I don't have a fancy phone. You know--the smart ones? Yeah. I have a plain, dumb phone that pretty much can call people and send and receive text and photo or video messages. Super simple. I need a smart phone, but I can't afford the data package what with all the wild and crazy spending we do around here--everything from therapy co-pays to utilities to food for the minions--it's expensive.
I know if I had a smart phone, it would be overloaded with apps. I'd be an app maniac. I see and hear about all kinds of apps that would do all kinds of things for me. I always find myself wishing I had an "app for that."
I'm kind of old school when it comes to helpful stuff, I suppose. I find lots of information, resources and solace in blogs written by those experiencing similar situations to mine. I've done that for years. Military spouse blogs. Blogs written by other moms. I have so many blogs about adoption saved to favorites (the cupcake sparkly unicorn variety) that I can't even stomach reading anymore. I recently moved from resource oriented blogs created by professional organizations or therapists to finding blogs by parents whose adopted kids are hauling around big bags of trauma.
While it is amazing to have real-life, unvarnished, realistic views on parenting kids who have suffered trauma, it is scary as hell. Especially scary now when each passing day pushes me further into the arena of figuring out how to survive a day and then the next...maybe I can do it? Maybe I can't? Maybe I don't want to? I often feel alone in that because my poor husband is more than a little over it. He's been through his own levels of trauma, for lack of a better word. The man has been on high alert for nearly two years now. From deployment in a war zone abroad to deployment to a war zone in his own home, his body can't tell the difference. On nights like tonight, when he literally vibrates with tension, but refuses to disengage and just go to bed, I want to beat him with a pillowcase full of bars of soap. I love him, but he knows enough to understand that when he's tired, he is sucky person. Top that off with a dose of PTSD and some M3 shenanigans and he's a mess--more of a detriment to my ability to parent than a help. The worst part is when everyone else is kind of doing okay, but he's not and he drags us all down with his sinking ship--the very same thing that he can't stand when it happens with M3, he does himself.
But, just as I'm trying to see the reasons behind M3's behavior rather than just the behavior, I'm trying to do the same with my husband. I have found my compassion for my husband has led to a renewed compassion for my daughter. She is a very, very sick little girl, but we do have moments where I can see what it could be like if she could be healed in some capacity.
I've had people tell me that with the prognosis we have been given, they don't know what they'd do and they would probably be looking for another placement for her. Don't think we have not thought of that. What we didn't know was that the outcome of that could financially devastate us--we could have to pay child support; we would be taken to court and face having some awful charge on our record regarding some form of child abandonment; we would be investigated to see if we're fit to parent our bio children (which I find particularly absurd given that it would be an evaluation conducted by the same people who found us fit to adopt in the first place, but didn't bother to point out our child would be seriously mentally ill); I would face an investigation by my state's bar to see if this affected my ability to practice law (the charge would appear on my record and I doubt many people would read past that to see what actually happened); and, perhaps worst of all, the charge would prevent us from becoming legal guardians for another's child should that be needed--what if something happened to one of my girls later in life and my grandchildren needed me in that capacity? Thanks to this adoption, that would not be allowed.
How is that even possible?
Rock. Hard place. That's us. Even if we need a way out someday for her own good--as in, we are told by professionals that she will never get better here and that we're a detriment to her recovery. Or, more likely, she is a danger to us and our family because she can't get better (RAD isn't RAD when you're an adult...it's a disorder of the sociopathic variety). Even if we have to do something drastic to save a life, we would go through a little house of horrors to do it.
They certainly don't put this on the brochures or in the information packets you request from adoption agencies.
Funnily enough, I may have rounded the bend completely because I'm having a good day today where I do not feel so weak, scared, discombobulated or beaten. I'm not optimistic. But, then again, I'm never optimistic. I may be more realistic? Or not. Not sure. But, I'm trying to figure out what works to 1) keep M3 in check and 2) keep myself in balance.
Not sure how it works, but one foot in front of the other is how I start, I guess.