Saturday, December 31, 2011


- my leg is totally messed up. I had the hardware removed October. The pain did not go away. I did not get any more motion in the joint like I was supposed to. I kept telling the doctor I was still in constant pain. He kept telling me I was not. I begged for physical therapy, he said it was unnecessary. He released me saying I was 100% fixed. Workers Comp tried to release me. I through a HISSY saying I was not better and things were not right. After hollering, crying and threatening with a lawyer, I got a second opinion. Lo' and behold there was a peice of bone that was left in the joint. The doctor missed it. It is now imbedded in my tendon. I am in constant pain. I now have to see another surgeon to talk about having it removed. I knew I was right.

- my daughter had another manic episode last night. She has been awake since Thursday morning at 5am. She slept for a bit this evening, but is back awake at 8:30pm. She is exhausted so I hope she sleeps tonight. We only do this about every 6-8 weeks. The last time she stayed up all night was October 7. I suppose it could be worse.

- My FAS child is not doing well. School provides him with much needed routine and being off is a recipe for disaster. I cannot wait for school to start back up in 5 days! On the other hand, he has finally discovered what happens if you "rub" your penis long enough in one sitting. Freaked him the heck out! He came screaming downstairs saying it had "popped like a zit!" LOL

- The hubs has been quite sick. Nothing horrific, just cold and cough with sore throat. Just enough to make him miserable.

- Christmas went well. Everyone was happy. we trimmed down the presents this year and gave some necessities like new comforters and treats along with the "real" presents. I liked it and so did the kids.

Tuesday, November 29, 2011


I am a microwave. I don't like things that drag out. I like things to be dealt with, settled, wrapped up and moving on in the shortest amount of time possible. The hubs? He is a crock pot. He has to think about it, let it simmer, sit on the back burner and mold before he has to do something about it. This difference coupled with the fact that I am also a "Fixer" is typically a source of contention in our marriage.

We have good jags where we are getting along famously and we both understand this about one another. This is one of those times. That could change in an hour, a day, a week or a month, who knows? If I am honest those good times are usually when he acquiesces, comes up wit ha quick viable plan and lets me facilitate it. Either that or just lets me make the decision and go with the flow.

I am blessed.

Tuesday, November 22, 2011


This will likely be all over the place because I am feeling particularly jumbled and irritable today. (I am not certain I have taken my pills in the last few days, I have been incredibly tired and have practically fallen asleep walking up the stairs to bed)

I had a friend say something to me last night and it has been on my mind today. In a nutshell, she said that her husband was "supporting" our long-distance friendship and even encouraging the long many-hours-travel visits because he knew now that we were not a "friendship-fling" and we were going to last. He also understood that we were good for one another.

I wrote before about my daughter struggling with G and I being close friends because see rarely sees me with anyone other than my mother. I started thinking about why that is. . .

I grew up in a large church. I had a good friend who was 2 years younger than me, but was much more popular, prettier and far more vivacious than I was. She was always the life of the party, willing to try anything and always needed to be the center of attention. That worked for me because if she was the center of attention, it left little chance of me being noticed. We had all the same friends and most of them were male. We all got along famously and they all lusted after her. I was merely a friend. I got to sink into my own little world and not be noticed quite so often. It worked.

What didn't work is the way she treated me. I was her stepping stone. I was the one she used as a cover. When we grew up and she went to college, she found way cooler friends than me. She dropped me like a hot biscuit, except when she needed something from me. When they betrayed her, like they always did, I was the one she would cry to. She never really realized that they turned on her due to her own choices. Girls usually don't like you sleeping with their boyfriends . . . multiple times . . . with multiple friends. Huh? Who would've thought? Her idea of attention and friendship was sex, with anyone and everyone. In her mind. she had no worth outside of her appeal. Who was it that was always there ready to pick her up? Me.

When we moved into an apartment together, I was the one who took care of everything. I cooked, cleaned and did her laundry. I was the one who paid the bills. I would have to nag and nag for her to write me a check for her portion. She would take my clothes and my shoes and mistreat them. I put up with it for a very long time. She was tied to my group of friends. She was my sense of meaning and importance. She needed me and I fed on that.

It wasn't until she went to grad school and her younger sister moved in with me that I realized that she had been telling her family all along that I was the person that she was. It turns out all these years, her family thinks that I am the one sleeping around, experimenting with drugs, and being all around wild. She would tell these stories at Sunday lunch and put me in as the main character instead of herself. Her father was an elder in our church. They had never really liked me and I now knew why. I was devastated. She had betrayed me. I never confronted her. I just simply stopped talking to her. The girl I thought was my best friend for 10 years was no longer a part of my life.

I never really got over that.

I have not really had friends since he eldest adopted son came into the picture. I have always told myself and others that that happens when you parent a special needs child. We cannot find babysitters so how do you go out with friends? Now,I can see that is was a convenient excuse. It was a way for me to guard myself against ever being hurt like that again. I have opened myself up to those on the internet, in my "circle", but that is not the same. They are far away, and they will not be a part of my everyday life. Until now.

G may be 2 states away, but I feel like she is with me everyday. She is kind, caring and compassionate. She cares about what is going on in my life. She reprimands my kids without even thinking about it! (Which I love!) I know beyond a shadow of a doubt that she is there for me at any moment of the day or night. The internet and cell phones are a mighty thing! Last week her husband went through a procedure that could've went south really fast and I was prepared to drive 2 states to be there with them in a moments notice.

It is nice to be able to give that to someone else again. It is nice to know that someone has "your back" (even though I hate that saying!) It is just know to know that someone "gets" you. I love her and her family with my whole heart and I am so thankful that she has opened up that part of me again . . .

Sunday, November 13, 2011

Ugh . . .

I had a wonderful treat this weekend. My dear friend G came this weekend to spend some time in my neck of the woods. I was blessed to be able to spend a couple days with her and it was awesome. I have been struggling this week with some issues and she came at just the right time to help sooth my soul.

We spent one day with my daughter in tow. I noticed that she was extra clingy and a bit difficult. It did not hit me until this morning as my friend and I were sitting on the love seat looking at photos with my daughter crammed in between us that she was jealous! I called her out on it. We talked it through. It was a good learning opportunity. I told her that I realized that she and I were almost always together and mommy rarely hung out with anyone else I that I think she felt a little jealous. She agreed and we had a little talk. It was good. She is having a bit of a difficult time in general lately and I think she definitely feeds off my anxiety. I need to be aware of that and calm myself accordingly around her.

The biggest thing I struggled with this weekend is my OCD. I was okay on Friday evening and I ran around cleaning for my friend, but my life has been crazy these past few months. Things remain undone and the yard work has fallen aside with my broken leg. By Saturday afternoon I was nearly hyperventilating with the way my house looked. It is hard for me not to feel shame and stress with a messy house when others are over. I tried hard to get past it, but I am still a bit hyped up from it even after she has left. Lately I just feel like there is not enough hours in the day!

The other thing I struggle with that is also related to my OCD is the behavior of my children. I struggle with them talking back and being generally disrespectful with other people around. I always feel as though it is a direct indication of poor parenting. It embarrasses me and I am ashamed that they act the way they do. The kicker is that they act worse when others are around because they think they can get away with it, so it makes it even worse. Ugh! I know that she is not judging me for it, but it is a BIG stresser for me when I am around other people.

I wonder if I choose to not open myself up to people because of all these superfluous feelings that come from the OCD? I wonder being alone is self-imposed exile of sorts so I can avoid those feelings? Perhaps.

What I do know is that this mama, my friend G, is worth it. She is genuine, kind, patient, loving and giving. She is one of the best people I have ever met. I need to stop, breath, and keep telling myself that all these thoughts are irrational and get past them. That is the broken part . . .

Thursday, October 13, 2011


Anonymous said...

I am really sorry that you chose to have this child that will be afflicted with a life long illness. I am sorry that she will battle for well-being every day that she lives. I am sorry for the tax payers, as she will become their burden to bear. All because you decided that it was best for you to breed.

Chances are that your daughter will also breed.

And the cycle will continue.


I don't mind comments and will likely answer just about anything that is posed to me. This one blew me away.

I don't believe that I have ever thought that my daughter would be anything less than an adult who is a positive member of society, supports herself and pays taxes much like I do. My mental illness is not something that most people I know would have any idea about. To the vast majority of people, I am a typical functioning member of society.

Those who are aware of my daughter's diagnosis are shocked when they find out about it. They would have very little cues that she is "suffering" from an illness that will likely affect her for the rest of her life. It is one that is very much a hidden disability. It is one that while she will "suffer" for it's affects, I fully expect her to live a completely normal life. It is one she can overcome and will prosper. She will be given every tool to manage her illness and her issues. She will be allowed to talk openly about her illness if she chooses, or keep it private. She will not be a burden to anyone, and the taxpayers will have no part in paying her way.

