Our "normal" in our 40's as we know it now. Before I start in this heart felt blog post I want to let my readers know we had a different kind of normal in our 20's. Let me explain. We had our first child a healthy whooping 8lbs 14 ounces baby boy and 2.5 years later we had a healthy beautiful baby girl. Everything was great, well except for being broke most of the time but most people are in their 20's. Our family was the American dream family of four, two kids a boy and a girl. They were smart kids, happy most of the time. They behaved in public, they had good manners and listened to their parents, well most of the time. Pretty much routine well child check ups were our experience of the medical field. I had a brief idea about what ADHD was but had never heard of, ODD,SPD, PDD-NOS,ID and so on, as it wasn't a part of my world at that time. I was vaguely aware that children were born daily with illegal drugs in their systems and a bit about fetal alcohol syndrome but no real in depth of the life changing results this could cause to a fetus. I knew that the world was saying play classical music for your fetus and stay stress free because things of this nature would help your unborn child. Never imagining or thinking of a world where pregnancies were surrounded by drugs and alcohol and domestic abuse along with no prenatal care and poverty. Life in my 20s was fun, exciting, full of classroom parties, walking our children to the small hometown lottery school that they fit so perfectly in. Sleep overs, birthday parties and everything that I imagined what raising two children and being married to my husband would be. Enjoyed the compliments and comments on how well behaved our children were when they went with others, even if sometimes we had struggles at home At least we knew that when away from us they acted well.
Fast forward 20 somethings years and we find ourselves in our forties. Once again raising a boy and a girl. How hard can it be, we did fairly well the first time this should be a piece if cake right?! This time I'm called mom by two beautiful amazing children, who were born to other woman. This time around we are what's called a trans racial family. Maybe not what most people think of as the American dream looking family, however increasingly on the rise in America. This time around the daily challenges can be exhausting, eye opening and mind blowing most days. We are every bit a "real" family and love all four of our children unconditionally.So fast forward to today. Today like everyday is a brand new day. Not knowing if it will be a good day or bad day for my 8 year old son. Remember all the abbreviations above well I have become to know what they all mean and then some. There isn't any easy decisions to be made but in fact extremely complex decisions that I never truly know yet if we're making the right choices for his life. His in utero experience was one I wish no baby would ever have to experience along with genes that didn't give him a head start in life. I often wonder how and why God thought we were equipped to raise his son and then I have to remind myself he will equip us with what we need each step of the way. From doctors to therapists to inpatient to outpatient to IEPs to his behavioral Management his laundry list of medications that all help to make him to be able to function in this world day to day. Not a day, and that is the truth not one day goes by where I'm not questioning our treatment plan or medications nothing about this routine is easy with the exception of unconditional love we have for our son and our determination to do what is best for him.
Our baby girl our daughter is four, full of life, vibrant in every way. Her first couple trimesters in utero were subjected to drug usage. We are starting to see signs of that with her impulse control and overall hyperactive self. But overall she is one tough and crazy loving little girl.
She as well has our unconditional love!
So yes, our home is loud. Our children can be completely rude and exhausting at times we are still a work in process with behaviors, impulse control issues. We have learned a completely different type of parenting this time around. One of extreme patience and understanding. Not always sometimes we loose it believe me, but have learned to stay calm, because as we escalate so do the behaviors. We believe in spanking, we believe in removing from situations and we believe in consequences. We are doing the best we can with what we can.
When we said yes to God's calling in our lives almost 9 years ago we had no idea how it would change and move us. We had no idea that we would be adapting to a new normal as I call it. We had no idea that most days we would be in survival mode. Life as a family of six has changed us that is for sure. We have had many struggles. But all has brought us closer to each other and closer to our Savior. Without God in our lives and in our marriage we wouldn't have made it.
Our son has been in a day treatment behavioral program for seven months now. It is time to transition him out and back into the public school system. It's not going to be easy as change good or bad throws him for a loop per say. He is excited and ready for school but will sabotage the very existence of the day he returns because then at least he is in control, in a place where he doesn't know exactly what to expect. Praying that this is minor as his behavioral and coping skills have come far in the past 7 months.
Why I blog this. If you haven't lived it, you don't know. If you haven't gone down the roads or the paths others have please don't try to explain the scenery. Please don't be quick to speak and if you must speak up with your opinion, please speak life. We like many parents are tired and don't need any negativity. If you truly want to pray for us Pray for wisdom and for guidance down this very unknown path were on. We know God listens! Some oldies pictures to enjoy! And a couple at the end from our Summer Vacation. These are my babies and even though our life is crazy at times I Love my babies more then life itself!