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Saturday, February 23, 2013

love family days....

Today was such a good day.

Cartoons in the morning, Trip to the museum, late lunch, shopping for some more jeans for munchkin, playing with baby dolls, hubs and baby girl watching TV together while I fixed dinner, then all of us to my office so I could get some month end stuff done, home, playtime and storytime.

No meltdowns, even when the baby dropped her phone and broke the screen.

Kiddo and I got matching monkey mood bracelets today.  Hubs is happy. Now he knows when to avoid his 2 favorite redheads.  ;)

I wish weekends were longer.

Friday, February 22, 2013

Another Attachment Session

this one was at our home instead of the office, so it was interesting trying to keep Ms ADHD girl focused and not playing with the pets instead, but overall, very productive.

My favorite exercise was us "beeping" each others noses and "honking" our chins.  We both got a case of the giggles.  Then again, her trying to keep a straight face while I made her laugh was interesting too.  That took no time to get her to laugh three times.

We looked in a mirror together where I'd describe her as I see her.  The attachment specialist asked her if she believed me and she said yes.  P said she sees in her eyes that she wants to believe me, but not sure yet. I hugged my baby and told her I 100% meant everything I said about my beautiful girl.

We always end our sessions by eating, which means right before eating we wash our hands. This time was washing each others hands.  Right after daddy washed her hands, she immediately picked up the cat.  Daddy had to wash her hands again, while she was giggling.  P asked if she knew why she picked up the cat right after daddy washed her hands.  She said "Because I wanted daddy to do it again!"

P said very smart, most kids didn't communicate that that was why.

We got to watch each other instead of going in different rooms this time. It was so much fun to watch the baby and daddy playing together on these exercises.

Eating--P told her that feeding each other is a way to show each other we love each other (after munchkin was basically shoving crackers down my throat and I was being gentle, lol).  Babygirl proceeded to kiss me and tell me she loves me and P challenged her to show me by being gentle instead of so rough.

I can definitely see where these attachment sessions will pay off. We have fun AND build attachments.

On a related note, a kind soul sent me some attachment cards from Theraplay and daddy and I are finding opportunities to do some of these things without the structure of a session to build on it.

Thursday, February 21, 2013

Insanely Comforting

After 3 long years, just knowing our baby was home was the first comfort.

But it was still slight distress because baby girl STILL had not been taken off of adoptuskids.  I was getting a little distressed and the irrational part of me was thinking "were we the best choice, but not what they were looking for and still actually looking and going to pull her away from us?!"

FINALLY!!! February 19, she's finally been labelled as "placed in state".

How reassuring to finally see those words!!!

Now I can finally quit stalking the listings!

Wednesday, February 20, 2013


....... after meltdowns

Last night was the roughest night ever.

Temper tantrums galore last night, kiddo yelling and crying' sending up with me in tears too.

Hubster got kiddo calmed down to listen some and I apologized for having to see me cry and explained screaming and yelling is a trigger for me as it is for her. We explained how it makes us feel to get yelled at, followed by shutting down and not sharing her feelings verbally. We let her know we understand by her actions that she's stressed, but if she shuts down, its hard to figure out what triggered the stress.

That provoked even more crying (from me and her), a ton more hugs and so many attempts to let our baby know our job is to help.

She cried, apologized and hugged us and shyly asked if we'd still be able to have our bedtime reading ritual.

What was a horrible evening turned productive and sweet and this morning was the calmest morning in awhile.

When I went to wake her up, no screaming today....just a "5 more minutes please" and we both took a 5 minute catnap and got up.

She's so worth the tears, but I really wish I wasn't a crier.

Sunday, February 17, 2013

I love weekends....

it's crazy how bad I miss our baby during the week when I'm at work.  As career-oriented as I've been in the past, it amazes me how much I would totally give it up to spend every possible second with the kiddo.

Things went better this weekend than they did over the week, so I'm guessing that my going back to work must've been the trigger for her.  She said it's the "time of year" that did it, but looking at her file, all her moves have been late May/early June.  That should be interesting.

