about the fact that birthmom did pan handling with a cardboard sign and people would give her money.... And that birthmom was very happy when they did.

The assumption is leading to everyone to believe that her behaviors are somewhat conditioned and that RAD is less of an issue....

They are still concerned about the sexualized behaviors and we have not actually figured out where these behaviors come from?

Jeremiah has been attending a few appointments for observation with both doctors and both agree that he is showing some very strong ADHD signs as well--however as everyone knows they will not Diagnosis for him until he is at least 5 or 6.

Makala seems to need to dominate the conversations as a 'control' issue seen often with RAD--but, we have seen dramatic changes in this behavior after the psychiatrist suggested several exercises to help Makala learn to wait to talk--and give me some time here and there for a break....

A star chart and rewards for delaying her intrusive behavior has worked very well and she has learned to say, Excuse me before talking and has learned to wait for her turn. Which star charts and that kind of stuff is usually not effective with RAD.

The plan now is to continue with both Attachment Therapy and the psychiatrist weekly until after the winter holiday and then in January start to eleminate the Risperdal to see if the old behaviors return....should they it will be assumed that she is Bi-polar and not suffering from RAD.

There are still impulsive behaviors however when observing Jeremiah both doctors can see that if Makala was even half as determined and ADHD as he appears and if her birth mother GAVE in to the determination that he exhibits then she has been conditioned to get what she wants when she wants it.... Jeremiah has become a little terror the past few months and is having tantrums and shows signs of NEVER giving up until he has exactly what he wants.... Very stubborn personality and very persistent for a little boy who is not even 3 yet.

so who knows?

Jeremiah started a new speech class this week where I am not to stay with him. He goes for three hours on Monday mornings and Yesterday they said he did wonderful and didn't appear to have a single problem after I left the classroom...he participated just exactly as they expected and he showed very few sings of anxiety during the whole time.... When he left the class he found me in the crowed of moms...and walked right to me with a smile on his face and was excited to show me his art work.

The psychiatrist sees that Makala is showing great signs as well and feels that she has a good sense of family and a normal desire for approval from me..... and that she is gaining new skills every week and doing wonderful.

I don't really know what to think at this point.... I can say that we have been thrilled with some of the changes since the medications were started and that overall our home is 100% more peaceful then it was only 60-days ago.

Clonidine was removed from the program and a second ADHD med was added.... Lately Makala has shown that she is able to concentrate and color and play games for much longer periods of time....and that she is focusing on her learning and starting to understand some things she didn't every day. At night she has been so tired she just goes to bed without even an argument.

We have been using the STAR reward system for the past few weeks and she is appearing to understand and respond very well to this. She has also had some small chores added to her day and is eager to do these to earn a star and the praise that comes with it.... She is working toward allowance and seems excited about her role in doing things around the house.

so I will just wait and see.... I suppose it is possible that the RAD was real and that my education and efforts have made a big difference? We have always been acutely aware of attachment and we started right off with the techniques we learned and have adjusted them as needed--maybe this all has made a difference? January will be the two year mark from the time the children were placed and perhaps this summer was the DARK before the dawn?

It will thrill us if she is taken off Risperdal and continues to have the control not to fly off into the RAGES....

I had thought that maybe my BIO children were just sedate and clam kids and that I was spoiled by their passive natures--and I had not realized just how busy these little ones really are? I thought maybe my older age made me more sensitive to the behaviors.... But both doctors tell me these children are very active and very busy and that I have my hands full! So I am relieved to know I am not crazy when I don't remember things being this hard 15 and 20 years ago..... my oldest son and Tori are clam and sedate people and always have been.... so who knows?

Anyway---that's the stat today.

Sunday, October 10, 2004

A Calm period or a New Normal?

Well, be it the medication or the therapy things have seemed to calm down very much.

The rages are NOT happening---she still argues and wants her own way and will still do anything she can to get what she wants--but I have not seen a full blown rage since August! Which honestly feels like ten years..... There have been "moments" but it seems she is able to talk herself down a bit and that is sooooo nice.

We have managed to keep her weight down with the diet.... But, I have to confess the healthy foods are very expensive compared to buying a bunch of junk! And on top of it all it is pretty clear that baby brother's system cannot deal with very much Splenda so I am having to be sure I keep regualar yougart and regular juice for him....

Next week is school conference. I cannot wait. The teacher called and asked to switch my time to one where we could go over the 20-mins allotted and use at least an hour!!! I don't know if that is for my sake or if there is going to be some kind of big news.

The only real EVENT of this week was the Tuesday Play date.... URG. We just found out some of our neighbors about three blocks away are not only in our same age group but adopted children from Korea -- or China as new borns they are 7 and 4 so we possibly have some NEW friends!!!!

Anyway---I spent some time talking with the mom on Monday and let her know some of the issues that Makala has---and we planned a play date for Tuesday. After the school bus dropped her off I walked with her down to the other families house...We all agreed that in One hour I would come get Makala and we would go get the baby from pre-school...Everything was clear even Makala should have understood.

We have always been real clear that she is not permitted to walk out of our Cul-de-sac and that she must be able to see our front door while she rides her bike...and she KNOWS THE RULES.

The other mother and I decided it would be a good idea if she gave Makala a 10-min and a 5-min warning that I was on my way--Hopefully, to avoid the blow outs she often has when things come to an end....So the other mother gave her the warnings.... I got in my car and started to drive when what did my eyes see?

Makala walking around the corner into our street! Like no big deal. I put her in the car and we went to the friends house...the mother was in a complete panic...holding her phone and nearly crying....she said she looked up and Makala was GONE!

Apparently M just walked right out the front door and didn't even say good bye ....and walked home.... ..............................and she knew better...................but 'FELT like it" the play dates for the rest of the week were cancelled and we spent a long time learning the RULES again.