I am proud that she is my daughter. As she grows we will talk about how she likely inherited this disorder from me just as I likely did from my mother. I will express to her that I sometimes bear the guilt of that. I will be honest with her. We will talk about the fact that her diagnosis is not a prison sentence. She can do anything she chooses. She can go to college and have a rewarding career and wonderful family just as I do. I support her choice to also have a family if she chooses just as I did. I will not shame her for choosing to have a family and will give her the support she needs to raise her children in a loving, functional and open home.

The cycle may or may not continue. That is not a choice of yours.

The SPEAK campaign that encourages others to speak out and share their issues with mental illness is born due to the attitudes and opinions of people such as this anonymous commenter. People have to be told over and over and over that it is okay to speak out that they are dealing with a mental illness because there will always be those who do not understand. There will always be those that look at us as though we are defective. There will always be those that act as though we should be ashamed and hide our issues. This not the case.

I am not ashamed.

I am not faulty.

I am not a burden.

I am who I am, just as you are who you are.

That is how I want my daughter to view herself. I will fight like hell to make she she never feels like the anonymous commenter and others like him/her view her. She is perfect. Fucking perfect to me.

Saturday, October 8, 2011


So I am pretty sure my daughter is in a manic phase right now. She has been kina sorta diagnosed with a mood disorder and the BiPolar diagnosis has been discussed but not technically assigned. This is the third time that she has been in a phase like this and I am pretty sure she is cycling.

On Thursday I noticed she was agitated. I thought it was the drama of the weekend and her routine getting messed up. With her OCD the routine is critical. The same-ness of her environment is super important to her. On Friday, school was pretty rough. Her teacher called me to tell me that she was "bonkers" and was quite spastic. She was not raging, just wild. Her teacher said she also noticed her handwriting was large and very bold also. Last night she was well behaved, but loud and hyper. She did not sleep at all last night. She came into my room every half hour or so to say hello or tell me that she stubbed her toe. She stayed in her room watching television and did not make a huge mess so I was grateful. It is the middle of the afternoon and she is still going strong like she slept well.

The last time this happened was about 6 weeks ago. She acted the same. Not sleeping, full of energy and happy. Today I took photos af a friend;s child. She always goes with us and she was super helpful and kind to the child. She adores her and dotes on her. I suppose it could be worse, she could be crazy.

I have been mourning the BiPolar diagnosis since it was mentioned. I suppose it doesn't matter what initials are slapped on her chart, she is still my daughter and I adore her. It is much easier when she is pleasant and for that I am grateful.

Friday, October 7, 2011


What is it about being the parent's of special needs kiddos? I think we have so many different challenges that people who are not in our shoes could not possibly understand. I know so many families have talked about the divorce rate with families such as ours, but I was thinking about it differently the other night when I could not sleep.

My hubby and I are pretty stinking close. We rarely go and do things without our kids (although we probably should more often) because the logistics of finding others to take care of the kids and all their various issues is far too great a task. We also enjoy one another and our kids! I think in our case, we have bounded over the special needs in our household. We have spent so much time relying solely on each other for support and "real life" encouragement that it is difficult to see someone else playing that role in one of our lives.

For so long, we have felt so alone and like no one understands what our life is like that we have battened down the hatches and circled the wagons. We have relied on each other to make one another laugh, held each other (me) while we cried, and stopped one another from going off the deep end. We are the only ones who truly sees what our home is like and what our kids deal with every day. The drama of having a traumatized kid in the house is great. In our home is one of the only places he feels comfortable enough to let loose. We are almost always his target. We are the only ones who could understand that.

Enter in another family who understands, not because they have seen it in our home, but in their own. This family has an inkling of knowing what we deal with. Even if their struggles are different they have been where we have been, they have walked a similar road. They understand the heartache, the drama, and the exhaustion.

But the problem is that we have relied on one another for so long, it is difficult to let someone else carry a part, even if it is a small part, of that burden. I have noticed that my hubby is more leery of allowing someone else to be that go-to person for my drama. He is feeling as though I no longer need that portion of him and that makes him feel a bit slighted. I had no idea he felt that way. I had thought that he would enjoy me being able to load that onto someone else. I thought the "respite" would be a welcome thing. After taking it over he understands and sees it differently now. He is understanding that seeking perspective from someone else does not mean that I don't need him, it is simply releasing some of that burden off him.

I am very blessed that he shares things with me instead of keeping it all bottled up. We are very different when it comes to how we perceive things and lately we have come to a good understanding of how one another thinks so very differently and have begun asking questions instead of making assumptions. That is a good thing! Our marriage is by far perfect. We will always have misunderstandings and confusion, but as long as we are willing to discuss them we will make it through . . special needs be damned!

Sunday, October 2, 2011


Apparently when it rains in my life it POURS. This weekend I went up north to visit my fabulous Soul Sister and spend some time with her wonderful family. A bit over half way there, my child with FAS (16yo) began puking uncontrollably. I got him some nausea medication and it stopped until morning. Morning began a bit and more meds kept it at bay. By early afternoon he was bent over in pain (this is a child with next to no pain receptors) and puking up everything consumed and then some. I consulted with the ped at home and took him into a satellite emergency room.

A few tests later and about 2000 cc more vomit and we were on our way in an ambulance to the main hospital with a severe bowel obstruction. Suck. The husband stayed with him as we got things organized at her house with the other children (her husband was a saint and had 5 kids at the house all day!) and then headed back up in the evening. They say things will move along on their own with hydration and meds, or he will have to have surgery to clear blockage and likely to remove part of his bowel. Oi!

I returned hom with the little kids so they can go to school tomorrow (6 hours one way!). I will return to the Great North (6 hours one way! Did I say that?) and retrieve son and hubby or sit at hospital til he is well. What a week this one will be! The only solace is that I was with my darling friend when this happened. She is a gem! I love her to bits. I had lost my ever loving mind this weekend, misplacing things, stressed beyond max and barely breathing. She took over, packed me up, sent me things, bought us lunch, took care of all of us (and convinced me to buy some awesome shoes!) . I could not fathom my life without her in it. I am more than grateful that she is a part of me forever. (She couldn't get rid of me now if she tried!)

It was interesting to me that even though I was stressed and forgetful, I was not crying or falling apart. If this had happened anywhere else I could never had held it together as I did. She is my rock. As soon as I got on the road to go home, the sense of dread rolled over me and I began to rumenate about all the many things I had to accomplish over the next 24 hours. I started to hyperventilate in the car and had it not been for my two little angels in the back (har-har, my daughter raged for 20 minutes at one point) I may just have thought seriously about that urge to drive into the path of that semi barreling down the road at 70 miles an hour. The thought of seeing her again held me to the ground. It mattered. She mattered. I knew I could do this.

The fun doesn't stop here! Oh no! There were 3 more fun times! 1. My daughter raged for 20 minutes on the tollway at one point. My son and I ignored the best we could, I knew sahe was stressed about leaving daddy. Her counting and perseverating had worsened since this happened yesterday. At one point my son said, "Do you want to live to see your ninth birthday? Then shut up!" And you know what? She did. 2. My van started displaying the oil light. I pulled into a gas station and there was NO OIL at all on the dip stick! Ack! Thankfully I was out of the Big City and close to a gas station and 3. I started a fabulously awful yeast infection from the antibiotics from the pneumonia ON THE WAY home during this 6 hours trip!

Sometimes you just have to laugh! All the other options are just too bleak right now!

Monday, September 26, 2011


I am healing. My leg is doing much better, although my movement is slow and motions are hampered due to the plate in my ankle. It does not allow me to flex my foot and I have a hard time walking. I look like Igor.

My little kids are definitely taking advantage of my immobility. They know I cannot get up quickly to deal with disputes so they can whack each other. That and a med change for the ADD one and we have a recipe for disaster. The Daytrana patch is doing well, but we are still tweaking dosages. 10mg is not enough and 20 mg trigger more bug fears, aggitation and frustration. Here's hoping that 15mg works well on both fronts. We shall see this week.

The Big Kid with FAS is being a pain in my ass. Apparently he is learning some choice teenager beahviors from someone at school with an attitude. He has never used certain phrases before and ways of saying things with nastiness is new too. He favorite way? Drawing out the end of the word. For instance : "I said I put it on the ta --ble - - uh!" Add an eye roll and a head jerk and you have my life right now. When he doesn't get what he wants, he goes from acting like a teenager to crying, whining and stomping his feet on the floor in a heartbeat. Lord have mercy, he is nutty.

