Thursday, February 28, 2013

Loving Fiercely.

The other day I was at lunch with a dear friend, that recently moved back into town and has been out of state for 5 years.

NOTE: I rarely see anyone in real life, because well my kids hold me hostage, my life is busy an about intense healing .
An hour into "catching up"... after she shared her trip to Disney World with her 3 kids,she asked ; "How are things with your big, beautiful family?"
I had decided to be honest....
I was trying to explain “things”...and she bluntly asked, (not being rude),

“So do you love your easy kids more?”

My answer;
“My “easy kids” (and what kid is 'really' easy) don't hurt me, like my kids from hard places do, but no, I don't love them less, I don't do less for them, in fact I probably do more, but my easy kids honestly are easier to love. My hard kids have taught me to love fiercely, without expecting reciprocation...and THAT has taught me so VERY much, even when I HATE it.”
I most definitively HAVE to love them differently.

“BUT they are SOOOOO cute, I would bring one home if I could, I don't understand how they could be so angry and violent”

(don't hate her she just doesn't know, she really is very sweet)

“Have you ever looked at how sweet and darling a baby gorilla is? Adorable right? Want to take one home?...truth is they 'can' be loving and oh so cuddly...truth is there is a primal part of them that may or may not rip your arms off of your body and beat you with them, truth is they could be easily frightened and throw their feces at you to keep you away if they get frightened, you just never know....”

she knodded.

“My kids come from survival, they can switch to that primal brain and have no say in how to regulate or really know how to stop their behavior... the throwing shit has happened...but look both arms still attached, for now.”

I grinned big at my brilliant analogy and humor...until I saw her face.

Forehead slap, I have gotten WAY too used to speaking frankly.

“What I mean is this, they are capable of things,things that no parent is prepared for because of things that were broken inside of them when they were very small, so they try to control what they my mom, never being ever to go to bed with a single thing out of place, even if she is on her death bed?'s like that with everything..and that can be HARD.”

She responded, “I am sooo like that, a little OCD, I have to have things in place before I can sit down or go to bed.”

“ Exactly, now times that by one million.
When Dude was a baby, he refused to drink, anything, for no reason.would.not.drink. He was 20 months old and going dehydrated, whatever I tried, he would spit it out..we had to hydrate him with enema's. Can you imagine, he is here in AMERICA for craps sake,and he is dying of dehydration, because he WILL not DRINK...and imagine being me, a Mother who has already had a son die because of dehydration...the look of HATE in his eyes saying, I will not let you save me, help me, love me,
....if he could have ripped my arms off and beat me with them he would it is like that, not always as extreme, but you know, like that...”
So I love his fierce little spirit the only way he will let me sometimes. With a whole lot of consistence, a whole lot of love, and not letting his rejection work, by trying with everything in my being to not reject is that for us.
Love is giving him everything no one else did, a bed, food, safe environment..and sometimes that is all he can take from me, even then sometimes THAT is too he emotionally does whatever he can to make me want to push him away.

I am not a robot, sometimes the kid succeeds, I am after all human and totally blow it.”

She just sat there.
“We live in separate worlds, don't we?”


we ate in silence for a while.

“I want to tell you about how cute Miley's birthday party was and how we decorated it,and the food I made, because you used to do the same kind of things, would that hurt your feelings?”

“NO, I would love to hear about it, it won't make me sad, a little nostalgic, but not sad.”

so she shared, and I lived in that world for a while...

When we left the restaurant she hugged me tight, and said, “I couldn't do it, and I am not being complimentary, I wouldn’t be that strong, or want to be, but I am grateful for you, and love you, I want you to know that.”

Walking to my car and watching her drive away, I knew that hug was a goodbye, forever.
She doesn’t want any part of my reality..and that hurt for three good long seconds, as I am sure she mourned what our relationship and how our lives complimented one another years ago...and I and she let it go.