Thankfully the other mother is actually open to more play dates!

Girl Scout training was fun.....found out I didn't have to go---don't have to reapply again either--been a leader for 10 years so they have what they need to check me out..... it should be interesting... It was nice to have a whole Saturday without kids.

Thursday, September 30, 2004

At this point in time I am starting to think that maybe we should stick it out with the mainstream and not place her into day treatment and this is a

My support system has sure been adding great info to my decision. There is only one point to clear up and that is the fact that the Day Treatment program is only for 6--7--8 year olds.They have another class for 3-5 year olds. And I am not exactly sure that we would be able to "Get In" again in the future. There are only 8 children accepted at a time and these children are in the program for 18-24 months so.......I suspect if we decided to pass that would be the end of this as an option.

We are getting dressed and ready to go see the Attachment Therapist and I am going to ask her again what her thoughts are.

On October 9---I will be doing an all day training for Girls Scouts. There are 16 1st grade girls and the troop needs a leader and 2 co-leaders so I signed up to be one of the Co-Leaders......DH said he knew I would get sucked in---and I said I knew I would too..... and so here we go.... I think Makala will Like Girl Scouts....and it really is a great Mother-Daughter activity.

Anyway--It looks as if we are leaning to the NOT going to day treatment plan. The past several days I have told Makala that she is still too little to go to the OTHER Col-de-sac's and play but that it is fine if other kids want to come and play here in ours. And there have been heards of kids playing with Makala!!!??? It is kind of winding her up---but it is good to see her play with the other children.

Friday, September 24, 2004

Deciding if Day Treatment really is the best idea...or not....hard choices to make.

I really hope we can stop all meds eventually and this is another reason I would like the intensive support that day treatment might offer.

I wish this was an easier decision to make. Part of me feels that with the support and help of the day treatment and the fact that next summer would not include the viod this one did perhaps she and I would have more Quality time together...... I feel sort of on the spot with DH as he does tell me that he will not override the decission I make....which seems unfair for me because then It is ultamatily all on my shoulders.... Another thought I have is that I could become more active with the Homeschool families and perhaps provide some social outlet for her there.

Right now Makala does not appear to be making friendships. She talks about children she likes and plays with at school....however the children appear to be uninterested in play dates or being friends outside of school. She has NOT been invited to a birthday party or play date in nearly a year and we only had two children willing to attend her birthday party last Feb....

Of course, I don't remember my other children having huge friendships in the first grade not really strong outside of school anyway--but they both have the SAME friends today that they made in First grade. They were involved in more activities then Makala has been scouts, and community center activities.... Tori had some significant social problems in early grade school because she skipped Kindergarten and was TAG (talented and gifted) and socailly did not interact with children at the same age.... but, Tori has always been an odd duck and very selective with her friendships. Both of my older ones were reading in first grade and sort of odd balls......still are actually. Tori will have her BS degree two months after she turns 20!!!!! my oldest son is starting his Masters and he just turned 21 so both of them had less concern about other kids--they both have the kinds of friendships that last a lifetime. But were and still are socially strange.... My husband cannot get over how odd they really are.... he thinks it is strange they never rebelled and that they dont seem to care about the things most young people do.... I wish I could take some credit for their sucess but I think it is their nature. Weird kids I suppose I don't know how it happened? After living the life I gave them I sometimes wonder? It is pretty sad when your children are smarter then you are by the age of 10! We just never really had a problem with them....never had to tell them what to do..... my oldest son got his Eagle Scout in the middle of his parents divorce! I suppose they spoiled me and made me think i was a better mom then I actually am.

RAD MOM Denial.... This stuff is just CRAZY.

I still have the days when I think that Makala cannot really be RAD!

And, wonder if we are in fact dealing with Mental Illness issues rather then attachment or adoption related issues.

I guess I get to this point when I see the signs that she does not completely fit into the mold of things that others advise me will be the case. For example when she left the Hospital we did not have worse problems at all--as several of my Internet support friends has suggested. In fact, things have steadily improved from the time we started medication and asked for intervention.

The Psychiatrist, Dr. Joe--also is impressed with some of her behaviors in relation to me. He points out that during our therapy sessions Makala looks to me for approval, and input first and that she gravitates to me in a very healthy way. He also says he finds her "family" attitude to be encouraging. Dr. Joe has a really nice Castle with special pieces that you collect and he has recently added some scary pieces for Halloween, a Ghost. When 'M' was playing with them he asked her about the Ghost and she said it was Big Brother (my oldest son) dressed up for Trick or Treat. The DR noted to me that this was a very positive sign and that she seems very connected to her family.

The things we do not know about Makala's history are somewhat concerning. We do NOT know if she was born drug affected? We do suspect that Birth mom had/has some significant mental health issues which were supposed to be addressed as a part of her case plan. Birth mom apparently named her angry side a different name. But, because Birth mom would NOT follow here case plan there is no real concrete information. We do not know anything about any other family members as Birth mom was estranged from her family from her early teens. There is just so little information to go on.

......and since we have been on medication and home from our vacation Makala has NOT had a single RAGE! There have been several moments in time where she was about to get on the floor and start her routine---and she has been able to stop herself when I ask if she really wants to do this right now? It seems that with the medications she is able to control herself.

Even her DIET has been less of a problem then I thought it might be. She is very disappointed when she cannot have sugar or sweet treats but when I explain that with the medications she cannot eat sweets she seems to accept it very well. She has asked me if she will EVER get to have ice cream or pie or sweets again--and I have told her that YES--but only on special occasions and she seemed satisfied with this. She has also asked that if she can learn how to stop having tantrums will she get to stop taking the medication and I have told her that we will see about that at the right time.

