Have Yourself a Merry Little “Meltdown”!!

Hello everyone!

It’s been tough here, I won’t lie. We have more meltdowns and “bad” days than “good” anymore. I’m certain the Holiday Stress takes it’s toll on ALL of us, not just the adults that are hustling & bustling about making certain all is taken care of for Christmas. I truly believe our children actually FEED off of our own stressors and whatever environment we “provide” for them.

We ALL want a picture perfect Christmas Season, right? You know, something that looks like this:

christmas-tree1

We ALL wish for that! We ALL work so hard to make our own homes, lives and families have the BEST for Christmas….and I’m not talking the BEST presents either…..I’m talking about the BEST Christmas experience so that when our children grow up, they have fond memories of enjoying this amazing season!!

My own “Past Christmas” memories are so wonderful!! We NEVER had a lot of money growing up, heck, we hardly had ANY money growing up!! But my mom (single mom with 4 kiddos after my dad left her penniless..literally….when I was only 13 yrs old & there were 3 others younger than myself) was amazing!! She was so wonderful at letting us kiddos see the TRUE meaning of Christmas. Our Christmas’ were riddled with tradition!! I, still to this day, keep some of those traditions alive in my own family!! We never went hungry, but had little money to just be frivilous with it, as a matter of fact, the FIRST time I ate out in a restaurant was on my First Date when I was 16!! Mom knew what was important and stuck to her guns! I so look up to my mom and when it comes to raising children, I look at how she raised us to the BEST of her abilities!! I even remember one particularly financially hard Christmas for my mom and all of us kiddos only got ONE Christmas present!! ONE!!! And we all got the exact same present…a bottle of hairspray each. And you know what, it didn’t matter to ANY of us that it was ALL we got. Not one of us was resentful or upset, we were telling mom that she didn’t have to…and with tears in HER eyes, said she wanted to do “something” for us! We were all teenagers at the time as well. What teenager in this day and age isn’t begging for a cell phone, iPad, Wii, etc? Times have changed, haven’t they? Or maybe it is US that has changed?! Now that WE are the parents…we need to get BACK to what is important, don’t we?!

Well, little MM is having a rough go of things. With his SPD (Sensory Processing Disorder), there is an incredible amount of EXTRAS going on around him at this, what WE call the “Most magical time of year!” We go to the grocery, & there are SO MANY extra ppl rushing about, SO MANY more lights, SO MANY more toys around every corner to get US to spend more money, SO MANY more poor attitudes as ppl FEEL rushed about, & I could go on and on and on. ALL of this seems somewhat “Normal” to us, right? We have grown accustomed to seeing this year after year. But I forget sometimes that my son, who is sensitive to those types of things, gets more “frantic” and “meltdowns” MUCH more quickly in those situations!! I MUST MUST MUST think of him first and foremost! Not the tree, not the decorations, not the last minute grocery shopping, and certainly NOT making this Christmas “perfect”!! It’s almost as if my son is asking ME……”Do you see what is really going on inside my head?” without saying a word….I NEED to be aware and sensitive to HIS needs!!

Do you REALLY see what is going on INSIDE my head

Let me be honest here. His behaviors have been SO OFF that dh even considered having Santa NOT come this year!! Yes, he’d get some things from us, but not Santa. I slept on it and prayed about it, because as tempting as it sounds to try to “help” him understand that his behaviors really ARE so off, taking away Christmas & Santa will NEVER EVER help him in any way, shape or form, I believe. This is NOT the way to reach our son…not at all. We are learning as we go. Needing to try “new and different” things as the old techniques aren’t working right now. They haven’t since he started school back in August. That really affected him in ways I’ve yet to understand!!