He is still having to be kept completely separate from the kids and the animals because of some horrid behavior choices. He is likely to really hurt someone if he is left alone with them. School does not seem to understand this and I put my foot down last week. I was feeling just shitty enough to holler at the Teacher of Record by saying cryptically, "I am warning you one last time, if you allow him to be left alone with another child and he does irrepairable mental or physical damage, YOU will be held responsible! And if you allow him to be left alone with staff prepare yourself for accusations! I will not be held responsible for what will happen. How soon can this be put in the IEP?" It was put in there the following morning.

I had a massive anxiety attack last week. I am not sure why, I thought I was doing pretty good emotionally, but apparently my body thought differently. It was the first time my husband had seen one and it freaked him out. I thought I was going to die. It had been so long since I had one like this (like 20 years) that I wasn't sure what was happening for at least 10 minutes, so my stress in what was happening made it worse. It lasted for about 30 minutes until I fell asleep. When I get one of this magnitude, I feel like I cannot breath. I have to sit ear an open window or I feel like I am suffocating. I feel super "bloated" like my insides are strangling me. My arms fall asleep and my legs twitch. It is the most odd sensation. The panic makes it worse and if I can psych myself out of it I can make it dissipate. That is the hook eh? Trying to calm myself when my entire body is freaking out.

Thankfully I am not down in the dumps, just irritated and on edge. I self medicated by taking two Zoloft last night. Hopefully some calm will come over me today.

Tuesday, September 13, 2011


My husband has been sick for some time. Initially we thought it was food poisoning and when it didn't get much better consistently for about 6 weeks he went to the doctor. The initial tests looked like hepatitis. Thankfully more testing revealed what was likely a wicked viral infection. It also revealed that his testosterone was very low.

My husband had a pituitary tumor removed in 2001. When they removed the large walnut sized tumors, they had to remove a portion of the gland itself. This has caused issues with his body not making enough hormone. He used to have to do shots and then some cream. He hated the cream and he stopped using it. The last time they checked his levels he was fine. This time they were VERY low.

Low testosterone can cause irritability, fatigue, depression and anger amoung other things. He has had two injections so far and even the kids can tell a difference in his behavior and attitude. It is amazing! I hope that the tend continues and he begins to feel more like himself. Once this infection gets under control he should feel like a new man!

Wednesday, September 7, 2011


I am in a bit of a better space today. Things are still crappy, but I am less emotional. Today I am mad though. I feel like I can do nothing right. My mother, who is my boss, is being a pain in the ass. We are short staffed right now and instead of dealing with the one who's job it is to staff the place, she is pissy at me. She is throwing stuff at me to do left and right and then gets upset when my work isn't getting done in a timely manner because I am doing everyone else's crap.

My mom and I are tight, but like I said before she is a trigger. She also has OCD and anxiety, but rarely admits it and prefers to live without medication.

She needs medication.

When she is unhappy she takes it out on me and my step-father. Stressful situations are ugly. Right now they are having their house painted. I know that would really mess with my OCD with everything torn up, and she is UGLY. It is there times that make her very dificult to be around.

I am not sure if you would consider it passive agressive or not, but that's what I think it is. Today for instance she was complaining to a coworker right in front of me that she HAD to come pick me up at 7:30 this morning. Last night she called me two times OFFERING to pick me up. I said no once and she called back saying it wasn't a bother. The other day I dropped a tool on my ankle at her house and it looked like it was close to needing stitches. When my husband went inside to ask her if she had any steri-strips, she came outside and called me stupid for droppingthe tool, saying I was "dangerous" and hollered at me for not being more careful in front of my three kids, my brother and my 4 nieces and nephews. (I am KLUTZY, I have always been KLUTZY, she always says I am "dangerous") Does she think I did it on purpose? Does she think I wanted to slash my ankle open?

Another thing she does that really sets me off is when we are at work and I am not feeling well. will say something like, "Man, my head hurts today." and she will say, "Quit whining." or "Suck it up" always in front of coworkers. If anyone else says the same thing she tells them they should go home and take care of themselves. I am not wanting to go home, I am just tired of being made to feel like an ass. She will offer to stay and work someone else's shift or even offers ME to stay. Swear to goodness.

In her eyes I am totally inadequate.


I have blogged a couple times about my 16 year old FAS and RAD child's paraprofessional. She is not appropriate most of the time. I have dealt with her for 4 years now because changing her will cause more issues for him than I care to deal with. This will likely be her last year with him so I am gritting my teeth and dealing. Each time I have an issue it is dealt with and I think it will get better, until the next issue of course . . .

Here is a bit of our issues with her in the past : she has called him "son", she has told him he could come live with her if we are mean, she has encouraged him to get a drivers license (his IQ is under 50), she has convinced him he can go to college to become a veterinarian, she allowed military recruiters to speak to him at school. He is in an Moderately Mentally Handicapped program. One of the teachers last year had her number and was irritated with her. Unfortunately that teacher is not here this year :(

Last night he came home with a love note from a classmate. When I asked him about the girl he said, "Mrs. M said I needed a girlfriend so she got me one." After talking to him I asked him how he read the note, he said Mrs. M read it to him and helped him write one to her. He also said that she kissed him in lunch and Mrs. M let him hold her hand in the hall. He said that she thought it was cute.

This is a child with attachment issues. This is a child who acts out sexually in our home. This is a child who is NOT READY for this type of behavior and I will not condone it! I wrote an email to his Teacher of Record and I got a response that said he "investigated" and doesn't think Mrs. M had any idea. That is a load of crap! I sent an email back that was not super kind saying she had an idea and it needs to be stopped.

Last night he was obsessed with his penis, gee I wonder why? I am not putting up with this junk from the school. I am telling you I will have her job if this continues. This mama is pissed.

Tuesday, September 6, 2011

the perfect storm

How can one go from having a great time to feeling like a failure in one day? Today I have had the perfect storm . . .

My child was horrid last night. He was up about 40 times from about 3:00am to the time we gets up at 7:45 am. No lie. We have an alarm system on his door so every time he came out ofhis room the alarm blew right in my ear. First it was that he needed a drink. Then he had to go to the bathroom every 10 minutes (which is his new lie of choice to not follow directions). Then he was hungry, then it was time for his bus (it was still dark out). I think he just wanted to reak havoc on the house. I got next to no sleep from 3:00 am on.

My husband is sick. He has some sort of viral infection that he cannot shake. He has been doing a bit better, but last night was rough! He was vomiting and moaning most of the early morning. I am certain the stress of my child constantly coming out of his room was adding to it. I am fairly certain that my daughter and I have the same virus, but it has hit him harder than us. I have not had ONE day in 4 weeks where I was not doubled over with stomach pain for a portion of my day. It sucks. Eating is not fun, and I love to eat!

I am just plain tired of hobbling around on my hurt leg. It is heavy and painful and I am just done.

My mom is in a MOOD today. She is grouchy because we are short staffed at work and everything seems to be my fault today. When she is like this it is a MAJOR trigger for me. She was unhappy with the way we dealt with some of my son's behaviors yesterday at a cookout and now I am on her shit list. She is being very short with me and that triggers me big time. I am a pleaser and I don't like making people mad (unless they deserve it LOL). I hate myself when she is mad at me. I feel useless and unimportant. I know I give her too much power, but we have always had a tenuous relationships until several years ago. Each time she does this it reminds me of how it was like before.

My van is broken and I have no idea what is wrong. I stress abuot money and this is going to be a major inconvenience. Holy crap, I cannot even think about it.

So I am on the verge of tears today. My stomach hurts and I want to crawl in a hole and die. I have not felt like this in some time. I had been doing so well. I am certain it will pass, but the uncertainty and the stress is making me crazy. I want to take some time and nap tonight. I rarely do that, but I feel like I really need it before I crack. The problem is with him being sick and a busy weekend that passed my house is a wreck and I have so much laundry to do.

Whine, whine, whine.

Monday, September 5, 2011


My kindred spirit came to my town this weekend. (we met a couple weeks ago in Chicago) She traveled here with her kids and we had a fabulous weekend doing not much of anything. Last night, I stayed at her hotel for a bit while my husband took the kids home to get ready for bed. He told me I could stay and chat for awhile, but when I got home I knew he was upset. He really wasn't much upset that I got to spend time with her, but that I did not spend time with him.

He said something that was quite touching. When I told him that I had very few friends who I connected with and said, "She is the first person who truly gets me", I hurt his feelings. He said, "I get you." And he does. I have shared my struggles with suicidal thoughts and depression with him. He understands living this life because he lives it with me. But it is not his battle.

I know he gets me, but she understands me because she has the same feelings, the same issues and many of the same demons to battle. It is different. Although we have lived separate lives, unknown to one another for many years, we have taken very similar paths. I adore her as though I have known her for years, not merely months.

