Tuesday, August 20, 2013

Save You

Almost a year ago Sweetie had her first rage with me, the following 7 months were probably the hardest of my life. I can't believe it has been 6 months since Sweetie went into PRTF.  What a crazy 6 months this has been. In less than 15 hours Sweetie will be returning home. I am excited and frankly, I am scared to death. Sweetie has learned so good skills to help her control her anger, but she has also learned some new behaviors that are difficult, like saying " I don't have to do that, you can't make me". Boy is that a trigger for me... I immediately think "What do you mean, I can't make you??? ". This will probably always be difficult for me to deal with. Both of us have the subconscious need to control things and have the last word. There is so much of my personality in my daughter. No wonder we clash so much. I have no doubt that if we had a biological child she would be just as headstrong, determined and stubborn.
Yes, the last 7 months has be so terribly trying, but I would not trade it for anything. Of course, I have moments when I asked myself "how did I allow myself to get in this mess", but there are many moments when I feel so much pride for how far my girl has come. I have had moments of doubt and regret. I have felt as if I have turned my back on my daughter when I admitted her to residential treatment. I felt like I abandoned her again. I know that it is what she needed, but there is still a huge quilt that I have carried. I pray that she sees we never left her, we were here the whole time. We have not given up on her. I want her to see how truly special she is and for her to know that she deserves to be loved. She deserves our love. I wish I could fix everything for her. I wish I could save her. But I alone can not. I do not know what we have lying ahead of us. I can hope for times of great growth for our girl and for us. I know we will have set backs and we will work through them.
For now life will be full of therapy and structure. 4 days of therapy a week, 3 are in home working with her on behaviors, Saturdays will be our trauma work days with Ms. Dana. I am excited to start working with Ms. Dana again. I have worked with many mental health workers in the last year and she is the only one who really understand Reactive Attachment Disorder. Our time working with her was the only time Sweetie was addressing any of her trauma history, which she so desperately needs to do in order to really begin to heal. I am excited that the Intensive In Home Therapy team is going to follow Dana's recommendations. I couldn't ask for anything better when it comes to treatment for Sweetie. Between the therapeutic team, her amazing school (that saved her spot for her to come back this year.)and Ms. Carmen (Sweetie's after school caretaker) we have our resources lined up. I really believe this is Sweetie's best chance at healing.

As always I am blown away at how blessed I am with amazing friendships during my journey with Sweetie. Friends who have been so supportive and so understanding. Friends who don't judge my Sweetie's behavior. There are not enough words to express my gratitude to everyone who has supported us and have prayed for our family. Without the support of each and every one of you  I could not be the mom I need to be for Sweetie. I have so much love for you all!

Sunday, August 04, 2013

For You

This 6 months has flown by and in 15 days Sweetie will be returning home from PRTF.I am excited and nervous. She was home yesterday and we went school shopping. It was so much easier this year than last. Sweetie is much more in tune with getting dysregulated by loud noises and chaotic environments. She only had about 30 seconds of issue during our 7 hours of shopping. She immediately corrected her behavior and was able to acknowledge that the super loud music in the store was too much and made her feel irritated. She has really gotten into different fabrics and prints, which is completely opposite of the Hollister tee shirts and jeans kick she was on last year. She again did a great job budgeting her school clothing funds and did not go over her budget at all, she also made sure to spend every single penny... literally :) She had a great day.

So with just 15 days left before Sweetie comes home, I am super busy trying to line up resources.
I have found a care taker for her after school who will pick her up at 3 and bring her home, help get her homework done, hang out with her and help make dinner. Ms. C has a bunch of experience with kiddos like my Sweetie. She actually works for the only group home I would have even considered.
She is all about structure, which is honestly something I need to be better about. So we will have her and then 3 days of Intensive In Home therapy 3 times a week. And after we adjust we will go back to our attachment therapist Ms. D. I am going to have to get Sweetie a tutor for math the make up for her missing the last few months of school. We are going to do what ever is needed to give Sweetie the best chance at healing and for her to succeed in whatever it is she decides.

I will be honest that I am nervous and excited about her returning home. She has made such great improvements the last few weeks. I am working on myself to control my own triggers. It is hard to let go of the feeling that she is going to blow up. I need to shake this feeling. If I am feeling it, she will be able to tell and that will cause her to feel rejected and cause the blowup. I have been working on this in therapy myself. It is difficult to handle the rejection and stay therapeutic. I really struggle with this and I will probably always be a work in progress in this area.
I had a great opportunity to practice that this past week. Sweetie was singing a duet with one of her peers for chapel. She refused to perform if I was present. Since it involved another girl, I backed down and waited back in the therapist office for her to come back. Once she finished her performance she comes strolling in , looks me dead it the eyes and asked if I was mad about what she had done. I said  "no", even though my feelings were hurt. She did this during therapy so that we would not be addressing her safety plan, which she did not want to go over. A safety plan is guidelines to help keep her safe and others around her safe. It was hard for her to talk about this, because it is admitting she has issues. That is still too much for her to handle. The path too healing is going to be a long on with my dear child, but it is a journey that we can make! I have real hope that there is complete healing available for my Sweetie to have.  That is really all this mama can hope for.