I am looking at this Christmas as our “Charlie Brown Christmas!” Why you ask? It really hit me a couple of days ago when my dh said something to our son and I’ll explain my reply to his comment. This year has been particularly hard on us. My health is declining rapidly, which doesn’t help MM with his stress levels in any way. I’m feeling awful all the time, and he sees that, but I’ve ALWAYS tried my hardest to enjoy and DO what I can, while I can!!! I haven’t even sent out our Christmas cards yet this year! Can you say, Way Behind!? LOL! What dh said was after he’d worked a double, mind you, so he was pretty darned tired to begin with. MM was starting to downspiral quickly as he’d been doing so the past several days whenever we try to honestly DO ANYTHING!!!! When we picked out our tree, MELTDOWN! Went to get groceries, MELTDOWN! Went to go Christmas shopping for him and he needed to stay with Grandma, MELTDOWN! Hence the name of my post…”Have yourself a Merry Little Meltdown!” Now, onto the other night…..we were JUST starting to bring in decorations to decorate our tree…MELTDOWN!! It gets all too easy to get extremely frustrated in the moment, doesn’t it?! We ALL do it…including me!!!! Dh, then turned to MM and said, “Gosh, we can’t do anything anymore without you having a MELTDOWN!! I’ve worked all night and then all day (double), without a nap before leaving and now I have to deal with THIS tonight, too!? Why can’t we just put up our tree without any Meltdowns?! Tell me, please!” I answered for MM, “Because this IS our normal!”

That is a hard one to accept…that THIS IS OUR NORMAL!!!!! Let me further explain why I said I feel like this is our “Charlie Brown Christmas”…..ok.

CHARLIE BROWN TRIES TO PERK UP THE FORLORN LITTLE CHRISTMAS TREE

Just as Charlie Brown tried his very BEST to bring the BEST Christmas tree he could find to the pagent for his friends, and we all know how that turned out, right?! His friends were SO disappointed in his choice. What if I were looking at our son as the tree? MM’s bring HIS BEST to us….and guess what? There is opportunity for growth, too! Not just for the tree, but for US in how we SEE the tree!!!!

Check this out:

charliebrownxmas4

We see everyone else’s “trees and decorations” and get upset with ourselves and second-guessing ourselves…wondering what is it that WE’RE doing wrong?! Failing to see the beauty in what we ALREADY have!!

Now this:

charlie-brown-christmas3

We talk it out, read a book or something online that stands out above all the rest to REALLY open our eyes to what is RIGHT in front of us!!! The ONE person who speaks to me the MOST is Bryan Post!!! He was an adoptive child who suffered from RAD (Reactive Attachment Disorder) as does my son. Bryan Post is now an advocate for ALL adoptive children and owns/runs and is a Counselor for The Post Institute. I listened to an interview he did just the other night, (it was done back in November though) and WOW, I was so glad that I did….it was JUST what I needed to hear!! I couldn’t wait to tell my dh to listen to it as well!! I HIGHLY reccomend ALL of you to give Bryan a try….he really knows what he’s talking about as he LIVED it!!! I’ve been following him for a Long time now and look forward to reading him, getting posts from him, etc. He is quite insightful!!! Here is the link to his blog: http://bryanpost.com/

Then we come to this:

Charlie-Brown-Christmas6Actually seeing the beauty for what it really is!!!!!! How amazing a place that is!!! How freeing that is for both the parent AND the child!!!!!!

And finally:

charlie-brown-christmas5Everyone else is able to see through YOUR eyes the beauty of it as well AND rejoice in it!!!!!

In closing, I’m glad my husband said what he did because it DID open my eyes that night. I’ve said it before, that “this is our NORMAL” but sometimes I tend to forget when we get busy with the holidays, and I shouldn’t ever do that. Our son comes before ANY holiday, stress, or LIFE event..by any stretch of the imagination!!!

It is my prayer that your family is able to enjoy YOUR NORMAL this holiday season!!!!!!

Many blessings to you and your children,

~Mama249

 

 

 

Handwriting Without What? Oh You’ve Gotta Be Kidding Me?!

I’m pretty sure y’all know that Munchkin Man started school at a regular Public School for about 7 weeks and it JUST DID NOT WORK, right?! There was A LOT of knashing of teeth, wailing, and boy oh boy, was there a bunch of kicking, spitting, hitting and nasty words hailed at Mama!

