Wednesday, February 15, 2012

Random Stuff

I’m having a hard time gathering thoughts these last few days.  I have a lot I could write about, but none of it seems to be coming together right now.  I chalk it up to stress, lack of sleep, not feeling well, and dealing with Bozos.  My patience is thin.  I am reminding myself every few minutes that I, too, am a Bozo. Except for the grace of God, and some experiences I never would have been able to fully imagine five years ago, I would also have no clue about the needs of hurt kids.  No graduate school counseling program, no youth ministry major, no teaching degree gives one the education I’ve gained these last five years.  Yet, I have SO much to learn!

The Princess is still struggling.  She’s still dealing with mean girl stuff.  She’s mad at everything and everyone, but she’s especially angry with me.  I won’t give her a cell phone.  I won’t buy her a bunch of makeup or a pair of boots with high heels.  I won’t let her date at age 13 and I won’t let her go out around town without an adult I trust.  I won’t let her have sleepovers except with people I know will be safe for her, and I keep those few and far between.  I’ve pulled her out of youth group because it’s not safe for her.  I am mean and over protective and old fashioned. 

I’m making plans to begin homeschooling The Princess because her grades have dropped, her behavior has escalated this year, and she’s getting deeper into a social “thing” (I have no word for it) that is just plain destructive.  We went through rough times with her brother when he was in middle school.  He is doing quite well now that he is in high school.  He’s consciously working to be better – to GET better – and he is!  She’s consciously decided we’re the ones with the problem and she’s just fine.  Her therapist and I decided it was time to very methodically TEACH her what PTSD is and why she struggles.  Again, I have some things I could write about here, but I’m having a hard time putting my thoughts together so that they would make any sense to you, dear reader.

I’m struggling, too.  I’m tired of being told by Christians who haven’t parented hurt kids for any length of time that my kids can be healed.  I’m tired of people asking me what’s going on, or what our needs are, but then not listening to me.  I’m tired of otherwise intelligent people NOT GETTING that complex trauma CHANGES the brain – for life.  Yes, God could choose to heal my kids.  He could choose to heal my brother who has Down Syndrome.  However, I haven’t seen any evidence that this is His choice for ANYONE with Down Syndrome, or C-PTSD, or RAD.  I accepted that about a year ago, and was FINALLY able to grab hold of A NEW HOPE for my kids.  

We are being refined.  We are learning what we need to navigate this life, but we will not be “healed” this side of Heaven from the things that have happened to us because of the evil someone else has done.  God can make for good what was intended for evil, and HE IS doing just that with my kids (they’ve come SO far!), but trauma DOES NOT “heal.”  As a friend told me yesterday, people who keep preaching that to me just don’t get the nature of God.  Sometimes, He allows things into our lives so that our gold can be refined.  What Christian hasn’t heard that sermon before, or read that bible passage?  Why do so many think God’s answer SHOULD be healing?  Why do people fight so hard for what they wish could be, rather than accept that God’s purpose may be different?  Why do we put so much energy into resisting, and praying, and pleading for OUR will to be done, rather than join Him in the work He is ALREADY doing?  Why don’t people realize THAT is what healing really is?

I’m meeting with someone today to discuss a proposal to train youth and children’s workers in area churches about the unique needs of hurt kids and older adopted kids.  I have a couple of professionals, as well as another therapeutic parent, lined up to serve on a panel to provide this training.  I’m not sure how the meeting with this person today is going to go.  

I’m also preparing to teach a parenting class to a very special group of parents.  They happen to be in jail.  I wrote a grant proposal for this project last year.  The granting foundation really liked the project.  I’m excited – and scared.  It ought to be very interesting.  At least I’ll have a captive audience there.


Anonymous said...

Ummm, why has no one commented... A JAIL-BASED PARENTING CLASS??!! I am so jazzed by the possibilities and how amazing that you had the drive and motivation to write up said proposal in the middle of your life! God bless you in this endeavor- need a prayer team?

Trauma Mama T said...

Thanks Anon - yeah, parenting in jail - cool huh? I will take all the prayer I can get! The class will run for 6 weeks. We plan to start at the end of March.

Anonymous said...

I don't have a google account so I am Anon for now! I am a foster parent as well as the parent of two brain-injured children.
You have an amazing opportunity to build up these girls and women who need an entirely different set of tools to parent their own children and also to create a better future.
I personally learned so much about myself while I was trained in attachment strategies for my adopted girls- and then got to teach these self-realizations to my teens, who get new understanding on their own behaviors and relationships. What a miracle...

Trauma Mama T said...

Thanks again, Anon. I do feel as though I've been given a gift to share. I know I still have much to learn. I know part of what I have to learn is teaching what I know to people who think they already know everything they need. I see folks with younger kids who are struggling, who have not be tested or diagnosed, who have no professional support system, and who I know will turn into teenagers sooner than their parents will realize and it breaks my heart for them. It's not that I'm any "better" or have any special advantage over them -- it's just that I've already walked where they're walking and am on the road where they are headed. That may sound arrogant to some. I just wish I'd listened to people who told me the same thing 4-5 years ago.