I love my husband with my whole heart. He is my rock. He and the kids are the reason I keep fighting. . . but sometimes it is good to have a kindred spirit.

Tuesday, August 23, 2011

the blogess

I read this today on this post from the Bloggess and I LOVED it.

Life passes. Then comes the depression. The feeling that you’ll never be right again. The fear that these outbreaks will become more familiar, or worse, never go away. You’re so tired from fighting that you start to listen to all the little lies your brain tells you. The ones that say that you’re a drain on your family. The ones that say that it’s all in your head. The ones that say that if you were stronger or better this wouldn’t be happening to you. The ones that say that there’s a reason why your body is trying to kill you, and that you should just stop all the injections and steroids and drugs and therapies.

Today, as Victor drove me home so I could rest, I told him that sometimes I felt like his life would be easier without me. He paused and said, “It might be easier, but it wouldn’t be better.”

These days are the darkest. But I know they will pass. I know that tomorrow things will seem a little brighter. I know that next week I’ll look back on this post and think, “I should stop listening to my brain when it’s trying to kill me. Why did I even write that post?” And that’s precisely why I’m writing this. Because it’s so easy to forget that I’ve been here before and come out the other side, and perhaps if I have this to read I’ll remember it again next time and it will help me to keep on breathing until the medications take hold and I’m out of the hole again.

Because quitting might be easier, but it wouldn’t be better.

self image

It is odd to me that as much as I struggle with self esteem at times, I have a decent time dealing with what I look like on the outside. There are plenty of things I don't like about myself, I hate my smile, my teeth are awful and my weight is double what I was when I got married. But I never really stress about those things. I have no idea why.

While I am quite large, I am pretty darn active. With the exception of soda, I think I eat fairly well and I eat decent portions. My blood pressure is always perfect and my cholesterol is normal. I don't particularly like the image I see in the mirror, but I look at it as who I am. There isn't much changing it. I like my food dang it. I have never had too much will power to begin with. Now, I am not saying I would not love to lose some weight, but truly it is not that pressing to me.

I think it boils down to this: I am who I am and if you don't like it tough, you don't have to participate in my life.

I know it is not that simple for some people. I understand. I don't fault them for that. We all have our own demons to deal with, but truly it breaks my heart when someone hates who they are because of how they look. There are far too many good people in this world who look at you for who you are and love you anyway, unfortunately the jerks are the ones who cause the pain. I've been on the receiving line of that pain and it sucks. I try my best to shrug it off and say screw 'em.

I typically hate seeing pictures of me. A few years back I realized, this is the face people see everyday, who cares if it is captured by a camera or not. I don't stress about it anymore, but I usually don't like seeing them. There are a handful of pictures of myself I like. I ADORE my wedding photos. I was shocked at how well they turned out and how beautiful I looked. It was the first time I ever saw myself as beautiful. I have always thought they turned out so well because I was so very happy that is showed! There a couple with each children as babies that I love and some from a family photo shoot last fall. These are my babies and in these pictures I am happy and proud of my family and it shows. The last few pictures I love are ones I have from this weekend. I was sweaty and hot, but you can see the pure happiness on my face from being with a kindred spirit. I think I look wonderful. These pictures are all so special to me because they don't just show the "outside" me, but the inside, the important part, is obviously shining through and at these times the inside was happy and it showed. I think I need to let her out more often!

I know someone right now who is really struggling. They are amazing, wonderful and kindhearted. I wish they could see past what they hate about their exterior and see what I see. I see a gorgeous woman with so much kindness and love. I see a beautiful, nurturing mother who loves her children beyond measure. I see a sweet soul who cares about those she loves more than she does herself. I don't see a size, I see a friend. I don't see someone who is broken, I see someone who needs to feel loved. I see someone who needs to see what I see in her.

I know she loves this song and today I changed her ringtone on my phone to this song. It could not be more perfect for the way I feel. (I had never seen this video before today even though I had heard the some numerous times. It made me cry)

Monday, August 22, 2011

blessed beyond measure

This weekend I spent time with another trauma momma family in Chicago. It was stinking amazing to sit in the presence of a family who gets us. One who see’s who we really are and still loves us. Priceless.

When I started blogging I had no idea that I would hook up with other women who were dealing with Fetal Alcohol Syndrome, Reactive Attachment Disorder or all the various diagnosis in our path. I had no clue I would not only find my community, but life long friends. I had no idea I would travel 3 hours to hug the neck of a Soul Sister.

This momma and I share so many things. I cannot imagine living the rest of my life without her in it. I am so glad I don’t have to any longer.

Wednesday, August 17, 2011


As bad as it sounds, my husband and I have noticed that our son's behavior and his actions remind of us of a dog's behavior. Here is why:

When he gets something in his head, there is no changing his mind. It is like a terrier who wants to dig!

He stares at others while they eat, hoping they will offer him some.

He has that flight or fight response when he feels backed into a corner.

If something moves outside he is instantly looking out the window and telling us about it.

If there is a storm moving in, he panics and refuses to step away from the window.

Runs to the door when someone knocks or rings the bell. Hollering "Someone's here!" the whole way.

And of course, he "barks" for no apparent reason except for hearing himself roar a lot of the time.

As much as I find this humorous, I am being somewhat serious. I don't know if it is his early trauma combined with his inability to understand social cues, but something about him makes him seem like a feral dog sometimes. Oddly enough we have found that he responds better if he channel our inner "DogWhisperer" and approach him in a calm assertive manner and show him that we are the pack leader. It works far better than entering into a power struggle.

Monday, July 25, 2011

questions/answers 2

I am really interested in answering these questions from my new friend, anonymous. They are well thought out and have me really thinking. I have had a recent leg injury so I have been laid up. Please pardon the short breaks between posts.

For this post, I would like to focus on my own mental illness. The following excerpts came from 2 different comments:

Okay, so I started reading back a bit, and it looks like your daughter did inherit your mental illness, and your mom also seems to have a mental illness. I noticed that you feel that your daughter will be better off than you were because of the availibity and information etc (plus your own experiences). How do you feel knowing that she will battle this life long illness? Do you encourage her to have children of her own- knowing that in all likelyhood they will face the same challanges?

What I am stuggling with is that your mental illness would be (in my opinion) a bad environment to raise a very well adapted child in, let alone a child with any difficulties! So what was the motivation behind the adoption? Was it so you could feel loved, and have a family? Children are really sensitive and perceptive - they would be very aware of your mental state... And your mental illness makes it so much harder to parent in general... So why adopt?

I have had suicidal ideations for years. I have only shared that with a handful of people. My mother does not even know how very far they go. When I do think about it it is usually when I am really struggling with stress or with feelings of failure. My Obsessive Compulsive Disorder causes me to want things to be perfectly solved in a timely manner. If things go wrong, I stress and fret and worry. They worry causes me to feel badly about myself and focus on my failure to make things go the right way. This is when I get frustrated and angry with myself. If it goes far enough or I am in a deep enough hole of depression, this is when I wish that truck driving down the road would hit me. Or I would like fora freak accident to happen that would simply take the pain away. I have never considered doing something that would actively cause my death. I am not sure if that makes sense, but to me, it does. I am not trying to make it sound better than it is, I am just trying to explain.

As I think about it, my suicidal tendancies tend to be more of the self loathing variety and less of the "world sucks" variety. I tend to want to die to be done with feeling like a failure. I hate myself sometimes and I would prefer it would just be over. I don't look at it as though it is hindering my life, just something that I have to keep on top of so that it does not take over.

My OCD is certainly something I can live with. I have been treated for my OCD for 10 years now. Most people would have no idea that I struggle with OCD. Once again, it is something that I have to deal with an understand, but not something that is so terrible.

While I have tried to be quite outspoken about my feelings here to make other's aware that there should be no shame in mental illness, I live a pretty darned normal life. Most people in my life have no idea I struggle with suicidal thought. My husband was the first person that I really spoke the feelings to. We sought counseling and that is when we found out I was OCD. So many things fell into place at that time! Since that time I shared these feelings with 3 people whom I am close to in real life and a couple of people from the blogging world. That is all. The last person I shared them with was quite shocked and said she would've never guessed. I have known her for 10+ years and consider her a close friend. Most people know I am OCD because I share it openly. My OCD tendencies that linger tend to be beneficial. I am the one people go-to for organizational help etc. I am not the crazy cat hoarder who lives down the street! :)

I do feel pretty terrible being responsible for my daughter having OCD. Her OCD does take on a different form than mine does. She does tend to have more of the compulsions than I do. She has tics that lately are under control, but she has struggled with in the recent past. I think her OCD may be a bit more intense than mine is. While I have found that I feel quite responsible for bringing her into this world and giving her a portion of my mental illness, I don't regret having children. I knew that possibility could exist. I also know that I am better equipped to deal with my own OCD than I was even 5 years ago. Knowing that she has OCD, knowing our treatment options and addressing them head-on seems to have given us the upper hand. Even though she is still quite young, I have tried to teach her to be empowered by her illness (or more likely power over her illness) and not to be afraid of telling others her brain works differently than theirs does. We talk about not being made from the same cookie cutter. We equate it to the oldest's difficulties and talk about knowing a little more about what he feels like. While it may not be a blessing to have OCD, we can look at it in a more positive light if we try.

