Wednesday, August 31, 2005

Summer goes on....

Wow--for the first time in nearly three years I feel a little NORMAL! For once I feel depressed about things that are NOT happening in MY HOME! Namely the Hurricane and suffering that so many people are dealing with! I feel for once in the longest time that I can actually pray and worry about something that is NOT happening to ME.

I guess this might be a sign that our family and our life is starting to return to some kind of normal and that my life is not consumed with dealing with the situations we have been in a vacuum! I have not been so touched by the outside world in so long as I have this week. I just wish there was something--anything--that I could do to help some of these people affected by this disaster!

I gave blood for the first time in nearly three years yesterday! The Red Cross always wants my blood because it is O negative and universal. It was the only thing I feel I could offer under the circumstances.

Anyway...... it feels odd to think that a disaster makes me aware that my problems are SMALL compared to the suffering of others. I cannot think of ANYTHING to complain about here today! My home is dry, my family is safe and my life is NORMAL and there are simply too many people who are suffering for me to use this space to vent or blubber about problems that are not life and death.

Today I just ask that any of us who are dry and safe and have homes, and jobs to go to pray and donate what we can to help others in what appears to be the most horrible natural disaster I have witnessed in my lifetime. A pint of blood--or $5.00 is needed by those who cannot sit at their computer today and go on and on about the trails of life and parenting......God Bless these families and communities that face this horror!

Friday, August 26, 2005

...and our Summer Starts Today!

Makala has all next week off from school/day treatment and it will be Summer for ONE WEEK! Yikes!

I have been making plans to fill the time and just pray that things go well and I don't have to take anything away from anyone for naughty behaviors!

Sunday is our anniversary and we plan to take the Kids to the only amusement park we have...if you can call it that...Then on Monday I am planning a day trip to the Beach (I am not crazy about the Oregon Beaches but in September at least they are sunny sometimes) Tuesday we are going to try to do the School Clothes shopping Everyone in this house is in desperate need of some new clothes! Wednesday I think we will hit the Zoo with my Friend who has the Twins...and Thursday Maybe MJ and I can hook up for the park and ice cream... Friday we might go to Mt Hood when there is NO SNOW because Anna does NOT DO SNOW!

The great thing is that I can switch the days we do whatever we end up doing so I might have a few day changes... The Weekend before school starts back up Andrew wants to go to Mt ST Helen's... and see what has really changed....Personally, I could do without the trip for some reason I do have anxiety over driving to the edge of a Volcano! But then again it could be fun because every other time I have gone up it has been so foggy I couldn't even see anything.... I don't mind looking from 60 miles away but I get real upset being too close I was 17 when she BLEW the real time and that was a traumatic memory for me! Scared the poo right out of me.

Oh well, I suppose it is good to over come anxiety! Hopefully the Kids don't notice that DAD does this long drive because every time I have been behind the wheel I turn off and want to drive back home at least 3 times on the way! I told Andrew he has to drive this time or I won't go! Andrew usually likes me to drive on our outings because he drives two hours everyday and likes to have the break!

I wonder if the Kids will be able to handle a Camp Out next summer? I thought about it for this summer but considering it would be Andrews first too I decided to wait and not torture myself with THREE first timers! Andrews brother, Gordon and I have been trying to get an ALL Family Camp out organized but most of the family cannot get over sleeping outside and not having a shower...bunch of wimps!

I miss the good old days of Camp Outs and the snipe hunting, burnt marshmallows and silly camp fire songs.... I never saw so many hotels in my life until I married Andrew... And if he would just agree to get a supper nice Motor Home I would be on cloud 9 I hate to FLY and I could go anyplace I want to go with a motor home! I am working him over for this big ticket item! Of course I would rather have a Hot Tub but don't think he is going to BREAK on that item for a few more years.... So the Motor Home could get him especially when I outline that a Trip in one saves Hotel bills and I could see my mom without airline tickets! Of course high Gas prices leave me a little lost on how to justify something that likely gets 4 miles to the gallon.....urgh!

Speaking of Gas prices I am seeing a lot of inflation at the grocery store lately and do NOT like it!

Anyway, time to go get Jeremiah and actually start the day! I love Fridays because I don't have Any REAL obligations! And I am still numb thinking that with both kids in Day Treatment I might actually have a few hours five days a week to do NOTHING! Right--I will likely use it for this web site or some other time consuming project!

Wednesday, August 24, 2005

Is it really only Wednesday?

Gosh I cannot believe it is only Wednesday! Time seems to be dragging for me this week!

M is still appearing to have better control of her moods on the medication. She is also apparently on a VERY low dose so that makes me feel pretty good.

I had my weekly meeting with the case manager and everyone can see the difference so it seems that for the near future we will continue to medicate. Perhaps giving M time to LEARN to skills to manage and deal with what triggers her rages.

Yesterday I got the fantastic news that Jeremiah is going to start the 3-5 year old day treatment program and personally this thrills me completely--especially given the recent developments with doo-doo issues that we are having! I am not going to go into any details as most people can completely imagine but I will say that we need new carpet!

