RSS

Tag Archives: failed adoption

Autism: Residual Pain

Residual effects of yesterday.

I am still struggling with overwhelming sadness and a sense of worthlessness. Other people write on their birthdays how blessed they are to do things and celebrate with their family and friends. Does that mean I am not blessed? We did nothing. I feel cursed. Broken. Alone. I prayed that it would be different, but many of my prayers are met with silence. I can only conclude that God is angry with me.

It isn’t that I believe He shouldn’t be, but… if I could do better, don’t you believe I would? And didn’t He come to save the broken and lost? Does anyone want saving more than me? Has anyone prayed as often for the evil to be taken, and to be made good, as I have? Maybe others have, and so have I, but years later and I am still broken. My life, my family, my heart – all broken.

This is reflected in the children I couldn’t conceive, and the children I couldn’t keep, and the family who abandoned me to their own activities on my 40th birthday. Not blessed. Cursed. And though I know I deserve this, it hurts just the same.

Once again I have to explain to the child I was, who held on for the belief that things had to get better, that things really don’t get better. And I try to hide from her the fear that all those years she lived in pain and terror were really the best she would ever get. And it breaks me, as much as if I were having to tell a child standing in front of me that this would be their reality. It breaks me, over and over, like a near drowned shipwreck victim being smashed against the rocks by the waves.

I want to write to you about success and healing, but what comes out is pain – for that is the experience I live with. Moments of happiness surrounded by weeks of pain. To write anything else would be a lie.

90's and earlier 008

 

Tags: , , , , , , , , , , ,

Autism: Under the Surface

Though I tried very hard, still I could not think. I read my devotional without an issue – but then it was mostly reading. I was able to get through penmanship, but then that is just copying. I did my grammar, but it was just answering simple questions, which I learned in grade school to do. Then I got to Latin.

It was a review lesson, and the work up until this point has not been difficult. Still I was unable to think. I couldn’t even translate one simple word, my anxiety was so bad. Not one. Not difficult stuff, but I couldn’t do it.

011

The reason? I had to go out that night.

Not an unusual place. Not with new people. It was a potluck dinner, but I had already planned to eat ahead of time. I did have to bring a dessert, but it was not something new, or difficult. Just so, so anxious. It is always hard on me when I have to go somewhere, but this was a bit much even for me… at least for an evening that is pretty much routine through the year. True, we took a break for about four months, but I still saw them in church most weeks. It shouldn’t have been so hard, but it was.

I couldn’t think. I couldn’t function. I couldn’t do any cleaning. Even the very things that calm me became impossible at that level of anxiety.

So maybe it wasn’t just that I had to go out that night.

Think again. Analyze again. Take it apart, and make the picture bigger. Look at it in context. Of course I would have been anxious about that night:

  • First time in months.
  • Potluck dinner.
  • Not eating with the group (eating would have been worse, but still.)
  • Bringing a dessert.
  • Visiting.
  • Leaving my house.

Each of those things individually cause me anxiety. Together, of course they would cause high anxiety. Even still, there must have been more. Look bigger.

  • First time leaving my dog since her spay 10 days prior.
  • One day after the anniversary of the day ‘my children’ were taken.
  • Dark, rainy days.
  • Frequent upset stomach in the days leading up to this (struggling with food again!)
  • Frequent headaches (mostly from the weather.)

Okay. So all of these things, for me, are huge. Together? Too much. The moment is beginning to make sense, but might there be anything more?

  • I have been completely fixated… perseverating… overwhelmed by my house, and the needed renovations.
  • My mind feels like it is about to snap as I try to make sense of all the losses in recent years.
  • My mom was planning to phone the next day (a good thing, as it is years between visits, and I like to talk to her, but… phones!)
  • My upcoming birthday tomorrow (September 25) which is always a time of reflection.

And now I pretty much understand why I couldn’t understand my simple Latin lesson. Autism: There is always so much going on under the surface. So much more than what is actually seen.