Reflecting after she drove away and I sat in quietness, waiting for my cell to start lighting up with texts of
“when are you coming home?”
“So-and-so just broke/destroyed/peed ....”
“Help meeee....”

I thought about where, and who I was 5 years ago...who I was, what used to get under my skin, what things I took for granted...
Yes, my heart breaks daily, yes, I am stretched and yanked and pulled on, and almost ripped to my kids inability to love, my heart and body are covered in emotional scars, loss and losing, sacrificing and letting go are daily events,”moving on” is a mantra tattooed on the inside of my brain...

as is the simple words 'Thank you”

and I like that.

I don't always like my life.
I don't always love my children the way most people love theirs... I simply can't.
But, If I am remembering, I AM loving them more and better than anyone else EVER has, that, right there is MORE than enough. I can feel good about that.

Today I am loving the fierce strength, confidence in who I am , who my family is, and NOT needing to apologize for those things.

Loving my children has taught me so very many things...things I may have never wanted to know about the extent of damage and pain, torture, neglect and abuse one little soul can take and their hearts continue to beat...

Loving my children has taught me fierceness in love, support, in caring, loving, recognizing what is and what isn't important, what relationships, words and work I want to put into things, and what is simply fluff.

I live in a no fluff zone.
I am good with that.

I recognize the losses, I do...but I also choose to see what I have been given ten fold in those losses, and some of the time (not ALL of the time) what I have gained, been given, the insights and friends I have now far surpass who and what I had and was before...and that feels right, not easy, never ever easy...but so right for me.

….and I also so still think baby gorillas are adorable....just sayn'.

Monday, February 25, 2013

Lets talk about SEX....

So, It's midnight, I was cleaning out my closet , donating those items I haven’t worn in a year...or finally getting rid of those items I swear I will wear “someday”, but passover every.single.time I walk into my closet...Hausta La Vista baby, packing to move can be soooo cleansing....

Anyway,, right? The topic of this whole derned blog post?
The other day I was invited to a BUNCO party/game thingy at my neighbors house. It is a dice game , that is simple, based on luck and finger foods. Most of all women socialize and snack. Anywho, before the dice were tossed, a women at my table brought up that she was a 5th grade teacher , and the girls in her class were about to begin the maturation talk.
She mentioned that the boys in sync WERE not only not going to be in the room ( that's fine) but were NOT getting a talk of their own....because well, girls mature faster than boys.

Interesting. I don't agree, but you know, interesting...

Then she also proceeded to tell me that the school district had a policy that the speaker was not ALLOWED to say either the word “Penis” or talk about actual penetration.
“WHA?excuse me? Other than The female cycle and change that comes with puberty, what are these poor girls going to learn about ACTUAL sex?”

“Well we CAN talk about how sperm fertilizes and about the egg, because we talk about eggs and the menstrual cycle and why women have eggs to begin with.”

ME: “ But no Penis, with the sperm, no direct explanation on how said sperm might “get” to the egg and how that happens WITH penetration?”

“No, none of that”


Here lemme borrow that soap box.

Number one, regardless of how conservative of a community we live in, these kids live in a world and time of constant communication and information, they already “THINK” they know about sex. Sex according to the media. Sex is what happens on all of their television shows, or between their favorite celebrities, or according to their the ONE place where they can get accurate, scientific information is failing them hopes of being what? Modest? Conservative? Not offending their parents? Now I one THOUSAND percent believe kids should be learning and having questions answered about sex, and maturation far before it starts happening , and preferably by their parents, but if not....hello it is basic biology. Biology that most 4 year old children “get” if they live on a farm.

I have a three year old daughter, just like she can point out her elbow, she knows where her vagina is.
To her an elbow and a vagina are BOTH simply parts of her body. Does she know certain parts are to be respected and she has all say over them, ABSOLUTLEY, and she also knows the appropriate name, of those parts.
BONUS. If anything ever, and heaven forbid it happen to violate any part on her, she would have the appropriate words to describe what happened.

