Thursday, October 10, 2013

My Reserves Are All Used Up

For the last 6 days, we've been on vacation.  I took the kids to San Diego Friday after school, and returned yesterday.  It was our annual trek to visit Uncle Matt, Aunt Amy, and Garrett.  We go with another family who happen to have relatively quiet, well mannered, EASY kids who get along.  We always go to Legoland, but this time hit the SD zoo and Sea World while we were at it.  I mean, who wouldn't when kids are free, right?  OK.  We're a bit crazy, but that's not my point here.

To my amazement, there were no meltdowns.  The whining was not at its usual level, easy bed times, minimal complaining.  Say what?  It was, well, wonderful.  It made it a whole lot easier to get those 5 a day hugs in when I actually enjoyed the time we were having together!  And last year my son was a wreck from lack of sleep and was a big cranky pants.  This year, the boy didn't even complain his back was hurting during the drive.

This is a WOW moment.

Now we're home, and today we are doing pretty much nothing.  Laundry, playing outside in this beautiful cool weather, cleaning up.  Ya know, the fun stuff.

Aaaaaaaand the good behavior is over.

It gives me pause and I realize maybe they are just running on empty.  They were running on all four cylinders for four days straight at theme parks, then two travel days; so how could I possibly expect them to still have any get-along-gas in their tanks?

And why do we expect our children to get along in the first place?  When I make a list of all the people I like after even a few days of being stuck together it looks pretty bleak.  But we expect these little people to just accept one another and be pals and play together and share and LIKE IT ALL THE TIME?  Yikes.  Not even on my best day could I rise to that occasion....... and yet with all the constant bickering and tattling and whacking each other I want to yell:


I believe we all have some challenge-able expectations of our kids, and I KNOW we have some of ourselves.  It's unrealistic to expect that my kids will have these great big personalities but only let them free when it's "appropriate".  Or that they have a parent who speaks her mind but then balks when they do.  Or that Mommy Cranky Pants is hiding out in the office right this very minute hoping empty-tanked kids aren't doing anything massively destructive.

So I'm taking a breathe, reminding myself in the midst of the resumed chaos that a little miracle happened this trip.  My kids got along.  We had fun.  We were family.

Tuesday, October 01, 2013

You Positive About That?

I have started to realize I am not the fun person I used to be.  And that just further pisses me off.
I can't remember ever being a glass half full kinda girl.  No overt optimism, but not really pessimism, either.  Just mism.  It is what it is.

These days I realize I am becoming more and more of a pessimist.  I actually catch myself wondering what annoying/rule breaking/argumentative/what the hell were you thinking thing my daughter will do next.  Seriously?  I'm mentally plotting my irritation? 
 I am planning out my mism?

I realize how sad that must be for her.  Then I get all in my own head with the internal debate of Popeye voice "I yam what I yam and that's all that I yam" vs " Don't be your mother, don't be your mother, don't be your Mother".

On the one hand, I will never be the queen of nurture.  I have found some peace realizing I am better at structure and boundaries both with myself and others.  I then realize I may be using that as a crutch - a way to justify my constant redirecting of my daughter.       *And yes, I also realize this is all linked to her while my son is getting my hugs and kisses (although I find a little justification in the fact he actually returns them and has never tried to assault me..... but that's a whole other cup o' worms).  

When it comes to my mother, I CLEARLY remember feeling like she hated me and I could never do anything right.  My brother did enough rights for the entire world, so after a while you kinda just say f-it and start emotionally preserving yourself.  And my current fear overwhelms me when I realize I am perpetuating this in my own daughter.  The amount of times I have to tell her to knock something off SEVERELY outweighs the amount of times I provide anything positive........ other then I'm positive you shouldn't be doing/saying/acting like that.

So how do I change the mism.  How do I take years and years of practice accepting half-fullness, justifying self preservation, and let's face it, the need to be right all the time, and morph it into something healthier?  Not just for her sake, but to stop these facial wrinkles from continuing until I look pissed off all the time no matter what cream I slather on.  How do I get back to being fun me while maintaining Mom me and squashing my mom me.

