WARNING: PLEASE DO NOT CONTINUE READING IF YOU ARE A FRIEND WHO WILL BE BURDENED BY WHAT YOU MAY READ.
I don’t know if I hate my life.
I am up early teaching VIPKID – my online teaching job – WHICH I KNOW I LOVE! I just finished my first class at 6:00 am and I have a rare unbooked class for 6:30. I have 30 minutes free.I waved goodbye to Constance in China and shut off my webcam. Then the genuine smile that comes from talking to adorable kids halfway around the world fades.I recognize a feeling of dread. Reaching for a prescription cocktail of Klonopin, Effexor, and Lexapro, I can hear my thinking:I HATE MY LIFE. I HATE MY LIFE. I HATE MY LIFE.Is this how I actually feel? Is this PTSD? Is this the anxiety and depression related to another frustrating turn of events, the circumstances of my adoption journey and subsequent trauma upon trauma?
I really don’t know how I feel.
I know that I should take my meds. I know the symptoms of PTSD are constant intrusive thoughts. I know I struggle with feelings of rejections and abandonment from the traumas of my life. I know when I do my best and my circumstances of abuse are chronic and intentional… It is sooooo hard to think
CHIN UP.. YOU GOT THIS!
GOD’S GOT THIS!
because hurts keep flying at you like a huge swarm of knats on a hike in summertime.
My trauma drama involves adopting two kids – siblings. In the state of Florida, there is no disclosure of a child’s background until they run to you yelling “MOMMA”. And how are you going to say “Oh nevermind little 6 year old I have never met… After reading your file, I don’t think this is a good fit.”
We went into adoption to help and we WON’T be the people who wound this child again. So we leave with a child and their file.. full disclosure HAHA.
And only small parts of the child’s file is available for the adoption counselor to give to adopting parents. Our counselor was able to copy everything because the records person left her alone for a bit. Seeing the rare opportunity, she frantically kept copying the complete file believing that parents deserved to know everything possible. But that file and information is given only after you have been given the kid. [Florida needs a revamp. Other states have trial visits for a minimum number of weeks for introduction and to see how both the adoptees and after adopters feel about this possible new family. I digress.]
We weren’t given background info. Prior to their permanent placement we knew: Two kids from Haitian background. Still pretty young. Age 6 and 7.
Then they came to live with us. They had expected behavioral, educational and academic problems. We wouldn’t know the extent of mental issues for years. Now we know.
And it is the worst.
REACTIVE ATTACHMENT DISORDER.
Low – (real low) cognitive function, IQ less than 70
I HATE these humans did not ask for this pain.
I HATE that our choosing to adopt brought so much trauma to my biological kids who once where so excited to adopt little siblings to love on… But those ” siblings” are now teenagers to avoid.
Fast forward 6 years:
Our daughter from college says she won’t come home again for the holidays if THING 1 is there. They both wreck havoc but #1 more than #2. My biological kids are amazing, loving people but their limits have been exceeded by about as much as kids could endure. So much hopes, dreams and wishes for kicking the soccer ball around or manicures with the girls on spa night have dissipated into a hellish existence of not 2 orphans finding a home but making us into a group of 7 orphans.. no family left. I hate THIS season for sure.
I remember when my biological kids grew carrots and marveled at a little seed that turned into a yummy veg. And I wanted to give that to my adopted kids. But because their behavior has been so terrifying for so long… Yeah – going to have to let go of that hope.
Now I just hope for the minutes that I feel the hands that are holding my head underwater release me. And in those precious ticks of the clock, I am determined to alter this family’s future. I will fight for my firstborn to have a place to happily come to. When life feels like it holds her head down, there will be a home for her to run to. She will get back the mom and dad she grew up with, and not put the clinically depressed couch potato with an exhausted glaze clouding the eyes that use to sparkle and laugh and the lady who sleeps at rest stops on the highway seeking safety before she can shut her eyes. My son will not need to describe a meal at his friend’s made by the mom as “amazing like when you use to cook for us.. remember pizza night and your shrimp Alfredo…”
Yes, I remember, but I have no idea how this nightmare (such an understatement) turned into 3 years of suffocation. We have gone from a residential treatment center meeting about our 11 year old who flipped all the tables in the lockdown facility’s dining room and hit kids with a broom stick (which she doesn’t understand why they called a broom a “weapon”) to a soccer game of our other daughter’s and cheered on the her as she flipped others on their backsides. Seamless transition? Nope. The first stop exhausted me so completely that I watched the second from behind a tree because the thought of interacting with others, being asked, “How are you?”, sent me into a tailspin.
I HATE THIS SEASON FOR SURE.
And Christmas was just 2 weeks ago. We missed Christmas 2018. We tried to not make a big deal out of the holiday in fear of sabotoge. Noticing a pattern of Baker Acts on special days it seemed to make sense to not celebrate Christmas. Do you hear the insanity? We need to change something. Drastically.
And it isn’t CHRISTMAS.