 

Tags: , , , , , , , , , , , , , , ,

Autism: Memories That Haunt Me

Well, the day is here. Seven years. It hasn’t always been this hard, but hard enough. Today I think of my children, and what might have been. I think of how quiet my house is. How empty. How large. Perhaps that is why each year at this time it becomes really hard to live here.

Last night I fought my way to sleep through tears, hopelessness, and an overwhelming sense of how broken the world is, and how broken my life is. I feel every loss, and every failure. Each and every one.

Vacation July 2016 014

I see my daughter at four, leaning in for a hug before she left for preschool with my husband. Achingly I hear my self deny her. I know why – I didn’t want her leaning across her sister, who had been sent from school despite spending the weekend treating her lice at home. I was overwhelmed. I would see her in a couple of hours, but was anxious about the appointment we were about to go into. I had my reasons. None of them good enough. I wish I had taken my baby in my arms – for three days later, when they let me see her for the last time, she had already been turned against me and wouldn’t come close.

“It is okay, Mommy,” she said. “They will let me come home.”

But they never did.

I see my daughter at six. Happy and smiling despite all of her struggles. Allowing us to change her plans, and drag her to an appointment (because she wasn’t allowed to go to school) even though we knew how hard change was on her. I see her relax as I assured her we would pick her up from the play room at the ministry when our appointment was over – but we never did.

I see my son at ten. Afraid, and vulnerable, and wanting so much to believe he would never be moved again. Wanting so much to be liked, and to fit in, that he would do and say anything. I see this child, who always surrounded himself with people – yet always seemed so alone.

I see my son at thirteen. Bravely coming to a strange place to watch his sister, while we went into an appointment – and being told he wasn’t allowed to go in with her. Awkward, and uncomfortable, and trying so hard to do the right thing despite all of this. I see his face as I walked out, and told him she wouldn’t be coming home with us. None of them would be coming home with us ever again. And I hear his words, and see his response these past seven years. “Family doesn’t matter,” he says. “People don’t mater.” “I would rather be alone.” And he is. That is the moment he stopped wanting to visit people. That is the moment he started hiding in the basement.

And I hate them for what they did to my children. And I forgive them, and think, “Maybe they were right.” Because I am broken now. And I hate myself for losing them. And I hate myself for trying. And it is so much easier to forgive other people – even when they took my children away.

The tears flow. Seven years, and that is enough pain for a lifetime. Yet the memories don’t end there. Over and over again I see those moments:

  • The last, struggled breaths of my dog – and how he looked lying dead on the table once he was gone… and the box that now takes his place.
  • The last pained breaths of my cats, my rabbits, my guinea pigs – and the very tears I cried as I held them in the end.
  • The last look at my Grandmother before I turned the corner in her apartment building, and left her for the last time.
  • My Grandfather, two of my cousins, my father, my mother’s mom…

And I think, as the losses pile up, and the memories haunt me like ghosts – I don’t think I can take any more. My mind will break. My heart will break. I can’t. I can’t. And I remember that thing that people say, “God won’t give you more than you can handle.” Is that biblical? I wonder. Can it possibly be? But what about those whose minds do break? What about those who snap, and take their lives, or take the lives of others – was it not too much for them?

I don’t know. Seven years. Seven years, and the pain remains. A hard, hard day.

 

Tags: , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , ,

Autism: This Week Broken

This is the week. The most difficult week in all the year, and I am feeling it. By the time I post this, it will be over – but that makes it no less difficult to get through. I can feel it coming, like some dreaded experience, though the experience of it happened seven years ago. Seven. Such a Biblical number, don’t you think?

Seven years should bring rest. While my body pretty much is at rest (my dog is still recovering from her surgery, and I don’t like to move from her, for she wants to follow) my heart and mind are not. I am full of anxiety, irritation, and depression. I feel anything but restful. Not grateful. Not content. Not calm. I know I am supposed to be, but I am not, and that only makes me feel worse.

