We are limping towards moving back home. We've now been out of the house for nearly a year and it's tearing us apart living where we're living. It's not really the fault of the house. It's a lot smaller than we are used to but that's not the issue so much as the space is quickly filled with all our furniture and toys. Our furniture is used to filling bigger spaces so it's larger in its dimensions that the house can handle. Our sofas alone take up most of the lounge. Add my precious Clavinova; our CD collection; a side board; our TV; a few guitars; a dining table and chairs and a ton of toys and we are tripping up over mess all the time. The hallway is now full of IKEA boxes with Katie's new wardrobes waiting for one or both of us to generate sufficient brain cells to decipher the ridiculously obscure flat pack instructions. Ordinarily I am a wizz at putting flat packs together but even I looked at the
Add two crazy kids into the mix and it's easy to see why I have a very glazed and stressed expression on my face and how I actually managed to fall asleep whilst talking to the wonderful Mrs VanderCave on the phone the other afternoon. That was a first for me!
The children are in bonkers mode at the moment. It's hardly surprising considering TCM and I are all at sea with everything going on with the house and trying to sort out my Mother-in-Law's affairs after the death of Pops in September. This is nowhere near resolved so the situation will continue until our case is heard by the Court of Protection at some point this
Ever the optimist, I'm always hopeful that things will improve. There are a tough few months coming up which isn't helping the situation. We will be moving back home and Katie will be starting a new school within a few weeks of each other. Moving might prove a nice distraction from school or it might tip her over the edge. Watch this space. Her current school are helping with extra visits to the new school and a laminated book with pictures of the new school and it's classrooms etc and a story to go along with the pictures. To help everything we are also currently having Theraplay input from our Post Adoption Team. The exercises we do are all focused on Katie's need to control( and I will write separately about these in case they are useful to anyone else). TCM takes Pip out so Katie and I can do the session on our own. Doing the sessions has really brought home just how controlling Katie is. It is a bit of a lightbulb moment and I'm seeing it in so many different scenarios and really clamping down on all the areas where Katie is attempting to sit in the drivers seat. What's also challenging is the fact that Katie has realised that we are having the input because of her behaviour and she is feeling embarrassed about this and this then leads to more challenging behaviour which then continues ad infinitum. I'm hoping though that if we can get through this uncomfortable feeling she might be able to start owning her behaviour and taking a little bit of responsibility for how she reacts.
One thing that is totally frustrating is the fact that few other people ever see the behaviour we experience at home, I had to endure my sister smugly telling me this week that she didn't know what I was talking about. "Katie was perfectly behaved and was very mature all day long" when she looked after her recently. She said "I don't know what you're on about with her behaving younger than her age!" and "You go on about it all too much" and "You talk too much about them being adopted" . All I will say is that Fathers Day was the next day so Katie's usual sabotage of the day came with added challenge due, I suspect, to the energy involved in being so perfectly behaved all day. Apparently, according to my sister, all I need to do is "leave her to get on with it", oh and to "ignore her at bedtime" (which I mostly do anyway unless she's out of bed or hanging out the bedroom window to be honest). Nice to solve all our problems so easily eh? Since starting this blog post earlier this week my sister finally saw the behaviour that I've been telling her about yesterday. I had a very apologetic sister last night who suddenly realised she hasn't really understood the situation or been there for me at all.
On a semi brighter note that same sister, after the revelations of last night (and who is a little older and wiser today), has taken the children out again to give us a break. Interestingly now Katie knows my sister is in the know about her behaviour she has treated my sister to a mini temper tantrum at soft play already. Is it wrong of me to chuckle at this anecdote? Hopefully though this will provide a little respite to calm down after another stressful start to the day and a light at the end of the tunnel right with hope that a little more support might be forthcoming (due to other family issues you'll forgive me if I don't hold my breath for too long on that last sentence though).
I guess I'd better go and put those wardrobes together now I'm childfree hadn't I?
I'm also having a wry chuckle because I booked a floatation tank for this coming Wednesday a few weeks back. I had a letter home from school on Friday to tell me about Katie's violin recital. Guess when it is?
I'd love to hear any stories or techniques that you can share about how you've resolved control issues. Do grab a cuppa and share them with me. Do you have any top tips?