I don't know for sure yet when he will be starting but, I do know that the style I see at the day treatment is one I like and that the ideas and methods are working in so many ways. It will be nice to have both children on the same consistent program and Jeremiah doesn't really have anything better to do for the next few years so we can't see any reason to pass this up.

Yesterday I went to the Zoo with his Pre-school and frankly some of those children are complete monsters and I was less then impressed with the teacher in charge of this class. If the worst we have to fear is that Jeremiah picks up new tricks from other children then.....I don't see how these kids in pre-school could have any less to teach him! My goodness.....

So for now it looks like our family is on a holding pattern of sorts. Which is good and for at least the next 12 months we should have a consistent life with few changes.

I also spoke to my daddy the other night. He is completely broken hearted. He and my step mother have a 13 year old son and for the past 8 or more years they have been the legal guardians to my step sisters three children.....well, my step sister has been CLEAN and sober for over 2 years now and is married and doing very well in life! Which is really a blessing...but my daddy is broken hearted because two weeks ago they had to let the oldest child go back to my step sister and the other two will be returned over the next several weeks.

Frankly, my father is over 60 and my little brother has really been screwed in all of this. My dad and step mom have had some very rocky times the past few years and I honestly feel that these three kidos should be with my step sister if at all possible. It is not like my dad is not still a grandfather the children are NOT gone....and my little brother deserves some time with my dad as his father and not having such chaotic life.... I might feel a lot different if my father were much younger but I don't like the fact that he has to WORK as hard and long as he has had to for the last several years just to make ends meet.

My dad was a father at the Age of 19 and has always had children to raise... He should have some time in his life where he is not a dad on call every moment.... Our family is not known to live to a great old age so who knows how long he will even be around! And my step sister should get her life together and take care of her kids... it is time!

I guess in many ways I want my dad back too. I am sort of hurt because I had to hear the news from my mother who heard from one of my other brothers....and my dad didn't even call me to tell me himself! And then he ended our call by saying he had to call the boy who went back to my step sister because he calls him every night....makes me feel bad because I cannot remember the last time my father called me...... Boy do I have some problems or WHAT?

Anyway--I am just glad that things are working out. I never much liked all this. We had offered to adopt the three kids when we were doing our adoption and were flat out told that my step sister was going to get them back and that my dad was simply taking care of them until she got her life together so it sort of seems odd that my dad is so broken up about letting them return it is not like they are gone--he will always be grandpa and he will always have a relationship with the children....so...at least that.

Can you tell I really have daddy issues?

Monday, August 22, 2005

One Week before The End of the Summer Break!

M got only Two Weeks off from school/day treatment for the summer and the first was near the 4th of July and the second week is NEXT WEEK! As nice as it has been for me to have consistency and I will admit time off everyday even in the summer--I am looking forward to next Week!

I love Summer and have to admit this consistency has been nice but I do feel like there was No Summer! It is going to be interesting cramming in the Beach and fun along with new clothes shopping all in one week! Actually, I am thinking of waiting on the new clothes because all the sales will happen after school starts and there is very little pressure to conform at day treatment soooooo why not delay and get the great deals!

We had a nice weekend! I do have to say the Makala and Jeremiah are pretty great about taking LONG car rides! We left home at noon yesterday and drove out to see the property that is VERY tempting to go ahead and buy! Then we drove and checked out all the little towns along the way and on the river! Making it even more tempting to put in an offer on the 5 acre lot since all we can seem to find right on the river are either large houses on tiny lots or large lots with old houses or no houses....Seems to be rather rare to see this kind of land on the river with a 3,000 sq ft house that isn't even 7 years old! BUT--it would add some real time to Andrew's commute and is still a little more expensive then we want to spend just now! The real plan is to move in 2-3 years we have agreed to only jump the gun if we find something we think is PERFECT! Not sure this is it--but we do know we cannot find this kind of land on the River anywhere else???? hummmmm

Makala was able to talk a little with me about "What she is thinking" when she is in a RAGE! She told me that in her brain she says, "Don't do it--don't say No, don't have a fit" but that she feels herself doing it anyway!

I wish I could figure out some way to connect with that little girl who is telling herself "don't do it" when she is feeling herself do it anyway! We talked for awhile about ideas to see if we can 'work together' and get past these tantrums... Makala liked the idea of counting to five and trying to hold still and be quiet until she has finished counting....

We are going to try some Strong Sitting exercises. Some children have had great results from practicing Sitting up straight and deep breathing when they are NOT in trouble. Sort of like a Work Out and self control grounding experience.

I also FINALLY am getting someplace with the Neurological Testing Referrals I have been trying so hard to get! The case treatment manager said that when he read the Alcohol Related Neurodevelopmental Disorder booklet he Agrees completely that this may in fact be a huge factor! YEAH finally someone who actually thinks I might know my little girl.... He of course still feels RAD is a big part of everything.... and everyone knows how I am and always have been a little unsure of this Dx.

