Wednesday, December 7, 2011


Another prompt that piqued my curiosity is Curious. I am a very curious person. I love looking in to things and trying to figure things out. I love learning about things and people. I spend way to much time on the internet looking up things I hear about. I wish I was better at applying what I learn to my life as I am sure I would be in a much better place if I just could.

Some of my recent curiosities have been reading about RAD, researching Blue Tongue Skinks this summer, I also have been reading a book about adoptions from China just because I found it at Goodwill and it seemed interesting, I have a stack of other books what to entertain me next.

I wonder what will be my next thing, what my kids think, what makes my hubby tick, why I can't sleep past 4 AM, when will the chaos let up, what will come of those relationships that are so confusing to me right now and why I am still up at 11 complaining about not sleeping when I should be sleeping while I have the chance. For now I bid you goodnight and I go to ponder the thoughts that will invade my head while I lie in my bed hoping to be sleeping.


In hopes of returning to blogging I went looking for a site with prompts that might inspire me to continue this project. I want to, no that should be I need to do this. Life has not been the easiest this year. I am kind of glad that it will soon wrap up and hope upon hope that 2012 brings more smiles than frowns. In my search I came across The One Minute Writer, which posts daily prompts to inspire you to write. I don't think I will be able to accomplish writing in just one minute but I liked the prompts and so I am going with it.

The prompt today says Yell, write about a time you yelled. Unfortunately I know too much about yelling lately. I have yelled and been yelled at more this year than I think in my whole life. I hate it. I hate that I allow myself to get so frustrated that I yell. I hate that I feel like the only way to be heard is to yell. I hate that my kids yell at me, and yes I know that they probably do it because I do. I hate that more often than not we wake up to kids yelling and at each other at the ungodly hours between 4 and 5 in the morning. I wish that yelling wasn't such a part of our household. I am working hard at trying to curtail that and feel like I am making progress in that direction, not as fast I would like but still progress and I will take what I can get.

Then there are the times that I wish that I could yell, I wish that I could scream, I wish I could tell them exactly what I felt. I wonder what holds me back then but not at home.

Thursday, May 26, 2011

I feel like someone snuck in my head and stole this from me

I found this posted on Storing up Treasures and I felt like she stepped in my head took my thoughts and changed just a few minor details. It is weird to feel so alone in this and then stumble on something that makes you see there are others walking a similar road.

My child is RAD.

Reactive Attachment Disordered that is.

And to you he is the most adorable, affectionate, loving child you have ever met. He melts you with every smile. He warms your heart with his engaging disposition.

In your Sunday school class he is the most well behaved student you have.

In your classroom he always listens and obeys.

When you come to our home to visit, he will grab your hand and show you around. He will hug you and make you feel like you are the most welcome guest we have ever had. He may even convince you that you have some sort of special bond with him.

It is hard for me to tell you that you are not special at all. In fact he does this with everyone. He does this with the creepy guy at the mall. He does this with the checkout lady at the food store.

In fact he does this with just about everyone he meets.

Except for me.

When I tell you what our life is like you look at me like I am crazy. You wonder how on earth such a sweet child could do or be all of the things I have said. You start questioning our parenting. You begin wondering if it is really us that has the issues.

You just see this cute little child.

You aren't here when he tantrums and screams. You aren't here when he refuses to eat. You aren't here when he eats until he is ill. You aren't here for the constant chatter. You aren't here when he stays awake all hours of the night. You aren't here when he triangulates us. Or when he does every possible annoying thing he can think of to each of his siblings. You aren't here when he won't share his toys or when he goes crazy because one of his little siblings took something away.

You don't see how he can't make eye contact. Or how he fidgets when I come close to him. Or how he gags himself in time out.

You just don't see it.

Yes, he is an adorable child.

But, he also has RAD.

We don't love him any less. We just have to parent him very different.

Thanks Courtney for saying most of what I couldn't. For what no one believes when I do feel brave enough to share. For making me feel not so alone for just a moment.

Sunday, May 15, 2011

Frustration over, Liam pulled out his presentation

Liam finally pulled it together and pulled off a great presentation. Thanks to Poppy for taking him to the Lew Wallace museum yesterday he had lots of information and he learned a lot about his Famous Hoosier. Here is the presentation we wound up with and it only took 3 takes and then he decided to go with the first one after all.

I think he did a great job since he just finished the book on Friday and his teacher asked him to turn it in Monday so they had time to get through all the presentations in the class before the end of the year.


