Book Lover asked in my last post
"How do you stay in love with these children? That constant negative drip on your emotions and heart has to take its toll. Do they ever show you any love or gratitude so you can keep going?"
I have found that, like in a marriage, the "in love" feeling comes and goes with each child. I never stop loving them but I do have moments when they are too draining, that I force myself to go the extra mile to prove I am always there for them. I do not like their behaviors towards me and on occasion find it hard to separate the behavior with the child. It is easier for me than anyone else in my life to do that. I have been told by professionals that that is the one of the keys to surviving parenting them.
I really have it easy with most of them. My reward is looking back to see how far they have come. With Cyr, I can see how close she is to me, she tells me things her friends don't share with their moms. We are connected and when I look at her every day, I see her smile and hear a giggle that wasn't there the first 2 years. She can cry when she is sad, laugh when something is funny, and yell when she is angry. She is an easy teenager, if there was one. I'm sure that will bite me in the butt soon enough. LOL
Ava is no longer stealing and destroying things. She is affectionate, sometimes too much but very sweet. She is a good student and is starting to make friends. She can now be trusted at other people's homes without a guard. That is something I was sure we would never be able to allow again.
Ella is a hard worker and will do anything I ask. She is able to talk about what is on her mind and process it with me. She is working hard at school and is catching up to her peers.
Emma has her anxiety under control with meds and has been trustworthy forever.
Gia is a bit of a whiner with her mother but I couldn't complain about another thing. She is adjusting and doing well.
Eddie came to us last year as a full blown brat. He was impossible to be around without irritating you. He was defiant and had so many "fears" he couldn't be left alone in a room to bathe or go to bed. He screamed for hours for attention He is one of the joys in my life now. I have no problem with him wetting and pooping on himself as long as he takes care of it himself. That is literally, the only issue he still has. His lack of attention span gets him in trouble but he never causes trouble or acts up. He is one of the funniest kids I have ever met.
Kiera is attaching and is now quite anxious about it. How could I possibly be upset about a toddler that wants to hug me, sleep on me, and follow me to the toilet to help me? She adores me and the feeling is mutual.
I guess that just leaves 4 that are difficult. Their issues are not their fault. They are hard to look past, yes. They take up a lot of my attention, yes. While they are holding it together they are wonderful. They are affectionate, thoughtful, and kind. Three become psychotic and lose control. It's not their idea to ruin their afternoon. They want to enjoy life so how could I not jump right back in with them when it's over? Only one enjoys the chaos. She is smart and knows what to say to pull me right back in. I received an unsolicited note last night from her that said, "Dear Nana, I know I am having a hard time right now but I don't know how to control my anger. Can you please help me?" Of course, I'm always willing to try again. It is a good thing she is cute.
I figure that I have no choice, I have to love them. Without my love they would destroy themselves. I can't say I want to be around them all the time but I do love them, always.