I guess, I just don't want to be in part of some big wave of Pop-Psychology! I remember in the 80's EVERYONE had Repressed memories and We had All been Sexually Abused but blocked it all out and Now needed to deal with it---OR---everyone was Multiple personality.... WELL---20 years later most of the real data on repressed memory has proven that if it actually does happen it is VERY RARE and most psychologists now feel multiple personalities are not really possible at least not the way Sybil made it seem anyway.... I would HATE to shrink this child for the next few years and find out 20 years from now that RAD was also over Dx and is NOT as huge of an issue as we all think....But then What if the science proves Reactive Attachment Disorder is Really Real and all the great answers are found?

I just keep going back and fourth on this issue! I feel like sometimes this RAD therapy is over focused...but, then most of it could NOT be damaging so no reason not to attempt the therapy and attachment work....so no harm done....right?

Frankly, I don't think there are two people on this earth that are exactly alike and I think MOST of us and our children are actually dealing with a variety of issues, personalities, prenatal exposure, post traumatic stress, and then all the things that any REGULAR Child might or might not have..... I just do NOT believe that ONE KEY is the answer to any of the issues any person deal with...It is a combination of factors and requires a combination of efforts and ideas.....

Anyway--Jeremiah has locked himself outside so I need to go....

Breaks my heart!

Friday, August 19, 2005

a Quick Note!

....things appear to be going rather well! Funny I can't find as much to talk about when things are even Steven!

M is really trying very hard and wanting to do well. It is so odd because I can tell when she is trying to irritate--or--aggravate someone else...and most of the stuff just seems like testing issues....

The lies are still an issue and still everyday WHY? Why tell a Lie about THAT? But, maybe this is a bad habit that can be changed?

The weekend looks fun: Saturday I get to get away with a Tupperware Party! and Sunday we are driving out to look at some property and a house--in a small town on the river far far away from the city! Yippee? Or not? we will have to check it out!

Tuesday, August 16, 2005

Another Great Day

I guess we have the answers about medication because this cannot be ironic M has had day after day of GREAT Behaviors! Even at school!

Not only are her moods in control but she has not tantrum-ed at all or even argued very hard... She is able to Make and Effort right now and is REALLY trying!

..........anyway, I am enjoying the Good Break and hope it lasts!

Monday, August 15, 2005

What a Completely Fantastic Weekend!

What a wonderful and fantastic weekend!

Saturday my oldest son came over and watched the kids for about an hour until Tori got here. He left a list of "M's Crimes" But we do need to consider the source he is a bit self centered and well...he may have a college degree but....he is on the less mature side....But we Love Him anyway. So M caused some issues but he most likely agitated her and well they deserve each other.

Tori said the Whole evening went wonderful and there were no problems. Tori read the booklet on the Alcohol Related Neurological Disorders and Went WOW with me!

M has not needed the bedroom door alarm for the past four nights because she has been HAPPY to go to bed.... We have NOT had a tantrum for 3 days....

Saturday Andrew and I got out and had a blast! Talked with several old friends and relaxed. Sunday we took the kids to some NEWER friends house and swam all afternoon in their pool, BBQ-ed Hot dogs and had a great afternoon.

Last night the KIDS crashed after such a fun day!

Friday, August 12, 2005

Placebo? or Really is what we need?

I really was hopeful that M would NOT have to be medicated and I really wanted it not to be what she needs! I just hate the idea of having her take meds and the side effects that medicated children have to endure.....BUT, is it all in my head or is it WHAT this princess actually needs right now?

Last night was only the SECOND night back on medication. I had planned for the fact that I wanted to attend our Adoptive Parents Network Group meeting last night and so I hired my oldest son to come and make sure the children were settled down so that Andrew would be able to do his weekly conference call to India.... They both reported that M was a complete DELIGHT--YES, I said DELIGHT!

My oldest son was able to play a board game with her and she didn't pitch a fit when she didn't WIN (which is Great because he always had a problem Not being the Winner too and even though he will be 22 next Monday he still has some growing up to do)

Then when it was time to go to bed M asked if she could "TRY" not having the Alarm on her door.....They agreed and told her that if she got up even ONE Time they would put it on the door....Apparently she got ready for bed and went right to sleep!

This morning she came down stairs DRESSED for School and Brushed her hair without being asked--which is usually a horrible ordeal since it is so long it is past her rear end! She ate her breakfast and gathered her things and waited by the door for her driver--kissed me goodbye and left with a smile!

HUH?

...could it be possible that she REALLY must need this medication? When I read this journal I can clearly see the difference between medicated and NOT! I can't believe this is my imagination that she does so much better with the meds...DANG it! It is LIKE NIGHT AND DAY!

I suppose that if this really is something my sweety needs that I can get over the fact she needs it.... I just wish I didn't have to feel so responsible for the fact that No One knows the LONG TERM effects of children taking these medications...like the effect 20 years from now....Or what about her reproduction and all that stuff...what if she really needs this medication and we keep her on it for years and she leaves home and goes off and crashes? Or has to go off to have children and turns into a crazy maniac and has problems? I just don't want her to have to be medicated and I wish this stuff was not working but It sure seems that it really is!