I have told my husband an several occasions that having the oldest definitely changed my position on having children on psychotropic meds. We have laughed that perhaps that was his purpose for him coming into our lives. Had he not been here, I would have had a hard time embracing meds for both of the bio kids. I totally believe that their medications have allowed them to live their lives to the fullest and I am not sure I would've felt that way before adopting the oldest.

(I am recovering from an accident and am laid up for 6 weeks! I hope this makes sense as I am on a bit of medication. . . I reserve the right to edit later if I don't feel I was clear on different ideas)

Friday, July 22, 2011


The last post brought a series of questions from an anonymous poster. They were some great questions. I did not take offense at anything that was asked as it was asked in a respectful manner. I think is poster just simply wanted to understand. I will attempt to answer them here as opposed to in the comments section since I think they will offer some clarity to my issues and our adoption.

Our adoption journey did not start out as one. My husband and I simply wanted to provide a child with a home who needed one at the moment. We became foster parents to provide a home to children who still had parents. We were well aware that they could go home to their parents and welcome reunification if that home was their best option. We did not let our foster kids call us mom and dad because I thought that was disrespectful to their parents. My oldest came to us while we were fostering. We had no intention of adopting this child. He had a mom who was working her plan. She was however quite mentally ill and moderately handicapped herself. The state did terminate her rights and he became available for adoption. We did not plan on adopting him and he was not even made readily available to us. He was labeled "non adoptable". We were told he was likely to be institutionalized. We committed to being his home until they knew what his "final placement" was.

At this point we had just had our own biological child. With the addition to our family came a newfound understanding of a parent's love. I mourned the lost of the oldest childhood and all the hurt and trauma he had gone through in a new way. I could not fathom how a other could do that/allow that to happen to her own flesh and blood. As a new mother myself, I wondered how that was even possible to live with one's self in that situation. My oldest was definitely loved in my home prior to this, but I loved him in a much deeper way after becoming a mother myself. My husband voiced the very same feelings one evening without ever having heard my feelings on the subject.

It was the next day that we put in an intent to adopt. I never looked at my oldest as a way to further our family, as though we were giving him the gift of a family, or as he was fullfilling a need in my life. I simply loved him with everything in my being and wanted him to be a part of a famil, our family, forever. The alternative turned my stomach.

I still feel that way today. We will keep on loving and supporting him forever. Just becasue I get angry and have some resentment at certain behaviors does not mean that I plan on doing anything different than what we do everyday. We keep on keeping on. We love. We support. And we do what families do.

The remainder of the questions dealt with my own mental illness and why I would choose to bring a child into that be it through adoption or biologically. . . . I will deal with that in another post.

Wednesday, July 20, 2011

anger and resentment

There is a bit of a scuttlebutt in the trauma mama blog-o-sphere lately. Last mom wrote a post about HOPE and letting go of the anger and resentment directed toward our kiddos. I get what she is trying to say, I do. But it irritated me. And I will tell you why.

For YEARS I have had suicidal ideations. I understand that these were there long before we adopted a "broken" and hurt child. But the struggles I have dealt with over the last few years I believe were directly related to the sense of failure of my ability to parent him and more importantly the self loathing that I felt for myself at the feelings I had for him.

Yes, I hate his mother for what she did to him. I hate that she was unable to care for him in utero. I hate the selfishness that allowed her to drink and whatever else while pregnant. I hate the PTSD she has caused him with allowing abusers into her home. I hate the mental illness that runs in their family. All this allowed me to focus my anger on something other than my child. But, when I became honest with myself and allowed myself to be angry at my child for his choices (whether or not they were conscious) I began to hate myself.

Recently a secure place for me to vent and be honest with myself and others opened up. The darling Courtney opened a private group on facebook where we can share and support one another. I have always said that blogging saved my life, I think this group has saved my sanity. Blogging made me understand I am not alone in dealing with the crazies of kiddos like ours, this group made me understand that I am not alone in feeling the feelings of dealing with kiddos like ours.

Sometimes things I read there are depressing and sad. Sometimes they make me laugh. I have said, "OMG I understand!" more than I ever thought I would. Some people would not like the things they read there, heck, I don't like everything I read there. I sometimes cringe at things that are said. But I quickly realize that this is the ONLY outlet some of us have. So many moms have come in thinking they are the only one feeling this way, and low and behold they find out they are not the only one! It is freeing. I have to pace myself, some days I cannot read everything there or I will go crazy. Sometimes I need a break from the crazy or I will focus on nothing else. Sometimes I am struggling so much I need to dwell there a bit. It has been a definite god-send.

As I was reading the post from Last Mom today I realized that I have been doing really well with my anxiety. I have been pretty chilled out with the son's behavior. I am pretty sure that is directly related with the opening of the group. I have had a place to vent AND hear others vent. It has taken the taboo out of saying "I don't want to look at my child" or "Hugging them makes me want to vomit". Do we still hug? Sure. But there, it is okay to admit to yourself and others that you had that feeling. It may sound really ugly and really bad, but you realize that those feelings are not solely in your own head. For me it has allowed me to love myself again.

By admitting my anger and resentment of my child it has allowed me to love myself in spite of the feelings, by knowing I am not in this alone.

By admitting my anger and resentment it has allowed me to release it and love my child despite the feelings, by knowing I am not in this alone.

The past few months has been pretty amazing. I was hooked up with an Orlado Trauma Mama who is more like me than I ever thought possible. Through her messages and her blog she has touched me more than she knows. The women of the facebook group may not know how much I have appreciated their candor and their raw honesty. They may not know they saved me from the self loathing I felt every time I looked in the mirror. For that I am eternally grateful.

Sunday, July 3, 2011

give an inch

Today the oldest slept until 5:00pm. He was up late with his dad watching movies and I took advantage of it an let him sleep. When he got up he was pretty compliant and we had an okay afternoon. I had to do some yardwork and I usually keep him close to me or he plays fighting games and whacks the littles when they get near him.

Today he was playing appropriately and I gave him a little more freedom. I was constantly keeping an eye on him, but I let him play with his sister. They are usually like oil and water, but they were doing well today. She was bossing him around and he was doing what she wanted him to. They played well for almost and hour and a half. I should learn that when I give him an inch of independence, he takes a mile.

When we went inside all hell broke loose. He did not want to do his normal chores. Chores he usually loves. The child loves to help and I was asking for help. He was grunting and hollering at me. He bolted. He ran straight out the door and he was gone by the time I got outside. This time he was at least clothed.

The husband just came home from getting him. It only took 25 minutes or so. Lately he runs to the same spot. This time he got in the car fairly easily. The bad part was he refused to get out of the car when they got home. It's hot. The air conditioner is on. All the windows are shut. The husband was hollering for help and I didn't hear him. Now he's pissed at me because I didn't come. He stood outside hollering like a maniac. When he finally got inside he began screaming at me and cursing at me with the front door open. He accused me of ignoring him. Yeah. Like I just sat and ignored him. Why is it that men cannot fathom that you just didn't hear them, they always assume you are ignoring them. Ugh.

We live in a very lively rental area. Lots of people are outside enjoying the night.

Nice. Now we are the family with underwear boy AND the family who screams at one another and throws hissy fits in the front yard.


Wednesday, June 29, 2011

stroke of brilliance

Tonight I had to take one of my littles to gymnastics. When we got home and rounded the corner I saw the Big Kid in the front yard in his underwear. This is typical. When he runs out of the house, 80% of the time he is in his underwear. As soon as he saw me, he ran inside and straight out into the back yard. When I got out back, he was wielding a stick of bamboo trying to hit at me. I took it away easily. He began hollering that he didn't to live here and he wanted to "get away from you people!"

I said, "Ok, let's go." I held his arm and walked him through the house back out the front door. He was yelling the whole time "Dad, save me. She's kicking me out!" and "I hate you!". I marched him out the door and straight to the car.

