Wednesday, July 27, 2011

The Time I Thought Would Never Come, Did. Or, The End.

AAAaaand, it's a wrap folks. Not the chicken kind, the kind where I am done writing this here blog. I finally ran out of things to say.

I have loved writing here, and sharing my stories. I really love all the people I have met, in real life and the "people of the air", those folks who I have never laid eyes on but who have become friends in almost every bit the same way as those I have met. It has been so fantastic to write this and have people read it- what a rush! Winning a few awards here and there- so cool! People who have read and read quietly, and people who have read and supported and helped with their own words, and lived this all with me, it's been wonderful. I've never even attracted a troll, though I can't imagine why not (am I not troll worthy?). Some amazing people have shared really personal things on this blog and I am extra grateful for that. You never know who might be reading that will connect with what you have written and it will help them somehow to make their way through.

It's not so much that I am out of things to say, it's more that I am out of new ways to write about the same stuff. I have written about my disgust with turkey on Thanksgiving 3 times now. First day of school, last day of school for the kids, also 3 times (or is that considered 6? Or even like, 11 for both kids?). My children continue to think of new and inventive ways to have tantrums and freak out, but even a clever tantrum is still a tantrum and dang if I haven't typed my fingers to death about tantrums. They still do cute and funny and delightful things, but again, when I try to start a post about it, I keep getting a "been there done that" feeling.

I've spent the past several years sort of living in my head. I found myself a stay- at- home- mom of 2, one of whom was not happy about any of it. My brain would spin like one of those centrifugal force rides at the amusement park. Constant, constant queries ran through my head. How can I make this better, how can I help this, fix it, change it. What is causing this, where does it come from, why why why. Writing helped me immensely in so many ways. Laying it all out, thinking it through, forcing an end point to the thoughts that would otherwise whirl around indefinitely. It also made me reframe so many things because often I would be in the middle of some kind of crazy Wango Tango and have a humorous thought, and I would then think- I can blog that!  It pushed me to see things in a much different light than the one of bitterness I was holding otherwise.

Anyway, I've been thinking about wrapping up my blog for a while now.

Genea has taken a dramatic turn for the better, after the worst 6 month span of them all this past winter and spring. I made a huge mistake in judgment last fall, went against my instincts, and allowed her to be medicated for ADHD. Though to be fair, at the time I would have danced naked in the yard during mosquito mating season if someone had hinted it might help. She became out of control. She became violent, verbally aggressive and her hair trigger emotions became even more labile. She could learn nothing, I mean nothing. Unable to even try to use a coping strategy. Somehow I missed the connection, partly because she was better able to focus at school and they stopped complaining about her distractibility, and partly because it was not a 1:1 give/take sort of thing. Finally after about 6 months I put the pieces together and stopped the med. There was no detectable difference in her focus that I could see and The Husband agreed. We let it go a few more days, and her multiple daily rabid explosions all but ceased to just one a day. Or even none.

Around the same time, I started giving her Omega 3 supplements. I have done this in the past with success, but the results always faded and I stopped giving it to her. This time, I gave her a full dose and stuck with it even when she hit a patch of regression. The regression was short lived and minimal, especially in comparison to the past. It really helped that she is able to swallow the capsules as intended, instead of my trying to sneak the liquid I would squirt out onto her peanut butter sandwich.

Last thing I attribute to her abrupt turnaround, which incidentally has lasted far beyond any previous period of "remission", is the oxytocin I started giving her (look it up, not the same as Oxycontin!). I do not exaggerate when I say that has had a dramatic effect. The first day I gave it to her she had been going on for hours about her homework, doing all the little RAD things with it, and the supplement arrived in the mail. I gave it to her and she went back to re-do the same math problems she had re-done 45 times already. She came out again a few minutes later yelling, I am SO MAD I CAN'T do this I HATE it but she was smiling and laughing. I was like I could see the supplement taking effect right there. The anger dissipated and was replaced with smiles and real (real!) happiness. No day since then has been such an immense testimonial but we give it to her when we think she needs it. It seems to have jump- started something in her brain that had gone horribly awry.

Genea's attachment to me has evolved some with the positive changes in her neurology. She has always been partially attached, but in that ambivalent and insecure way. Push- pull on steroids. She would beg me to hug her then grunt and shove me away when I did, then she'd shriek in a primal, infant way, that I moved away after the shove/kick/whatever, for example. We are getting stronger finally. Finally! 

She is far from "cured", and probably even far from "better". But for us, it's big. It's do-able, livable. We can breathe.