I am really impressed with how well things have been going with the meds. I am not sure if I have updated everything but, we are using Risperdal .50 mg a night, Ritalin LA 20 mg a day and 'when needed' a tiny chip of a Clonidine, lately there have been FEW problems.

We did have a stealing event from school this week. Makala came home Tuesday with some small toys from her classroom....and On Wednesday I went into the school and talked with the principal about the fact that this is NOT a typical 6 year old stealing for the first time. That it was actually a test to see if the teacher has control of her classroom. The principal was very supportive and understood what I was saying. The principal had Makala miss Lunch and recess and stay in the office with her--then return the items and apologize to the teacher and her classmates. Makala has been told that if this happens again she will have a bag check everyday before she leaves school.......

Day Treatment We did get a call yesterday that the committee voted 100% in agreement that Makala should be accepted. I was told an opening might come up within a month or as late as January.

Daddy--has some real negative feelings about taking this step. He is worried she will have resentment, that she will not make friends and that she could be exposed to children with even more serious issues. He is also concerned that she will be TAGGED as a problem and that it will follow her..... Thankfully, the Day Treatment center offers family counseling and support now that we have been accepted into the program. We have an appointment next week.

I think that socially she could be even more hurt staying with the kids in her regular class and having problems and that the children may decide to NOT like her and this could follow her even more then being removed 18-24 months and going back later.

I personally would like her to go there for several reasons. First of all it is Therapy for 6 hours a day---everyday and including the summer...... It is intensive and they have great experience with RAD and the other issues Makala has..... It is a WHOLE program her school work and her whole time in the center is designed to meet her needs---and her issues. I just feel that at 6 we have a chance to help her so much more now---if we pass and things were to not improve then we would only have Residential Treatment as an option later. The program is designed for children under 8 and is an effort to keep children out of residential treatment.

I think that we should also accept the fact that people with a whole lot more experience then us have accepted her into the program---and we should take a clue from that especially since space is so limited and acceptance is so hard to get.... My goodness that should be a really big clue. As I have told DH we do not know all of the info that was complied while she was in the Hospital? We were told very little and clearly she qualifies for this treatment---another really huge clue if you ask me.

I keep telling myself that if I were not running ragged to two different DR appointment every week--I would have more 'quality' time to spend with Makala. We could use this time to join Girl Scouts and I might actually have the energy to take a leadership role with a troop. We could find many alternatives for Makala to develop friendships and make social contact if I wasn't so tired from simply organizing all the therapy every week and dealing with all of this on my own......

Jeremiah is also now in attachment therapy with Makala's therapist. We are all confident that we can help him with his issues before they are full blown. He clearly has anxious attachment and at 2 1/2 it is a lot easier to work on then it will be later. And it is so easy to make mistakes right now. For example for the last 6 months he has had not one, not two but three security blankets he carries around---and two pillows and a stuffed Beaver! He will not be in a room without all his stuff even if he doesn't touch it he wants it to be in the same room he is in.... Our natural inclination is to start taking some of his items away to break this habit--but, the therapists advises not to do so....and to let him have his stuff! So there are little things you would do with a child that we are advised to not do....and it is the little things that really can make a difference!

Anyway--that is the rantings for this week..... And now we are deciding on the day treatment program.... I really feel it is right to send her now..... I think we would regret passing up this chance.

Thursday, September 16, 2004

Dealing with the Schools.

For the time being.....

We are going to just let things be at school..... We have had Dr Joe look at a 3-page 'statement' I made outlining the things we feel need to be addressed under the IEP 99% of which are behavior issues.... and have sent copies to the school--the district and that state. Apparently our 'notifying' them this way will make it less possible to have her kicked out--later should something BIG happen. Otherwise I am going to simply keep very good records of the things that go on.

It is so funny because the lead teacher for Jeremiah's EI class is also an adoptive mother her son was 7 when placed and now is 26---Anyway apparently her sons needs where the reason she ended up as a special ed teacher! She has had a great deal of contact this summer with Makala and has asked me at least three times if the school has done an IEP---when I told her the results of the last meeting she was NOT happy--so she hooked me up with the advocate. She says there is no reason not to IEP.

RAW sugar--Honey and Brown sugar---So I am slightly confused because for me it has always been very black and white--It is either Sugar or not! I guess having a best friend all my life who was type one diabetic and watching her die last year has made me miss understand what the heck the difference really is between SWEET things.....

The Oatmeal Cookies were a real winner--today I am doing Peanut butter

The Ritalin has been horrible! Either the coming down time is insane and if we give her a little more later in the day she cannot sleep at night. I am starting to feel that she does not need this med.... maybe something else but this is too high and too much for her....

The other day she came home from school and could not shut her mouth....when we went to pick up Jeremiah she was talking 90 miles an hour telling a story as we walked down the hall--parts to one person--parts to another--parts to no one????? It was like she was OUT OF CONTROL and in Overdrive!

Monday, September 13, 2004

Keep on Keeping On

Monday Morning......
Okay it sure has been a draining week! And here it is a new one starting!

School IEP
What a joke that was--right now the position of the school is that "She is NOT having problems there--" so they are simply going to "WATCH" and revisit the whole thing in October.... The general attitude is that if she isn't having problems at school then the problems are ours to deal with at home.

The shrink (DR. Joe) has told me this is the 'common attitude' of the public schools and that they generally make sure to make the parents feel awkward during the meetings by out numbering the parent and diverting everything to being the parents responsibility.

Meds We have been using the Risperdal (.50) Mg at night and the Ritalin 10 mg in the morning.... and truthfully there has been great improvement in every way.

Makala--did have some trouble falling asleep for a few nights but that seems to have passed lately.

This morning she woke up pretty rough and in a bad mood--but by the time the bus came she was herself again.