I have talked with other parents who have tried medications and NOT seen any improvements or the medications lose the effectiveness after a period of time. All I know is that when I look at this journal I can see that the 9-months she was on Risperdal she was not flipping out everyday--she was not arguing about every thing and she was in a stable mood....so much so that day treatment thought she would graduate by this coming Christmas and be ready for school again...Then we took her off meds and it has been a quick and painful spiral down to the worst fits and tantrums I have ever witnessed!

Maybe this is Just a fluke and maybe she is trying hard and working on it and it is all ironic? I suppose that we can keep her on for awhile and try a back-off again and see what happens later? I just cannot believe what 2-days on this medication has demonstrated to us....and I know that M will be so much happier and live such a more peaceful life it she is not always verging on some mood swing of some kind or another....

Anyway--I cannot wait until she gets home today to see what happened at school and how she does this afternoon! I would so much love to be done with the flipping out and lack of stability with her moods.... I just see no way that she could even learn at school or have the ability to accomplish much of anything in her life under the situations she deals with when we were not medicating.... Just the most simple tasks were too much for her.

Yesterday, we did have some argument about riding bikes but, honestly I don't think her wanting to ride the bike and being insistent was all that unusual she didn't have a tantrum just some re-asking and begging and some minor arguments about it but eventually let go and waited until it was TIME to ride...which did happen just not when she wanted it..... I think this was completely normal 7-year-old behaviors and didn't feel she crossed any REAL line with her begging yesterday....

so who knows here and if the meds are needed then I need to get over my own not wanting this to be the case. I may not like this and It might scare me half to death but without it what would her future even be if we cannot make it ten-minutes without some kind of mood swing and freak out?

anyway that is the update for this morning.

Thursday, August 11, 2005

We started the new Medication--Abilify 5MG

I was able to get somewhat caught up from my lost time on Tuesday. After School (Day Treatment) yesterday M was on "Picked Plans" with mom until Mom catches up with the things she couldn't do on Tuesday because of all the problems....Like finishing the shopping with Jeremiah BEFORE M got home and then making the Peach Jam mom planned to make on Wednesday morning but couldn't because Mom had to do the things she couldn't do Tuesday!

M went to Church group last night because she didn't have much chance to get into trouble because Mom had picked her plans and they didn't offer much opportunity to get into any trouble.

As far as I know last night the ONLY issue we had was ONE LIE!

At the meeting on Tuesday I talked about how I had told M that I know sometimes she might have lied to me or someone else and everyone believed her--but, that getting away with a lie here and there is NOT a great way to live her life... That I am sure she has pulled the wool over my eyes once or twice but, she really should not count on it.

The Treatment staff thought that was a BAD choice of Words because it gives M ideas that sometimes she can get away with her lies... But I personally think it goes without being said that SOMETIMES she gets one past us....I don't think pretending we don't know this is true does any good? She has to be smart enough to notice that she gets away with lies here and there and not talking about that seems like it would just be a secret in her heart and give her more power. I think it is far better to state the FACT that I am sure she has gotten away with many lies but that the RISKS should be enough to tell herself she would rather not try?

Maybe I am wrong but I know when I think that I can get away with something I am more apt to try it. And having this just be some thought in the mind that once in awhile I don't get caught means I might try more often...Why pretend it is NOT a True Fact. The truth is that I am sure she gets away with more lies then I know of...and pretending I don't know that fact means she does and will keep trying.

The Treatment staff feels this gives her an idea that sometimes she gets away with it.....I think she is smart enough to have figured it out already and I would rather tell her I know how it works!

Anyway, I do hope this new med works I have not done any research yet so plan to today.....and still thinking about the Adoption Assistance and revising our requests to include Respite Care... It takes sooooooo long for me to get some of the simplest things done lately!

Wednesday, August 10, 2005

Well, that was an interesting afternoon!

yesterday was another wild ride to say the least! Day treatment had a planned meeting at 2:30 to go over all of M's goals and progress, it was one of those meetings I could choose to attend or not. I had sent a note that I wouldn't be able to attend because I didn't have any arrangements for child care and short notice made it very difficult to arrange!

So M got home and her book from school had a GREAT Day report so I let M know that tonight there was a really special Meeting for all the Tupperware mom's and the meeting was special because it was KID's Night and all the mom's could bring their kids for the meeting....which was going to be a lot of FUN! All we needed to do is get to the store for some food so we had dinner and at least tomorrow's lunch and then get ready to go!

..................well, at the store M noticed that I was buying all the "special" diet foods that are low in sugar and carbs and she realized that it was clear she was going to go back on her meds...At which time she decided to FREAK OUT and BEG me up and down the isles NOT to put her back on. She made promises that From RIGHT this moment and for the REST of Her life she was going to STOP having tantrums and arguing and being unsafe....But, mom just told her that the past few weeks were the time she needed to show me this and that as of now the decision had been made and it was not going to change medication was going to start again.