I am tired of being frustrated. Tired of trying to get them to understand basic things. It's been 2 weeks of a new behavior approach with Alexis and towards the end of week one I thought we had progress. But alas we back slid and every day we are still doing the same things, getting the same outcome, and are shocked and amazed by it. Please tell me that eventually it won't be worth the fight and she will just do as she is told. I am frustrated by her defiance and disrespect

Liam has had to do a written assignment and related project every month this school year. Every month we have had to argue with him to get started. Every month he has rolled around on the floor whining and grunting and kicking the furniture. Every month he refuses to do the assignment for hours on end. Every month after hours of refusal he finally gives up and gets it done in about 30 minutes. This month he just needs to write down notes so he can easily read them and make a video presentation of what he knows. Fairly simple as it doesn't involve a whole written report. His grandfather even took him to a museum for the guy he has to do a presentation on. I thought for sure that would help him to get ready for the project yet. Here we are 2 hours past can you please go write down your notes and not one pencil has been picked up. I am frustrated by his stubborness

Landon wets the bed every night, he has not ever not wet the bed in 3 years he has been potty trained. He doesn't get up in the morning and go to the bathroom. He says he doesn't feel like it so he just pees on himself. Every day I am greeted with the smell of pee. Everyday for 3 years. I am frustrated at his laziness.

Calgon take me away.

Saturday, May 7, 2011

AMI where we love to forgot the world

Anna Maria Island specifically the city of Anna Maria on the island. My grandparents lived here and I loved visiting them, it was like going to another world. There isn't a lot to do there but that is part of why we love it so. One of my favorite trips was just Jason and I for 5 days. It was wonderful and we did pretty much nothing the whole time. My grandparents lived closest to the Tampa bay side of the island. We loved getting up early and going out on the Anna Maria City pier and look for dolphins and watch the fisherman. There are always pelicans on the pier hoping for a kind fisherman to share his catch. At night it is just as interesting. One night we watched a fisherman try to bring in a nurse shark. He wrestled and wrestled that nurse shark walked him down the pier and just before he got him to shore the line broke and the shark got away. He didn't want to hurt the shark just wanted a picture with him. From the pier we also saw a manatee swim under the pier. It was amazing.
The gulf side of the island has big white beaches. On my trip with Jason we would go out on the gulf side beaches and just be. There is nothing like just being. I would lay and read and he would wander the beach looking for creatures and shells. Another treasure of the gulf side is the Sand Bar restaurant. The food is good, but we loved sitting outside and watching the sunset with our feet in the sand and for me at least sipping a chocolate martini.

Another awesome feature of the island is you don't need a car in order to get around. They have a free trolley the runs to take you to all the neat sites and beaches. Another mandatory stop when we go to Anna Maria is the City Jail. We have been going to the jail every trip since we were kids and is a required stop on each visit. After you grab your snapshot in front of the jail you can check out the Historical Society and learn a little about the history of the island and even see a military uniform donated by my grandfather.
If you want to leave the island which on our trip we left just to visit this place. This is my happy place. I love to go here. It is Mote Marine laboratory and aquarium. You can see a giant squid. When I say giant we are talking 27 foot giant. It is no longer alive but still cool to see. They also have sharks, dolphins and manatees. The have a contact cove where you can touch starfish, sea urchins, horseshoe crabs and other sea creatures. But my all time favorite place. My happy place, the place that I can spend hours and in fact I did just that on our trip is the Sting Ray Touch Pool. I find the sting rays to be the most fascinating creatures and to be able to touch them was just amazing. They have their stingers removed so they can't harm you and I have never seen them even attempt to try and harm anyone. They just swim by and if they want you to touch them they swim up so you can reach them and if they don't they stay just far enough away that you can't reach them. It truly was my happy place. I can't wait to go back and visit my little sea friends.
There is more to do around the island and just off the island but these are our favorite things to do on the island. We haven't made it back in 4 1/2 years and man I can't wait to go back down there. If you need to just get away from it all visit Anna Maria I promise you won't regret it and you will leave dreaming of when you can come back.

Mother's Day

Mother’s Day isn’t for the mothers who are proud parents of perfect children. They don’t need a day to celebrate their perfection. They get that every day when their loved ones and strangers tell them their children are perfect. They get that when their children bring home perfect papers from school with perfect pictures of perfect families all holding hands in front of perfect houses with perfect lawns and flowers and happy dogs and cats lounging nearby.

