Girl is managing to keep her temper under control and I am very proud of her for that, one tiny little outburst in the past week but I have this theory. The more she is reigning in her temper the worse the tics are getting, it’s almost like a different release for what she is feeling, we are seeing new and quite specific tics being added all the time to the palilalia and zuzzing noises and I can’t help but tell her what she is doing, in the hope that she can try and take some control of them. She has no idea what she is doing of course and I know she can’t help it but I worry that people or more specifically her friends at school are going to start noticing because the tics are getting odder, more frequent and are no longer confined to noises.
Girl’s latest and most noticeable tics include repeatedly bobbing her tongue out very quickly like a snake while she is talking (and actually while she is being quiet too) and yesterday she started clicking too. I am filled with angst. On top of this the conversations are getting harder and harder, she just cannot process anything we tell her and it is frustrating to say the least.
Yesterday in the car on the way home from school I told her that a little boy from her class wanted to invite her round to play on Thursday, we ascertained that today was Monday and I got her to go slowly through the days of the week, she said Monday, Tuesday, Friday, so I got her to think about it and she did it correctly, because she can do these things but often says the first thing that comes into her head. I then repeated back to her slowly ‘so today is Monday, then Tuesday, then Wednesday, then Thursday and then you can play at your friend’s house.’ Thirty seconds later, ‘Mummy, what day is it today?’ (I count quickly to ten in my head and try to hold in an exasperated sigh) ‘OK Girl, we already worked out what day it is so have a think about what we just talked about and tell me what day you think it is?’. ‘Thursday’ came the reply. Start over. This is pretty much a typical conversation and I find it quite difficult to cope with them, I can’t work out how to get her to process what is being told to her and keep it in.
Along with the tics we are seeing a rise in controlling, demanding and bossy behaviour and feel like the time-bomb is close to explosion but you know what? I know when it comes we will cope and that is definitely something to be positive about, no matter how bad meltdown is with a united front we get through it.
I have to repeat the words ‘don’t take it personally’ to myself all weekend like a mantra but it’s so hard not to take things to heart or believe my own advice and after a particularly tough and emotional weekend (which I will tell you about later this week) the words are still ringing in my head this morning.
My son and I have a particularly good relationship, or that is we have a good relationship until the rest of the family come home and then it just seems to fall to pieces and what started as a few minor incidences is turning into a standard, consistent behaviour and I feel like it’s breaking my heart into little pieces.
All week while Girl is at school and the Hubster is at work Boy and I have a lot of fun. He has such a lovely, cheerful, fun personality; he loves to be close, playing, laughing and giggling, cuddling and tickling and he loves nothing more than helping mummy with the housework but when the family starts to come together at the end of the day the personality rapidly disappears.
The Hubster rarely sees the special Boy that I know that he is, he sees a grumpy, demanding, wilful little boy who will fight against everything. In the evenings and at weekends my little boy will not let me do anything for him without kicking or screaming or shouting for daddy, he will not make eye contact with me and he does not want me to play with him, tickle him or help him. He does not eat, he throws things in temper, he deliberately causes mischief for attention, he craves daddies attention but on his own terms.
I remember at two Girl being a little like this (though sort of different), the minute the Hubster came through the door that would be it, it was all daddy, daddy, daddy but our adoption was difficult right from the start because of her experiences in foster care and it was easier to accept that she needed her daddy at the end of the day. Now, although we have some difficult times Girl and I have a really good relationship, she is actually a bit of a mummy’s girl and after the really tough start we had I never thought I would say that!
The difference that worries me is that Girl could be a little monkey all day and just continue with the testing behaviour into the evening. However, with Boy the change in behaviour is so pronounced that it is causing me real anxiety and I have come to dread weekends because I just cannot be a mummy to my little boy, not for want of trying, he just won’t let me.
I’m finding this post particularly hard to write as I just feel so low. I know enough, have read enough books to know that it’s not personal, I know that in time Boy will get past his current difficulties, after all two is a difficult age for any child and it’s less than a year since he left foster care so he must still have some pretty traumatic memories of life-changing events but I feel like I am wishing time away, I live for the end of the weekend so we can get back into mid-week routine, I watch the clock ticking round to bedtime because I find the constant rejection hard to bear, the negative behaviour, the not eating, the screaming and wilfulness, the hitting and kicking, the battle for attention between the kids.
I don’t know how to end this post, I feel like I have a million thoughts still to write down but have run out of words. It really does help to write things down, even from this outpouring I can see one massive positive, jumping out of the page at me and that positive is Girl. Despite everything she and we have been through we are getting there, we have lived and learned and that gives me massive hope for Boy. Now, how long till bedtime?