Monday, March 26, 2012

Forgiveness is divine. It must be because it is pretty darn hard!

Last week a historical event happened.  I went to the movies all by myself. Yes, I went. I ordered a large popcorn and a large drink. I held it in MY lap and I ate it! None of said popcorn ended up down my shirt and a drink was not spilled on me. It was a lovely experience.  I went to see this new movie called October Baby, and like everything in life, I used it as a way to try to become less of an unfit mother/person... because we all seem unfit at times, don't we???  

You can read about October Baby  by clicking on the name.  But I can provide you with the short and dirty version without providing too many spoilers. 

Basically, this college age girl named Hannah has some pretty serious medical issues. She has lung issues, seizures and some hip issues. She ends up in the hospital and is told at 19 years old that she was adopted. She is also told that she is an abortion survivor.  Hannah goes out on a quest to find her birth mother and wants to meet her.  Well, she has a journey of discovery and ultimately learned about forgiveness.

Let me stop right here and say, THIS BLOG ENTRY IS NOT ABOUT ABORTION.  As a woman that was advised by medical experts to abort a baby and refused, as a person who knows loves an abortion survivor and as a mother of a baby who will forever pay the price for his birth mother's poor choices, I have definite opinions on the topic.  But, so does everyone else.  It isn't a can of worms that I am remotely interested in debating. Maybe another day, maybe another blog post, but not this one. 

Stepping off my soap box now, I will carry on :)

Watching Hannah go through this experience, I learned a lot about myself as a person.   I learned that I spend entirely too much time holding on to hurt feelings.  I spend so much time looking at Biscuit and, honestly, hating his birth mother for all of the things that she did to him.  All of the time that she spent hurting him. Because she was selfish. Finally, when he goes to a family that loves him more than life itself, she won't just let him go, let him be happy. No, she had to drag that process out too.  By not showing up to visitation and never even attempting to meet the person that was raising "her" child, she just left him alone in the world and luckily he found someone to make sure he was ok. I am angry!! To say the least, I have a lot of aggression toward her.  I really do and it probably isn't healthy.  But, "to be human is to be beautifully flawed."  This is one of of those flaws that makes me real beautiful. 

If I stepped back and looked at my sweet little man, I would know that she had to have some good in her. She had to, she made someone that has heart, iron will and determination like nothing I have ever seen.  I realize that she took wrong turns in her life.  I know that her life was basically one wrong turn from the very beginning. Although, I don't feel that it an excuse for anyone, I know that I can't judge her. I don't know her story.  I know, "life isn't always black and white, I can hate the crime, but not hate the criminal." 

Does this mean that I won't want to play a game of "Whack a Birth Parent" each and every time that I have to hold him so tightly that my arms hurt just so he can get the sensory stimulation that he craves??? Or when he wants to go outside and I can't let him because he is too young to understand that he is having a breathing is optional kind of day??? Or when he is crying out because of some medical procedure and I can't stop the pain. Or, when he gets asked not to come to the YMCA or to Mother's Day Out because they are too scared of his medical issues???  All he wants to be is a typical two year old!  No, that isn't what it means. 

It does mean, I have to see the good in her. I have to forgive. I have to understand that hating her does nothing but plant a small seed of bitterness in me. I don't want that. It isn't good for my babies. Besides, he is part of her. Never, in a million years, could I hate one of the two great loves of my life.  One day, he may meet her.  I want him to be a big enough person to be able to look at her and say,  "I forgive you." 





The weak can never forgive. Forgiveness is the attribute of the strong. ~ Gandhi

He is one of the strongest people I know.

Monday, March 19, 2012

I left half of my heart at Gym and Swim...the other half is at home with his nurse :)

The Bit is an AMAZING child.  Don't get me wrong, he has his moments. All kids do. Overall, he is amazing.  I am going to need all of you to point me to this blog on the days he is making me nuts :)  He has Spring Break from kindergarten most of this month and last week was his first ever day camp experience.  As a mother, it was MY first week too. 

This was HARDER that his first day of preschool or KINDERGARTEN.  In preschool, he was there with kids his own age. I could mentally prepare myself for the fact that it was "good for him to socialize." Kindergarten -again kids his own age. PLUS for the first month he was on an augmented schedule to phase him (or me) into the new school schedule.  NOT here, I dropped him off at Gym and Swim and there he was in the para Olympics of all summer camps he was swimming, dry land training and canoeing all day long. He could handle it, but he is my baby and he is with the BIG kids... GULP!!