Mother’s Day is really for those of us who are in the trenches. It is our “Memorial Day”. It is a day for us to mourn the loss of our perfect families and to celebrate our little victories. It is a day for us to take a moment and be thankful that we were able to keep our children alive for another year. It is a day for us to pat ourselves on the back – because we aren’t going to find anyone else who gives us pats on the back while telling us they are proud of us.
So let us take this day – this Mother’s Day, and give ourselves a little celebration. We have kept these children alive for another year. We do (sometimes) get papers home from school – so what if the pictures are messy and upside down? Our children do smile at us sometimes – so what if it is while they are trying to bite or kick or scratch or strangle us? Our children still have beds to sleep on and pillows for their head – so what if it is just a mattress on the floor because they broke the good bed?

I raise my (virtual) glass to all of you wonderful Moms. You wake up every day knowing the battleground you are entering, but you don’t shrink from the war. You enter with all the weapons at hand, knowing the only shield you have is the love in your hearts. You walk through the day – and, indeed, all the days, with your head up and a glint in your eye that says to the world: “This is my child. For better or for worse, I will love this child until the day I die. I may not like this child right now. I may not want to look at this child right now, but I do love him/her, and if you mess with my child – you mess with me.”

I support all you wonderful Moms who are walking through storms darker and more frightening than any storm known to the perfect moms with their perfect children. You walk through chaos and tornado and fire and wind and rain and rage and mania with an aplomb that is not even found in our Special Forces. You face heartbreak and loss with strength and calm. You have PTSD that is untreated and undiagnosed, and yet you still enter the daily battle. You smile when others would cry. You carry on when others would give up.

Maybe you do retreat to your room sometimes, and maybe you do want to give up, and maybe you do cry and rage at the heavens. Maybe you do yell and tear your hair out. But you are allowed.

So give yourself this day to mourn the children you dreamed about and to laugh at the heavens because you are winning. Every day you are winning. Every day you come closer to the picture of perfection. Every day you are able to laugh in the face of total annihilation. Good for you! Give yourself this day to know that each of us thinks of you as a hero. Each of us gives you pats on the back and says “You are wonderful. You are doing a good job. You are appreciated and you are not judged. You are special. You are loved. You have sister-warriors and brother-warriors who are in the trenches you are in. You are worth having a day named after your amazing feats. You are loved. You are loved”

Note: I can't take credit for the awesome work above. I got it from an online support group and it resonated with me and I had to share it. It was written by a special momma if 3 named Kerry

Sunday, April 24, 2011

Grateful Sunday

Taking time to reflect on things to be grateful this week. I started out this week worried that Jason and Liam would be gone for two days. Could I handle the other 4 by myself for two days? Well I am happy to say that it went well. I am grateful that my Mom took Brenna for that night and so I only had 3 kiddos. They did surprisingly well for me so my worry was for naught. I am grateful that my Mom came and watched the 3 kids while I took Brenna to Kindergarten roundup. She was so super excited to see Kindergarten and ride the bus.
I am thankful for old friends and a new get together. A group of 6 of us had plans to meet up for dinner. Most of the ladies I met when Liam was less than a year old through a Moms group I joined. Over the years we drifted apart as our kids grew older and we added more kids to our families. It was wonderful to get together with them and catch up. We have hopes to make it a more routine event and I would love to see that happen. I am grateful for old friends and new starts to old ideas.
I am excited that I got to spend some time sewing this week and loved it. I made Brenna 2 dresses, a taggie like toy, a burb cloth, a sleep sack, and a hooded towel. Plus I baked and decorated cupcakes. It feels great to be creating again.
I am loving that Jas is embracing my love of nail polish and is spoiling me with little nail surprises. I am having a blast creating new manicure looks with all my fun polishes.

Friday, April 15, 2011

An amazing video from an amazing family

I happened in to an amazing blog that I have found very informative and helpful in the land of attachment issues. I am truly amazed at how she manages all the things that RAD brings to the table. I wish that I could channel her in our trauma time.