Christine Moers keep a log of hugs.  A log.  She's got a few more kids then I do so I thought I don't need no steenking log!  But I can't actually keep track of the number of times I hug my daughter and the log will keep me accountable.  So that's starting.  I am setting a goal of 5 a day.  Good hugs.  I mean it hugs.  I will not be my mother hugs.  I am going to hug the shit outta you even though you may not enjoy it hugs...... at least 5 times a day.

I am starting a fun jar of dumb and silly things to do - dance party, hokey pokey, jump in the pool with your clothes on, play a game, etc.  Ideas on other stuff would be greatly appreciated.

I am also posting a link to this blog on my FB page.  Now, you may be wondering how in the world this has anything to do with ANYTHING.  I guess it's just my way of putting myself back out there.  Just me.  Maybe the vulnerability will do me some good, maybe someone else some good.  When I think back I realize that writing was always an outlet for me.  It allowed me a place to be myself and express my honest thoughts, no matter what.  I wasn't trying to impress anyone or speak to anyone, I just needed the moment to verbalize the garbage in my head so I could sort it out.  If you're reading this, now it's your garbage, too!  HAHA. Sukkkkuuuuuuuuu.

October is now positive month for me.  I am not changing my mism, but tweaking it a little at a time to better myself.  So if you know me, feel free to flick me in the arm when you hear me harping on my kids.  I may punch you in the face, but hey, I'll start a hug log for you and make it up.

Monday, September 23, 2013

Starting Again........ Again.

This has got to be the most sporadic blog ever.  How long can one go between blog thoughts?  Apparently a long time.  Not that the thoughts weren't there, those darn things never leave, but the time and drive to write are definitely hit and miss.  Obviously.

Right now I am in a Masters in Counseling program.  For the first year, I feel like I learned nothing.  It was a review of ethics, child development, and sexuality.  My class consists of 8 people, most of us have been together since Day 1.  We know each other too well and our stories and viewpoints are getting old even to us.  We just began a new class, Marriage and Family Counseling.  FINALLY.  The good stuff.

Most days I battle my own thoughts of failure.  Turns out my daughter is still a struggle for me, and now my son has issues with emotional regulation.  They are both too loud, to quick to anger, and constantly arguing or ignoring me.  I wonder why I think I am going to be a therapist when my own house is in disarray - then I remember, those who can't do, teach!  My my how I hate that saying, but in this case I will use it to my advantage because it is partially true.  An excuse to be sure, but a verifiable one I will mold to my needs.

Originally this blog was about my journey through infertility and I connected with some pretty amazing people.  It was a source of support, inspiration, friendship, and peace I so desperately needed during that time in my life.  I cherished every comment and spent hours reading what everyone was doing and hoping I could provide some level of feedback and support to those far away friends.

I have adopted two children and have the family I thought I wanted.  Not that I don't want it, it's just not the one I had ever imagined having.  I can't say I have overcome infertility - there are still many moments I allow myself a pity party for my broken parts, wallowing in the what ifs, sending silent wishes for a miracle.  Still.

My days now are spent looking for solutions for our daily chaos.  I have some new friends who have therapeutic children and provide inspiration the way my infertility bloggers did years ago.  Maybe that's why I thought about this page and decided to visit it again.  I considered starting a new blog, with a new name and new ideas, but I find it too difficult to just cut off my past.  I had some amazing thoughts over the years!  Ha!

My goal is to write once a week.  Not for you, if there is a you, but for ME.  I want to find ways to step out of my snarky comfort zone complaining about all the things that haven't gone according to plan and instead find gratitude for what has landed in my lap.  My kids are beautiful.  I mean, model quality watch out, I'm screwed attractive kids.  I could have ugly AND problematic kids, so thanks powers that be for this gift.  How's that for a start?