Educating our children is protecting them.
If our kids know the ins and outs of sex, is that giving them a permission slip to start sleeping around? Absolutely NOT, you can apply education with whatever moral, safety or other wise values, beliefs and precautions you want. I think the education is vital SUPPORT to the “why” in the moral hand hold of abstinence or safe sex. If a girl is old enough to menstruate and get pregnant ...shouldn't we be using words like “Penis and penetration?”

I mean bumping Who-ha's and We-willie-winkies, can make a baby , just as easy as a Vagina being penetrated with a Penis? Sheesh, don't you think the correct terminology is something we should teach our children out of respect, for them? Teach them about the possible life they could be creating in the loss of information we are giving them, in the name of “protecting them?”

Lets be open, lets answer questions. Being responsible means education, when we hide things and words from our children, we are not creating an environment in the protection of innocence, we are creating “the unspoken”, something that is dirty, or shameful...and I am sorry but Sex IS AWESOME, and fun with the right person, and I sure don't want to screw that up for my kids for the rest of their lives....

So lets talk about sex.
Lets talk about all the good things and the bad things, that. may. be.
Lets talks about sex with our kids.
Some resources we use as a family, and my husband as a therapist recommend.

And you now have my permission to go youtube the Salt n' Pepper song running through your head.
It's O.K., I know you want to.

Tuesday, February 12, 2013

"Moving on" by Bugs

I have an enormous amount of guilt that resides deep in my chest.
Some days I am so accustomed to it I don't feel it. Other day it is a boulder that blocks deep breathing, figuratively and quite literally.
I feel guilt for the trauma I have caused to my "already here" children by making the choice to bring traumatized children into our home.

At times we are a messy concoction of life, but there are days I see the separation effect, the loss the damage done by the early childhood trauma experienced by my newest additions, and how that disconnect cuts our family in two. When I glimpse my healthier children witnessing  rages, violence towards me, non compliance in simple everyday things ...I see their pain, their confusion their frustration over things never-ever being simple.

It had been a rough morning, one child christening all of my jewelry in the toilet...while another for reasons that skip my memory became primal and in the midst of breakfast cooking decided to lose her poo.

Today turned from structured school day, to a-dance-my-butt-off therapeutic day.Once child was regulated, we did Trauma Release exercises,strong sitting  and tapping, lunch and naps.
Later I returned home from a meeting with yet another mental health specialist, a big meeting and evaluation before one of my children undergo some deep psychological testing;my oldest at home had an essay waiting for me, on my bed.

Through tears, the boulder began to shrink. Maybe it will only last for today, the shrinking, but I doubt it. Because somewhere in this mix of odd crazy hard insanity, are moments I see so.much.hope.
I see the amazing people they are all becoming because of each-other.
I see the unconventionally designed patchwork quilt of a hodgepodge of individuals being a thing of warmth, comfort, strength...and really a kick ass family, raising thinkers, dreamers, lovers and fighters teaching each-other with their weaknesses and their strengths;

                                                               "Moving on"
                                                                             by Bugs age 11

"My family has some boundaries that they are still working on, but they are getting there. I mean closer to making better choices. As an example; today my sister started raging and screaming while my Mom was trying to get breakfast made. So she took my sister and had her sit under her legs, so she could continue to make breakfast. Well my sister hit her and tried to leave, after a while my Mom said she would have to stop breakfast and take her on a walk outside if she couldn't calm down.

So I sat on the floor and gave my sister the "Stop and Think" sign.
Then our dog Penelope came to sit by me so I moved with Penelope  next to my sister.  Then she started to pet Penelope and calm down.
So my mom realized this and moved her legs from in front of my sister and  had her strong sit on the floor. Then I said to my sister " Good Job, you used a tool!"
Then my Mom kneeled next to her and my sister told my Mom that I was helping her.
So I gave her a big hug and looked up at my Mom smiling and almost cried.
I will say I was a little surprised, but deep down I knew I had a feeling that I knew my sister could turn it around. I have realized that they are getting closer to making better choices."

