Sunday, November 8, 2015

Orphan Sunday

Today is Orphan Sunday.

Back when I first stared fostering, I would say about one year into it, I did not understand how people around me just did not get it.  By 'get it' I mean, how can you see that there are CHILDREN that need homes and a family....and you just don't do anything?

I struggle with this, a lot.

Now, I do think I understand it more than I used to because there are ALOT of kids overseas that NEED to be adopted and I have yet to feel like I am supposed to do that.

Their are tons of special needs kids in the system that NEED homes, and yet I do not feel equipt to take that on either.

I understand that we each have our own place in this giant puzzle.  Quite frankly if we all jumped in and helped as many kids as humanly possible even that would not work because we ALL would be so burnt out and have no help.

The people in my life who have never adopted or fostered, but support me, actively support me, are such a gift.  When they love my kids it helps me.  When they watch them in the nursery at church it helps me.  When they babysit my kids it helps me.  When they give me their hand me down it helps me.

On days like Orphan Sunday, my 'message' is this:

There are kids who need families, desperately.  Please search your heart and see if you can help.  If adoption isn't for you, foster.  If fostering isn't for you, donate.  If donating isn't possible, gift your time and love.  Find a way to help, and help.  Even the smallest bit of help makes a world of difference in the orphan crisis.

Wednesday, November 4, 2015

Sick.

Lizzy is sick.  She has been coughing for two weeks and last night had a temp of 103.5.  She will be going to the doctor today.
I don't know why, but the first thing that comes to my mind is her biological mom.
I cannot even imagine that woman taking care of a sick kid.
I'm not going to go into why because I don't want to tear her down.
I just shutter at the thought of it.
When ever Lizzy is vulnerable her biological family comes to mind.
I just can't imagine what her life would be if she would have been returned to them.

Lizzy says a lot of random things.  This morning she said, "I am so glad that you and dad got married and never broke up."

I am glad she feels that way, but all I could think of was her 'broken up' biological mom and dad.
Yet another thing that she has no real concept of, but for now, I am just glad she has us.

Monday, November 2, 2015

Halloween 2015

Our first Halloween as a family of six is a complete blur.  I think I have a picture some where of it (one, single, solitary picture *can you tell I was stressed!* )


This year was much different.  It was chilly so we took pictures in side and then joined my sister and her kids at a Trunk or Treat and then called it a night!  The kids had a blast!


Belle from Beauty and the Beast

A ninja
 A Giraffe
 A Cat
 Sheriff Callie
 A Princess
 My oldest is the one on the left.  He went Trick or Treating with a friend.
 A Princess
This year I did the unthinkable.  I told the kids that we were just going to use costumes we already had!  I was pleasantly surprised that they did not complain at all!  They all had something they wanted to wear and I had fun giving the three middle girls formal up do's and then glittered their hair (doesn't show up well in pictures, but they all looked so cute!)

We had a good day with the kids.  The kids had a lot of fun.  And the BEST part was no one peed their pants!  ;)

Wednesday, October 28, 2015

The lying. The never ending lying.

Some days I just want to give up.

My oldest daughter is the biggest manipulative liar I have ever met.

She is also my biggest helper, so good with the babies, kind (most of the time), fun, responsible....

It kills me when she weaves these crazy lies.

This one was concerning my other daughter, the one closest in age to her (Lizzy.)

I found out about two really crappy things she did to Lizzy today.

It was like she just woke up this morning and decided to have it out for Lizzy.

It broke my heart that she would do such mean things to her sister.

Then, of course, lie about it to my husband and I.

And better yet, I totally over reacted and really ripped into her.

Uggghhhh.  I did manage to calm myself down faster than in the past.


Oh, and it's the 28th...you know, the three year anniversary of this child coming to live with us.
Big surprise the she woke up and regressed to old behaviors, huh.

I will never get over how all these anniversaries trigger these poor kids.


Monday, October 26, 2015

Other Foster Care Blogs

If you love foster care and love adoption, you need to start following this story:




http://aspiringearthmama.blogspot.com/2015/10/a-lot-can-change-in-2-weeks.html

Normal.

Seven years ago I was a normal mom.  
I had one kid.  
My husband and I took him to do normal kid things.


I loved that kid a ridiculous amount.
I still love that kid a ridiculous amount.
I got married the summer after I graduated from high school.
14 years later I am still married.
One first child is now 13 years old.
He has been an older foster brother to 12 kids.
Now he is the oldest of 8 children.