Today she posted this amazing video that was created by one of her daughters about how far her other daughter has come. It is a stunning video and I had to share it.
From Welcome to My Brain here is the video

Thursday, April 14, 2011

What has been up with us

Well after much hemming and hawwing and hiding I have decided to come clean with what is going on in our world. What's been keeping me from blogging. We have been dealing with issues with the kids. Some big ones some little ones but here is an overview of what we have been up to. This was part of an update

What I figure the best way to do this is to go by child. So lets start with the oldest and work down. Liam was diagnosed in August with pretty severe Generalized Anxiety Disorder. ( He has a counselor he sees at the church where the little kids go to preschool. We really like her and so does Liam. She has helped us with getting him help at school as well. The biggest things she has helped us to understand is that part of his anxiety is shown through Selective Mutism. ( This is why he may not respond to you when you talk to him especially in front of new people he doesn't know or in situations where he is not comfortable. Please understand it isn't because he doesn't want to respond he may not physically be able to. There are times when we are talking to him that he moves his mouth to answer and no sound comes out. It use to make us so frustrated with Liam but now that we understand we try other ways to get him to feel safe enough to respond. He is making progress, he can order his own food at restaurants sometimes we have to repeat it for him if it is a noisy place as he doesn't always speak loudly. If he feels like he is in trouble or has disappointed you he may not speak. If he is nervous about where he is or who is around he may not speak. Please don't take it personally if he doesn't respond or say Hi to someone you want him to talk to. I am sure if he could he would as I imagine as hard as it is for us to deal with it is even harder for Liam to feel that worried that he can't speak. He currently has an IEP (Individualized Education Plan) at school to help him when he struggles with communicating both verbally and written.

Alexis. Alexis has a few things going on. More than likely Alexis has attachment issues. Which is diagnosed as Reactive attachment disorder (RAD). There are two types of RAD inhibited and disinhibited. Alexis has the disinhibited type vs the inhibited type. The biggest difference is that kids with disinhibited type will seek attention from anyone including strangers instead of avoiding relationships and attachments. (for more information on RAD I tried to find a something that explains ways to help for family members but didn't really find a good one but didn't find one for teachers of children with RAD and think that it does a good job of explaining things We try really hard to follow the instruction and direction of our therapists in how best to help Alexis through this process. We realize we don't get it perfect but know that we are doing our best to help. This is a letter written by grandmother to other grandparents about her grandchildren with RAD. the blog this message is on is written by a mother who is raising kids with RAD. She has some great posts on her blog as well as videos on youtube. Another thing we are working with in regards to Alexis is more than likely early onset bipolar. Both sides of her biological family have bipolar. Alexis has a lot of the symptoms of having this. She is currently on meds to help her with this. If you would like more info on EOB please read here

Landon currently has a diagnosis of ADHD however lately we have been seeing more EOB signs in him and are working to determine what is the best course of action for Landon.

Brenna right now seems to be ok. She does struggle with opposition and defiance but we have our fingers crossed that it is from being 5 and nothing more. She is currently in treatment for a lazy eye and wears an eye patch for one hour each day to hopefully correct this. She was tested last summer for NF which thankfully came back negative. The Dr at St Vincents is still looking in to some other concerns with Brenna. We have our next appt with him in June. Hopefully all will check out well and she will be good to go.

Rogan is dealing with childhood apraxia of speech. ( While it sounds scary and it can be his speech therapist thinks he will be able to overcome it. He ages out of First Steps and working with his current speech therapist on his 3rd birthday in June. He should be going in for testing through the school system for his speech. The therapist thinks he will qualify for assistance with through them. I am trying to be hopeful but as many of you know of our struggles with getting the school to acknowledge our kids needs makes me concerned a little.

So that is the overview of what we are dealing with in regards to the kids. It all manifests itself in different ways that we get to try and deal with but we do our best. So if I am a little short with you or seem unavailable know it probably wasn't you I am just having a bad day.

Tuesday, January 25, 2011

Life has been a challenge so I going to try a challenge

In honor of the turmoil and craziness our life has been lately I am going to take up a challenge Liam's counselor suggested. I am going to try and think of the good things as we work through the other stuff.

First and foremost I am thankful for my hubby, with out his support I don't think I could have made it through the last few months. His calm and patience in the chaos is always wonderful. The fact that his hugs shield me from the stress for the moments I am in his arms is like a welcome oasis in the storm.

My friend CeCe who always shares my amazement in the path my life takes and is always available to listen. She allows me to say the crap that I think even if i don't really mean it and never condemns me for it.

My sister for listening and sharing what she knows since her kids are older than mine and she raises kids for a living.

My Dad In Law for all he does with Liam providing him a calm in the storm that is our home at times. For being brave enough to tell me what his concerns were even though he was worried it would upset us and even more for listening to our concerns and still being there for us.

I am grateful that I sucked up my fear and talked to who is now Liam's therapist. She has been a big blessing to our family not just with Liam but with all of us.

Those are some of my gratefuls right now. What are some of yours