Thursday, February 7, 2013

The day my son tried to Blow us up, for the Second time....

Traumaversaries...are something parents, victims and therapists in the trauma world reference when talking about a day, season, or time of year where someone is more than usually triggered,acting out or even plagued with anxiety attacks or some other odd health phenomena.


Don't ya'll remember the Greys Anatomy episode when a woman came in with a heart attack, that ended up being an extreme anxiety attack...that happened on that day, as they discovered every year, for the last 5 years, on the same day that her lover died?

Yeah, like that...but not.
Because it doesn't wrap in a syndicated one hour episode, with McDreamy patting me on the shoulder and telling me everything is going to be doesn't end with knowing at all if it is going to be I am going to throw A LOT of love, compassion,faith, hope, understanding and everything else I have at this...

Today I posted this little cheery Facebook update....not really feeling cheerful, or happy about the prospect of a new heater...but you know” trying to make the best out of a rough situation”...

Today, after the Furnace guy fixed 'Frankenstein' (yes we name our cars and appliances we are thoooose weirdo people), the Furnace dude showed me the broken piece, he gently mentioned that was so random a piece to be  broken the way it was... and then added these words.

“Funny, I looked up the books and same thing, same piece same thing happened the same day last year.”

Whaaaaaaaa...wait a minute...and then pieces of the last few days began to fit, one of mine has been COMPETLY off...the quiet one....the one that has the storm brewing with in...
The one every second of everyday for the last 3 days has been wonky times a million....

.....and when I go back and read last years emails, last years messages...I see a pattern, you know, cuz a mini base ball bat that is stuck in a Furnace and breaks off spokes and makes the rotation go off can create a fire....happening twice, on the same day, one year apart...BOOOOM.

HOUSTON we have a problem....

So after I signed the “yes bill me later, yeah the dude did the work” paper and got the pink copy of it.
(I do believe that is the technical term)

I cried a little in the hallway, face palmed in the “last year, same time” of it all. I took a big,fat.breath.

I went to my boy.
I promised him before we even had the talk....

*that I already knew and had forgiven him.
* that he would not get in trouble.
* that no one would spank him
* that no one would call the police
*that I still loved him
*that I was not getting rid of him
* that I was going to help him try harder to keep his boundaries
*that it really was going to be O.K.

I said these things while my chest squeezed and panic filled it, because I had a hard time believing my words.
Can I help him enough?
Is it really going to be OK?

Traumaversaries are the things that go bump in the night and make you question EVERYTHING...because you are living them, right then, and that is all you see or feel and Perspective is that 20 year old body, you don't even remember having.

I held his face. I helped him with words.
He shared some words that scared the ba-jebbers out of me, true, feeling words.
Like: “I really wanted to blow everyone up, especially you Mamma,."
" How can you forgive me for that?”
“Uh, O.K. Wow, those are some pretty big feelings, no matter what it is my job to love you and keep all of us safe.......and ect.”
He cried, tears came out of everywhere. I hugged him.
We both were snot dripping messes when it was all said and done.

He ended with...

“Mom I only sometimes want you dead. But then if your were dead, who would I ask to help me cuz you were dead? I know I told you I don't love you and maybe sometimes that is true, but sometimes it isn't.”

“I will love you enough for both of us when it is too much and too hard for you.”

We put more boundaries in place, NOT COINCEQUNCES...but boundaries..explaining he wasn't in trouble, but he needs help keeping his brain and hands in places he won't feel bad about know, like not blowing up the entire family.....

The hard thing is he doesn't know why February 6th, 7th and 8th are such hard dates for him, we might never know why, will we be prepared next year? You betcha...Will these days be starred and perhaps we will be out of town? You can count on it...

and now, I will go snuggle a baby, and a puppy at the same time, and have a good cleansing cry....I will mourn with my boy the broken parts that these dates have cost him,what it costs all of us.....

...oh yeah, and I am going to be grateful, you know that I am not blown up, that soooo would have made my day worse.