Seems to be an ongoing battle but we have changed all the food we have in the house.... This is so hard for us because half the family needs to GAIN weight---daddy and Jeremiah need to eat all they can to just maintain their weights.

So daddy has a stash of his JUNK food which he can eat and eat and still lose weight---and Jeremiah is getting what he needs and Makala is needing to learn that she has to be careful.

I am trying to see this the same way I might if my child were type one diabetic.... My very best friend in all life was and Thank God Makala does not have to take blood tests and receive insulin.... It is difficult for her to understand but my feeling is that we need to do our best so she does not gain 40 pounds this year!

Snacks have become very fun here....

Re-vamping my old recipes:
I learned a long time ago that using Zucchini Milk as a substitute in baking recipes for MILK is great....and substituting Apple Sauce for OIL also works. I have the most splendid Pumpkin Zucchini Bread recipe and have used the substitutes for years.... Now for the Sugar issue.... I plan to try it today.

Zucchini Milk -- Peal all the green skin off the Zucchini and drop the rest of the fruit into the blender and blend it to puree---CAN BE FROZEN. This milk can be used in place of regular milk in MANY baking recipes and as a base for cream soups, and other dishes that use milk.

WE are cutting down on the MILK products only in areas we can due to the CARBS.

Wednesday, September 08, 2004

This summer has new meaning for mom

Summer is usually the best time of the year for me..... I love summer.....and hope to forget this past one as the years go forward! Right now the First Day of School is the BEST day of the year....

School OR Day Treatment

We are on the waiting list for the Day Treatment program and it is unclear how long the wait will be so in the meantime we were advised to send her to school as usual. I had been in contact with the school over the summer and I requested a teacher with at least a 'passing interest' in the issues of children who are adopted. As well as someone who WILL email, call, send notes home and otherwise communicate with us. I have a meeting for an IEP tomorrow.

I have also made it very clear to Makala that ANY PROBLEM on the BUS in ANYWAY her fault or anyone else's fault she will ride to and from with me....ONE STRIKE--ONE CHANCE.

Attachment Therapy
It seems that both the Attachment therapists and the psychiatrist are in MORE agreement then not about Everything lately so for now we are planning to keep on going to both.

I honestly think there has been an improvement with the medications. The intensity around here has gone WAY down...

I am learning that apparently the kidneys can be effected by the Risperdal and that CARBS and Sugars are processed differently with the use of this medication. The psychiatrist and I talked about Fruit and the sugars they have and this kind of sugar is NOT the fact he wants us to offer her as much fruit as she wants.

We made one drawer in the Fridge a 'snack' drawer so that she can access the Oranges, apples, grapes, pears and plums. I am also stocking the drawer with String Cheese and sugar free apple sauce and I have discovered some of the Low Carb foods out now are pretty good substitues as the main thing they do is ditch the sugars! So we have reduced CARB yougarts.

The psychiatrist gave me an Oat Meal Rasin Cookie directions using Splenda and whole grain flur instead of the white--This seems to be WELL liked by everyone. We are supposed to increase her protiens and watch Fats. Breakfast is now about eggs and other non-sugar foods. Anyway---it is busy here I have two college kids getting ready to go off this weekend so I am helping Both have decided NOT to live in the dorms this year (that should be interesting) and there appears to be a fight about who gets the new printer.....urggg.

Thursday, September 02, 2004

Back HOME !!!!

Our trip was fantastic!

I am so glad we went The flight in and home was great the biggest problem was Not Makala but the 2 1/2 year old!Makala was Makala the whole time and that was so nice and being with my Mom and Aunt was wonderful.... Both of them understood and helped greatly by treating me as, and allowing me to be "THE MOM" .....with so much extra support... I love them so much! Plus I was given love by people who really do love me.

There were behaviors that Aunt Terrie and mom analyzed and gave me feed back on.... Both with Makala and with myself! And we were there long enough that all the "IDEAS" they had and tried were proven effective or not. The general consensus besides the fact that the BIOS were abnormally passive and quiet children ..... was that Makala is a "little Pill--but absolutely adorable" And that We need to get a grip on things before she is a teen.... Her lovable side--her annoying side--and even THREE raging episodes were seen by well as my way of dealing with things....

Medication Makala did 'seem' to have a better grip on her moods but I didn't attribute this to the Risperdal too much as I felt it had not been long enough to build up and start working. During one of her major rages Mom suggested I use the 'emergency' dose (Risperdal M-TAB 0.5 mg) --The one the doctor told me might knock her out.... Mom and I thought we saw a nearly instant (meaning 15 - 20 mins) change in her anger and attitude... but I thought it might just be our own thinking and not the med.... As sometime it does seem like Makala can switch right over and be delightful??? We noticed that Makala seemed to have a pattern of being great one day and just off the wall the next--every other day....up and down.

TODAY--we saw Dr Joe the shrink--and he said the M-Tab should work that quick and that 15-20 mins was right to see an effect. Then he said the every other day thing is not uncommon so he has increased her daily does to 0.5 mg Regular Tablets of Risperdal. She will have a blood test Friday to check the levels in her system.WE have also added Ritalin LA 10 mg (Lowest dose Long affect) so that Makala might be able to focus on one thing for more then 3 seconds.... At our appointment today she literally played with EVERY single toy in the office for three seconds before moving on...

Dr Joe thinks starting school with the ability to focus will help her.I am liking this doctor very much! He spent a long time with me talking about the fact that RAD and Bipolar have so many of the same symptoms and that in many cases the same treatment of medications is called for.... He is 100% supportive of the other RAD therapy and he seems to know a great deal about RAD and Adoption in general. Makala likes him and sad but true she seems to be 'different' when a man is in the room so in a way this might be good for the sexualized behaviors that I honestly do not think would come out with a female doctor.