On Monday, I left that building, without my little blonde cutie beside me and felt like I left half of my heart at Camp.  Half of my heart -beating, exposed and weak only to be ruined by the elements. Scared that the big kids are going to take away the innocence and pureness that makes him who he is and start the shift to turn him into the teenager that he will be...ugh!    

The end of the first day came and when asked how his day went, he said, "Mom I got to save a kid's life today."  For further explanation, he didn't actually save a life, but the canoe tipped and he paddled his over so the kid could get in. Good enough for me. The next day, "Mom, I got to lift up the whole back of a canoe by myself. Wanna see my muscles?"  The week went on and every day he came home with a proud accomplishment and seemed to grow just a tiny bit more as a person.  At the end, sweet Bit, who also has a whole lot of his Mama's personality was presented with the WILD AND CRAZY award. Which he proudly displays on his special shelf.

This week, in my quest to be less unfit than usual, I learned two things:
1. Thank GOD for the Biscuit. Without him, I don't think I could handle Bit growing up without LOTS of medication.
2.  Maybe this half of my heart isn't as
weak as I thought that it was. Maybe, I have put enough work into this half that when tested, it is just as strong as all of the other (bigger) hearts running around out there. This half of my heart, has learned confidence and independence. He is certainly more wild and crazy than some, but that is ok.  After all, wild hearts, can't be broken.  

Sunday, March 11, 2012

Life... it is going to be a wild ride...

When I die (which I don't plan on doing any time soon) I want my tombstone to say; "It was a wild ride, but it was fun. Wasn't it??"

Friday, I went to a training. This training was about people with Fetal Alcohol Syndrome and raising "Children From Hard Places."  Initially, I spoke with the person giving the training, she recommended that I read the book The Connected Child. It is a book for parents that have welcomed children through adoption from another culture, from troubled backgrounds or with special needs.  To humor her, I read the book. 

Initially, I did it thinking, "This book has nothing to do with me and my problems... not even a little bit." This book as all about kids that were in the "system." These kids were traumatized. Kids that were tossed around. Biscuit was NEVER tossed.  He kind of fell and landed softly into the arms of a woman that wanted him more than she wanted her next breath.  Well, I was wrong.  I am beginning to learn that in life, most of the time, I am wrong.  I was so smart when I was a teenager. What happened???

I learned that kids with Fetal Alcohol Spectrum disorders are ADORABLE. With their sweet little precious moments eyes, who couldn't love them??? I think God did that on purpose. Because if they weren't so darn cute, with all the screaming, explosive tantrums, OCD, ADD, ADHD, learning difficulties, sensory processing disorders and trouble living life that these kids face- all the while frustrating the parents that love them more than life itself. Any parent would absolutely want to KILL them- if they didn't have those sweet precious moments eyes. Even as adults, you will look into their eyes and remember the sweet baby that you waited for. The one you loved before you even knew. The one that took your breath away the first time he was laid in your arms and you won't want to take. him. out. Who said that evolution didn't exist??

With that said, I learned a lot of parenting Biscuit is recognizing that life is all about prospective. His prospective is much different than mine. His prospective is that of a person that has Post Traumatic Stress Disorder. He came to me at 6 weeks old but, I wasn't able to protect him for the first year of his life. The one where he was the most venerable. When he was traumatized. The one where he was forced to use alcohol and drugs. He has brain damage.  His fight, flight or freeze response is very heightened. It is my job as his mother to make sure that even though I KNOW he isn't in any danger, he knows he isn't in any danger. It is my job to make sure that he has an outlet to ensure that the sensory stimulation that he craves is received, safely.  Since, he enjoys sitting in my oven, this is NO easy task. I promise. Please don't think I haven't tried to lock said oven.  

It isn't about him learning to be normal. What ever normal means anyway. It is about my husband and I learning to help him be the best him that he can be. 

So here we are, at the beginning of another wild ride. One that I am scared to death of...really I am. But, I wouldn't get off of it for anything in the world.  One day, I will look into those precious moments eyes- now belonging to a grown man (who hopefully doesn't still sit in the oven) and know it was a wild ride, but we had some fun along the way.  Didn't we??