Holding onto anger is like grasping onto a hot coal with the intent of throwing it at someone else; you are the one who gets burned.”
Buddha
Well, MM was “holding it in” as they say, at school and literally EXPLODING when he got home…completely at ME. The reason? Because he said, and I’m telling you the honest to God truth, these are his words….not mine and I’ve NEVER EVER given him a hint of any of this…this ALL came from him. He felt like a “Volcano was erupting inside of him” while at school and he “could actually FEEL it” in his body. It would start at his feet and then end up at his head by the end of the day. He could really FEEL this!!!! How horrid for a 5 year old to have this feeling ALL day long!!!!!! He’d come home, and couldn’t hold it in any longer, EXPLODE on Mama, and all holy heck broke loose! That was all she wrote! Then, when MM and I would talk about it after he’d be completely calm…..he’d say….”Mommy, you’re not fixing it! I’m hurting and you’re not fixing it!” Can you ever, ever hear your child tell you something like that and NOT cry, want to scoop them up and want to fix their every hurt and pain?!  Well, I sure did!
My son was screaming out at me:
I was between a rock and a hard place, too. I had to convince dh that homeschool was the place for MM. After MANY MANY MANY tears, trials and tribulations, it happened..dh saw what was going on. I posted about it in my last post. So…thankfully, homeschool it would be…PHEW!
Here we are now…a few weeks later….and where are we? Gosh, where the heck do I begin? Well, I think I’ll begin tonight with my title….Handwriting Without What? You’ve Got to be Kidding Me!!
I chose an Online Homeschool Program….one that I NOW regret immensly…..for US…..because of it’s extremely RIGIDand outlandish requirements that our particular State doesn’t EVEN require!!!!!! But that is another story that I refuse to go into. This particular program may work beautifully for someone else’s child/ren….but HOLY COW, GEEZ LOUISE…..NOT MY CHILD!!!!!!!!!
First and foremost….we were having an amazing first day of Homeschool! I welcomed him with a great Bulletin Board…which I cannot show you, because of pictures, I know y’all understand, right, complete w/ plenty of First day stuff…..his first day picture, our weather today, etc. It REALLY  is a wicked cool bulletin board, too!!!!! So, we’re pluggin’ along w/ our schoolwork and he’s doing WONDERFUL, and even calls daddy at snacktime, telling him “I LOVE Homeschool, daddy! We’re having fun doing xyz!” Then, right after the phone call…WHAM……it all came crashing to a total HALT…..
Handwriting time came and Munchkin Man (MM) had ALREADY totally learned one complete way of writing while at home with Mama AND at regular school and now, this new online program used the progam called “Handwriting Without Tears”…..he was going to have to TOTALLY re-learn a NEW way of writing……HUH?!
Ok….so they call this “program”…..”Handwriting WITHOUT Tears?” LOLOLOL….believe me….I’m NOT really laughing…..I’m dying and crying inside for my child…my FIVE year old son who is having a GREAT first day of Homeschooling and TOLD me in his OWN words…..”Finally, mommy, you fixed it!”
Now….he has to re-learn this crap?! Are you stinkin’ kidding me?! Well, when he SAW this…he had a complete meltdown…..a total meltdown. The day was DONE….and I mean done! I’ve NOT been able to teach him since!!!!!!!!!!!!!! Gosh….that was, what, Sept. 17 and today is the 24th!!!!!!!! He has become increasingly angry….and BOY do I ever mean angry!!!! I’ll post about that in a later post….this is enough for this one post!!
My loving boy is lost….blown away in the wind…..the Fall is here…..and I can only guess that his loving spirit blew away with the warmth of summer’s memory. The crisp, cold dew settles on the grass in the early morn….just as the crispness of his heart barely wraps his gentle arms around my neck any longer. Where has my loving boy gone? Why did School take his heart? Why did you not believe me when I knew this would happen so long ago?
I want my little boy back!!!! I’m crying inside and out!!!!
Blessings to you and your children…..
Mama249

I Won’t Give Up on You!

The last two days have been hard…..hard on MM and hard on me trying to figure out his triggers. MM was soooo crabby that it was horrible. It was almost constant.

MM is “usually” more happy go lucky than having a hard time with his rages and SPD, but not the last couple days…..phew. Is it something in the air? Is there a Full Moon? Whatever the case may be, he was not a happy lil guy.