Teena is still Teena. My child who has never had an un-met need is as secure as a child can be, I believe. I'm a little worried that she will never learn the real word for "pea finger". I have had a few opportunities to correct her terminology, and she says, uh huh, uh huh, you mean the pea finger?

I'm nervous to pull the trigger here. I don't want to click publish! But I am not the sort of person to fade into oblivion. I'm more of a put a stamp on it and be done sort of person.

I would be more than happy- excited even!- to do the following:

Guest post for any blog
Write for an adoption publication
Write for any publication that pays
Answer any questions a person might have by email
Help prop up, coach, or support any person who needs it going through any part of the adoption process including the "after"
Any other interesting thing you might be able to think of that I might be interested in!

I'll keep my domain open for a while and will probably shoot out a few posts here and there just to keep it alive. So please keep me in your reader- it won't cost you a thing! People seem to enjoy the archives. Currently, someone is going through and reading old posts a lot. I will get 40-50 hits on one single post from like, December 2009 out of nowhere! I still fully plan to keep up with blogs I read so I'm not going to disappear.  I'm just retired from blogging as a regular part of my life.

The End.

Monday, July 25, 2011

This isn't as much fun as I thought it would be

Leave it to that stupid ass crust Skankenho to suck all my fun out of her moving day.

A few weeks ago the horrible skank who lives across the street and her New Fiancee Ickman (click there for part of the history if you have not read it before) were formally evicted in court and they had a certain time frame to get out.  The past few days I have seen much coming and going, boxes packed up and that large storage container dropped off.

Back in the days when that Fucktardmoron (previous New Fiancee) was living there I had dreams. Dreams of hauling a lawn chair to the edge of my yard and drinking a few beers while watching him move out. He managed to move out in the night without my noticing, thereby ruining my dream of waving middle fingers, shouting obscenities and taunting that jackass while he crawled off.

So this week their time was up. I think they got confused about the day they would be required to leave. Skankenho's two daughters have been at my house daily since Tuesday saying it was their last day in the house. We let them play together late into the evening to say goodbye.  On Wednesday one of them was here at 6:11 AM looking to play with my girls. I have to imagine that none of the FOUR adults in that house knew she was up and out. Anyway. Thursday they came over again to officially say goodbye and I believe that is when if finally hit Genea that her friend was moving away. It was not pretty, oh geez it was not pretty. My poor little girl who has been so battered by rejection and abandonment could barely come to the door and had to be pushed to hug them through her sobs. Then Friday they were still around, the girls came over to ask if one of my girls wanted some raggedy old bleached out sweatshirt. Of course they did! And they are fighting over who gets to wear it! Ick!

Friday, still there. Saturday, still there. Sunday, still there. However, finally on Sunday now I have somewhat of a confirmation that they will leave.

Ickman (New Fiancee Du Jour)was out on the lawn with his dogs throwing stuff into the storage lockers.

(Incidentally, why does a grown adult man have 2 medium sized super fluffy white dogs? I can only imagine ugliness as to his reasons)

Anyway, a woman was walking her dog past their house and his dogs started barking. Of course they were not restrained at all. Ickman loudly apologized to the woman several times, which she ignored. Shockingly, he became as belligerent as a 12 year old boy, yelling "Okay, fine, you don't have to talk to me! I'm just saying I'm sorry about that! Don't worry today's our last day!". Skankenho comes out to see what the fuss is about and he repeats himself. Loudly. Then, he did it. He yelled THE C WORD down the street at the woman who was only walking her dog.


Just because she did not wish to stop and chit chat with his flabby butt. Dang. But, that was the confirmation I have been waiting for. Sunday, their last day.

Seriously though, I really thought I would enjoy this and I have not. I mean, I did giggle at a few things like skulking about in the bushes trying to take the above photo, but overall this moving has sucked for me. Genea is a mess. I knew she would be sad but I thought she would be okay with seeing her friends at school. I should have realized nothing is that simple for her and those abandonment issues would fire right back up. Although, she is coming to me to talk about it, so that part is great. Teena on the other hand, a child who has never had an unmet need, is ambivalent. She cares, but is not choked up.

Then, Skankenho has had her daughters at the house while the police are there with the landlord to photograph the damages. The kids had no idea when they would lose their home. They have no place else to go so for now are moving into a hotel. That just plain sucks. It's not their fault their mother is a lunatic freak.

It'll be nice though, to be able to shake off that shitty reminder of such a rough part of our lives and get it out of here. 