She instantly progressed even more into her uncontrollable behaviors and chanting her desires over and over.... pulling the shopping cart and making it hard for mom to shop....pleading and chanting up and down every isle in the store.... I tried hard to tune it all out which only made her more angry. When I would not continue to respond to her she came over and slugged me--Maybe I should have kept my mouth shut until we left the store--but, I didn't and I let her know that she was no longer going to the Tupperware meeting.....and she went NUTS!

I would say she hit me at least five times....starting pushing on the cart so I could not move it anyplace. Ran up and down the isles and was screaming at the top of her lungs! I saw a workers so I let the worker know we were not going to be able to complete the shopping and that there was some cold food in the basket! And I picked up Jeremiah and he started crying because he wanted the candy he had in the basket and he had been a complete angel and didn't think it was fair...I needed stamps so I thought maybe we could get out quickly enough if I stopped at the service counter and paid for the candy and stamps

Well, as usual there was someone at the service counter with a problem and the clerk was on the phone trying to fix the problem...so there was going to be a 'little' delay....but, I thought we could stick it out a few moments....M started pulling on my arms in order to make me drop Jeremiah and was flipping out--EVERYONE was looking at the whole situation and reaching for cell phones most likely to call the cops if they saw me hit her or something--after all clearly this child was being abused by ME! The bagger boy, Andy who is downs syndrome just froze in his skin and couldn't move watching M.....he looked terrified at what he was seeing....

I eventually gave up and left the candy on the counter and walked out of the store...... AGAIN wondering, What the HELL do I do NOW? and I looked at the clock and saw it was five minutes after 2 p.m. and I could make it to the Day Treatment center on time for the meeting--so I did and brought both children with me!

The shrink was there and we got a script for a new medication that MIGHT be as effective as Risperdal but with fewer side effects and we discussed her treatment progress and goals....The school has notices nearly every area has been backward progress too and while they do not see the tantrums (proof this is really RAD in their minds) they also have seen many of the same problems I am having at home.......

I was surprised because I feel like we have been HORRIBLY mean and controlling and all we ever seem to be doing is punishments and gee how hard can we be on her day in and day out....but, the majority of the staff feel that we need to stand even firmer with her....and use the bedroom door alarm ANY time she gets out of control, is unsafe, the phone rings, or I need a break! And that coming in on the Back Side and processing that "I love you and Daddy Loves you NO matter what you do WE LOVE you and you are not going away and blah blah blah will eventually get through to her???????????????????

It has been very clear that negative consequences do NOT work with this child and positives seems to give her "credit in the Bank of being naughty" so.....what is there really left to do here?

The advice I am getting is to stand even firmer and not allow her to be unsafe or abusive and eventually she will GIVE UP on this WAR she has going on?

I feel like Hitler some days! I feel like even with some of the Marginally "normal" 7-year-old stuff she cannot be permitted to GET AWAY with one DARN thing at all! PERIOD! One inch and she not only takes a mile but she is ON THE MOON! One get away with it and I might as well write her a permission slip to do anything she thinks she might want to do....

I am repeatable advised to dish out the consequences and process with her....M, we love you and we always will...(true) M, it hurts to know that you would try and hurt me and your brother because we are family and we should be protecting each other from things that might hurt anyone who is in our family.....

this back end processing is KIND of HARD for me. I always called it the BEST LOVE TIME when I was a child. When my father would lose control and cross a line and be too hard or hit too much he would come to me later and GIVE me all the BEST LOVE and all the GREAT WORDS I needed to hear..... I think that my training in getting HIS BEST LOVE after some extreme event led me to have problems in my first marriage.... Almost as if I PUSHED to have a fight or conflict in order to have the MAKE-UP Love....

It is HARD to say if I might have played a part in creating more conflict in that Marriage due to this NEED I had or not....Fact is a wife beater and raper would have been that way no matter what....but, I have often wondered what MY Own Messed up needs did in fact create an environment where being a battered-wife was MORE likely. All the therapy I have had tells me this is actually a normal reaction when you are a victim of domestic violence.... Victims often blame themselves.... and all that psychology but, I was there and I do remember being aware of my need for the MAKE up stuff and have to wonder how much of a part I actually did play in setting my ex-husband up to feel not choice but to HIT me?

This is part of why I am thinking more and more that the opinions of the caseworkers that a former abuse victim will have the compassion to be a Great Parent for a child who has been abused. I just don't know if this is really true anymore or NOT? Given that the advice I am getting it to process and give MY BEST LOVE after a dramatic event with what appears to be a terrible consequence for my child....I find it very hard to Give my Best Love following an event like this......??????

I don't want her to learn that following PUNISHMENT comes the greatest connection we share!

I also have to wonder if MY OWN issues in this area have meant that I have NOT done as good a job in the processing part and perhaps I have HELD BACK too much and not provided the RIGHT KIND of processing following a consequence????? I do tend to delay the processing and try to do it when things seem more settled down and I avoid doing the processing AT the End of the actual consequences.... usually, I think I tend to wait until the next day to really sit down and process and given that she is 7 and emotionally only 4 I should take into consideration that TIME is LONGER when you are a child.......