Really strange, but on Saturday night, we took MM to see a Monster Truck show (without prior purchase of tickets) so we stood in line for QUITE some time. There was a lady 3 ppl up for us who asked if anyone wanted to purchase the tickets she had JUST purchased….strange, right? Well, her reason was none of the seats were together! Uh, no thanks…..this is family time and that means family sits together! We were just discussing that we may have to break the bad news to MM shortly as it appeared no seats together were available any longer……when we heard a loud voice come across telling us that the place had JUST SOLD OUT!! Sorry, thanks for coming he said! Uh…..we paid for parking (a ridiculous amount I might add), and now we just stood in line to have to tell our RAD child that we had to turn around and go home?! Oh boy! I was, to say the least, a bit nervous. We decided to go to the next building and check out what was going on with the crowd over there. THANK the good Lord above……there was more “stuff” going on that we could check out!! It was hilarious…..but MM told us he was having “fun!” Oh YES!!!!!! He understood that the Monster Trucks SOLD OUT……and he was “OK” with it. He is making strides for sure because this would’ve sent him into a tailspin a year ago or so. On the way home, MM stated, “This was the BEST day ever!”

Are you serious, I thought?! I was estatic that he was able to take a “hard” situation and turn it into the “BEST day ever!”

We got home…..that is when it all hit the fan. Bedtime is ALWAYS hard and it is ALWAYS a battle. MM started to melt down….quickly I might add. He was stiffening his body so that we couldn’t have him go to the bathroom before bed. He was in full rage mode. I sat with him in his room (just as I do every night) until he finally fell asleep.

Then came Sunday……Boy oh Boy was he crabby! And mean! Now….I know with every fiber of my being that RAD kiddos go through this…..but it doesn’t make it easier on either of us. I just trudged through the day…..doing lots of holding! Poor kiddo.

On Monday, he awoke with a furry……he was not over whatever was going on with him. We had a day much like that of Sunday.

The above picture is almost exactly what MM looked like for those 2 days…….phew…..poor kiddo.

NOw we’re here on Wednesday…..whatever it was that was either bothering him, or just was causing the tailspin, is over. I must say that during that couple days, MM decided he was NOT going to drink Milk any more and was going to strictly drink Gatorade. Uh, no you’re not. No matter how much I talked to him or anything…..he FLAT OUT refused to drink!! I mean ANYTHING until I gave him what he wanted. I was NOT going there and letting him control the house. I AM the boss…..I MAKE the rules (along with daddy naturally), not my RADish. I’m happy to report that his “fast” for milk and all drinks only lasted 2 days……he drank, of all things…..4 big glasses of Milk yesterday! I was thrilled…..he is still using a sippy cup for most drinking…..he doesn’t want to give it up. He said that the sippy cup doesn’t “allow air to touch his milk and THAT was the trouble! HHhhhhmmmmm….ok. So long as he got through it. He was glad to drink all that milk in his opened top Thomas the Train cup. Go figure.

Today is the first day of February! I’m thrilled because that means that Spring is not that far away! I adore Spring and all its splendor, the gorgeous flowers…..the budding trees……the occasional rain shower (I don’t like ALL the rain……just some of it)…..and the general awakening of “life” as it is. It is our opportunity to take a look at ourselves and say……”wow, I’d love more beauty in my life!” Plus the fact that I’m an beginner photographer (insert the fact that I’m still learning a lot) and Spring shows much opportunity for myself and my trusty Olympus E-Pl1. I had received it a tad over a year ago…..for my birthday……it is the best gift I can imagine…to be creative…..to chronicle MM’s growing up…..and to look back at the many memories that exist in photographs. I must admit……I’m addicted to taking photos…..seriously addicted!!

Blessings to you and your children…….

Mama249

 

 

These Words Should Never be Uttered by a Four Year Old

Tonight MM and his daddy were playing flashlight all through the house, going from room to room, looking at our house in a whole new “light”….no pun intended. They were having a blast……Daddy would hide an item and then MM would take his trusty flashlight and look all over for it. Well, MM decided he’d rather play “Thomas the Train” in the middle of their games……with MM being Thomas (as usual). Daddy tried to convince MM that they could finish their game first. No go there….he wanted to BE Thomas.