So that's it. They are gone. Oh wait--- seems I CAN muster up some happiness! Yipee!

Huh, there's more.


Monday, July 18, 2011

Hell comes to Green Bay

It's hot y'all, bloody hot. Evaporate your blood hot. Fry the skin off your body hot. Melt your eyeballs hot. The temp today is 93, which is probably laughable to all the southerners, but way up here in the frozen tundra 93 is waaaaaaay hot. I think the heat here is hotter than in the south.

My friend Sarah says you are allowed to complain about one season. That's it, one season. The rest of the year well, suck it up and shut up (I'm summarizing, Sarah puts it much more nicely). She's right of course, no one wants to hear another person constantly whining about the weather. I quickly and easily picked winter. I mean, sheesh, what with all the dang snow and snow days and ice and freezing your nose hairs, winter is an easy pick for complaining.

But its really super hot. Heat index at 108 HOT!

What to do..... what to do......

I decided Sarah must mean other people. All those folks who complain and whine constantly about everything. Me, I am merely being observant when I note that steam coming off one's eyeballs is not normal and this heat sucks. When I become disgusted realizing that the heat and humidity is causing a marinating effect in my carpet and the stench from years of an errant cat and two un-potty trained children is rising from the fibers again, I am objectively noting a fact. Is there anyone who would find that pleasant? No? See? There you go. Fact.

(Actually, I have been told a *few* times in my life that I complain a lot. I don't understand that at all. I make informative observations in order to show others seeking clarity the light of my opinions. Altruistic y'all, not complain-y, helpful! Maybe those people ought to shut their pie holes and pay closer attention.) 

Satan is looking for ice cubes. Seriously, that is too hot.

Kids won't go outside because it is so hot so they are stuck inside with me, who also won't go outside because of the heat. For lunch they are going to boil hot dogs in their little pool outside. I might just stick my head in the oven where surely it has got to be cooler. It's so not fair that we get buried under snow for six months and now we can't breathe without searing our lungs. Sheesh.

See how just a few months ago the snow was up to the top of the slide on the kids playset!

We are under a "heat advisory" until Thursday. Thursday! I mean, that should be against the law! Who is in charge of all this I ask you, hmmm? My dad would say Al Gore made it hot. He invented global warming and now look what's happened. My dad never misses an opportunity to slam Al Gore. He lives for it like I live to smash grocery carts. Al Gore and his fancy internet and inconvenient inferno b.s.. Personally I am more likely to blame republicans- all of 'em but especially that prick of a governor we now have in Wisconsin. Here we have a new governor and the very same summer the heat gets so bad that opening your front door is something out of the movie Backdraft. Seems like an obvious link to me.

Thursday, July 14, 2011

Hope in a Comment

When I posted the link to an article about the long term effects of sexual abuse on children, one person left a striking comment which I decided to share up front. It's the sort of thing I really appreciate and commentors who came after her did as well. I know a lot of people don't necessarily read all the comments or come back to read them and yet this one is important I think. It is both gracious and inspiring and above all, hopeful.  It is from a woman named Kristina (who has almost nothing on her profile!). So, here it is.

Hopefully I can help some of you feel a little better. I had an awful childhood. I was born with mild CP to a teenage mother, who dropped me off with a neighbor and didn't look back. The neighbor got ahold of my grandparents, who raised me. My grandfather began abusing me shortly after I moved in. This went on until I was 14, and I didn't tell a soul. I definitely had my share of mental issues as a result of this, but I am now a healthy, self confident adult. I'm raising well adjusted daughters. I also volunteer at a group home, where I teach creative writing and self esteem to teenage girls. It took me several years to take ownership of my body and sexuality. I think the biggest risk is that they may be victimized again, which I was. My daughter is the result of an assault at 19. I have not let it define me. I refuse to be a victim. Make sure your girls know that their body is theirs, and they get to decide who touches their body. This includes you. Make sure they know it isn't their fault. Have a healthy attitude about sex. If you think it's wrong or dirty, then they feel wrong or dirty. Be open when they have questions about sex, as they have not learned about healthy sexuality. Lastly, help them come to a place where they can forgive their abuser. This is not for him, but for them. Healing cannot happen with hate inside your heart. They will never forget, but they must bury the past in order to have a future. Their abuser does not deserve forgiveness, but do any of us deserve Gods mercy? My most healing moment was when I sang at my grandfathers funeral. I of course sang Amazing Grace, and I truly felt Gods grace at that moment. I was 16, and felt that I had closure. I also chose to be baptized. I felt that this was a final way to cleanse myself. Many victims feel dirty or ashamed, and i wanted to wash my shame away. Do whatever you need to do to get there. If the perp is still alive, you could have a symbolic funeral(he's dead to you) where you burn or bury a picture or letter. A friend of mine had a forgiveness and letting go ceremony, where they burned items representing the abuse, and herself as a victim. They were not religious, but they also poured water over her to "wash away the past" and it seems to have helped her daughter move on. Good luck, and blessings to your girls. They are strong.