As anyone can imagine, adopting 6 kids can flip anyone's life upside down.
I would be lying if I said I never missed the 'easy' days, the ones spent with just this kid.

I wouldn't trade my current life for anything.
But I would pay a lot of money to go back in time for just one day and be 'normal' again.

Saturday, October 24, 2015

Am I back?

You guys are SO sweet!  Yes, I abandoned the blog for months because:

I have 8 kids to take care of


and


my internet access and computer have been a bit hard to get to.


To come back to such sweet comments on here really surprised me.  It shouldn't have.
Blogging, literally, is what got me through some of my HARDEST times during fostering.

Anyway, thank you for checking on me.

I am SO hoping that I can get back into blogging regularly because I MISS it and I LOVE it.


 ------------------------------------------------------------------------

Things of note:


-We finished our 8th child's adoption.  It took 10 months, but it is done!!

-We closed our foster care license about a week after we finished the adoption.  It's not like they are going to give us any more kids at this point.

-School has started and 5 of my kids are in school full time.  It is wonderful.  They are happy too.  ;)



Over the last two years, during all my 'radio silence' here, SO much has happened.  We are just now coming up for air.  I am trying to figure out what that means for this blog...and other things.

I am toying with the idea of pulling up posts from my first blog so that everything is in one place, from the beginning of foster care to now.

I am also debating about not being anonymous anymore.  I am no longer a foster mom.  I don't have a bunch of rules I have to follow.

So, we will see what happens.  I am hoping I am back for good.

I guess we will find out.


Thursday, June 11, 2015

Vacation.

Today is the kids last day of school and tomorrow we are leaving to go on a mini vacation.  Yesterday we purchased a 15 passenger van.  For the past three years we have been driving 2 cars everywhere we go as a family.  I am so glad that is over.

As I am packing and getting things ready to go here is the list of things that I am also having to plan out for my kids who struggle with change:

-Deciding who is going to have to wear pull ups in the car for the long drive because

A. They might stress pee in the car (I have an 8 yr old and 5 year old who do this)
B.  They might wait until there is no where to stop to use the bathroom to actually tell us they have to pee (I have a 7 year old who does this all the time.)

-figure out a seating chart that gives people space and keeps 1 specific child from bugging people because she bugs everyone that she sits next to

-pack puke buckets because my kids seem to puke for no reason at the oddest and most inconvenient times

-what to pack to entertain them all (which is normal), but it has to be stuff they can't destroy the car with because, if given the opportunity, they will.

-and back to the seating chart, have to keep the child who has acted out sexually away from everyone so he doesn't get any bright ideas in the car

So, to sum things up, I have to worry about people inappropriately touching each other, people peeing  in the car for no really valid reason, worrying about them destroying the car, and prepare for at least one of them to puke unexpectedly.


Happy vacation to us!  😀

Wednesday, June 10, 2015

School.

My oldest daughter has taken up crying in the morning before school because 'she will miss me.'  She doesn't do it every day and if I am being honest sometimes I wonder if she is just trying to manipulate me.

I, of course, want the tears to be because she truly would rather be with me than at school BUT I also want her to be independent, have fun, and enjoy school.

We moved in January, so half way through the school year we switched schools.  During the first semester my oldest 3 children when to public school.  No one, including this same daughter, cried about going to school.  If fact, I think her old teacher was so much fun and even favored her so much because this teacher had also adopted from Foster care herself, that she got used to every day being a party and feeling 'special' every day.

After we moved we decided to home school our two oldest boys for the rest of the year.  I decided to transfer my oldest daughter to the public school where we moved to and also enrolled Lizzie in school because home schooling her was not working for her in the way I hoped it would.  Lizzie has also had at least one day where she cried because she would 'miss me' while she was at school.

Over all, Lizzie has done beautifully.  She manages to hold things together at school and doesn't get in much trouble, but as the teachers will tell you,she  is harder to deal with than an average child.  She has learned much more in school than she was with me at home.  She is receiving special services and they are benefitting her.  Unfortunately, as I assumed, she comes home every evening and has to spill out all the bad behavior that she was holding in all day.  She also likes to say and do every negative thing that she sees other children doing at school. That has been kinda hard, but we expected it so we try to be flexible and work throught it with her as best as we can.

Yesterday I went with my oldest daughter to a field trip to the zoo.  We had a great day.  She was paired up with a classmate who did not have a parent come with them and the two girls had a great time together.

I am thinking that our great day yesterday is what brought on the tears this morning.  I can't tell you how much I want to send the bus away without them when they cry, but that doesn't help really because it all just starts over the next day.  My husband and I take turns getting the girls off to school in the morning.  They never do this to him because they know it won't get them anywhere.