He asked where we were going. I said, "You said you wanted to leave so I am giving you a ride." I drove to a fairly nearby, desolate looking industrial area. I stopped the car and turned it off. He asked what I was doing. I said, "Looking for a place for you to stay. This looks pretty good. No fridge, no tv, but there are some cages over there you can sleep in if mean dogs or wild animals find you in the night." He bowed his head and stayed buckled. (I kindof worried he would call my bluff, but I held firm)

He asked if I was kicking him out. I said "No, I love you. You are the one that wants to leave. I thought I would help." We sat in silence for a good 5 minutes. I asked him if he wanted to get out or come home. He simply said, "I can't decide." He kept saying, "Would you miss me?" I answered "Of course, but we are down with you threatening to run away and saying you don't want to live with your family!" We sat for another 2 or 3 minutes. He said he "couldn't figure out what he wanted to do" so I told him we could keep looking. I found another place down the road.

I told him that this drainage tube looked fairly inviting. I said, "I don't think there will be too many raccoons in there. And hey look, there is a tarp over by that building you can use for a blanket." He refused to move. I went around to his side of the car and asked him to get out and look at his new place to live. He refused. I crouched down beside the car and told him that I would prefer he stayed in the house where he was safe, but if this was what he wanted I understood. I told him it was time to make a decision. He said, "I want to go home."

I asked, "Why?" He answered, his bed, his blanket, tv, food and a place to keep him safe. It took me several prompts to get him to say "the people". Sad. All of those things were way more important than his family. That speaks volumes to me.

On the way home we saw some cute girls sitting in the grass. I asked him if he wanted to get out and show the girls his underwear. I am that bad!

Now he is home and I have to endure him telling me he loves me 5920 times tonight. Lord have mercy.

(I told him that we were taking pictures of his two choices so that he could remember what his options were)


When my son came to live with us he had many, many diagnosis. Reactive Attachment Disorder was one that floated in and out depending on the mood of the therapist (who was a joke!). I always knew there were some attachment issues. I have no idea if he would technically be considered RAD right now, but I have no doubt that what I am dealing with is attachment related. Here are his best tricks:

He has no issue hurting others. Sometimes, for the most part, it is simply a case of impulse control and poor understanding of cause and effect. I like to tell myself this. I can see the delight he gets from hurting things on his face sometimes. I am not sure if this is increasing in frequency or I am just better at seeing it. He typically saves the really mean, dangerous stuff for the animals, but I can see slight things aimed at the littles now. He has really no remorse. If he shows concern it is because he got caught, not because he is sad her hurt someone else. He has killed baby chickens and pet fish. We think he caused the death of two cockatiels and he recently tried to kill our dogs and attempts to hurt them (and the cat) DAILY. It is a miracle he has not been bitten.

Love and Hate. I think he does love us. But I think that to him love is fluid. I think he loves and not loves us numerous times a day. It is not an all consuming, unconditional love. He loves us when he wants something, and hates us when he doesn't get his way. He is constantly saying, "You hate me. I should've said no when they asked if I wanted you to adopt me." or he asks to go live in jail or the hospital because we are not nice. He has no issue separating from us and thinks everyone he meets is his new best friend adult and child alike.

Desire to please. I think this is similar to love for him. He desires to please us when he thinks he will receive something for his efforts. He could care less about pleasing when he is not receiving a reward in his mind. He is unable to make himself do something he knows is right when he is in a particular foul mood. Sometimes he is physically unable to even agree with something as basic as "Can you see me?" when he wants to be defiant.

Inability to make a decision. He is completely unable to make a decision sometimes. He will ask for a certain food and once he is given it he will no longer want it. If you go to take it away he will holler that he is starving and he wants the food. Immediately after it is put in front of him he will say, "I said I didn't want that stupid food." We could do this for hours. It is though he wants to argue and push other's buttons. I understand he feels these conflicts internally, but it is difficult to deal with it. If it frustrates me, he wins.

If he thinks no one is looking he is absolutely unable to do the right thing. He cannot and will not control any behavior he knows is wrong if he thinks someone cannot see him. His difficulties with object permanence do not allow him to understand that others have ears and can hear you calling the dog 2 feet from them even if they are not staring you in the face. This boggles my mind. I can be sitting directly next to him and if I am reading something he thinks I cannot see him hitting the cat ON MY LAP. Swear to goodness. This is also when he is destructive. He likes to pick apart my plaster walls, unravel blankets or tear anything up he can.

I am not certain if you would consider his sexual acting out as being a part of RAD, but I do somewhat and I think bears mentioning. Someone said to me recently, " Once a kid is sexualized you cannot put that genie back in the bottle." So very true. He acts of for a couple different reasons in my opinion. I think he acts out due to his impulse controls issues due to his Fetal Alcohol Syndrome. I also think he acts out because he has a low IQ and if he wans to do something he does it regardless of where he is or what he is doing. I think it also has to do with the attachment issues because he feels no connection to people and he has no qualms about hurting others.

Superficially charming. My child is the sweetest, most kid, helpful boy ou would ever meet. Unless of course you are his parent. He saves all his best tricks for us. He loves to help people and will charm the socks off others. This is definite RAD behavior. Why should he punish them? They are not the people caring for him. They are not the ones who took the place of his mother who neglected and abused him. They are not the people who could be just as hurtful as her if he let them. Get it? Not fun.

Lying. Lord have mercy the child would have a cat in his hands and say "I did not touch the cat!" and he will swear you are going to believe him. He gets angry when you tell him that you are not asking a question because you know the answer. He will deny til the day is over.

Clingy? He is on me the minute I walk in the door from work. He must ask me for a hug 3,846 times a day. I used to feel bad about rationing them but many therapists made me understand that it is not healthy to be that clingy and inappropriate. I do not deny him, I just tell him I am busy and I will get to him in a minute, or I say, "Am I doing something right now?" He usually accepts that well. . . then asks 45 seconds later. It is tiring and I feel badly for not hugging him every time he asks. The problem is I would never get anything done. Most of the time I ignore it like I didn't hear him.

Entitlement. This is a HUGE one for us. He thinks he is entitled to whatever he wants. He should have the same everything as both other kids. If one has a popsicle and one has an ice cream cone he should get BOTH. He is constantly concerned about what everyone else has and what they are doing. If a child at school is in soccer he HAS to be in soccer, no matter that he cannot kick a ball to save his life and has no concept for the game. He will argue and be defiant about it all day long. We always end up being the bad guy because we won't let him do ANYTHING!

I understand how those seeing this type of listing and then seeing a child like ours would think that we are bad parents. I understand how a child like this could present totally different for other. I get that people would think that I am horrible for not hugging my child or saying that the hugs he gives give me the heebie-jeebies. It sounds awful to me. The problem is that you cannot fully comprehend that trauma that RAD causes to the WHOLE family until you live it.

We don't hate our kids, we hate the RAD.
We don't wish our kids gone, we wish the RAD gone.
We don't get sick to our stomach looking at our children, we wanna puke on RAD.

The problem comes when we are unable to separate the RAD from the child. Sometimes to road to healing is long. Sometimes the road to healing takes detours we never thought we could endure. Sometimes the road brings us bumps and gives us bruises that show on the outside.

Had I not had the network of moms and blogs I have had the last few years I would be dead.

I am serious. Dead.

If I didn't have these women, I would've felt like a failure as a parent and felt so desperately alone that I couldn't take it. The sense of failure you feel is one I would not wish on anyone. The RAD does win. It wins nightly as I put my head on the pillow and reminds me I have not made progress. It rears its ugly head in the morning when I don't want to wake my child for fear of what the day brings. It wins whether I let it win or not. It wins when it survives. It is survival.

It is HARD.



It is so very LONELY.

Sometimes the child treats each parent differently causing triangulation issues. A dad may see things the mother never gets. The mother may have victories that sends the dad's relationships tail spinning.

It is a rough road. A road no one else can understand unless you have lived it.

It make us parents feel like failures and creeps.

We are well aware that the things we say aren't normal. We get it.

The problem is, others don't. They see what they wish to see. They see what their experiences allow them to see.

I get it. I get the hurt and the confusion. I wish I was behind that veil too. I wish I didn't know what RAD was. I wish I didn't know what it could do to my family and my child.

I wish I never had to experience this, but above all, I wish my boy never had to experience this.

In a perfect world . . .

Friday, June 10, 2011

the goo

I am not sure why, but my depression and anxiety has always been very visual for me. When I think about how I am feeling or try to assess the depth of what I am feeling, I see it as a picture. Today I feel as though there is a black goo threatening to envelope me. I feel better today and I feel like it is holding, waiting for a break in the armor. It is a blob hanging over my head. Right now, I feel like I am strong enough to hold to away. To keep it hanging, but I am well aware that one break and it can begin to attach itself to my head and ooze slowly down my body enveloping me in it's gooey, black darkness.