Tuesday, November 29, 2011

Well well well. Here I am again after, um, how long? Long enough to think anyone who may have had any interest in reading any of my thoughts has now wandered away to live their lives. A lot of their lives. *sigh*

So maybe this will now be just my venting spot. My WTF generator. My send it out into cyberspace and see what happens place.

I re-read my last post and actually laughed my ass off. Well, maybe not as I see my giant ass is still in tact (too bad) but I had a pretty hefty chuckle.
My daughter was eventually diagnosed with Reactive Attachment Disorder. Thus my concerns about her quick transition appear to be well placed, eh? Score one for paranoid intuition!!!

It has been a long battle. LOOOOOOOOOOOOOONNNNNNNNNNNNNNNNGGGGGGGGGGG. And after each battle is won, another surfaces, and thus the war between mother and child control wages on. and on. and on.

Therapy now completed, we are in a MUCH better place. Mostly. There are still days when I doubt my ability, wonder if I am doing the right thing even BEING a mother. Boy that infertility baggage does cling, doesn't it?

We finalized our adoption last January and had a big fat party! Why not? We went through A LOT to get our kids and needed some celebration with our friends and family.
Now we're approaching the one year anniversary and my children are expecting another big fat party. Well kids, get ready for a big fat disappointment! From now on, it's just family day. Suck it up, deal with it, we love you dammit!

Now that I've ranted a wee bit, I'm feeling a bit silly. Knowing I am the only one likely to read this little ditty makes me feel like I can say anything, but also wonder what's the f-ing point? Just another one of my great cannundrums.

Sunday, July 12, 2009

she's here!

I am sooooo far behind, so here's the short version.

Alize moved in on Thursday, 7-2. Hubby was off that Friday so it seemed like a good plan to have three days with him home for the long nights we were preparing ourselves for. We'd been having her over twice a week (all day) but had not done an overnight. At the time, she was subscribing to some 'bad' habits (personal opinion here) of falling asleep whenever she wanted, while watching TV, in a bed with her brother or foster mom. At our house, bed time is 7:30, no TV, and you're in your room. Alone.

I bought her a fish to provide a night light and some sleepy time entertainment. Maybe not as interesting as a cartoon, but it's all I've got.

She seemed to get it a little bit, but we weren't sure (and still aren't) if she realized she was moving in forever and ever and ever.

We held our breath the first night, waiting for the whining and screaming and I Want To Go Home-ing to start, and then turned blue because nothing happened.


Nothing. Not then, not since. No issues sleeping, hasn't mentioned her previous foster mom, brother ~ nothing.

New scary-ness coming over us. Too easy. Too simple. Too abnormal not to have some level of separation anxiety from the brother you've always lived with and the foster mom you've been with for more then a year.
Needless to say, I've arranged to meet with a bonding specialist to try and get a handle on all of this.

The one that seems to have the most difficulty is, in fact, ME.
I am overwhelmed by the constant questions, the why why why why and repetitive 'where's daddy? what's that? what cho doin? You no sooner answer then she asks again. and again. and again.

I don't know if this is entirely normal, but I can tell you it's annoying as hell. I am missing my quiet time with Alex, being able to engage when I want to and allow him to quietly play other times. I seem to have no down time except for the 1 1/2 hour nap they take, and that flies by.

I am mentally exhausted. And it's only week 1.

Add to this fun my husband is leaving town TOMORROW for five day, then home for the weekend, then gone for another 4 days.
I know I'll manage, but it's a daunting thought, knowing I'm flying solo so soon for so long.

Feel free to send me your leftover prescription medications.

And here's what we're doing it for........................................

I am going to try and keep this up better, if only to post pictures and not much else (who has time???).
I hope everyone is well!
And I wasn't necessarily joking about the meds.

Sunday, May 10, 2009

oh. my. god.

I had to make sure we contacted all the relatives first before writing this post.

Mom wants to relinquish!


For those of you out of the terminology loop (haha), this means she wants to sign her rights away. At the meeting, she stated she has done a lot of things regarding her case plan, but realizes she cannot provide the life her children deserve. She asked if we would adopt Christopher and his sister.