Seven years of “after.” Seven years of “since.” It happened so long ago, that I should have healed. But I haven’t. In moment I think I have, but so many things are triggers, that so quickly I realize that I haven’t really healed at all. I should have healed. I haven’t. Another failure to add to my list. I begin to think that I was never resilient to begin with – that word that they like to throw around to help them feel better for the things they feel they have to do. “People are resilient,” they say. “Children are resilient.” Whatever helps them to sleep better at night, I guess, but not all of us are. Not all of us. Probably in their line of work, the majority of the people (adults and children – who are not that different, really) are likely not resilient.

welland

So maybe I shouldn’t have tried to adopt in the first place – being one of the not resilient ones. Maybe they shouldn’t have approved me. Only I was taught (as if it were fact) that if I tried hard enough, I could… and if I worked hard enough, I could succeed. Never was it even suggested that this might not be true. Those who fail are those who don’t try hard enough, or work hard enough.

Besides, I was feeling pretty good at that point in my life, and fully believed I was healed of those issues in my past (at least in the moment… perhaps if they had asked me on a different day…) and I was already (successfully) working with children.

I had the desire. I had the education. I had the empathy, and the mercy, and the love. I had the time. I had the space. And most important of all, I tried hard. I worked hard. Every day I worked to succeed at this. I tried enough. I worked enough. But somewhere along the way someone was flawed in their thinking.

Maybe if some people work hard, and try hard, they can succeed. Some. Not all. Not all.

So I failed, seven years ago – and above the trauma, and above the loss and the pain, and my own shame over not being able to succeed at something that so many others manage to succeed at (for I compare myself with all parents, and not just those who try to adopt through the foster care system – I can’t help it) but I also still feel the judgment of so many others who seem to believe if I had only tried hard enough, or worked hard enough, I could have adopted those children. I want to shout out, “I did!” Though I know it wouldn’t make a difference.

Seven years. And what is more, I am also turning forty this week. Another biblical number. Forty days and forty nights of rain. Forty days in the dessert. Forty years in the wilderness. Forty. Another number promising an end to suffering and pain, and the beginning of hope. Seven years and forty years, both in the same week. Will things get easier after this?

I am trying. Trying not to think of it – though my days are filled with fear, pain, sadness, hopelessness… My nights are filled with tears, and insomnia. I am struggling through with headaches and exhaustion. This week. Trying, trying, always trying… yet though I try so hard to think of other things, and find positive ways to spend my time, it does no good. This week, I am broken.

 

Tags: , , , , , , , , , , , , , ,

Autism: One Short Email

The thing is, even being content or happy doesn’t shield me from the effects of receiving an email like that. I even allow that she might not have meant it the way I read it. But the pain, and the panic, and the after-effects were as strong just the same.

That morning, I was exceptionally happy – for me. I rated my depression as a five out of ten (and considering I have only gotten above a five a couple of times in over a year, that is really good – for me.) I was doing so well, and I was accomplishing so much, and then out of nowhere came this email.

I won’t say exactly what it said, as it both isn’t important, and will trigger me again – but it basically said, “You are doing it wrong.”

There.

Conflict. Criticism. I just can’t do it.

Small as it may seem, it is a huge trigger for me. I mean, big. I did mention I have Post Traumatic Stress Disorder, right? That does come from a traumatic childhood, but it was healing. Triggered at times, but not in all I did. It was getting better.

But then I had three children removed from my home in a failed adoption – and the trauma from that is so bad that one small encounter with a stranger, or one sentence in an email can take me from the most contented I have felt in months, to hiding out in tears for days after.

“You are doing it wrong.” Those weren’t the words she used, but it is the same thing. It wasn’t even about something that is absolute – just like with the children’s ministry – one theory, one opinion, in a world full of them. What makes them right?