After today they only have one more day of school.  I am very happy to have a break from it!

Monday, June 8, 2015

monsters.

Saturday I found a lot of pee soaked articles in my child's bedroom.  You can check out the post below to see how I felt that day.

Sunday we had a great day.  The kids all did great at church, and my child who had been hiding pee all over their room was being oh so sweet in hopes mom would act like the pee had never happened.

Around 7 pm Sunday night I decided to ask the child if they wanted to talk about what happened.  I had very good intentions of clearing the air and was hoping we would be able to move forward while becoming closer.

What lofty goals I make for us.

In speaking with said child I was told that they are scared of monsters in the closet at night so they pee in the bed instead of going to the bathroom.  Ok, I can deal with that.  The child was crying so of course I believed the story of waist high grimmlins that were being imagined.

I decided to go up to the bedroom and show the 'scared' chd that there was no secret door that was letting them in AND was even going to block of an area of said closet that was the focus of these fears.

As I went into the depths of the closet, underneath a blanket in a far back corner, I found more hidden pull ups.  The pee filled  pull ups were from a LONG time ago.  Ok, we have one lived here six months, but they were from about five months ago.

Common sense is not something my child possesses yet.  A huge lie of a story blaming another child for these actions was spun for me, and I was not giving into any of it.  This went on for two hours.  For two hours I was lied to no matter how much I begged them to let the truth out.  It was so sad.  I could tell that the child was convinced that if the same lie was said enough times I would believe it.  I did my best to not threaten discipline, but not matter what reassurance I gave the the true would 'set them free' the lies continued, centered around trying to throw a sibling under the bus for actions they did not commit.

After two hour the truth came out in a very detailed way.

All trust that had been built over the past five months was already destroyed.

We feel like we have been fooled into thinking healing was happening and trust was being built when really the wool was just being pulled over our eyes.

Today is a new day.  I guess we will start all over, again.

Saturday, June 6, 2015

Reality.

There has been more to my blogging silence than just being busy.  Since bringing our sibling group of three home we have been in survival mode.  Every time things start to settle down their bio mom pops out another baby.  Despite the fact that we knew we were at our limit with six children, we said yes to the next two babies that were born.  We have gone from parenting two children at the beginning of 2012 to parenting eight children by the end of 2014.
I have gotten everything I ever wanted out of Foster care.  I have adopted my Foster child, I have adopted a large sibling group, I have adopted a new born baby and will adopt another new born baby very soon.  I feel incredibly blessed...and overwhelmed.
Every single one of my adopted children that are over the age of one have some very difficult behaviors that have consumed our lives.  Thankfully we have not had to deal with any violence or rages, but we have dealt (or are currently dealing with the following)

Lying
Peeling
Destruction of property
Sexual acting out
Inappropriate touching
Learning disabilities
Manipulation
Extreme jealousy
Continuous bad decision making
Extreme defiance
Bad attitudes
Extreme self centered ness
Food issues
Emotional health issues
Attachment issues
RAD like behavior

The list could go on.  On my end I have been dealing with my our behavior and issues.  I have been extremely dissappointed in my own ability to parent my children.  My patience, tolerance, love, and determination are all severely lacking at times.  The kids' list of problems is huge and my own list of mistakes I have made is probably equal in length.

Some days are better than others, but, in all honesty, we are struggling and it is hard to write about it.  If I was to truthfully blog about our days it would be quite ugly at times.  Over all we are moving forward, it is just at a snails pace.  Days like today remind me to be thankful for the good days.  Today was a 'one step forward two steps back' kinda day BUT my reaction to the poor choices of my child were 100% better than they used to be.  I can honestly say that today I got it right, which is something I cannot always say.


If you need me I will be cleaning peed bedding and about four days worth of pee covered clothes that I found hidden in my child's dresser.

Thursday, March 26, 2015

He's here, and has been.

For the life of me I can't believe I left off like that.  I have found that eight is the majical number of children that makes it official:  I can't do anything I want ever.  :)

He got here on dec. 22, just like his older sister.  I didn't plan that.  God did.

We have had him for 3 months and we will be finishing the adoption around the six month mark.

Him bios didn't fight for him.  They said they would get lawyers and did not.  They walked out of the termination trial.  They weren't interested in working a case plan.  They didn't appeal the termination.


It makes me happy for us and sad for them.


I can't tell you how much I hope they don't have any more children.  We are maxed out.  They won't let us take anymore even if we want to.  I want the kids together.