So anyone who prays out there--would you mind asking the Big Guy to lead me a little more on these issues? Please.

I am going to set up another therapy series for me with M's

Tuesday, August 09, 2005

Tuesday Morning and the sun is shinning!

ok, I do feel a little better this morning. Yesterday was NOT horrible nothing major anyway....but, there was still the constant argument and name calling and fingers in the ears when I tried to talk which really RIPS my Shorts.

I wanted to spank her butt so bad! but only talked about What would have happened when I was a KID! And when I was a kid I can tell you that I would have been knocked through a WALL if I had even thought about talking to my parents the way she seems to think she can talk to ME!

Anyway.......after being told (screamed at) at least 5 times to "Shut-up" and a rough argumentative afternoon Makala was sent to her room early (to spare her life! ) And she asked if she could show me that she could stay in her room without the alarm and I said, "OK we will try it." So she named one of her dolls Jeremiah and started talking to the doll...which was really about attracting her brother to her room because he kept hearing his name said!

so I eventually had to put the alarm on her door.... and she screamed like someone beat her anyway.....and eventually gave up and went to sleep

and I finally made the Margaretta's I got supplies to make three weeks ago I had two and passed out! ummmmm Margaretta's reminds me of HOME--San Diego! yummy! It will be at least another 6 months before I can look at booze again I really just cannot make myself like it more then twice a year..... God knows I have tried twice to become an alcoholic but, never make it past the second drink!

any-who today is shopping day and this week I hope I don't blow the whole weekly budget in one day! I see some BIG-Time inflation at the grocery store lately and blew my hole budget last week in three hours! Time to get back to my coupon cutting and bargain hunting!

Monday, August 08, 2005

Woke up with RAGE!

it was not even 6:30 a.m. and already it started today!

UGH!

Anyway, what a fantastic way to start the day. I am so tired of this CRAP! Really I am....sometimes I just want to give up and let her flop and deal with whatever happens along the way.... It is getting to a point that I wonder if it will even matter or make a difference what I do or don't do...... just close my eyes and let it happen and see what it turns out to be?

I have pride, and guess I would never be able to just let the chips fall where they may!

This is hard. I have only once in all my life felt the LOVE-Hate fine line dynamic of a relationship and I divorced that one..... No way I can divorce this....but, I do have some issues I need help to deal with. I simply will NOT allow ANYONE to abuse me and there are just days where I do actually feel abused by this child...It creates a whole world of MIXED-UP feelings inside of me.... I will not be a victim ever again and I don't care who the person is. BUT--it is this child and I promised to love her and I do love her but I will not be hit--I will not be called names and I will not be abused! Not by anyone!

so why did they thing an Ex-Victim would be a great placement for an abused child? Some of us respond by acting out what we have experienced and others heal and move on....I would want to be one who has healed but not always sure I am....Maybe I overreact sometimes....because I feel the feelings I do and I am not always able to feel the warm gushy love I think I should?

My Ex-husband was my first love and I loved him for 14 years before I just could not love him anymore. I learned how to hurt and I learned how to TRY with everything to make it work....I learned how to analyze and shrink every little detail of each episode of HELL he offered me....and it did not Fix whatever is the issue with him....He still hit me he still said hateful words he still was hurtful and I did end up giving up on my relationship with him.

I just cannot deal with the intentional mean and nasties...and I don't think this is some kind of syndrome, disorder or whatever all the time..... When do I get to say GET OVER IT and MOVE on?

Anna

sorry for the ranting and negative tone of this posting--I am slightly on the down side today--hope I come back tomorrow.

Sunday, August 07, 2005

Fetal Alcohol Syndrome & Alcohol Related Neurodevelopmental Disorders????

In Oregon Families who Adopt children from foster care have the ongoing support of Oregon Post Adoption Resource Center which has been a life saver for us. It was their office that Talked Me Through the issues last summer and helped me get Makala into the hospital and find help!

Anyway, I have been talking with ORPARC and to help find good respite care. And they just sent me a booklet "Trying Differently Rather Than Harder" By: Diane Malbin, M.S.W.

Oh My Goodness!

I keep wondering WHY NO ONE has done any neurological testing with Makala YET? and What on earth does it actually TAKE in order to get the referral and have these tests done?

Personally, If I was in Charge of the World one of the things I would advise New Adoptive Families to do is take their special need, older and leaving Foster Care Children and HAVE EVERY TEST UNDER THE SUN DONE!

I realize that all of these tests are expensive and may or may not lead to the right care but WHO NEEDS THIS MORE THEN OUR CHILDREN?

Why does it take 2 1/2 years and five different doctors, and therapists to even get to a point where the PARENT is looking for the actual answers. This booklet is 79 pages (small) and I do not have a degree in anything but, can see and identify 100's of reasons why testing is called for and should have been done 2 years ago!

Anyway--I will be working through this whole issue on the site and here and seeing what comes of it.....