001

Only power. But power doesn’t make a person right, it only gives them the ability to destroy those that don’t have it. “You don’t agree with me? I will crush you.” And the thing is, they can. Forget this, “what can they do?” for I know what they can do. They can crush me – and they do. Again and again.

And what can she do? She can take back what she gave to heal me. I have never even met this person, and she has the power to destroy me, because in a moment of overwhelming pain I agreed to accept a gift from her.

Yet from my childhood, and from trying to adopt my children, I know. I know that any gift given can also be taken back. And any gift that isn’t taken back still gives that person so much power over me. And with that power, they can (and do) crush me. And it terrifies me.

So one line, in one email, can set me to days of panic attacks and tears. One comment can set back months of healing, and cause more fear than I can express. People want to believe that other people are resilient – that what they say and do doesn’t matter, really – but not all of us are. Not all of us. Many of us have been through so much already, that we just can’t take any more. And what have we learned? That other people have power. That other people can and will use that power to destroy.

Maybe she was just making a suggestion. Maybe I took it too hard. The next email said how well she thought I was doing… but then, the children’s ministry did the same thing – over and over – and they destroyed me, and then blamed me for being too stressed out working with them.

So what can one person who disagrees with me do? More than I hope any other person has to experience. One line in an email. One line. And the fear, and the trauma, and the social anxiety, and the desire to isolate myself grows in leaps and bounds. For what could they do, but take away the life line they threw to me, and leave me to drown.

 

Tags: , , , , , , , , , , , , , , ,

Autism: A Brain Like Mine

The thing about a brain like mine is that it doesn’t let go. Whatever I am fixated on – be it housing, food, a show I am binge watching, the loss of a pet, the loss of a child – will remain, locked in, set on repeat, until something else comes in to take its place. Even then, it is only gone for a while. For a while, until that thought, that pain, those pictures come back, and the process is repeated again.

The thing about a brain like mine, is that so much comes at me in pictures, and my memories are the strongest, clearest pictures of all. So I step outside, and for a moment – just a moment – I see my dog at the door waiting for me. In the hallway, on my bedroom floor, wrapping himself in my blankets on my pillow. Just a moment, and then he is gone, and the pain washes over me.

I close my eyes, and see them. My dog. My cat. My children. Myself as a child, looking in a mirror. Or worse – myself as a child looking out. Memories. So full of longing. So full of pain. And when those pictures are gone, the sadness or the fear remain.

me at 7

The thing about a brain like mine is that nothing becomes ‘long ago.’ When I think it, or see it, remember it – it isn’t something that happened in some far off moment. I am there. I am there, yet I can’t reach out and pull those I’ve lost through the memory. So close, yet nothing I do will get me there, and it breaks me. It breaks me.

The thing about a brain like mine is that it isn’t easy to distract. If I am sad, if I am scared, if I feel lost, or ashamed, or broken… no amount of positive thinking, or breathing exercises, or… will take away the emotion. In fact, it is more like an attack, and that feeling, that thought fights back and becomes stronger.

The thing about a brain like mine is that it is standing on a fine line between fantasy and reality. And while many see reality as the goal – that to let go of a grasp on reality is to become unstable – the reality of this world fills me with such pain that it is hard to stand.

Reality is not a place I would choose to stay. Instead I spend much time reaching for this imagination, which will carry me away, and make it easier to endure. Would it be so bad, for instance, if I could see my lost animals, and lost children, and lost family with me along the way – rather than feel this pain and emptiness that will not let go?

The thing about a brain like mine is that I am more likely to cry out against these chains that bind me to the knowledge of life as it is, than to seek help for the moments of freedom where I can believe that even that is possible.

The thing about a brain like mine is that I see this world too clearly, and over and over again it breaks my heart to look out over this broken world. If I could let go a little. Even just a little. Maybe I, too, could find joy in a pain filled world. If only I didn’t see it.