Sometimes I try to place something physically between me and the blob. I imagine an umbrella. An umbrella of good things. An umbrella of things I can do right. Sometimes that umbrella can be particularly hard to open, sometimes it springs to life and I can rest easy. Sometimes the umbrella is a golf size umbrella and sometimes it is a kiddie umbrella.

Hears hoping the battle of the goo continues to go well today.

Thursday, June 9, 2011

rough day

Today has been a rough day. I am tired and I am disheartened. The big kid with FAS is on my last nerve. His incessant talking is driving me to the edge of sanity. He is stressing about the last day of school on Monday and I am certain he is taking it out on me. I am the one he always takes it out on. His mother allowed others to harm him. His mother drank and smoked pot to medicate herself from his behaviors. Her own mental illness would not allow her to get past her own needs and wants to care for him. I am the substitute for his anger at her. He is pretty decent until I walk in the door with the smaller children and then all heck breaks loose. The ugliness, the whining, the constant talking, the crying, the aggressiveness. It becomes tiring.

I am struggling with a bad case of plantar's fascitis in my right foot.. Last week I was unable to walk without excruciating pain. I saw the doctor and got a shot that normally helps. Last week it did not. I am fairly certain that the prednisone in the shot throws off my medication and causes some OCD behaviors as well as anxiety. It makes me incredibly hot and my skin all red. It sucks to go through all that and not be better! Because the shot did not work, I am on a nasty anti-inflamatory. It makes me dizzy and disoriented. I think it messes with my meds too. Plain and simple I am a mess!

I knew I was done for tonight when in the middle of cooking dinner I got distracted and found myself sitting in the shower scrubbing the walls. I shook my head at myself and walked out. As soon as I did, I took care of what was on the stove and started scrubbing the kitchen sink. It took me a minute to regroup and try to focus myself.

Today at work I went to the boss (my mother) to talk about something and ended up crying about something unrelated at work that I really hadn't even realized was bothering me. She kind of looked at me like I was loosing my mind. She knew I was sliding into unwanted territory. I could see her concern on my face. While she understand my OCD and my anxiety, she really has no idea about the depression and suicidal thoughts I struggle with. She has her own issues and I have never felt like I could unload that on her. She has been in denial about her own OCD and her control issues for years. I have always thought that she would take my unknown issues as an affront to her and cause her more trouble. And sometimes I just want her to be my mommy and not look at me differently for the fact that I would take the life she gave to me and throw it all away. I don't want to always think that she is assessing my mental state.

I am very much in the state of "fixer". When I feel like this I want to make everything better for everyone else. I worry about things going wrong. I think that because I feel so freaking crappy about myself I want to fix things. I feel so badly about myself I want to help others so that maybe, just maybe I will seem like I am useful. I want to feel essential. I want to prove to someone that I can be valuable. I guess if I feel like someone else values what I can do for them that maybe it will change my opinion of myself. I am not sure I have ever really realized that before. That is why me vomiting this onto the page is so very helpful.

I hate this. I feel like I am on constant vibration. I don't feel like I can relax. My mind races. It is tiring. Perhaps an extra Zoloft and a good night's sleep will turn things around. Let's hope I find myself in a better place tomorrow.

Wednesday, June 1, 2011

long time no see

It has been awhile since I posted. Life has exploded into ugliness from the FAS child. It has been rough. The good news is the funk that drew me in a bit more than a week ago is gone. I worked hard and I clawed my way out of it. The husband has been better. I have been better. It is good.

I think God knew I could take no more. I had some very kind comments from friends who had no idea what I was going through. I had a few online friends contact me and give me some fabulous words of wisdom. I really needed that. It was a lifeline.

Today the oldest came home from school (he is in an MoMh all inclusive classroom). He was very disturbed and refused the food that was put in front of him. That never happens. The child will eat poop on a stick. (our running joke) I had to run an errand so I took him with me. He immediately told me that a boy in school showed him a "very innapwopwiate picture". I asked what it was and he said, "It was a girl with no pants and one with a boy who had his penis in a girl's butt"

Holy Lord. I nearly wrecked the car.

Recall that he is a 6 year old in the body of a 16 year old.


We had a talk about parts. I explained that girl's have another part that boys don't and that is where the penis goes. You really should've seen his face. I nearly pee'd myself. I needed to explain because he was sexually molested in our house by another foster child. I needed him to know that is not typical. He then said, "Can we please stop talking about this?"

Holy cow. I really should've had that talk sooner, but it had not been necessary.

Friday, May 6, 2011


The depression is settling in. It feels like it has a grip on my heart. My chest is heavy. I feel like I will never smile again. I want to cry at everything. I drove to get lunch this afternoon and I saw a big hole where they were working on the street. I wondered what it would be like to just drive into that deep hole.

I know I will be fine. I always am. The problem is that each and every time I go through this I feel like I leave a piece of me behind. I feel like I have to give up on something that means something to me just to be what others want from me. I will change what I believe to make sure I am doing it the right way.

Problem is, I feel like things that matter to me are being pushed aside.

I'm not saying I want to be the asshole he thinks I am, I am just saying that I want what I think to be important. I want to feel loved and cherished, but I am wondering if there is something broken in me that I can't feel it even if it is there.


When I started this blog, the anonymity was a draw. I felt like if only one person knew who I was it would be easier to say what I needed to. Then I brought some of you into that circle, and now it is difficult to say what I want.

Why? I don't really "know" you. I haven't looked you in the face. But I feel like I do. Today is a day that I really need to vent and express my feelings and figure out where they are coming from, but it is hard when people see this side of you and the other side that you publicly put out there. But I have to get this out . . . it may not make any sense, but I feel like if I don't it could get ugly really fast.

Today I would like to be done with life. I would like to just lay down and die. It's hard. Being a mother is hard. Being a mother who is constantly having to argue with her kids is even harder.

My two littlest children have no sense of respect for adults. They are the kids who hold it together for the most part in school. They do pretty well in being appropriate when they "have" to be. For me, they are awful. They do not do anything the first time they are asked. It could be something as simple as, "Hey bud, pull your pants up." They just refuse to do what they are told. At just under ten years old this is no longer cute to me. This is disrespectful and rude.

My personality is one of "fixing". If there is an issue, I want to fix it. I will do what it takes to fix it NOW. I want it to stop and I will be firm until it is better. The husband is one of those people who try to get them to fix it by making jokes and trying to get them to do it in a round about way. I don't think that is teaching them to be respectful, I believe that is teaching them to find a "out". It is allowing them to be disrespectful as long as they are funny about it. (This may not make any sense to you at all, but I need to try to explain)

So what happens? I am an asshole in their eyes and he is the funny, joking daddy. They tell me they hate me often. I spend a few days a week driving them to school with my son kicking my seat telling me he hates me. Why? Because I had the nerve to tell him to hurry, or to buckle his seat belt in a harsh voice because I had already asked 5 times, or God only knows what else I was firm about. My daughter never wants to leave daycare at night and yells at me telling me she hates me or I am stupid. It is tiring. It is hard. It is heartbreaking.

I understand parents are not always liked by their kids. I get that. I am okay with that. But it seems the more he gives in, the more I am hated. I am tired of being the bad guy. This is compounded by the fact that he rarely sees their behavior in public. I run most of our errands after picking them up from daycare. I am the one seeing their horrendous behavior in the store. I am the one seeing how they react to me when I tell then to stop spinning in the aisles of a store hitting people who are walking by. I am the one constantly being argued with and screamed at. I see how they are developing a nasty attitude and rotten behaviors in public. I am the one embarrassed by their antics in public, he is not. He can tickle them and change their mood when I ask them to get their pajamas on for the 16th time. He is the fun daddy and I am the mean mommy.

It is getting to me. Today I lost it and began telling him how I felt. It was not pretty. I was frustrated and angry. I sad mean things to him. He said mean things back. He told me that they basically treat me like an ass because I am one. He said I don't allow them to be children. That is probably true, but I am trying to be firm and constant to change the monsters that we have allowed them to become. It just stung hearing it.

Couple all that with the anxiety I am always feeling and the depression that comes with being tired and feeling like a failure and I would just rather walk away and die instead of being the bad, mean mother. I have been working later, the oldest has been REALLY doing poorly and the husband has not been helping with the chores as much as I would like. His natural response when the oldest is doing poorly is to sleep, so he has been taking the time while I am a work and the oldest is at school to sleep which makes me more angry because I would LOVE to spend all day in bed.

It has all put me over the edge and when I get pushed over the edge, my natural instinct is wishing I would die. For the last few weeks I have been struggling with even wanting to leave work and go home, so this just makes it worse. I will say that I have resisted the urge to self harm this go 'round. I have not wanted to pull hair or scratch my arms. I have not done any head banging, I have just done lots of crying and shutting down. I suppose that is something.

