Category Archives: Older Child Adoption

Dorm Life

Sweetie 3 has been in the dorms for a month now. Oh how I miss her! The GOOD news is, she is just 30 minutes away. How convenient! Sweetie 2 and I are having lunch with her tomorrow at her dorm apartment. We did last week too, and I think I feel a tradition coming on! 🙂 We text back… (more…)

What Does Connection Look Like?

What does connection look like after your children have not left well? In today’s society it is so much easier than it would have been a long time ago. Remaining connected to our children who are outside of our home is vital. Obviously, there must be a connected relationship already established. I am so thankful that over the years, our… (more…)

A New Phase

We were doing really well. WERE. FAS wreaks havoc on families. It is a demon that sometimes cannot be controlled… For some children it effects their bodies, or facial images, for others it has permanent lasting impact on the reasoning in their brain. We have that impact. Sweetie 4 had decided at 17, her birthday, she would run away from… (more…)

2 Weeks

It has been two full weeks since Sweetie 4 came home. Two wonderful weeks! She is doing so well. We are so proud of her! And we are proud of us too. 🙂 We have had many talks, shopping trips, a “Girls out to get Starbucks” on Thanksgiving night, where we all sat outside because they were closed and laughed… (more…)

Settling In….

Sweetie 4 has been home since Friday. The weekend was like another Furlough. She knew what to expect as we continued doing the same things and she had the same schedule. Then came Monday. It was all new to her. She has been away over a year and the dynamics of family life have changed now that 2 of the… (more…)

Reflections

Tomorrow, just one more day, and Sweetie 4 will walk out the doors of the detention center into a new life. But it won’t be a new life with a different family. It will a different life with THIS family. HER family. I cannot express how closely we felt the despair of the possibility that she would not return home.… (more…)

“They Just Need Love”

I was sitting in the psychiatrist’s office with Sweetie 4 for an appointment last year. I traveled from home and she was brought by the juvenile detention center. The transport officer was a very nice lady who was very well meaning. She spoke about how she is the “jail mama” and all the kids call her that. She mentioned it… (more…)

Staying Connected Staying Safe

When parents adopt a child, they responsibly contemplate all sorts of scenarios and difficulties, and prepare to help their new child adjust to family life. There are classes to prepare, all sorts of seminars and books to read. Some parents may already have experience with other adoptions both domestic and international as we did. In fact, we had adopted domesetically… (more…)

48 Hour Furloughs AND The Countdown Begins

Seventeen days from today, Sweetie 4 will be home. HOME…. and WHOLE. Any of you who are regular readers know that the past year and a half has been very hard. Sweetie 4 spun out of control and eventually crossed an uncrossable line. This brought the legal system into our lives, and for a little over a year she has… (more…)

The Twenty-Four Hour Furlough

Sweetie 4 has made it to her first over night furlough. It has been nearly a year since she spent the night in her own bed. She was so excited to be able to come home. A typical furlough is quite busy. Just to give you an idea of what it is like; she has to have objectives to achieve… (more…)

The TWELVE HOUR Furlough

We had 12 hours together yesterday! Oh my heart! It went so well. We picked her up before church services and she bravely went with us. 🙂 She saw all sorts of familiar faces who welcomed her with open arms. I’m so thankful for that! We went out to lunch with friends and then headed home to work in her… (more…)

A New Furlough

Yesterday was furlough day again. We had so many praying for us, we could feel your prayers. 🙂 The furlough went wonderfully! It was 180º from the last one! And we pray the cycle in the right direction continues! She was pleasant, and met most of her requirements. She forgot about taking pictures of some of her required objectives, but… (more…)

A New Day-A New Chapter

I have to say the last few days have been soul searching, as we were writing back and forth with Sweetie’s counselor, and discussing future ideas with our social worker, and then visiting Sweetie at the center. We could feel the prayers of the Saints who pray for us daily and we are so thankful. I visited Sweetie 4 on… (more…)

Fine Tuning

Sweetie 4 is continuing to do well in detention. We are so pleased. I KNOW that all of us are excited and believe she is going to do well, but we still have 3 months left. Honestly, I think these are NECESSARY months for her, very much like that of a baby in the womb. They COULD survive at 6… (more…)

Being The Steady…

Somebody asked about disrespect from a teen who said they COULD be verbally abusive and there was nothing the parent could do about it. The question was, what do you say when they say this? First off, ((((HUGS)))) to you. I know this was not a part of the picture you had in mind when expanding your family, and offering… (more…)

Changing Faulty Thinking

There are so many layers to trauma, neglect, abuse, FAS, PTSD, Borderline, it is amazing how thinking can be so off that you almost can’t figure out how to address it. Almost. 🙂 The other day we had a GREAT visit with Sweetie 4. She seems to be moving in a direction that has all of us cheering her on.… (more…)

An Aha Moment again…..