Friday, July 8, 2011

You know what I really love?

There is this one little thing that I really love to do. I love it so much I almost look forward to it. It is a little strange though. But I'm guessing if you read here you are getting used to the strange. Possibly you even expect it. You are no stranger to strange.

This might be a little more strange than the normal strange.

It might even be unhealthy. But I'm not exactly known for my consciousness on that subject. I eat cheetos and even go without sunscreen.

I love, I would even say I LIVE, to smash grocery carts.

Okay! I warned you!

I mean, the satisfaction I get from shoving that fucker across the lot to crash into the cart carrel, wow, I'm getting worked up just thinking about it.

There might be a chance I have a touch o' The Crazy myself.

I spend my time and my money in the store. I lope out to the parking lot with my kids jumping and whining, after having dragged them through the store jumping and whining and being demanding. I tell them to get in the car while I put our crap in the trunk and without fail there is an argument. I mean, what? the? hell? How do 2 such short people manage to fight with each other about something so fucking simple as getting in the damn car? Just get! in! the! car! There is nothing to talk about! Simple process, open door, sit your ass down, mouth closed! Squabbles always ensue and I want nothing more than to smash something.

(Though I have to admit, even when the kids are nowhere near me I still smash carts). (I must have leftover frustrations). (Keep your sassy comments to yourself there, lol!).

I slam the trunk of the car shut. There is minor satisfaction in that, however I drive a Pontiac. There is no heft to the trunk and so very little sense of release. In high school I drove my parents old 1970 Chevy Caprice. Now that's a car with some heft, a car that could sleep 6. You had to  put some muscle into pulling the doors closed or slamming the trunk. Anyway. I digressed.

So I drag my cart away from my car, having already scoped out the nearest return carrel. My pupils start to dilate and I can feel a surge of blood pressure rising. The corners of my mouth twitch but I try hard to resist smiling. I don't want all the other customers to see me. It would look weird.

(I resent places that have plastic shopping carts. You know who I am talking about *Target*).

Ideally I would find a carrel with several carts already in it. Empty ones are still noisy but less disruptive. There is no domino effect of watching the other carts scurry and lurch forward. I line that fucker up from about 5 feet back and tense my muscles with all the strength afforded to me by having a 6 year old child who still loves to be carried. Then BAM! I send that cart flying across the parking lot! SMASH! It bangs and crashes into the carts already returned and hurls them forward as well, the noise sounding like a repeating echo. Banging into the sides of the carrel, metal shrieking on metal. Yikes! People are startled and look over, surprised at all the noise I have made. Some even look disapproving. Oops, heh heh heh. My daughter Teena calls out from the car "Wow Mama! That was coooooooool"! I think so too. Ahhh.

Okay, I can't be the only one. Right?

Monday, July 4, 2011

Rationally irritated or illogically sensitive?

So a few months ago I finally found a therapist for Genea. She is about 25 miles away, and takes our insurance. I have been a little apprehensive about her and her lack of experience but willing to give her a shot, since it took us 3 years to find her. Genea loves to go there and do whatever she wants, make a huge mess, and have someones undivided attention for an hour.

This past week when we arrived, she wanted to speak with me privately at first. This is never a good sign. It never occurs that a person is requesting your attention privately to say "wow, you are the greatest parent ever!". Right. So she tells me that Genea see's being sent to her room as a punishment. That I am using a "fear based, punitive, punishment" with her, and that if I continue to do it, we are going to "clash".

Um, okaaaaaaaaay.

I always thought of fear based, punitive, punishments more like if I broke Genea's arm. Or locked her in a closet for 6 hours. Not sending her to her soft cushy room with her toys and stuffed animals. But sure.

