Thursday, 28 February 2013

2 years as a family of 3

2 years ago today I posted this...

'We went to the adoption agency offices this morning to plan out the next couple of weeks. We had some formal stuff to go through, and promises of reports and life story book came from boy-o's social worker, but both us and his foster mum wonder whether it will actually happen. We have planned our meetings with boy-o until next Tues. Because the foster mum has other children, one of whom is having an operation next Wed, we are having a review meeting next Tues, and then will plan from that point!

Having done that this morning, this afternoon we actually meet boy-o. He started off shy, and not at all happy, but gradually he started to come round a bit. After about 20mins, he ended up looking at the book I made whilst sitting on my lap - which I have to say was a truly amazing experience, not having a little boy sitting on my lap, but the fact that this is our little son.

We built towers of stacking cups and knocked them down. He spent time emptying my handbag. He spent time with M, again sitting on his lap looking at the book, but also playing with other toys. We looked at the photo of our dog, and decided that dogs go 'woof'.

When we left boy-o said 'Good bye' and 'see you'. And it's nice to know that in the morning, we will spend more time with him.

I can't explain how happy I feel right now, and I know that I will grow to love this character, who does everything at one speed (fast) and wants to explore and investigate.'

And that last sentence was so true... I did grow to love him, faster than either I or M could believe. He still does everything at that one speed and still wants to explore and investigate. He has learnt so much (and we have learnt so much) over the last two years... it has been an amazing roller coaster  good times and bad times, but so, so worth it. I adore the fact that he's is ours and we are his. 

Friday, 22 February 2013


So back in Nov we phoned up our adoption agency and said 'we're ready to start the process for a second child'. We knew that we would have to wait until after Christmas for anything to happen....

We had a visit from a social worker 5 weeks ago. It was our old social worker so she was honest and straightforward with us, and very much gave us the impression that the paper work would follow soon.

So here we are 5 weeks later, waiting for that paperwork....

And the reason, those magic targets made by the government. 8 months from enquiring until approval, except enquiring is getting that form sent off back to them. The longer they delay on sending the form, the easier it is for them.

I know that there are families already in the system, that they need to try to push through - but it's so frustrating .. we could be approved within 3 months, and have a child out of the care system not much longer after that. Instead we are waiting because the social workers are too busy meeting their targets with those that have already had the form.

So as generally happens when the government sets targets, things happen so slowly in the beginning, so that the waiting times during the time that counts is shorter!

There are a lot of children waiting to be adopted within our area at the minute - it's one of those areas on the map that shows over 48 children... speaking to one of the social workers we've been told the actual figure is twice that. Which is why it's so frustrating to be waiting for some paper to come through the post so that we can start again!

Thursday, 21 February 2013

Welcome to ICLW

Welcome if you are here for the first time, it's ICLW, please click over to Mel's to read more about it.
I love ICLW, as it gives me chance to read new blogs, or blogs I read rarely; I don't participate every month, but thought I would have a good go this month.

I'm nh, married to M and parenting through adoption boy-o.

We travelled a road to get to where we are now, through infertility, IVF, ICSI and miscarriages. I can't believe thought that very shortly it will be 2 years since our boy came home with us forever... time flies.

We live on the outskirts of a city in Yorkshire, not a glamorous city, not one that people think of visiting as a nice place, but it is home... and we love it for all it's quirks.

I am involved in various adoption activities in the area; myself and another lady organise park meet ups for adoptive families, that same lady organises a support group for adoptive/pre adoptive parents and we are lucky that our agency also provides a group for young children to go to once a fortnight. Normally we don't go - but this week is half term holidays, so we will be there.

We adore boy-o, he is our blessing. But as with most adopted children there are issues that arise because he is adopted. My blog is a space a use to write about some of those issues, along with things that are happening in life in general.

Welcome - I hope you stay a while and have a look around...

primal responses

I love my boy dearly, he is amazing and it still gives me a thrill every time I remember I am his mother. His thrill with the world and wonder in what he sees is contagious.

And yet...

If you look under all that amazement and joy and caring; there is a terrified little boy who doesn't let himself fully believe in the good. We try hard to remember, but others don't see it, they are of the 'now he's adopted, it's all okay' opinion - along with 'he was so young, he won't remember'.

Except what they don't see, is that response which is primal... something is different, something is changing, what is going to happen....flight, fight or freeze.

On Monday, we went to my in-laws for a while... and boy-o was playing with his granddad  And his granddad started to tease him, that Father Christmas lives in their box room.

And boy-o burst into tears, came storming into the lounge and wouldn't leave mine or his dad's side for the rest of the time we were there.

'but it was only a joke' 'come on boy-o, I was only teasing'

We calmed him down, he stopped crying. 'You are safe, mummy and daddy are here, our job is to keep you safe, nothing bad will happen, we are here'

'it'll be okay, no harm done'

To which I have to admit I snapped 'except the screaming that will occur tonight, the terrors that will come'

'no, no, that won't happen'

Even M said at that point 'it will'

'no, you're over reacting' 'you make too much out of the fact he's adopted' 'he's okay now'

I did feel like phoning them up every time he woke up screaming that night, to say
'yes, he's ok, this is normal isn't it?'

I didn't. But I wish I could have done.

I wish I could get them to see that little boy that is terrified of 'different', because if I can't get them to see - what chance to I have of getting others to see.

Saturday, 16 February 2013

Weekend thoughts

My mind in snippets....

I spoke to my boy's teacher at the end of yesterday and said what I thought had happened... she said 'that makes sense'. I do like her, and one of the assistants; just the one that sends me around the bend. I might accidentally have let his teacher know though, although I hope not. I work with his teacher's sister in law, and she takes keen interest in my boy; as I do her daughter - who is now at Uni. She asked how he was doing on Fri morning, and I told her I wasn't happy and why! She won't go out of her way to say anything, but you know how these things end up happening.

