Tuesday, March 4, 2014

Parenting

When I first started writing this blog more than 5 years ago, I just wanted to write, I didn't worry about offending anyone, because no one really read it!  I might have 300 hits a month.  Now I have thousands a day and I think a little more about what I share.  Before it was mainly for friends & family to read, the girls' adoption and the accident changed all of that.  So sometimes its hard to know what to share and what not to share.  Now I blog for various reasons, sometimes just to write something and encourage myself like an on-line journal and other times to specifically share about God and how He has helped us.  Sometimes it is to just catch people up and sometimes it's to share advice/things I've learned.  Sometimes it is just to share my heart.

Shad signed up for piano lessons today.  He has been struggling with some behaviors lately that we'd like to see change.  He finds it very hard to be truthful when asked about something that he thinks will get him in trouble.  Shad has had some problems in this area for years but we've seen it increase the older he has gotten.  He had asked for a kitten for about a year.  I was concerned about having to have anymore responsibility so we talked to him about how he would have to feed/water and clean the litter box daily.  Around Christmas we got him two kittens.  He did great for awhile, everything was new, the kittens are really great little fellows and easy to care for.   A few mornings ago I asked if he'd cleaned out the litter box before school.  He said yes, but since I hadn't seen him go out to the laundry room, I asked him again and again he said yes.  THEN he told me to go and look (obviously thinking I was too busy and that by telling me to do it, I'd think he had really done it)  WELL......I know a little bit about what I call "criminal thinking"  I didn't spend all that time working as a probation officer and working on a MA in criminal justice for nothing!  I went and looked and it was beyond obvious that he had not cleaned it.   When he was confronted, at first he still insisted that he had cleaned it (there was hardly any litter left in it and plenty of poop so unless the kittens ate the litter he had not cleaned nor added litter)   Then he said he lied because he just didn't want to do it.  I almost laughed, at least he was being honest:) 

For punishment there was an area of the yard that needed to be weeded and he got to do it all by himself. (it's a joke around here if something needs to be weeded...which boy is going to get in trouble first and have to do it LOL)   Because this is a behavior that happens repeatedly, we feel it is more than just disobedience, it points to a need in him.  Sure there is a part of it that is disobedience but there has to be more. 

After he had gotten most of the little area weeded, I went out and talked to him.  We had a good talk first about the disobedience and lying.  But then we talked about something he could focus on and he said he wanted to take piano lessons.  He had mentioned it before, so today we went to the music store in town and signed him up. 

Parenting a child that has been adopted, requires a lot of finesse and wisdom.  The child is usually emotionally scarred in some way by the rejection and abandonment of his birth family, even if they don't  quite understand it. Then if the child had been in an orphanage or foster care....they've got all of that to deal with also.   Adopted kids tend to statically have more issues with mental health and criminal involvement.  That doesn't mean that every adopted kid has some huge problem at all!  But it does mean there is more emotional baggage for a child that has gone through such a deep hurt.  So in dealing with Shad, we really try to parent creatively and outside the box.  I am sure we don't' always get things right!   But we try our best. 

I'm sharing this NOT to shame him at all.  (All kids lie and so do most adults  LOL)  But to encourage other parents to deal with your child's behavior, don't push it under a rug BUT also try and understand the child.  Shad is so bright (in 4th grade but almost in  6th grade work) we do have to work to keep him occupied and interested.  I'm really excited about him signing up for piano lessons and love that he has the desire to do something like that.  I'm glad we could deal with the situation and still give him something to help him feel good about himself and something he can focus on. 

Every child is so very different.  Steve has always been so easy going....but if you take that to the extreme, that is not good either.  Sam and Sarah are so different from each other although they have the same medical/mental diagnosis.  And Selah was very different before the accident and after the accident, I've had to remind all those who work with her, of WHO she was/is so the expectation for her to be a certain way, may have to be challenged due to who she was before the accident.   Parenting is complicated!  Sometimes when I get together with friends who share about their crazy family and then I share and....then I think.....WHAT the heck will my kids say about me when they are grown???   

Sam had really gotten back on his schedule and was doing really good with the anxiety.  The last few days he has seemed stressed again.  We go back to the neurologist this month, so we'll see if he will keep him on the medication he tried him on for a few weeks.  I think it seemed to help, it was so light but he ran out before the appointment came and the doctor wants to see us first before he decides what to do.  Again, if we can keep him occupied and busy, he seems to handle stress much better.  He has began doing NEW things and it has always seemed like he gets upset/stressed when he is progressing mentally.  He has become so much more independent of us in just the last week.  He now runs all over the yard without us holding his hand.  This is something he didn't do a month ago....now we are very focused on making sure our gates are all securely fastened and our gaze is on him the whole time he is outside! 

Like I said, parenting is not the easiest thing in the world but the most rewarding!!!!!!

Selah is back to normal, so thankful she made it through that infection without having to go to the hospital.  She has just done great with all of that.  In PT this morning, she was able to get full range of motion.  Selah doesn't really like it when it gets hard and will grimace but she could do it with the PT working her!  I'm not sure she had full range of motion BEFORE the accident!   The weather is so nice she is out every morning in her chair.  She seems to really enjoy going outside. 


So another day of trying to be the best parent possible for each of my kids....some days are easier than others but it is so worthwhile.  I love my kids just the way they are mentally/emotionally/spiritually/physically.... I just want to help them get to the best place possible in their lives.  Each of them will have very different futures based on their abilities but our focus is to equip them in all the areas mentioned above so they can have the best life possible. 

We as parents can always use prayer to help us, so feel free to pray for us!

Most of the time I'd rather just deal with things in a tough straight forward way, it is much easier but I'm not sure it is the best way.  BUT as we deal with problems we do keep our standard up, we just try to encourage the child to come up to that standard using every means possible!  Sometimes the encouragement may come in a more punitive way and sometimes in a more encouraging way.   And there is ALWAYS plenty of weeds in yard/garden/flowerbeds LOL

1 comment:

  1. That is a fun story. All 4 of ours are homegrown yet each one is cut out so differently! One is super uptight. One is super laid back. One is super musical and One likes to do what she decides to no matter what we say she should do! I love reading your blog - I started following you the day of the accident. I don't have time to read books like I would like to but your blog is like reading a mini chapter of a book every day. :) You are a great Author and keep it entertaining. Thanks for keeping it real and as always praying everyday for Selah and your family!

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