I told her that our main purpose of sending Genea to her room is so that she cannot take our entire household hostage with her screaming. The level of sound this child is capable of would shock you. It is actually physically painful to be around, and I refuse to allow her to force us all to sit and listen to it, unable to do anything else because of the volume. Think I am exaggerating? You are welcome to come over. Any time. I was unsure as to where this was coming from, and I realized that the previous week Genea came home from school having pea'd herself just prior to our appointment and I told the therapist that's what I did about it. Sent her to her room (more on that later).

Therapist launches into her favorite topic, "Conscious Discipline". Reminds me again she is certified to teach it, does home visits etc. This is the parenting class they recommended to me during the intake. I let her know I would be happy to do something different with Genea. Sending her to her room does not stop her from doing whatever it is again. She will still pea herself, throw things, hit, have raging tantrums and all of it again the next day, or hour or whatever. It helps her calm down and it makes her world smaller and more contained, but it does not prevent another occurrence. While I believe it does not hurt her, it also does not help her really. If she had any suggestions that would allow the rest of us to function and help Genea at the same time, well, bring it on and what are you waiting for! She tells me she is going to lend me the book about this Conscious Discipline and so I go into the waiting room and start to read it.

Your mileage may vary. This is my opinion. Whoa crap, the author is condescending. One of those that is like, my way is the only way and you are so dumb to be doing all that stuff like a regular inferior parent. Just do as I say and your children will glow from the halos that emerge. She proceeds to tell various stories about herself coming upon unsuspecting parents in public and sorting out their children right! then! and! there! She is a hero! Thank God for her and her fairy magic wand of words! Now the parents of the world can finish their errands with all problems solved! Okay, I am really sensitive to this kind of crap. Arrogant, child-free, and with a Messiah complex.  Anyone who starts off having elevated themselves over me, without their own children, pisses me off. But I proceed, determined to give this (shit) a fair shake.

After a few chapters I pull out the Ulta flyer that came in my mail and read about pretty make up and hair stuff instead.

On our way home, I am thinking this all through and trying to figure out where it came from. I realized that when I told her that Genea was sent to her room after peaing, that was all I said. Because I did not want to stand in front of Genea and nit pick the crap out of her running down the long list of things she had done. After discovering the pea, she came in the house and started licking syrup off her breakfast plate, which was still sitting there from the morning. She was high strung, hyper and argumentative, trying her best to instigate with me. I was trying to make her lunch and realized it was a time when she needed 100% line of sight supervision and I could not give that and get us ready too. She would next start bumping into things by accident, stepping on the cat by accident, kicking her sister by accident and sneezing huge gobs of snot and forgetting to use a tissue. By accident. Trying to be proactive, I sent her to her room to keep her world small and keep her away from hurting people, things and pets. And still get her lunch done so we could go.

There are a few other things about This Therapist that have bugged me. She wants to see Genea on her own, which would be fine except how are we going to work on attachment and her history if I am not there? I have always read no matter what you are working on, the child with Reactive Attachment Disorder should never be seen alone. They lie and they manipulate. Genea has a memory like swiss cheese and thinks nothing of filling in the blanks with whatever her imagination conjures up. She lets Genea hug her over and over- again, if we are addressing her attachment to me, should she be letting Genea do that? I don't mind once, but not repeatedly. 

At the end of our last session, This Therapist wanted Genea to tell me something and Genea said no, she didn't want to. Therapist said.... oh no, not that, tell her what you are worried about at school, and  Genea did. But what the hell was it that she didn't want to say? Ugh, I can just see through to some massive triangulation coming up.

Then to top it all off, when I got home I read through some more of that book. Halfway through the book the author recommends sending a child to their room if they are hitting or doing whatever and will not stop, to keep everyone safe. Wtf?

I'm wondering if This Therapist is too inexperienced to help us. She has older kids of her own but they are "regular" and we all know how dramatically different things have to be with Attachment Disordered children. Genea has never successfully triangulated me against anyone. (Yes, I am on that child like corn on a cob). She keeps trying though, and I am worried with this woman she might be able to force the wedge. I could insist on being in the room I suppose.  I can just ask her to quit allowing Genea to hug her more than once, and I can let her know that "telling" me to stop sending Genea to her room was overstepping, especially in light of her own book suggestion. Genea likes her, and is in fact doing well these days. Whether the positive change is due to the therapy I don't know. It might be a small part, and Lord knows, we need every part we can get! My concern is though, that with that list of errors having already occurred, maybe this is just not going to work. Genea and I need to be led through our issues by someone who knows what they are doing without me having to point out significant process errors. . Not forcing us into this boxed up theory because it's the one she knows.

Ah well, I think I am answering my own questions here, but what do you all think?


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