Today should be interesting because we have the Company Picnic at the Zoo! Yippy! Last year the picnic was the morning after Makala was released from the hospital....Seems that NOTHING really has improved over this whole year! URGH! Anyway, it should (hopefully) be a FUN day at the Zoo and I have to get myself going or I won't want to go....so I will write more later.....

Saturday, August 06, 2005

School was Great Today and Home is not too bad...

It does appear to be bothering Makala that she cannot be trusted to be safe around Jeremiah. Right now the ONLY place Makala can be is in her room or Where I can See her at all times.....It is NOT always as much fun when you are being watched all the time....
We have had three time outs so far today...... and the have become progressively longer in time.
I have to be totally in control and push EVERY single issue. Today mom said, lets all fold this load of laundry and put everything away and then we can get swim suits on .... Makala vanished and reappeared with her swim suit on....

So Mom had her go back put on her clothes and then we all folded and put away the laundry before going out to play in the water.

The time outs have been all about control things...like sitting on something Jeremiah wants to play with or putting the dang Picnic Chair into the little pool AGAIN even after she was told NOT to just yesterday. And she got a third time out for raging and NOT getting up to take the second time out. She tantrumed and cried and Chanted until I told her that any more noise would be more minutes on the time out....she pushed it and got more minutes....and then more.

I asked her to breath deeply and LISTEN to my words this time...."If you continue to make noise I will put you in your room until dinner. Nothing is going to take time off this time out and the next step WILL BE your room." .....she whimpered but did get herself under control.

After the time out the kids went back to play in the water and Makala ran in to get a rubber band...BUT even without me Asking she said, "One of my rubber bands fell out of my hair and I need to get a new one." Which would have been fine if it had been TRUE. But it was not true she wanted a rubber band to hold towel and I most likely would have given it to her--BUT she thought she HAD to LIE?????

I told her that I didn't understand why she would have to Lie about such a crazy thing because there was NO Reason for it. Had she shared her plan or idea with me I would have had NO PROBLEM with her using a rubber band and the fact she lied it the problem! URGH!
anyway....that is the highlight of my afternoon so far......

Friday, August 05, 2005

When the Smoke Clears....

Yesterday was back to "normal", well NORMAL is a relative term so by that I mean--what we have come to accept as Normal.

Still rough and I still have to be on top of EVERYTHING but at least no one was molested or heard some strange thing come out of Makala's mouth. That would be a good day all things considered lately.....

Yesterday I started using "Progressive Time-Out's" The first time out was 7 mins.....the second time out was 15 mins, the third time out was 30 mins....and so on and so on.... I simply have been telling Makala that the whole IDEA of a time out or any consequences it that it is supposed to be sooooooo terrible that a person decides it is just BETTER NOT to GET INTO TROUBLE in the First Place!

...............and because it does not seem that a 7 min time out is enough trouble that Makala decides to make the best choices Mom will have to work hard and find which consequence is BAD enough that Makala will try all the time NOT to have to face that consequence!

............................and if Makala wants to have "Negative Attention" then FINE by ME because Negative Attention is FREE and I can spend all day long doing that if she wants--besides I like to save money and negative attention is no big costs...Not like going someplace or doing something we can have fun doing.

Overall I feel much better today! I had a long bath last night and got another great night of sleep. Jeremiah is at pre-school until Noon and I am busy doing the things I LIKE TO DO! I think I have most of my energy and HAPPY back now and I can keep on keeping on at least for another while---who knows how long but that is the BEST we can do right now!

Thursday, August 04, 2005

Feeling better....today

I must have slept like a rock last night! My back is killing me which only happens when I sleep like a log and don't move all night. Other then that which moving around will make better, I feel pretty good this morning.... THANK YOU, MJ for the phone call last night!

Today is my EASY DAY of the Week. Jeremiah is home all day with me and we just play and rest and have fun. It is GOING to be a HOT day and I love LOVE HOT days! I sure miss San Diego right now. Summer makes me home sick. I wish I could afford to live in style in San Diego---La Jolla maybe..... or when we retire maybe a nice condo on Mission Beach in the middle of all the action.... I miss the REAL Ocean and REAL LIFE when it is Always 75 degrees and only rains two days a year..... hummmmm Of course there really is NOTHING more beautiful then the summer in the Pacific Northwest! It is really very pretty and still very GREEN which is nice.

I can tell this is going to be a HOT day and it is not even 8 am!

Anyway, I am finding that keeping up with my blog is helping me a lot. I keep wondering how on earth ANYONE could have even expected the issues we are dealing with. It is crazy. One moment it is SURE thing RAD (Reactive Attachment Disorder) and the next moment I am sure this is some horrible mental illness that will progress....

So now I am off to clean a few things, play with Jeremiah, work on the website.....watch Jeremiah swim ....soon because he is begging right now! ... Ready--SET--GO!

Wednesday, August 03, 2005

....so far so good.

I wonder if sometimes I use the same titles for different post. I feel like I am running out of words!

Aside from the fact that this is all very horrifying to me apparently DHS has to get a report....oh man. I don't care about being an open book to anyone--that should be clear here! But, I hate that my daughter is not getting it and that this could be something that hurts her later in life.