Anyway---- Dr Joe also has some recipes for foods as apparently Risperdal can affect the way that Sugar and Carbs are metabolized...? I am working in researching this because I haven't found much info on that issue.

There is tons more but that is it for now....

Saturday, August 28, 2004

Just TELL me what to do--why do I always have to decide?

Mixed messages and different advice seems to go hand and hand with parenting no matter what--but when your child has special needs---OMG--- just digging through the pile of advice--support and information can be a full time job!


Our Attachment Therapist is--All for--the Day treatment program and sees this situation as a blessing! BUT DR. Joe wonders why we would even consider it now that we have found medication and a good combination of therapy and intervention!

So we ask ourselves is DR Joe motivated by the $250.00 an hour and if so why would that be the case when there is such a shortage of child shrinks you know there must be 6 more kids just waiting to get an appointment?

Then we try and consider the prospective each person involved has....and The attachment therapist clearly has a great deal of 'HANDS on' with Adopted children having raised four of her own and fostered 16 more....BUT DR Joe was an Adoptee who came from an orphanage at the age of 8.

And some of the biggest issues I feel underlay the situation is the sexulaized behaviors---which ONLY DR Joe has seen because he is a man.

He seems to feel the medications are helping enough and that Makala is NOT really having too many problems in School so why mess up a good thing?


and the more confused we get---the more likely a space will open up sooner---forcing us to make a decision.... so I expect they will call me next week and say they have a space for her-----and CRAP we will have to decide. Everyone knows that no matter what we decide at some point or another we will regret any decision we make today!

Isn't that how it always works?

But, DR Joe is still playing around looking for the right combo of meds....and he seems to feel Makala is dealing with RAD--PTSD--and possible Bi Polar and Possible ADHD....and that everything is a treatable situation...... HE cut out the Clonidine and instead added a Ritilan Boaster for the Afternoon.

And he is suggesting that there is something other then the Risperdal which may not have the hunger and weight gaining issues with it.....

At this point in time I am starting to think that maybe we should stick it out with the mainstream and not place her into day treatment and this is a decision I will likely question for the rest of my life..... We are however going to attend a meeting at the center and continue to maintain an open mind....until we have to decide.

Thursday, August 12, 2004

Will they ever agree?

So it is a week and a half after the big crisis and the intervention! Four nights in the hospital--a visit with the attachment therapist--intake meeting for Day treatment for emotionally destrubed children and finally the actual appointment with the new shrink we finally have found who has space in his practice but does not accept the state heath insurance and our insurance only covers 50%!!!! .........and truthfully we are more confused then we were two weeks ago!In patient treatment, and the attachment theripists FEEL the biggest issue is anxiety and we were told by both that Cloinidine might be a good soultion to help keep her calm so we can have a few days without 5-6 hours of raging sessions....

We do not like the side effects we were told about this medication and we really would like to aviod it completely as it is an adult blood presure med and could lower her heart rate to a point of concern and I really am not interested in doing CPR.The new doctor has ALL the records of the hospitalization and is a man...the first man we have seen. During the 2 hours we were at his office yesterday Makala acted the way she 'does' with men which was interesting and the female doctors and therapists have NO CLUE about 'these behaviors' because they are not good looking strong and handsome men...

Before the end of the session yesterday Makala had told the doctor that she was the mom and he was the dad of the doll...and that because they got married they played with each others privates and made a baby! She NEVER would have interacted this way with a female.He spent a great deal of time talking with me about the EXACT way a rage goes down....and he feels that we are dealing with some real issues...

His oppinion is that any progress we are making with the Attachment is set back and delayed in some ways simply do to the extreme amount of time and energy we are dealing with the rages... I did bring what I do have on vedio tape and he sees what I do.... a little girl completely out of control and unable to even speak real words.... flipping around on the floor with her arms out for hugs and kisses--which are freely given even in the middle of the rage.

During this time she cannot hear anything...and often speaks jibberish and eventually gains a sort of distant control over her body--and then withdrawls to a degree... For us the withdrawl is less noticable because we are just happy there is silence and she appears to be in control.Then almost always withing minutes the second round starts which generally is the most serious and includes the hitting, biting, scratching, pinching spitting, and throwing things around...

The chanting starts and in this cycle it seems like she hears and understands but she has NO desire to reach out for hugs and kisses and will not accept them when offered.... This is the longest period of a rage and this is the time that can last for hours... and usually ends with her being physically exhosted and totally unable to fight any longer....

Then she withdrawls again and appears to be interested in something else.... but 9 out of 10 times will go back to the behaviors of the first round and beg and plead and want hugs and kisses.... but she seems to be able to hear us...and it appears she realizes how out of control she was which does actually cause her to express remorse and be sorry about what happened...sometimes she will even clean up after herself...

Sometimes we think this is simply an act of still trying to minipulate us... but on the vedio tape it does actually look like she just woke up...from a bad dream... If we talk about what happened often she still wants her way and will use the fact that she feels bad and helped clean up and is in control now--so she should get what she wanted.... and then it can escalte again...It is usually not over until some SUDDEN moment when she looks at us and says something like....."My barbie is so pretty!" or Mommie I love your hair cut...and then it is OVER.

The new doctor says these rages are more like a Bi-polar episode with a child... That she is cycling through the ups and downs during these rages...and that she really does not appear to hear or have much control over herself during the hight of them.

He agrees with and appears to understand a lot about Attachment and suggested that we continue with this therapy by all means....he does not agree with some of the advice we were given...especially the advice that the next time we cannot get her in the car we should drive off around the parking lot...he feels that is very bad advice that we need to keep working on Makala to not ever feel abandond and he thinks that is a bad action to take (we didn't really like the idea when we first heard it either)He has put Makala on Risperdal in order to help keep the edge off the anxiety and the HIGH UP's and help her reamin calm... He gave us a daily doseage and an additional small doseage for emergencies which if used could knock her out for 24 hours.... I am not sure how I feel about doing this... but his feeling is that we CANNOT possibly attach with these kinds of daily episodes and that Makala needs to expereince several months of NOT having the rages in order to even begin to attach.I would say the majority of attachment talk we did was the same kind of information we have learned from the therapist.

