Thursday, March 8, 2012

There is no place like Home.....

There is no PLACE LIKE HOME…except for when they have no idea what the definition of “Home” really means.

I went to Orlando for six days.
 It. Rocked. My. World.

I can’t use words to describe what these women mean to me and what their love and acceptance did for me, my heart and my healing…like if there were words, I wouldn’t use them because it was so sacred to me.

And then I came home.

Correction: I flew to my mother’s town, picked up Baby Faith, Cookie and Diva, and drove the four hours home the next day.
This was the first time I have had an extended time away from my children since they came home over two years ago, and left them with someone other than my husband.
My Mom ROCKED it. She really did. She respected the boundaries my kids needed to feel safe, she even took the time to call me during my trip to let me know “she gets it”…the charming of two years has worn off on her….


So we get home. While on a lovely drive to therapy…cause you know I had that planned pre-Orlando…Diva gives the smack down with;


“Yes baby-girl”

“Me and Cookie were talking and we have decided we like Grandma better and are going to go live with her.”


(Note: I was prepared for this, since my kids have come home, the second someone/another adult be it a teacher, someone from Sunday school, the chick that fills the all you can eat bar at Golden Coral, shows they provide basic needs for them, an option B. flashes into their little brains.
I learned not to take it personally….O.K. so it still hurts, but I’m not talking about that.)

“Oh wow, well I can see how you would feel that way, Grandma ROCKS, and there are days I want to go live with her too. That’s what is so great about special places, like where Mama went in Florida, and where you went at Grandma’s….but cha know, they wouldn’t be so special if we were there all of the time.” (I lied…Orlando would be)

“I don’t care we are going to go live at Grandma’s, we like her better and don’t love you anymore.”

Feeling is mutual kid…
“You know that’s O.k. that you have those feeling right now, it might have been scary for you that I left, I can feel that with you.”

“No I don’t care you left and might have died.”

“So what I might be hearing is you thought I would leave and not come back and maybe die.”

Silence in the back seat.

“wow, I am so sorry my leaving may have made you feel scared, I love you and made sure you were in a safe place, and that I was going to a safe place, so we would see each other again soon…and that way, next time Mommy has to go, you know I will be coming back.

Silence in the back, accompanied by a brave sniff.

“Well, I still want to live with Grandma.”

“Well if you want, let’s call Grandma, and see how she feels about you moving there.”

(this was pre-planed)

We called Grandma on the speaker phone, while sitting in therapy parking lot…

Conversation went as planned…me calling and explaining that Cookie and Diva had decided unanimously they were to move in with Grandma forever….

and then Grandma, individually explain her adoration and love for each child, and very plainly saying, “No” they may come for visits, and are welcome when Mommy wants them to come, but that children belong with their Mommy and Daddy, and her job was to be a special place, sometimes, but not always.

I asked her if she was sure…and she said “yes”…and then we hung up.

I smiled gently at my disappointed crew..and said,” I sure love you guys, and you are always invited to stay with us, forever, cause that is what a Mommy and Daddy are for.”

Secretly, we may have all been a little disappointed the Grandma thing didn’t pan out. …but, there is a HUGE part of me, that thinks maybe, just maybe a little bit of healing and another confirmation of them where they belong, no matter how much they push us away, may have just gone down…..maybe.

There is no place like home.


  1. I am amazed at that pre-planning you did. I wish that kind of forethought came more easily for me.

    YOU ROCK! :)

    What kinds of things do you do typically to prepare your kids for a trip? Especially since you will have two rather close together?

    1. Daily Notes, small presents from Mommy, a "days till Mommy comes back chain"....and my kids do better (well my non neuro typical kids) do better NOT talking to me...

  2. Have I told you lately that I love you? Cause I love you. That is all.

  3. Wow, standing ovation from me because you ROCKED it!!! I LOVE it!

  4. oh my, i am wowed by the preplanning, too. and i'm going to steal it. when i was in orlando (and watching you hoop it up in style), my kids were all with my husband...because i only have 4. and you have more! also because my mother hasn't spoken to me since we got our adoption referral two years ago. well except occasionally, when she wants to reiterate that we should never speak to her again. wait, i'm getting an idea. i SHOULD totally leave my attachment challenged kids with my mom. that could be very interesting for everyone. okay, wait, back on track. that was a fun vision, though. :-)

    in april, i'm going to chicago for parenting in space and have - oh my, i have to pinch myself - convinced my husband to go with me. because even if we learn nothing, we will be away from the kids for 3 freaking days! together! my 4 kids are each going to different places while we're gone, and then there are backup plans in place, and a babysitter for the last few hours, etc. (it is HARD to get both parents away together when there is no grandparental support nearby), so i think i will preplan this same conversation with each and every one of those caretakers. oh, wait. two of my kids aren't attachment challenged. so i don't have to do quite so many. but i'm definitely stealing it for the situations where it fits.

    you rock.

    1. You rock Megan...loving you and your husband enough to make all of this work so you can go, is enormous...
      P.S. You will SOOOOO learn something! See you in six weeks!!!

  5. Just started in on your blog and I.Love.It. I love your honesty, your quirky kids, your beautiful girls hair do (just look at Diva) and your writing. So glad I got to meet you in Orlando ;o)

    1. Right back at you Heather..LOVED hooping with you and learning about your amazing family.
      You know I had NEVER hooped with anyone other than my kids until great!

  6. Awesome! Sorry about the parts that hurt, but what a great mom!!

  7. Wow, you were thinking ahead- so awesome!

  8. Wow wow wow. I learn so much from 'hearing' how an experienced trauma mommy talks this kind of curve ball through with their children and unpacks it with them to the real issue underneath. Amazing stuff. Really amazing.

  9. Well, if I'd gone to Orlando.....something awful would have happened here....well, awful things happened anyway, but I was able to somehow pull the family out of the fire, only a little singed... I hope. But, still, I'm envious, envious, envious.

    You are one bright mommy!

    1. Annie, I love you. I know that fear and paralyzing knowledge of NOT being able to leave my family. If Papillion was still here, I would be in the same boat..or have used respite...
      I so hope you can find respite Annie, you need it...LOVE YOU!!!

  10. Revisiting this because I really am borrowing it to prep for our time away at Parenting in Space this weekend...looking forward to seeing you there. :-)

  11. I've just read this after so many people recommended it to me. I did our first respite in two years and the aftermath was, well, ugly and I was somehow surprised and horrified all at the same time.

    I LOVE the idea of a phone call because my daughter has been trying to trade us in since Moment 1 and maybe this would mean something to her.