I need to refer you to a fantastic post I've read this week; one of those I shall print out and have pinned up in our house. Quick go read An Adopters Manifesto across at The boy's behaviour if you haven't read it yet, and whilst you are there; have a good look at the Weekly Adoption Shout out.

Still waiting for paperwork from LA for second adopter; it's possible that our social worker's plan won't pan out. Not surprised. Not worried. When it happens, it will happen, the timing will be right for us.

My sister is just starting her homestudy. That's all I'm saying on that at the moment.

Half term is here.... I love it as a teacher, but boy-o craves and needs routine. It could end up being a long week. We only have two real fixed plans at the moment... need to come up with something for the other three days.

I'm 36 very soon. Very, very soon. I didn't give up celebrating my birthday when I turned 30, in fact I very determinedly celebrated it the following year. But it's all still wrapped up in emotion, and I'd sooner it was past.

Life is full of interesting happenings... Church, school, pre-school, Brownies, family. Too much going on, not enough time to devote to any of them really. Each day comes, stuff happens, and it passes.

Thursday, 14 February 2013

school... again

I am ever so grateful to those adoption networks that I mentioned last time; but I am also grateful to the friends that I have on the doorstep - or rather in the play ground at school. I am lucky, one of my biggest supporters through the dark infertility years happens to have some children at the same school as boy-o attends nursery. So when today I was blindsided, I saw her on the way out and along with a lot of other things that we were talking about, I was able to say to her what I'd just been told. And later, when I found out what had actually gone on - you know by talking to my boy - I was able to phone her up and say...all a drama about nothing.

What am I going on about?

Well, when I discovered that boy-o was chewing lots at school, and trying to find reason - I'm convinced it's about grounding and feeling safe - I spoke to his keyworker and let her know that we are thinking of adopting again; and that we have talked about this idea with boy-o. His keyworker obviously let other staff know about this, which is fine, mostly....

Until today - when I got greeted by my least favorite assistant, with 'boy-o's been crying today, and when we spoke to him he said he didn't want the baby to stay'

And she obviously jumped to totally incorrect ideas about adoption and what is going on in our house. Needless to say, I did say 'oh, that's interesting, I wonder where he got that idea from, we don't have a baby, nor are we ever going to have a baby'

When we got to the car - having spent some time chatting to my friend... I was talking to boy-o as we were driving away.

I asked boy-o why he had been crying and he said - 'I wanted to come home' which was a long way away from what the assistant had told me.

It turns out (I think - will ask more questions tomorrow); the little boy who was really upset at drop off time, eventually went home with his mum and baby brother. Boy-o is a caring little soul and the baby brother has some problems and he always asks about the baby.

But... the upset boy obviously got to go home because he was crying, with his baby brother.

My boy isn't silly, he'd told me he didn't want to go, but he'd gone to nursery. He told me he wanted me to stay - but although I settled him, I didn't. But he saw someone he likes upset and able to go home... and I think decided to try it on.

We did talk again about having a 'little brother/little sister' and he now claims he wants 2... he still likes the idea (he may not when they actually arrive). We also talked about how big brothers and sisters don't have to leave because new ones arrive.

I really think he was trying it on, but now I have another thing to discuss with his keyworker!

And yes - I know the assistant means well, but I don't think she listens to him properly. He gets muddled when he's upset and he can do upset really well. Especially when he's as tired as he is.

Roll on next week, some down time, some friend time and some sleep.... and for me some research into sensory integration!

Tuesday, 12 February 2013

Adoption support networks

Just a really, really quick post... just to remind me that it feels good sometimes.

This evening I have been to the adoption support group and have come home buzzing, because it's so wonderful to meet with like minded people and talk through the day/week/month's issues. I got to sit and chat to all sorts of people, from those who I count as friends because we've been in each other's lives for what seems like forever (really less than 2 years?) and we have adopted children, people who have just adopted, and people in the preparation stages.

I love the contacts that the web brings forth, and the support network here, and the immediacy of it. But I do also love the support group and the chat and talks that we have there... plus I can phone some of these people up at 2 o'clock in the morning, and they wouldn't find it odd.

I have some amazing friends outside of adoption, but there are some things that only a few of them would get, but that all the friends I've seen tonight would get instantly.

And as an aside... I owe the two friends who made it possible for me to go to adoption support tonight instead of another meeting a huge drink each - sometime I will get to go out with them again!

And best of all, I got some ideas of how to get across to school why boy-o is chewing so much at the moment... hurrah!

Friday, 8 February 2013

Past, present and future news...

I should have updated before... we've had a better week at school, boy-o has taken his chewy to school every day and he has been calmer and listened better. If only they had mentioned it earlier. He's also been sleeping better; and things have generally been calmer at home.

In other news; still no news from our social worker, I will be emailing her next week, all innocent like, just to say I'm concerned that we haven't had the form yet, and could it have been lost in the post.

In old news - I've remembered I'm not especially good at this point in the year. It was brought home to me because I'm working for a new head of year at school and every time he's seen me this week, he's asked if I'm ok.... the last two years I've worked for HoY's who knew why I don't do well and have just accepted it. I can't bring myself to explain, to someone who doesn't need to know why Feb is so hard; but I might just hide next week.

I can't help but remember that miscarriage. I allow myself some space at this time of year, it is my time to grieve, it is only now and an odd day in October when I let myself dwell.

It doesn't take away from what we've got. It doesn't alter how much I love our boy. I cannot tell you how much he has enriched our lives - and I've said many times before we are truly blessed by our boy. But... at this time of year my thoughts turn to those what might have beens.