DH--felt much better with this doctor he addressed the concerns of the eating and weight gain and agreed with the therapists and said do not put limits on it... DH--felt better with a doctor who could witness the behaviors we are all rather concerned about... We left his office feeling mixed emotions....knowing he supported most of the Attachment therapy...but also seeing what we do and that these rages are beyond what any family could possibly face daily and attach the baby is acting out and copies his sister and that showed up on some of the vedio tape... This doctor wants our family to have some period of work on attachment with a child who can hear us and feel the hugs we do give her...

He is supportive of the bottle and rocking and reparenting methods...he does not rule out the need for the day treatment and he does not rule out mental health issues.He is going to cost us a load of money but I have to wonder if this is not the one time in someones life where money should not even be part of the issue... We are going to need to pay him about $400.00 a month... for awhile... He also wants us to back off the EXTRA activities and try to stay home.... It sort of hurt my feelings because when we were talking about Makala's background I used the phrase the state had with me that birthmom was a 'sofa surfer.' When we talked about the vacation -- he thought is was a bad idea and told us the last thing M needs is to sofa surf for two weeks...

He also does NOT want me to allow the chiropractor to work on her and help her relax her back--and I agree with him because he said my daughter does not need that kind of physical touch coming from anyone other then me... I had not thought about that before....

So---I guess for the next 30-days we are going to try the medication and see if it will take the edge off these rages long enough to have any kind of quality of time with her... She is to take it an hour before bed and we gave her a dose last night... There has not been a rage yet today--and she is not a zombie so that is good... The last thing I want is to knock her down... She has been pretty happy is where we are and I am packing to sofa surf at mommies house for two weeks..... We are taking the trip.... I do think in the long run it will be a good trip and I think that the time we spend together around other people who actually LOVE mommy is very important....We live around DH's family and we do have some having my family be there and confirming I am a good person and I am the mom could do some real good...

Wednesday, August 11, 2004

Keeping my mouth shut.

Today has gone very well..... We met at the therapists office as mom and dad without the kiddos...and it was wonderful. DH has this inner hope that all of this will just suddenly stop--but, he is also intelligent enough to recognize good suggestions and try new things... The book "99 Ways To Drive Your Child Sane" came today Wow that is a great read because it makes the parent know they really are not all alone!!!! I am all right about trying a few new ideas...

Today was funny because I tried the idea of having a Tantrum Contest...When she started to throw a fit--I said, "Oh Goody a tantrum---lets have a contest--I bet I can scream louder and longer then you can...." and I started.................her reaction this time was to Stop and then try to get me to stop!!! How funny but guess what--the tantrum was over right then--so in a way I won today huuuuummmmm this attachment stuff is upside down and thankfully by the end of the day I was finally starting to feel like 'I wanted to engage with her...." that really is a major improvement because yesterday I really didn't even want to interact at all and I know that is not a good thing....

I know for sure that the father of my older kids is a RAD baby..... We got married at 18 and I lived with RAD for 14 years and now I know why the 'normal' way of relating was not possible.... I sort of feel bad because now I think that I could have learned how to help him......I guess that wasn't what a wife should have to do---and that is why I really pray Makala makes it to the healing side... It is so painful to imagine adult life with this kind of trauma not being dealt with in a healthy way....

Gosh I used to think he had some master plot written in a secret meeting where I was selected to be the one they drove crazy! Honestly an adult who does not have the right kind of help is a sight to behold and so difficult to love.... Sometimes it really does seem like there is a real plan to their mission to drive us over the edge. Makala has been able to strum my buttons just as magically as my oldest son and Tori's father learned to do.... My relationship with their father still includes button pushing... in fact the only real communication we have is by phone maybe twice a month and no matter what, it always includes some kind of dig or jab from him.... It is sad that he has this problem...

Our Children do grow up and they need to be healthy so they can have long and happy relationships with their spouses and children too... That is really what I personally have to focus on... Makala is still young and there is so much hope that we can get beyond this stuff.... I keep telling myself that I have had all those years of experience with a RAD person....and I have tried all the tricks once before--they didn't work and here is a whole list of things I didn't try--because I didn't know what they even were.... Now I have a chance to help someone...who is still ripe to be helped.

I am usually the mom who talks too much and is pretty open to conversation about just about anything.... But, I was never a mom who didn't add my own commentary---and my own opinions... I always did a lot of talking with my oldest son and Tori--and it was pleasant conversations... not circles and meaningless questions...and not getting it.... The hard part is not talking too much for me.... I have been doing VERY well on my facial expressions today--I have tried to keep a pleasant expression on my face....

Tuesday, August 10, 2004

Day Treatment Meeting

YESTERDAY--I had the meeting to get on the waiting list for the Day Treatment program Oh my goodness to me this just seems like a great answer.... I have been soooo worried about school starting. The program is actually 18-24 months long 9 am- 1 pm five days a week with only the Major Holidays off.

The public school provides transportation and the program is considered school replacement. When she exits the program they work directly with the school and she re-enters through the special ed program. They suggest this because during her time in day treatment she will be in a situation of one adult for every two children and it is too hard to enter the school and be 1 adult for 25-30 children...

The special ed department has a lower ratio and can work on getting Makala mainstreamed. The program deals with only Emotionally Disturbed children 3-8 years old. I was told to imagine a one hour session in therapy and to consider every hour M is there is therapy....They will integrate what she needs in to every part of her day--including the educational things. Parents are required to spend one hour a week min there--with 30 mins for 'quality' time with the child and 30-min dealing with the TEAM and her plan.

