- Happy St. Patrick’s Day. I wore my green glasses today.
- Things are…all over the place. I almost hate it when someone asks, “How are you?” Like, there’s a pandemic, I’m an extrovert trapped at home; my daughter is struggling and I don’t know exactly what I can do to make it better, work is emotionally draining 99.9999999995% of the time and my own mental health always seems precarious.
- So, I”m doing fine.
- Except, that’s not really true.
- I am fighting the good fight though. With daylight savings I can get more outside time and I’m delighted by that. I’ve taken Yappy on an evening walk every day this week. The increased sunlight and exercise is always great for my mood. I’ve started sleeping with my weighted blanket again. Sometimes that added weight, pressure just is so soothing.
- I’m really struggling with parenting right now. We have a good medical team. We’re really trying to give Hope autonomy with her care as a young adult. I’m trying to give her structure, but it’s really a lot with everything that’s going on. The issues are just like whackamole; we get one thing under control and something else pops up. Depression is getting better, but now the anxiety is debilitating. I can only imagine what it must be like for Hope. Not being able to find a “fix” is killing me. I really feel helpless and super frustrated. I don’t see this ending anytime soon.
- At the end of every day I’m exhausted. I would probably allow myself to get in my bed at 7:30pm if it didn’t sound SOOO early. Sometimes I do it anyway, but days like today…I’m trying to wait until at least 8pm.
- In other news Yappy is now using steps to get on and off of my bed; I’m so proud of him. A few months I noticed he was starting to have to work harder to get up on my bed; it’s a big jump. I bought some doggie steps, tried a couple of times to train him to use them. He looked at me like I was stupid. I shrugged and just left the steps there. After a month he started randomly using the steps, just like that–no prompting, no treats, nothing. He just started using them. Now he uses them consistently unless he’s feeling frisky and wants to hop up. If only everything was that easy.
- I am supposed to get my second vaccine next week. I’m now able to really count down the days until I can see my parents, who will be getting their second shot tomorrow. Just knowing I will be able to hug them in a matter of weeks nearly brings me to tears.
- I still wish I was motivated to write more, especially about parenting and older child adoption. Sometimes I get so frustrated because so much of the adoption conversation is dominated by infant, international and transracial adoption. I really wish more folks were writing about families like me and Hope. There are absolutely threads that are similar, but there are narratives that are different–not better or worse, just different. I often find myself trying to decide if I want to weigh in on posts even though I know the conversation isn’t about older child adoption and I want to hear about those stories and from those adoptees. I’m realizing that I might need to reconstruct my adoption squad. Our challenges never really go away, but I don’t necessarily seek the same kind of engagement and help that I used to seek. This young adult thing is different, and while in some ways it’s hard to remember what life felt like before Hope, it’s only been 7 years. It’s crazy. I just wish there were more folks talking and sharing about this kind of journey. Sometimes it’s lonely out here.
March 17, 2021
March 18th, 2021 at 11:38 am
Knowing you’re actually going to see your folks and hug on them, that’s everything!
It’s been said eight thousand times, but pandemic life is doing a real good job of exposing every crack, magnifying every bit of every struggle, wearing down reserves… so much respect for you and Hope.
March 19th, 2021 at 12:09 pm
It’s so hard to share online about older child adoption because while cute baby photos are easy, big kid struggles feel like things that our kids might not want on the internet. Which does make it hard to find online community! (My kids, adopted from foster care, are 17 and 20 now).
March 19th, 2021 at 12:13 pm
Yes, this is so true. Thanks for pointing that out.
March 19th, 2021 at 2:50 pm
THANK YOU for normalizing and sharing and really the hope.
March 22nd, 2021 at 11:28 am
ABM – I live for your posts each Monday. I agree we need more folks to share about their experiences with older adopted children, especially moms of color. You have given me some food for thought. 🙂 Would you be open to a group chat/conversation to offer guidance? Maybe we could discuss how to get started, keep it going, other considerations. (Not like you don’t have enough on your plate!) Thank you for sharing your experiences. You are a bright star! Shine on!!
March 27th, 2021 at 8:31 am
I read your blog regularly when I was considering fostering and then starting out, then got sort of burned out on thinking about foster care or adoption when I didn’t have to and so stopped for awhile– but now some friends are considering adoption, and I was so happy to be able to recommend your blog as a resource! I’m enjoying getting caught back up. Just wanted to tell you that I appreciate your honesty, and all that you share.