Tuesday, June 14, 2011

Love me some adoption based regression!

Okay, maybe that's a bit of a question mark but at least that's what it feels like. 

I have one who transitioned home very seamlessly.  Aside from a few major melt downs ie 45-60 minute tantrums, this child just adjusted to a completely new life with few glitches.  However, for some reason, within the last 3 or 4 months, it seems like we are getting to experience some of the emotion that perhaps that child didn't process the first time around.  Lengthy tantrums with a fairly heavy dose of anger that includes hitting at grown ups and being defiant. 

I know, I know, sounds like regular toddlerish stuff.  But it is all very out of character for this child.  It just feels like there is an anger in there that is more than just "I'm mad because I didn't get my way." 

Tonight's bedtime brought on one of those moments.  While reading Curious George Goes to the Hospital for the billionth time, one child kept moving all over the bed and not watching the story.  When I asked that child to stop and not spin in a circle, the other child immediately spun in a circle right next to me.  (Not a huge deal but lately both of my kids have struggled with obeying the first time.  Heck, I'd even go with obeying the second or third time but right now it seems like we are lucky if there is a response at all.)  That said, I sent the second spinner to his/her room.  Bring on the tears and yelling and pouting and flailing. 

I finished the story with the other child, sang with the other child, and then joined child two who had stopped for a few moments but then started right back up.  The child was still angry so I offered up some suggestions on how to deal with the anger appropriately like using a pillow to throw/hit or talking to God about it.   I let this child sort that part out and when I came back a few minutes later, the child was having a pillow fight with the floor.  (At least that was a good choice.) 

The child said he/she was ready to talk tso into bed for some cudddling and talking about 1. the anger and 2. the disobedience that occurred with the book.  As we started with the anger part, I covered all my adoption bases and headed down the "sometimes I wonder if when you are mad at this mama, your anger gets all mixed up and that sometimes you feel angry at your Haiti Mama too." 


More adoption talk. 

"And I wonder if sometimes you are mad because it feels like your Haiti Mama left you at the orphanage." 

More sobs. 

"And sometimes I wonder if you are mad because your Haiti Mama isn't here." 

More sobs. 

"And sometimes I wonder if when you get angry over other things if that anger you have at your Haiti Mama gets all mixed up inside." 

Intense sobs and big sloppy tears from the mama in the room. 

"You know, I think your Haiti Mama loved you a lot even if it doesn't feel like it." 

Quiet and then, "Why she leave me, if she loved me?" 

And now into the nitty gritty, the hard parts that just sucketh like no other.  "Well, she didn't have very many choices.  One choice was to take you to a place where there was food and where you would be safe.  The other choice was to keep you with her and not have enough food to feed you and then be worried you might get sick or die." 

Given our current family situation with the death of D's grandma, the death part sparked the curiousity. 

"Die?  What you mean?" 

And so we went, down the adoption road, the one that I as a parent tread so lightly on, hoping I guessed right at to how the emotions and experiences of my kids are either tied to the events of today or the shadows of the past.


Miss Alissa said...

Praying often for their sweet, little hearts! And also for you and Derek as you guide them.

stephanie garcia said...

Those are always difficult and emotional conversations, but definitely the right road to travel. At the very least it helps your children realize it is okay to talk about these things with you. It sounds like you were wise and did a great job!

Kathy C. said...

Wow. Amazing that he'd have such feelings when he was at the O. so young. It's good that he is processing them now though.

We are dealing with one having made a serious accusation against an older brother. I'm sure what she said he did, didn't really happen but I fear it did happen to her at the O (or she saw it) or she wouldn't have the knowledge she has. Off to see a counselor tomorrow!!!

Hilary Marquis said...

Oh i wish you lived closer...it is so hard to know what to do sometimes. I had sobfest here last night about wanting to see her Kyrgyz Mama. You did well, Kayla