They also offer the family counseling, marriage counseling, and will help with at home living skills and parenting ideas....that fit with Makala and what they can learn from her. Our first step was the intake meeting I had yesterday and now her file will be given to the head shrink and he will decide if there is enough in the file to move it forward or if he would like to spend time with Makala.... Once he moves her forward there is a committee that decides which children are placed on the waiting list..... and then you wait for space...

They only accept 12 children in Makala's age group. We have been told to go forward and start school and continue with all the other therapy until we find out what will happen with the Day treatment situation.....My fingers are crossed....... I feel like this program could really make a difference.....This afternoon DH has agreed to go with me to the Attachment Therapists without the children..... Thank goodness it is about time! And....... things have been EVEN--Saturday went well but Sunday there was a melt-down and spitting and general not cool things.... I am just at the point where I am simply not responding to very much of anything.... I am saying, "bummer" a lot and I am keeping my facial expressions straight.... I also have to admit that it is not easy to want to enjoy time with her right at this moment.... I really do hope that the trip is going to be nice...I cannot wait to see my mommy!

Friday, August 06, 2004

Psyc Ward Meeting

We met with the 'people' this morning and were advised that they do not feel meds are called for right now......but, that M was dealing with some very serious and complex issues. Poor boundries in most areas... Loss and grief and ODD were the biggest issues.

They have taken steps to have us placed on a waiting list for a Hospital University Day treatment program.... Which is 15-18 months long --very close by--and would include school and EVERYTHING! She is on the waiting list and openings are expected in September it is a five day a week program and only takes the MAJOR Holidays off....

I have our intake meeting Monday at 10 a.m.

We have been advised to keep our Attachment therapists and that the Attachment issues will also be part of her day treatment program. It is covered under the state insurance.I am feeling a little like a big blessing has been dumped on my lap so we will have to see if everything continues to be what we expect it to be.

Makala was released after dinner time. The drive home was interesting..... Mom got her and as we were driving she asked about her church group meeting on Wednesday night and what day was today? I said 'Friday.' and she realized she had missed a meeting-----then she said, "I hate you...." I just said,---"bummer" and she started talking about other things....She said, " they did NOT fixed my problems."

I said, "They weren't supposed to that is up to you and me to work on."

She said, "I don't even think they helped me."

I said, "You haven't had a tantrum in four days have you?"
She said, "NO."

I said,"Well, that looks like they helped you a lot to tantrum in four days must feel pretty good......"

We are going to do this one day at a time.....

Thursday, August 05, 2004

More Mom Chatter

I should clarify how the therapist intended to say she was affraid it would end up as residential treatment--She was saying it in a way that she was affriad WE would go that direction or that someone in the system would want to point us in that direction. and that she would rather have 'this' happen then RTC be wanted or taken.....

Actually, if I can think clearly enough and write better this thrapists seems to hit a lot of nails on the head! We had already talked about how Makala would love it if I left and she had daddy to herself... and we have been starting some things to work on that area.... Including the threrapsits setting up some meetings with both parents....

We will have one next week.... DH has not had much contact with her and right now he is a little untrusting of the therapy because of the weight gain--he sees the weight as a possible lifetime issue and unhealthy....DH considers that to be a strike.... He is also annoyed that if she anticipated this kind of situation coming up why didn't she advise us?.... all I can do is point out that we WERE ADVISED that something like this could be antisipated all the time during training, and in everything we have read.....

I personally have been looking at myself and some of my reactions and my own parenting styles to see what I can change in myself too....

Personality and upbringing taught me that "Athority" always gets the 'last word'..... With Makala that is impossible and so I am trying to see things different and say that I will be OK with things if I am happy with getting "My Own Last Word"....even if it is not the last sound I hear about something.....

The therapists suggests that I learn to say "Bummer" a lot and just stop talking.... She is right because it has always been my mouth that gets me into trouble and for once in my life I need to learn how to shut up.... I can do it---I can do it---I can do it--- I just tried it with the college kids who had to start a political argument...I have one Rush Limbaugh conservative republican child and another---Peace loving, liberal democrate....WOW---all could say was 'Bummer' surprisingly they got the point....knowing I am working on this to help Makala.....

It was actually a good exercise for me.

The other thing I know I must take care of about myself is my facial expressions...Apparently, I would never make a good poker player because I have very animated facial expressions... When my oldest son and Tori were little I could send them a message across the room with "A Look" --knock it off---come here---nice job---I disaprove....whatever and they got me---and responded.Makala--has said she doesn't like some of my expressions (I can't blame her) so I am very VERY much working on trying to NOT use "Looks"....

Makala is not the first person who has had a problem....I was once nearly fired from a job for a "look" I had on my face! So I have been keeping a mirrior arond to see just how bad I really am..... My father had some faces too and I can remember not likeing it much....

I am also going to take the advice for some relaxation tactics. I have needed to learn and use many different relaxation methods in my life and I had already decided this was a great time to start doing them more often. Little brother started biting his nails about 2 months ago and he seems to have some nervous habits 'grinding teeth' so the more the merrier!!! Daddy is so high strung he cannot even feel a back rub--so maybe it can calm him down too.... Daddy is ALWAYS doing something.... he works hard and he plays a lot with the children he always has a project going on and he is not the kind who comes home from work and sits down....he goes from one project to the next and keeps busy.... In a structured way but the man is on the go all the time.

Anyway--we see Makala again tonight. and have the meeting in the morning.I hate to think of it being horrible after she gets home. We do have door alarms set up. Walgreens actually sells some portable ones we took on vacation for a low price and they are great.I am not sure what we are going to do about the trip to Illinois we are suposed to fly Aug 16! I know once we get there my Aunt and mom and step dad will be there and all of them are exactly the right people to be around....