We were playing school and went on a "field trip" to see the goats.  Babygirl was pretending I was her best school friend and she was the teachers daughter.  She "invited me" to come home with her after school when we got back from the field trip. As we entered the house, I jokingly said "house sure is messy".  She said "Well, my mom works all the time"


My poor princess.

(fyi--I don't work all the time, it's full time, but not more than a normal full time job, although I guess after 9 weeks off, it seems like all the time to both of us)

Saturday, February 16, 2013

What a week.....

After a 9 week bonding leave for kiddo, I had to go back to work Monday. Hated doing it, because I could totally be a stay at home mom and be happy, despite having a rewarding and successful career.

I think it triggered the crazies though. We had one rough week.

Babygirl was argumentative all week, she shut down during school one day and wouldn't do her work, she wet the bed every night, she stomped my foot, she left her IPad at home twice, she didn't remember to have her homework signed, she lied to us a couple times, she had a meltdown because she didn't want to give her classmates Valentines (after picking out some at the store) and a serious meltdown over us reminding her to brush her teeth after she tried to go to school without brushing.

What a week!! I was so looking forward to her therapy and seeing if her therapist could help her with her coping skills. But 45 minutes before her appointment, we got a call that she left sick, so rough week and no therapy.

I hate that my going back to work seemed to trigger her so bad. It breaks my heart. I know schedule changes are hard on her and we're going to have to work thru this together, but it totally made me cry several nights to see her so obviously hurting.

So, any good thoughts and prayers are much appreciated.  I hate seeing my baby hurt.

On a positive note for the week, this sweetie pie made her daddy the sweetest birthday note yesterday and had her daddy buy me a Valentine balloon from her and she had daddy bring her by my office after school one day and gave me a big hug. She totally loved her webkinz goat she got for Valentines from us.  (she adores the neighbors goats and is currently trying to talk daddy into getting us some goats for her)

Thursday, February 7, 2013

The Honeymoon

Everybody constantly talks about the "honeymoon period".  It's almost annoying how much the honeymoon is discussed. I find myself talking about how much I love our little girl and invariably, anybody that has experience with adoption says "You're still in your honeymoon period", as if that's going to change how much I love her.

I can say with certainty that I love my baby regardless.

Yesterday we had our first FAPT and VEMAT meeting.  It was determined that the honeymoon is actually over and that they consider her conditions pretty severe. It's actually reassuring to me because based on her behaviors, that she's being her and that even if things were never to get better, we'd totally always be hopelessly in love with this girl.

That said, totally need to work on some things. Calling another child at "molerat" at school, asking a teacher if she could bite her when she was mad, having complete meltdowns over homework or having to go to school in bad weather (storms are a major trigger), food binging at night, sleeping in clothes, bad grades, bedwetting 2-3 times a week and serious focus issues.  Some of these are just minor things that I note but don't "worry" about (ie, bedwetting is not a big deal, just a symptom of the need behind the behavior), but I want my baby to do well, both socially and academically, in school, so we have some work to do and I'm looking forward to seeing her progress into the sweet young lady she is.  She truly has a heart of gold, and she needs to know this is forever. 

The incident at school happened Tuesday. Wednesday as we went to meet with her social worker, our baby started crying and begged me not to tell what happened and changed her feelings chart on the fridge to sad.  I asked her why she was so stressed over us telling and she cried and said she was worried they'd take her away from me.  We assured her 1) that calling kids names and threatening to bite a teacher wasn't acceptable, but it also wasn't a reason for DSS to remove her from our care and 2) we wouldn't let somebody take her away over something like that.

Despite a zillion conversations about it and lots of hugs nd kisses, I don't think she believed us that she was coming back home with us because she packed about 15 baby dolls for the trip and her bag of coping skills, lifebook and photos.  She was such a happy girl yesterday afternoon when we got home and so loving (even more than normal and she's a loving child on a normal day). 

Good times or bad, we're in this together and I adore her.  I think we're handling her issues pretty well and starting to connect.  More on our attachment interventions later.