Insert jaw drop and almost falling out of chair followed by failed attempt to hold back tears


I couldn't believe it. My stomach did such a flip I almost threw-up.
PGM was there and I asked about her position on wanting to get the kids - you know, because no one else was addressing this MAJOR issue. She stated she didn't know, but it didn't seem fair to take the baby boy away from the only mother he's ever known.

But she didn't say no.

So Friday I meet with the moody CM who informs me even if paternal grandparents report interest, she and the AAG (atty for the state) will argue best interest for the children. some stuff came up during my side conversation with PGM (forgot to mention I brought her to my house after the meeting so she could meet the boy. I wanted her to see I was willing to let her be a grandparent, see what a nice place he'd live, etc etc) that led me to believe they wouldn't pass a home study, anyway.

CM asked when I thought I would start visiting with his sister, Alize. Told her I was waiting for the green light and she said "Green".

So it's happening. Really happening. I am soooooo freaked out!!!!!
Today we're tossing around ideas for a new name for baby boy. Alize with remain Alize, Ally for short. Her current foster home is pretty lenient with her and I already know my work will be cut out for me. She's three and needs to be potty trained, has some speech delay, and is a bit of a wild child. I'll start visiting with her during the week while my parents come over and watch the boy, then have her here, then a few overnights, weekends, and then voila'! A family of four.

Did I mention we may also take the 11 year old brother???? (0:

Monday, May 04, 2009

I wanted to post more pictures of my little busy bee, but hubby put everything onto hard copy and locked them away in the safe. Better safe then sorry -hehehe.

Anyhoo, the latest battle is mostly within myself, although COMPLETELY spear headed by our lovely case manager.
Short version is this:
Haven't see her in a few months, which is no big deal as I need nothing from her.
Called the FM that has the two other siblings and she mentions she spoke with the PGM. say what?? You mean the PGM I've been asking about for months now?? Great. AND?? FM is a little old and loopy, thus not a great source of information. Said she asked about the kids and said she wanted a visit but that was really all. FM redirected her back to the CM.
Did I mention CM gave the CM the PGM's number and had HER call??

Feeling a bit put-out and out of the loop, but ok. at least I know there's communication happening.

CM sends e-mail wed night asking if I am available Thurs for a visit after noon. Respond to e-mail stating we have pediatric appt at 11, followed by errand running and a nap, so how about 4? Ask CM to call with details.

CM calls at 1, rudely tells me she doesn't care if the baby is up or not, she has another appt about 25 min away at 4:15, so she'll swing by here on her way to the appt and "I'll say what I have to say and you say what you have to say and then I'll go". um, ok. agreed to swing by at 3:15.

After 3 shots, nap time and baby are not agreeable. Don't hear phone ring, here beep for missed call. CM had called about 3 minutes before, leaves message stating she's not coming because I'm not answering my phone, and I now need to call her supervisor to have someone else from her office come over here.

Now I'm feeling avoided. And paranoid. And mad.

Send e-mail stating I was sorry to have missed her call, but didn't realize her attending the visit was dependent upon my answering my phone. Asked when the next staffing was (she had mentioned there would be one and would tell me details when she came over). Informed her I was available for a visit any day except the 6th, and any time between 10 and 2 to avoid times in which I put baby down for a nap.

Reply e-mail was to meet at 9 on a friday, and that the staffing was scheduled for the 6th.

Now I am in WTF mode.

I cancel all plans for the 6th, get my parents to come over to watch baby b/c now I'll be damned if my ass is not going to be there for that meeting.

The meeting is a TDM - Team Decicion Making. This meeting has two sole purposes. Either to change the case plan to severance, which means they'll be going to court to try and terminate parental rights, or to discuss a change in placement - which could mean those grandparents want more then a visit.

I am paranoid, I admit, that all this avoidance may be to get around an uncomfortable discussion regarding relative placement.
Or it could be the better option.
Let's hope for that.