Case Manager suggests we keep her in our sight at all times. Sometimes I just feel like telling people,"OK, you do it and show me how?" Anyway, THIS IS WHAT WE SAID WE COULD NOT DEAL WITH!!! So is anyone going to pitch in and help deal with the fact that we actually did get what we said we could not handle...and now we have to handle it....and it is way more then not letting a 7-year old out of my sight......

But, I hear you and I understand and well, I will keep the plan........ my heart is broken too by the way.

It is 6:00 a.m. and I am ready....

I am up and ready. Today is going to be stressful--hot and we have a late Dr. Appointment..... This morning I go in for my weekly meeting... that should be interesting.

Anyway, I am feeling pretty good. I feel physically better this week and my diet feels like it might be working a little..... I have so many ideas in my head and so little time. Oh Well. Right now, I am still working on the Adoption Assistance (subsidy) changes. Oh Fun!

I feel terrible but I often try to remind myself that WE Love Makala in spite of herself. As hard as it is some days. We know we are the parents she needed and that no matter what happens NO ONE could have tired any harder then we have. I think this is how it is no matter where the child comes from. I sort of had to close my eyes and hope and pray for the older children too. I think all kids make their parents panic at some point or another.

My biggest mistake is HOLDING on to feelings for too long. I have to be careful this time because that only hurts the chance of us getting over this. I have to be a safe mom, and I have to show the unconditional love and forgiveness--BUT at the same time teach responsibility and choices and all that important stuff. This kind of parenting is WAY more "do as you see me do" rather then the "do as I say, not as I do" way that I parented the older kids. A completely different set of needs, and everything.

Sometimes my heart just breaks over the life I was able to give to the older children. But, when I think about it I know that I did my best and there were mistakes. I guess it is going to be true for Makala and Jeremiah too. Anyway, it is getting late and I have to start the day.

Tuesday, August 02, 2005

Oh My Gosh and a bunch of other Why Why Why's

well, it is unbelievable just how far this child wants to push me. and God knows that she could have the world at her feet....but, Why Why Why....why.... Not even worth adding the ? question marks because the Whys just don't matter to me anymore

It was the typical afternoon and Makala had to pretend that she did not know why Jeremiah was soooooooooo upset...and that she had no idea that her foot was ON his Gummy Bear--at the bottom of the pool....all he wanted was his gummy bear and she just didn't realize her foot was on it......out of the pool for a time out....tantrum fit--RAGE!!! No way is mom going to take it today....

Long LONG LONG time OUT! Long enough that she GAVE UP the attitude and stopped RAGING and I got a few words in....Like that I don't mind giving her Negative Attention because it is FREE and I am saving a lot of money because negative attention is easy enough for me to give her if this is what she really wants.

When it was over she did a good turn (Girl Scout Talk) and emptied the cat box! Wow nice job Makala! I was really so happy....and I called mom and not 2-minutes later JUST had that FUNNY FEELING and sure enough I walked into the play room where Makala was in one of her acting out stages and inappropriate. Clearly sexualized behaviors.

I called the Day Treatment center and her case manager called me right back and told me to put Makala in her room with her alarm on the door. Feed her let her go to the bathroom and blah blah blah so I am keeping a log and well what a wonderful odd feeling to have a child in a room with an alarm on it....urgh....how odd how hard this is.....I am so tired of being on guard....I guess the alarm really does reduce my stress and make the home safe.....I just wish things could be normal...What is Normal anyway? Why? and who the HELL caused these issues in the life of this BEAUTIFUL little girl....I wish that person was in a room with an alarm right now....or dead.... anyway......another rough day in my life....my heart just keeps breaking,

Monday, August 01, 2005

Spending some time Making some changes

It seems very clear that when you do the same things expecting a different result then it is a waiste of your time....

If something is not working then the only way to fix it is to change the something.

.....so, that is what I am spending some time thinking about this morning. Both Andrew and the State Adoption Assistance (subsidy) has to be cleared up on a few issues and both need to cough-up the right amount to see to it that I am able to provide them with everything I have on the LIST.

My oldeer kids had enrichment activities and that was when I didn't have anything. I don't even know how we ever afforded the things we were able to give to the older kids, but dang-it they did have enough and exactly the right level of involvement in extra activities. They didn't have ALL the new things but they did get some things that WERE all the Rage. They had as many books as they could read and I could afford. Nintendo and some special things were always updated.

My oldest son had Tiek-won-do and some other classes at the Rec Center, Cub and Boy Scouts, and music tools his SAX! And my oldest daughter had Ballet, and was in a Pageant when she was 7, and Girl Scouts, and her Art Supplies and a lot of things little girls like.

So these costs are going to need to be fully covered--Andrew!

and, I will make sure they are because I am going to re-do the Adoption Assistance with the Exact and Correct dollar amounts I need and for what they are needed to cover. Of course, Andrew that will not include the things that WE NEED in General, therefore these costs are above and over our "General Budget" each week. So this is in addition to MY Weekly Budget, Dear.

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