As I was about to start writing this post, the phone rang. I knew that number, and I answered. “Is this Jennifer,” she asked. “I just wanted to let you know that Gryffindor’s ashes are ready to be picked up.”

Broken.

 

Tags: , , , , , , , , , , , , , , ,

Autism: The Pain That Never Ends

Though I have only been awake for a few hours, it has already been a rough day. It was rough as I awoke, and while in the past few days, I have awoken to similar thoughts, the rest of the week I quickly got past it. Today has been different.

I conclude that this thought, this pain, this panic, will never truly heal in this lifetime. There is a hole that cannot be filled, and a pain that cannot be reconciled. Though I have days where I find joy, I have never truly forgotten – and I only have to look to my dreams, and the prayer I begin before I even wake up, to know how deeply it affects me still.

I was in a room. A long room filled along one wall with shelves that had numerous toys, games, puzzles, and books. In the dream, I thought it was a room from a house that I used to live in. Now that I am awake, I am pretty sure it was one of the preschool rooms in my church. It doesn’t matter, really.

In my arms was my baby. My angel. Beside me was a friend, and this friend had decided that she would adopt this child in my arms, since I was unable to. She asked me if this was okay, and though it pained me, I agreed with her. The child would have a good home, and at least I would know her. At least I would see her.

wii

For days, weeks, months, in the dream, I spent much of my time in my friend’s apartment (this room where I used to live) with this child who was, yet wasn’t mine. In the beginning, the baby called me, ‘Mama.’ As time went by, and the adoption was going through, she began to call my friend ‘Mama.’ That hurt, too. It hurt a lot! But still I was in the life of my baby, and it had to be enough.

And then I found out that this friend and her husband were trying to buy a condo, and would be taking ‘my baby’ away from me. It isn’t that they intended to take her away, but it was a really nice place, in a good neighbourhood, and it would be best for the child. Besides, this friend and her husband had always wanted to live there, and now they had the opportunity.

It didn’t matter to me that it was a beautiful condo, in a nice neighbourhood. Where they were living was next to me. The apartment was fine, and I never felt unsafe there. What mattered was that they were taking ‘my baby’ from me.

At the end of the dream, I was walking through this condo, holding ‘my baby,’ when my friend found me. She said, “you didn’t even tell me where you were going, you just disappeared.” I needed to see where my daughter would be living, and it was a beautiful home – new kitchen, hardwood floors, gas fireplace in the sunken living room… beautiful.

But nothing could convince my heart and mind that taking my child away from me was worth… whatever they were giving to her.

And I awoke crying, “Please bring my babies back to me,” as if, even six and a half years later, it is still some nightmare that I can wake up from. “Please don’t take them away.” And it has been the same for many days. The dreams are always different. The people, the places, the story… always different. But the message is always the same – my babies were taken away, and I want them back.

How could anyone have thought this would be better for me than raising the children, challenging as they were.

The pain that never ends. The tears that never dry up. The trauma that will never be overcome. The hole that can never be filled. Not in this lifetime, anyway. Is it any wonder it is hard to keep going most days?

*This post was written and scheduled, as were many along with it, before my dog died.  I have been rearranging my scheduled posts, to post the ones about my dog during the time I have been struggling with that loss.

 

Tags: , , , , , , , , , , ,

Autism: Crisis Mode

When I was in eighth grade, we had silent reading time. I loved silent reading time – probably one of the most comfortable periods of time I had while in school. The teacher would spread a bunch of books on a table, and we could go up and sign one out. We would read the book, and have to write a report on it whenever we were finished.

I remember the time when I picked up the book Homecoming, by Cynthia Voight. It was the thickest book on the pile, but that is not why I chose it. I really enjoyed reading books about people going through struggles, and how they overcame them. They took me out of my own rather traumatic life, and brought me into the midst of people who were having challenges of their own.

In this book, a group of (I think) four siblings were abandoned by their mother in the parking lot of a shopping mall, and decided to make their way to their only relative – one they had never met, and only knew of from the address written on a lunch bag.