 

And when I say, “He wanted to BE Thomas,” I wasn’t kidding. MM pretends to be Thomas the Train all day long. He chugs along the house moving his arms as if they were his rails moving his wheels…..to which he always refers to his feet as “Wheels.” Then I heard something that shook me to my core……..

“I don’t want to be MM.”

“I want to be Thomas.”

Daddy was expaining as best he thought about he loves MM, not Thomas…..Mommy loves MM, not Thomas. I quickly came downstairs to ascertain the situation.

I outstretched my arms and asked MM gently to “come here sweetheart.” He immediately came to me, let me hold him and he rested his head upon my shoulder. He had the saddest look on his face.

I asked him, “Why don’t you want to be MM?”

“I just don’t.”

This went on for a few minutes.

I started to guide him in his thoughts as sometimes it’s hard to say the words for the RAD kiddos….they know it, but they are afraid to say it.

I asked, “Do you not like MM?”

Shaking his head “no”, “Uh uh.”

“Why honey…..tell me what is the one thing you don’t like the most about being MM.”

“That I can’t be Thomas. That is who I want to be. I don’t like being MM.”

I tell you this…..I wanted to cry for my son at that very moment…..but Knew I needed to stay strong for him……I continued on….

He continued, “I don’t like how I feel.”

I said, “Oh, because you get those feelings inside that you don’t understand?”

“Yes,” he said.

I went on to explain to him that we all have feelings inside of us that we don’t understand and we aren’t sure what to do with. He lit up somewhat.

“Do you not like MM when you get into trouble?”

Shaking head emphatically, “NO! I don’t like it when that happens. I want to be Thomas.”

I stated that everyone gets in trouble, even mommies and daddies. Everyone…..he’s not alone.

His entire demeanor changed at this point. His lil head lifted, his eyes got that sparkle back, and he asked,

“What did you do to get into trouble?”

I explained a few things…..and a few things about daddy…..everyone.

He hugged me.

He said he didn’t really feel a lot better about it and still didn’t want to be MM, but it is a start…….

My heart is broken in a million pieces…………….

 

My son, my son……do not despair……..we’ll get there……we’ll get there someday…….to where you like yourself……and you want to play with other kiddos…..and you finally understand all those jumbled up feelings going on inside of you. I’m here……I’m not going anywhere, my son……..I love you, my son.

 

Blessings to you and your children…..

Mama249

 

The Bend in the Road

A bend in the road is not the end of the road… unless you fail to make the turn. ~Author Unknown

 


With God, all things are possible, right?! That is what I’ve been telling myself for the last few days. Why, you ask?

At times, while dealing with the healing process of a child with RAD, and a few other things, I often find myself up against a road “block”…..of sorts. I saw this quote today and thought it was perfect for what I’m feeling at the moment. I WANT to do the right thing, but do I always, heck no. I WANT to know how to do the right things, but do I, no way Hosea.

I’m a clump of clay waiting to be molded…..I need to teach myself FIRST and foremost before any healing can be done. If I don’t know what the heck I’m doing, it’s all for naught. And I’m not for that at all. Not saying in any way shape or form that I have to have it all together all the time….no one is perfect…nor should I think that I have to be. I’m human, I’m a mom learning as I go, on this winding crazy ride called life.

I catch myself doing something that isn’t being the theraputic mom that I need to be…..ouch. I don’t want to do anything that would hinder MM’s healing. I don’t think I am…..but when I feel like I’ve hit this danged road block…..or bend in the road……I choose to keep going. And keep going I will!!!

I keep telling myself when MM’s raging, yelling at me, etc, that it is sadness behind all of this…..he’s not really MAD…..he’s sad and doesn’t know what to do with it. That is where I come in…..to help, to guide, to hug, to love. I need to STOP…..and think…..be-fore I even think of reacting!! And boy is that hard to do in the heat of the moment….when you have a RAD child kicking you, screaming at you, etc. But he’s worth every bit of this……I”m his mama and he’s the love of my life….we WILL get through this…together (his daddy too), this family we have together. FAMILY……brings a tear to my eyes and a smile to my mouth. What we longed for, hoped for, dreamed of. Reality…..we ARE a family…..just not the traditional kind. But we are US…..and I love us.