The husband truly is a good man. he is loving and caring. he doesn't want the kids to be angry at him. He wants to be the fun daddy. His position is that if he gets them to do what I want them to it is all good. My position is that they are feeling like they got something over on me. I suppose we are both right in one way or another. I just wish he could back me up in front of them. I wish he could help me get them to be more respectful and obedient. They are not cute little ones anymore, they are kids who really should know better. There is a balance there, I just can't find it. Apparently I suck.

The one fault I think he has in all of this is that he doesn't respond like I think he should (or would want to) when I tell him where I am emotionally. If I had a spouse tell me that they wished they were dead, I would hope that my response would not be to tell them they have created this themselves. I would like it if he would sympathize with me. I suppose he does not think I would ever act on it (which I don't think I would) but I need to feel loved and appreciated. I want him to make me feel differently. I want him to tell me that would be a mistake. I don't want to be yelled at during this time, I want to be made to feel like I am essential to this family. I want him to make the feeling of wanting to die go away. Why is that so hard to understand?

Tomorrow will be better. It always is. Heck, perhaps I will feel differently in an hour. I will succeed at stuffing it down and dealing with it internally. Things will go right back to where they are and I will just be the bad person, I am used to that. But right now, it hurts and I just want the pain to go away. I want the thoughts of "If they hate me they would be better off without me" to be gone forever.

I don't really want to hear, "If they hate you, perhaps it's your fault."

Friday, April 29, 2011

so glad for gut feelings

I would really like to post this on my other blog, but I think this needs a little more confidentiality, so I decided to put it here. Truth be told, I probably shouldn't blog it at all, but I really need to purge this from my head and I need to use it for reference. So, here goes.

My oldest with FAS has had to be very close to an adult at all times lately due to some issues with leaving our property unsupervised. Last night I used him as a helper at an event at my work. He was FABULOUS. He was very helpful and took direction very well. It was a good 2 hours of work and he was darn near perfect. Tonight my boss asked him to help once again for another event and he dressed up in a costume. He was wonderful except for a few instances of not listening. He earned $25 for his work. He was excited to spend it on a video game tomorrow.

We came home and I asked him to help me with some yard work to earn a few more dollars. He got into an argument with the 2 younger children and took his sister's chalk that she got for Easter and began throwing it on the house next door, breaking it. I distracted him with a job and he did okay. They left with dad to get some dinner to bring home and we kept working. I asked him to go through the house and unlatch the back gate. Normally he does really well with this type of chore and I tell him I am going to count to a certain number and he tries to beat me. This keeps him from dinking around and makes him think only about hurrying instead of getting into something he shouldn't be in.

Tonight I gave him til 15. I usually don't really count until I see him and then I let him "beat me". I was trimming the bushes and was a bit sidetracked. I realized he was taking too long. I turned off the trimmer and heard our bigger dog barking a very odd bark. She rarely barks and when she does it's not very loud. This was a frightened bark. I hollered for the oldest and he did not come. I almost continued working thinking he was simply guzzling milk out of the jug, but something was nagging at me. I turned the trimmer back on and then decided I really should rely on my gut and I tossed it down and hurried into the house. I opened the front door and tripped. What did I trip over? A pair of scissors sticking through the rug and into the linoleum floor. I tripped over them, and they were so stuck they were still standing up. I immediately surveyed the area and saw 3 more pairs of scissors tossed around, the kitchen broom, a large pen, and a jump rope. I knew right away that the oldest was trying to hurt the dogs.

I wanted to blow up and start screaming. I was afraid that if I did I would not be able to stop. My pups are my babies. It is my job to protect them and he was trying to cause them serious harm. I was eerily calm. It had to be God because I have no idea how I stayed so in control. I asked him what he was doing and told him I wanted truth the first answer. He said, "Trying to kill the dogs". Holy Lord. I asked him why and I got about 5 answers from, the typical "I was mad" to "I miss my cat when I was little".

I am really not sure what the reason was, but I truly believed he was trying to kill the dogs. My husband got home and I sent the smaller children away so we could talk to the oldest together. The husband had no idea why I was so calm. He was dumbfounded. I was to! I think it scared the stink out of the oldest, which was a really good thing.

The husband and I talked later and we both find it interesting that as soon as he does something well, that includes a bit of freedom or is a bit more age appropriate he turns around and gives us a whopper of disobedience. I don't understand it. Is it RAD? Is it him bucking the restraints of his supervision because he has a bit of freedom? Is he self-sabotaging? I don't get it.

I am sad. I protect the younger kids from him. I keep him very close, constantly supervised. I don't know what more I can do. Each time I try to give him some slack, it backfires.

By the way, he is spending his earnings on new chalk for his sister and really nice treats for the dogs, NOT a game. Anything left over will go in the bank.

Tuesday, March 15, 2011


I am sure if I searched this blog for the term "medication" I would find a blog post or maybe two that echo what I am going to say here. Since this blog is primarily for me to vent, I need to say it again for myself and maybe for you to hear.

My daughter has begun a new tic. These tics are typically based in her OCD behavior. I have noticed that she typically picks a behavior and gets obsessed with it, then she tends to relax and it fades until another one takes it place. We have gone through hair chewing, a mouth movement, clicking her teeth, hand movements and now the dreaded throat clearing noise. She makes this noise roughly every 6 seconds. Holy Lord it drives me nuts! I have tried not bringing attention to it, but I cannot let it go. It is quite distracting and very annoying. I have even gone so far as to suggest she fidget with her hands if she feels the need to do something over and over again. I cannot imagine how distracting it is in school for her peers.

While I do not think that raising medication is the answer, I an very thankful for medication during times like this. I know that my OCD tends to "rev up" for no expolainable reason and I need to double medicate. The doctor knows that I do this, and has okay'd it. Usually it only takes 3 days or so of this in order to get back on track. I am hoping this will help this time for her.

There are times that I think about taking her off medication and offering some skills that will help her when she is dysregualted. There are times that I feel like maybe she is too young to be on 2 psychotropic drugs and I am taking the easy way out. There are those times where I feel like she has calmed enough to be able to work through her frustrations and rages about things not going as she had planned them (through her OCD) and that she can make it without medication.

Each time I am directed back to being thankful that she is growing up with opportunities that I never had. She is growing up with the ability to feel at peace in her own body due to those very meds. She is growing up will medication that will help her understand that there is better ways of controlling her impulses and that she has been successful in that. She is growing up understanding that she is not "bad" and that she is able to function typically like the other kids in her classroom.

Those are the times that I am thankful for a skilled psychiatrist who does not believe in over medicating and who walks a fine line between the disorder and the medication. It is those times that I remember the change in my life from unmedicated to medicated and the joy and peace that came with it. Perhaps that understanding is the most important.

While I believe there is merit in not medicating children who can learn to deal with their disorders, I think not medicating those who cannot is holding them back from what they truly can be. For me, it was freedom.

Tuesday, March 8, 2011


My daughter is doing very well. Of course we still have our stand-offs, she is still so very stubborn. I am praying that perseverance will do her well in life. I can see her trying really hard. That is good sign. I can see that she is no longer a "slave" to her moods and her impulses, but she is able to fight and control them. I see so much of myself in her.

Today she came back from school and told me that she was on blue. Blue is a referral to the office. Apparently she had been disrespectful all day. (She said her stomach hurt all day. That is not an excuse, simply a reason. This illness thing we have all had is hanging on for dear life. It took me at least a week for my stomach to stop hurting after I was done with the medication.) She was being disruptive in reading time and she was sent to the hallway. She went! That is HUGE progress. In the past she has refused, thrown a fit, toppled desks etc. There is a table outside the door (which has a window next to it) of her classroom. She says she hopped up to sit on the table and it clanked into the window. Her teacher assumed she had tossed it toward the window like she has tossed desks before and was sent to the office. She went without a fit!! They talked and she received ISS (in school suspension) for tomorrow.

I know it sounds ridiculous, but I am so thrilled. She handled herself appropriately. She did not throw a fit and complied with everything they asked of her. I explained to her that although I was not happy she was disrespectful and disruptive, but the way she handled herself this time was great. We talked about how she has reacted in the past, and I pointed out the differences this time in case she did not make the connection. We had a great talk. I did not want her to think that getting on Blue was not an issue, but I wanted to really commend her. I think I found a good balance.

She did NOT want to tell daddy. I told her that we would at dinner, that we do not have secrets. As soon as we got home she asked daddy to come sit down and she told him all by herself. (I had already told him so he would respond in a similar fashion as I did) She said she was sorry and that she knew that even though her stomach hurt, she had to obey. She said, "I will start over fresh tomorrow." It was sweet.

Progress. It's amazing.