Aunt Terrie has Fostered nearly 60 children and adopted....she is wonderful she was the wife of Uncle Eddie who was in an orpahnage his whole life and she is my best support by once we are there I had thought this would be a great trip for Makala---There is so much family there with a lot to offer....the two weeks we planned to stay.... It is the getting there and getting home I am concerned most about...can you imagine a delay in an airport or an airport evacuation with a RAD kid and a 2 year old by my self????? Not sure I even want to try it?????hummm......

A little better.....?

Well, I am feeling a little better.... It has been a hard few weeks.Makala--is safe and fine. The place is not as horrible as I thought it might be. And thankfully she is getting all the help we could ever hope for.

Our Attachment Therapists has been deeply involved in this whole situation.... She has recomended that Makala not be kept the full 7-10 days as that would be too long....she would like Makala to be released on Friday evening.(total of 5 nights away from home) We have found a 'shrink' finally!....

A man who was working with a bigger group office has recently left to make his own practice and slow his life down a bit--He has 22 years experience and his wife is a Family Living Coach (?) They can see her Monday! He only likes to treat the pre-school and very young children under 10 so we fit with his likes....

Our thrapist told me that she antisipated something like this would take place.... and that her greatest fear was that we would need to get residentail treatment due to the great shortage of real psyc help in our area. I wish she would have told me this! The therapist says she believes that Makalas biggest issue is sever anxiety and that she is always ready to snap--and release the stress....

Which goes along with my Chiropractor who checked her out last week and said he had never seen a little child with such tense muscles in her back! The therapists suggests that Makala is always so filled up with anxiety that anything will cause her to need to release this stress and that she is not finding ways that she can let it go without the tantrums and rages...I have to admit that her stress is starting to make me stressed out and that I have been getting to places where I overreact sometimes....

Last night I ran and got fast food for the rest of the family and the whole way home I was thinking--"Oh gosh I hope they didn't forget sweet and sour sauce, or a straw--or the prize--Oh no I got something for mayself and Makala is going to be mad she didn't get what I got...Oh no, did they give me apple juice I don't see it............oh thats right M is not home, I don't have to worry about all this..........."I guess the stress is affecting me so much more then I realized!The therapists wants both my husband and I to come in....

My husband is somewhat less convienced there are such issues... as RAD there is so much literature which refers to RAD as POP-Psychology and a fad. We are still on the same page but I feel he is doubting me and my abilities more and more.... But like he says he is here 1/3 of the time that I am.Anyway--that is a quick update.... We saw Makala last night and she is NOT being medicated... she was still out of control in many ways and wanted us to play UNO her way and not by the rules...she wanted me to leave and she is still not being very nice to me unless someone else is looking....

We are just telling her that we want to find the right way for her to feel good and not be upset so much.... She actually seems to be having fun at the center but has asked to come home.... We can take her anytime we want however the therapists has advised us that if we pull her out and something were to happen to her or the baby there could be some ramifications we wouldn't want to we are following the advice of everyone involved....

Monday, August 02, 2004

Tonight she was admitted for Pysc Evaluations

........tonight she was admitted for Pysc evaluations......

Well, it has been a hard weekend here.... and a very hard Monday.I spent most of last week looking for a child shrink (I can't spell it right now) and never could find one who was accapting new patients.... The regular doctor had a heart attack last week when he saw M's weight gain and said it was time for some real evaluations and we needed to look at the possiblity of some meds......

I called EVERYone listed in the Phone Book for 75 miles.Still doing all I can working on the attachment therapy.Saturday there was another event of Running into the street at dusk when daddy said it was time to go home.....neighbors had to help get her home....she was spitting--screaming--foamng at the mouth--biting--hitting and full out hell....She spent Sunday at home---isolated to some major degree--mostly with me....

Today I "accidently" bought her some apple juice from the vending machine on our way out of the YMCA after swimming....and she dropped it--because she WANTED it right now and couldn't wait until we got to the car and I opened it for her so before we left she opened it and it fell right out of her hands ........It was all my fault......

I should have known she wanted it right then--I should have been a good mom and made sure she had her unspoken needs completely met. Even though typically we don't get things from the vending machines. Instead of being happy we did she decided to be angry that her impatience caused a problem.... In the car she went 'APE' because I wouldn't get her more.

I was supposed to run back in and buy her another one.When we were driving she got out of her seat and started pulling my hair...hitting the back of my head.... I nearly called 911 I wanted to drive straight to the hospital but we managed to get home after I pulled off the road and waited for her to settle down...

HOME was worse then ever.She attacked me--spit on me--thew things out the front door...Threatened to take herself and "HER" brother and levae... I am not her mom--or his mom--and he 'BELONGS" to her..."YOU are nothing--I hate you--I wish you would die---I want you to move out and leave--I hate you--I didn't ever want you--YOU GET WHAT YOU GET and if YOU don't like it too bad I don't care--I hate you..............."I talked for a long time to a woman at the Oregon Post Adoption Resource center.....

I called all the shrinks again....Then I didn't give her a soda when she demanded it. I didn't give her what she wanted--she packed her stuff and said if I wouldn' leave she would....then she woke up the baby....hit him in the face with HIS hot wheel track and told me she would do anything she felt like to HER brother....So I took her to the Hospital.....and 6 hours later they told me to go home and bring her things tomorrow.....

They felt she needed to have an evaluation....she will be there for 7-10 days....I am feeling like a loser right now.... I am devastated inside. I love her soooo much. I am not feeling better--I dont' care if tomorrow will be nice without her here--I don't care if I did my best--I feel like I am spent and really hurt and all I want to do is go and get her.................

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