Over the last several years, we have been learning more and more about what abuse and neglect does to the brain. It changes it. I have written long ago about chaos being normal and normal seeming like chaos to the newly adopted child, and that IS true. It is our job as parents to flip that around and help them… (more…)

A Mountain Moving Experience

It has been a while since I wrote an update. So much has happened and oh my goodness! MOUNTAINS HAVE BEEN MOVED! What does that mean? “Mountains have been moved?” It means what seemed IMPOSSIBLE…. Happened. 🙂 As many of you know, Sweetie 4 has been home 5 years and 4 months and 20 days; not that I am counting.… (more…)

Progress? I Think So. :)

Last night we had a counseling session at the detention center with Sweetie 4.  We all knew 1 week in advance what this session was going to be about.  Mike and I talked all week about what we might say or what she might say and as we were on our way to go to the session we both looked… (more…)

Defeating Shame

Defeating SHAME  written in 2011 Another BCLC Moment, brought to you……. 🙂 Sweetie 2 and 4  Skating by the Shoppe 🙂 If you understand the concepts behind BCLC (Beyond Consequences Logic and Control) you will know that being in a place of  FEAR_brings about  shame.  A child  can get angry or sullen or shut down.  They may act angry or… (more…)

A Not So BCLC Moment

Originally Written in June 2011 We can turn our personal failures into successes A NOT so BCLC Moment: courtesy of ME! Turned into a BCLC moment…. in the end. Today started out as a great day. Everything was going well… Sweetie 4  was very excited about her treasures from the Euro Deli and said some really sweet things. Then….all of… (more…)

A New Phase

We are entering a new phase in life.  Girlies are GROWING UP!  So many unexpected things have taken place in the last 2 years.  We have had our ups and downs…. and that means life is NEVER DULL! Sweetie 1 has moved in worth her birth mom.  YES…. I just typed that! This happened last week and I am at… (more…)

“What Is Your Need?”

We visited with Sweetie 4 last night.  It was a good visit. 🙂 All day, I had been pondering a quote from Dr. Karyn Purvis: “I have never met a child who can’t come to deep levels of healing, if you understand their need.” I pondered this for a couple of days and it got me to thinking, “What is her… (more…)

Blindsided Again…Sort Of

I’m not even sure what to think honestly.  I wrote in the post below about Sweetie calling home saying, “Mommy! I need you!!!” Then, yesterday happened. It was visitation time.  Now we have been visiting Sweetie 4 between 3 incarcerations and 2 psychiatric stays, and she has always come to visit.  Not so last night. When we arrived, the officer… (more…)

It’s Not About The Paper

Have you ever seen that video clip, “It’s not about the nail?” https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=-4EDhdAHrOg We had one of those moments today. Sweetie 4 and I had a psychiatric appointment today.  It was stressful and full of difficult discussion. She called tonight, using her birthday gift ( phone calls) and was sobbing on the other end of the line. “Mama, I need… (more…)

Ten Years….

Ten years ago, we were in Ukraine.  As many of you know, we have a book in the editing process. I wanted to share an excerpt from it here, in honor of Sweetie 3’s 10th anniversary. 🙂 This is a small part of section 3. VISITING The first days of visiting were great. We would get up and Andrew would… (more…)

Sweetie’s 2 and 3 Are On The Slopes!

I am so proud of my skiier and snowboarder! Here there are with their surgeon and Friend Dr. Herring. We are so thankful for the opportunities they have been given! The amputee ski trip is the high light of their year!

Visiting and Singing and Things….

Tonight, Mike and I visited Sweetie 4.  She is doing really well. She was talking about all the things she got to do during her childhood at home. Apparently they talked about this in group therapy today, and she was thinking about how much fun she had while she was home. She was expressing thankfulness that we let her be… (more…)

“To Be Continued”

Many of you know that for the last year and a half, we have had a very difficult time with Sweetie 4 and more recently with Sweetie 1. Struggles in life will happen.  As a dear friend said, “If it’s your turn to have tribulation, then tribulate!” 🙂 We have been soul searching our hearts over these two sweet hearts.  … (more…)

Great Visit

We had a really great visit with Sweetie 4 tonight, after meeting with her counselor.  She is starting to work hard in the program she is in and we are so thankful for the hard work going on behind the scenes. Sweetie 4 is a very likable girl!  She can truly be so funny and sweet, and tonight we saw… (more…)

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