They had very little money, and very little food, and had a very long walk ahead of them.

003

The idea of sleeping outside, surviving off of bananas and peanut butter sandwiches (which was all they could often afford) and finding ways to make up even a little bit of money so that they could carry on, appealed to me.

It wasn’t that I wanted to live that way, or wanted such things to happen to me, but my soul seems to awaken in crisis. I don’t want that. I am anxious even at the best of times. But when there is no option but to try to survive, my mind goes into overdrive, and I think, “I can do that.”

It is the day to day living, whether calm or painful, that is so hard for me.

I suppose if something really bad had happened to them, the idea would have frightened me more. But the book was more about struggles, exhaustion, and worry, than about anything really bad. They had a goal, and they strived to reach it, for there was nothing more they could do.

Goals are something I can live for. To have an exact picture of where I am headed, and a time frame of getting there… I can do that. It is when things go on, seemingly forever, that I fall apart. It isn’t that having goals takes away the anxiety, either. No, it becomes even stronger when I have something I am working for – but that the end is in sight – whether something like the end of a college course, or the finalization of an adoption – helps me to keep going and fight past that anxiety.

However when things go beyond the time I expected them to take – like when the finalization papers were ‘lost’ for our adoption, and we no longer had a set time for how long it would take for that to go through, or when at a job (that is hoped to last indefinitely), that causes me to fall apart.

I don’t know why I live for crisis. I am not even sure that I do. It is just that maybe a crisis results only in things that must be done, and then will end as life settles – and life itself? Goes on until death.

 

Tags: , , , , , , , , , ,

Autism: Mother’s Day

For years this has been a difficult day for me – like Father’s Day used to be while I was growing up. I could celebrate my Grandfather. He was a very positive influence on my life, and I loved him dearly. However, I was obligated to celebrate my father, and he was not.

It wasn’t that I didn’t want to do things with him. When we were out, my father was a lot of fun. He was even easy to talk to – and that is a big deal for a person who struggles to talk. But when I went to get a card, they always said stuff like, “the best father,” or “I am so lucky to have a father like you,” and that wasn’t true.

Even though he was fun, and easy to talk to, he was also manipulative, and would later use those things he learned against me. I don’t know why I shared with him as long as I did. So “lucky,” was not the word. And it isn’t like I could (or even wanted to) get him a card that said something like, “to a horrible father, who has his good moments,” or something. No. The cards were full of lies, and I just wished the day would pass us by.

Even that kind of card wouldn’t have been accurate. More like, “to a father who confused me, and made it hard to trust people.” For most of the time I didn’t hate him. I hated what he asked me to do – but then I blamed myself.

Anyway, back to Mother’s Day. How can I celebrate Mother’s Day, when it reminds me more of the children that were taken, then the one who was left? I always feel such shame in asking to celebrate this, as “I lost my kids,” keeps ringing at the back of my mind (or, well, not so far back, really.) So how can I say to my husband and son who are left, “come, let’s celebrate me, today!”

Maybe (and I have been told this often enough it must be common opinion) people don’t think of my loss in the same way I do. “The ministry was wrong,” they tell me. “You didn’t lose your children. You failed to adopt. That is all.” But in my heart and mind, I have lost my children, and that pain makes Mother’s Day especially hard for me.

“Who here is a mother,” they ask, and I timidly raise my hand. I have my son. I still have my son. But for a person who dreamed all her life of having five children, had four, and only has one adult child remaining – well… I am not what I thought I would be. And this day reminds me of that failure.

And then they speak of those who wanted to be a mother, but couldn’t have children. I think, “that is me,” but then, I did have one son… but then I had four, and now? And they speak of those whose children died, or those who as adults turned away, and I feel that pain. But mine were taken. They are still here. They still live. But I don’t know them anymore.