Peace and Blessings to each of you….

~Mama249

You Can’t Be Talkin’ bout My lil Man?! Or Can You?

Yesterday was a very important day in my eyes. An important one indeed. Nope, it wasn’t anyone’s birthday or anniversary. It was a day like any other day….with one exception. MM and I got to go to see the NEW therapist yesterday afternoon.

MM’s first therapist, whom he saw for about 7-8 weeks, continually insisted weekly that we, the parents, do something that we were TOTALLY uncomfortable in doing…..locking him out away from us when he has fits/rages even tho there is NO DANGER involved. Everthing in my gut and all that I’ve read tell me that we are to bring him in closer to us…..not shut him out…alone so that he can feel abandoned once again. Geesh! Dropped her like a bad habit.

MM and I played in the lobby for about 10 min. or so before the thin, pretty, dark-haired therapist came to the lobby for us. First thing she did was NOT to address me….she addressed MM. He liked the attention. We were playing Thomas Trains, naturally as this is about ALL he’ll play (we brought our own toys). She asked him (us) if he’d like to come back with her…..”yeah, but don’t forget my mommy!” he said. He kept a watchful eye to make sure I was right there and wouldn’t abandon him…..he’s so afraid of abandonment….terrified of it.

She went over the rules of her office and what was allowed to be played with, what was touchable and what can be played with but asked for first…and what was totally off limits. Oh boy…..MM tested her BIG TIME on the off limits stuff….the entire time we were there…..about 1 hr and 40 min.

She’s very gentle, soft-spoken and incredibly nurturing without going overboard and yet she’ll be very firm in her “no’s”. I really really like her a lot. She and I went over sooooooo much stuff I think I made her head spin. I had a list of 40 behaviors that I felt were necessary for her to hear about. She so appreciated that and made a copy of it. I just didn’t want to forget anything and one never knows if it’s just “boy stuff” or if it’s Attachment related. Well, come to find out….it’s ALL related. More on that later in this post.

She was talking to me…..and the words came out…..they still haunt me to this moment…to my very core……RAD. For those of you who are most likely reading this post…..you know what RAD is or have dealt with it but for those just glancing through….it’s Reactive Attachment Disorder, the worst aspect of Attachment Disorder. I questioned her on this 3 separate occasions in our conversations. Nope….it’s RAD.

Today I spent a bit of time looking up RAD….but MM already had a diagnosis of Attachment Disorder….just not RAD. I found a wonderful site helpguide.org that helped me see clearly what is laid out in: understanding RAD, what causes RAD, signs/symptoms of RAD, what a parent needs to know on raising a child with RAD, and tips on making your child feel safe/secure (repairing RAD) and lastly, helping your child with RAD feel loved.

Boy did that last one sting a bit…..”helping your child with RAD feel loved.” Are you serious? I love him to pieces and he’s my entire world! I show him this daily all throughout the day…..but I have to put myself in his shoes….he doesn’t trust, doesn’t feel secure, and doesn’t feel loved or worthy of love. I honestly want to cry writing these words. 

There is a reason my son has RAD…..he may not have been able to bond and form an attachment with the FM (Foster Mother) in Guatemala. He was taken away from his BM (birth mother) the very day he was born…..he’d spent 9 months listening to her (in the womb naturally), feeling her…..longing for her. I don’t know the reasons for relinquishment but I have a strong feeling poverty was at play since she had several children already, had adopted out a daughter before MM, and then MM was adopted out to us.  

Let me give you a bit of background on Attachment and RAD:

Children with attachment issues and RAD have great difficulty attaching to others and have a time of controling themselves (emotions). Most often, they lack empathy, self-worth, fear of many things – getting too close to someone so they push them away, anger and a strong need to always be in control. Boy, does that sound like my lil MM.

It’s weird to look back and remember when receiving photos of MM while he was in Guatemala (we received monthly updates,  photos and 3 DVD’s taken by our facilitator) that he rarely smiled in Any of his pictures and not much in the DVD’s either…some in the DVD’s with interaction….but not as much as you’d think. I always thought he was just camera shy….or the person taking the pics just randomly took them whether he smiled or not…lol. If only I’d of known then what I know now….but I cannot and will not beat myself up for the past. It is the past for a reason…..you cannot change it….only move on and learn from it, in all greatest hope that is.

Now, we get to Guatemala and it’s day 1 with MM….he’s not with us for more than an hour or two and he starts hitting dh. I knew at that moment something was up….he’d either seen abuse or was a victim of abuse and thought this was ok. It wasn’t playful hitting either….it was downright  hitting with anger behind those eyes. Yeah, one could say he was upset about the situation…but it hasn’t stopped yet (almost daily) and he’s now 4 1/2.

He gets to Daycare after being home with me for about 8 weeks, and the hitting gets MUCH worse, the behaviors esculate, and so on and so forth. To give you an example of the hitting and how bad it was…..we did a hitting chart to see just how much he was actually hitting at Daycare…..WOW….it was a real eye-opener…..he’d hit 25+ times in the morning and even more in the afternoon on a given day.

Thinking back…..he’d “cling” to a particular worker  and wouldn’t let anyone else care for him without a downright fight on their hands. (I’m doing a lot of thinking back…trying to piece this puzzle together) Then we switched to a preschool setting because the one he was in had little to no discipline, no structure AT ALL…..it was pretty much all free play all the time, and we were going through First Steps and she’d fill us in on the warning signs of what was going on there….BTW…they are no longer in business…go figure! The new preschool was great….and yes, he clung to one particular caregiver immediately. She was the ONLY one who could take him to the window to see me off and wave good-bye. If she were busy, it was pandamonium!!!!

I’ve been in denial for a long time….about Attachment. It is clear to me now that he formed a quick attachment to dh and not to me. Now, don’t get me wrong…..he’s affectionate with me….he tells me he “loves” me without prompting. Mind you….he NEVER shows me affection in public, but will daddy. If he’s “told” to hold my hand because we’re in a parking lot, he will….but only when asked. He’s totally different around me at home than in public.

MM gets very angry with me, taunting me, hitting/kicking me, seems to have no remorse for his actions….he’ll say he’s sorry, but you can tell he’s only doing it because we asked him to. And OH….the control…..that is a post in itself. He ALWAYS has to be first, the best, the better of him and I, and boy oh boy is he defiant and argumentative! And a terrible silly liar….lies about the silliest things that are so obvious. I could go on and on. BUT I do want to say that if your child exhibits several of these…..please, please, don’t wait. Talk to someone who can help. The sooner you “get to it” the better results you’ll have and a better success rate, too.

MM also has a few other issues going on too…..SPD (Sensory Processing Disorder) and Separation Anxiety Disorder.

I’ve heard that at the point of the trauma…..that is when their brains stopped developing emotionally. They continued to physically grow and can be incredibly intelligent…..but act much less than their chronological age…because of the trauma they’ve experienced. How sad. I’ve got to grieve the loss of this…..I must in order to help heal MM.

First and formost in helping MM develop into the person he can be….I’ve got to give him a sense of felt safety and a sense of security. He doesn’t have that yet. He’s constantly testing me. CONSTANTLY….& it gets OH SO annoying….but I must remember where he’s coming from and not internalize it and make it about ME…..it’s not about me…..it’s about MM. That is so hard in the heat of the moment…..I think I’ll make laminated reminder cards for myself and put them in various places around the house to look at immediately when there’s trouble in the air. Simple reminders that don’t make him out to be the bad guy…he’s not by any means……or to taunt him….no way!! Just daily reminders that (as told to me & others on a group I belong to):

I’m Bigger, I”m Stronger, I’m Wiser, and I’m More Kind.

That should do the trick to remind this girl to take it easy….take a deep breath, blow it out and be calm…..calm….and even more calm in the midst of chaos. THAT will give him a sense of felt safety…..I’m not “losing it” or proving to him that he “won” by showing him that he can’t trust my emotions.

Well…..I’ve practically written a book tonight….thanks for listening to me rant. I’m scared……I’m worried……I’m sad……I’m mad that MM has to live like this because of something that we cannot change. That is exactly it…we cannot change it……we can only change what is NOW and what is COMING. I ask for your continued prayers and we embark on this journey of healing.

Peace to you and yours……

~Mama249