I walk away from church feeling sad, and wondering how I could possibly ask my family to celebrate me. After all, I lost my children, and if you “mess up raising your children, nothing else you do matters very much.” And I realize that my shame over this is not past, and I feel again my fear over the world that has such power to decide.

And in my ache, I hear in my mind, “I wish I could have children.” And I realize, though I am nearly too old now for that to be a possibility, it is still what I long for. No matter how much I try to tell myself I am okay with a future without children, I am not. Not really.

So we drive home, and I walk in my door, and I am greeted by my dog and one of my cats. They look up at me, and in their eyes I see that I am still needed. I am still wanted. It may not be everything, but I am still ‘mother’ to them, and that at least is something.

016

 
 

Tags: , , , , , , , , , , , , ,

Autism: When “Do To Others” Doesn’t Work

When I had my children, who were on the fetal alcohol spectrum (or static encephalopathy, as it was properly diagnosed) as well as attachment issues, I learned pretty early on that restricting certain foods from their diets had a significant impact on their behaviour.

welland

Over the first year or so, I removed refined sugars, food dyes, dairy, and wheat from their diet. This was neither easy, nor cheap – but at the time, I felt it was worth it. I replaced these foods with others – applesauce, rice syrup, and such for sugar; soy milk, goat’s milk, or for the youngest a dairy free formula for the dairy; garbanzo flour, rice flour, quinoa, oats, and such for the wheat.

During that time, they became a lot calmer, and had really good appetites. They would, without being prompted, eat everything on their plates, and seconds as well. At each meal, they would thank me for the food, ending with, “it was very tasty.” I didn’t train them to do this, it was just their response.

I admit that they were very thin. I asked many people what to do about this, but no one had any real suggestions. Maybe avocado – which I fed them, but they stayed thin.

Another thing that I did with/for my children was to provide a rather strict routine (which helped them to remain calm, as they always knew what was coming next,) and to constantly supervise them when they were together as they had certain tendencies that might result in pain or emotional trauma for them had they not been watched.

These are things that I did for my children, not to my children – but the ministry, and others, who had more experience with typical children, responding in typical ways to foods and such, did not understand this. Their view was that my ways of raising these children was rigid, and controlling, and even abusive.

The thing was, my children were not much different from me (except they were all a lot more social, for all of their lack of boundaries scared me in this way.) I was fed a ‘typical’ diet growing up, and it made me feel really sick all the time. I would have loved for someone to have taken the time to find out what I could eat, liked to eat, and left me feeling healthy. I would have loved for someone to do that for me, as I did it for my children. I would even like that now!

Growing up in a traumatic environment, and with undiagnosed Autism, which brought with it a whole host of issues, I had many bad habits that could have been supervised away. I don’t blame my parents for not providing that level of supervision – it wasn’t done in those days. Still, I knew those habits were wrong, and I couldn’t break them on my own. It took me years into my adult life before I could overcome a lot of them, and I still struggle with some.

Having someone supervise me so closely to ensure that those bad habits were replaced by better ones, is something I ached for in my early days. In my own silent way, I was begging for help with these issues, but no one heard me.

So when I knew that some of the habits of my children could end up in pain, and brokenness, I supervised them. It is what I wanted to be done for me. It wasn’t easy. It meant a lot of juggling to ensure that as the stay at home mom, I was always watching them (no bathroom breaks while they were awake, and my husband was out, for instance.) It was tiring. It meant constant vigilance. I could have done it easier if I just let them… but again, this was something I did for them, not to them – as I would have wanted done for me.

Again the ministry decided this was rigid, controlling, and even abusive. How do they make these decisions? And in the end, they took my children from me, and the adoption fell through.

“Do to others as you would have them do to you,” I suppose doesn’t work in cases such as mine where what is wanted, and even needed, is not understood – because it is not ‘typical.’ But I don’t think it was fair to call it abusive.

 

Tags: , , , , , , , , , , ,

 
%d bloggers like this: