Thursday, December 31, 2009

Embarrassing Moments

We decided to skip bowling because they didn't have room for us. They were booked solid all night. Skating was an all nighter and I knew I'd want to slit my wrist after an hour or 2 with the baby. We almost didn't make it out of the house after my son decided to threaten to kill and chop up Rosa and Alyssa for looking at him. He managed to pull himself together with the help of my DH. I lost my patience and had to leave the room. He was so delusional, claiming I was mean to him and we all hate him. NOTHING was ever said or implied that anyone was irritated or upset with him in any way. He thinks this crap up all on his own. I'm getting heated up thinking about it again.

We ended up going to Chuck E Chez. I signed up for their membership online and they sent me a ton of great coupons. We had the place to ourselves. I'm not kidding, there was only one other family there. They had a blast! When they closed at 10PM, we came home to watch the ball drop.

I forgot to mention in my post yesterday about how the kids embarrassed me. I know all you moms have had those moments in public when your kid whines in the bathroom stall that you are pooping and it stinks or in the check out line and they ask you why someone is so fat. We've all been there, done that. I had Abs (my 11 yr old niece), Emma, and Ava with me at the thrift store. Within minutes they were bored and ceased to be much help. First Emma had to use the bathroom and the other 2 quickly stepped up to take her and go themselves. I pointed to the back of the store and told them to stay together. About a minute later I heard the alarm sound. I knew it was my kids. Everyone stopped and stared the entire 60 seconds it screeched through the store. Just as it stopped my kids ran around the corner and hollered that they had set it off when they opened what they thought was the bathroom. It echoed they were so loud and everyone was so quiet for a few seconds. Then everyone started laughing. They were mortified, it takes more than that to get my blood boiling.

Later, after they had relieved themselves in the proper place and the attention was back on shopping. I managed to get them looking again with the promise to leave as soon as we looked at every pair of pants. I asked them to look for size 4 and 18. Once I filled the cart with all the 4s we needed, we were all to put our attention on finding any 18s for me. If you are wondering why I am sharing my size with you all, I figured you may as well know, every one within our local area does. You see, the girls would YELL out, "Hey, here's an 18! That's for you right? It's huge! Wow, this is ugly. Here you go Mom." The first time it happened, I acted like it was no big deal. A fellow mom looked at me and smiled, knowing. I discreetly mentioned they could just bring anything they found to me. I thought/hoped they got the hint. I should have known better. The second time, a woman laughed out loud and mumbled something that I couldn't understand. The third time, I calmly took it from her hand and said, "Nanny will love these!". My kids were confused and asked, "Why would Nanny care about your pants?" No one was fooled. I was humiliated.

As we were waiting in line, Rosa called to tell me Ruthie had threatened to kill her with the knife int he sink and had to be held. I promised to hurry home and hung up. I quietly stated we were in a hurry to get home. Emma announced loud enough for every one in line to hear like it was every day conversation, "I bet Ruthie tried to kill someone again. She really can't handle Mom having a life. I wonder if they will put her in the hospital like Michael and Patches so she won't try to kill every one anymore." Ava said, "She'll have to go when she stabs someone. You can't be dangerous and live in a family. Mom won't let her kill anyone because she loves us no matter what." I was so ready to go. I couldn't even say anything. I looked up and the cashier's mouth was hanging open. I smiled and unloaded my basket. I mean really, at this point, what's to hide?

Wednesday, December 30, 2009

Making it Fair

My sister, Kiki, just left with her kids and husband. I had 2 of her kids for a few days while she took Cyr. It was a nice break for Cyr. She and Sanna slept until 2PM one day. We enjoyed having the girls here, as always. I miss them so much and only get to see them occasionally. It was like a tornado hit my house this week. It was messier than usual and the kitchen floor is so bad that my BIL's feet stuck to it. Gross!

I snuck out this morning to hit the local thrift shop. Four times a year they have 50% off and I load up. Patches is gaining weight steadily and in 2 years has gone from a girls size 10 to a misses 6. It is a hard size to buy for a 12 yr old. Everything looks too mature and the jr sizes are too sexy. Everything is 10 inches too long. The tops are easier but getting her to wear the right size tshirt is hard, too. She has no sense of style or cares what she looks like. I force Cyr to try and help her but she tends to try things on her own most days le4aving her to look homeless. Her poor hair is a story for another day. So today I purchased a new wardrobe for her. She got 7 or 8 new pairs of jeans and 10-12 new shirts. All fit her the best we are going to and look great. I sat with her and showed her what goes with what and hope she remembers. Most shirts were $.60-1.15 and the pants were $1.15-2.15 for name brands like American Eagle Outfitters, Express, Areopostale, and Holster. Amazing deals on the cutest clothes.

Tomorrow we are going to take the kids bowling. We haven't taken them before and we are hoping it is something even Ella can do. They wanted to go skating but Ella gets too upset because her feet turn in so much and they trip her. Emma will be at her Mother's with all 3 sisters so she won't be joining us. Neither will Rosa and her kids for that matter. My kids have been getting upset because her children get to do a lot. They go with their Father, Rosa takes them out to do family things and lets them all sleep with her on the weekends, they have a Grandfather that comes every couple of months, and they have had 2 vacations in the last year. I think it is great for them but it sucks for my kids. We are broke from taking care of an entire additional family and don't have any extra money for activities. How do you explain that to a sobbing 7 or 8 yr old? All they see are the extra presents and special evenings watching movies or going places. I promised them to do things with just them again. We will be making an effort to separate things up a bit without leaving Rosa and her kids out of everything. It's a very fine line to walk. I don't want anyone to have hurt feelings but I need to let my younger kids have fun, too.

It's good to have Cyr home, she hasn't set the phone down yet. LOL My sister said she was a joy to have over, she never complained and behaved wonderfully. It's music to my ears.

Tuesday, December 29, 2009

Christmas Fiasco

I must have skipped over the Christmas afternoon episode. Sorry. I am trying to forget it and move on.

I had mentioned things were going well that day and I spoke too soon. Michael had been pushing the limits but was pulled back without much drama. That is until there was drama. I can't even remember what set him off. He went wild with anger. It was worse than usual. He put all his energy and efforts into hurting me. I was having a hard time getting a good grip and in the process he managed to bite my left breast and leave a huge bruise. Trust me when I say, I do not bruise easily and if a bruise is visible, he had to work very hard to get it there. He then grabbed the next available skin and it happened to be my other breast. He grabbed a handful and twisted as hard as he could. He slammed his head back against my chest that afternoon and it left a very tender spot on the front of my left shoulder. When the kids hug me, I wince in pain when they try to lay against me or hug me.

As I mentioned, I really don't remember what started it but I should have seen it coming. He had taken the trash out moments before and told me a bunch of cats surrounded him. He claimed they were circling him. They were trying to scare him and hurt him. It was painfully obvious this didn't happen and he was hallucinating. I comforted him and we moved on. He came to me several times asking if I was calling him. Later he became irritated, claiming I had been calling him and was trying to trick him. Shortly after that, all Hell broke loose.

In the end, he kept slamming his head back against me and I wasn't against the sofa so we fell backward. Since we were sitting and I was behind him, you would think if anyone would be injured, it would have to be me. It wasn't. He said he heard a snap in his neck because he was trying to hit me with his head as hard as possible. He began to cry and complain he couldn't turn his head. I waited a second to be sure it was real.m Yes, I have been tricked into believing they were hurt or were done just so they could really hurt me. I quickly realized he had hurt himself and I began trying to assess the situation.

The sad part is, my first thought was that I was going to be accused of harming him. It was going to look like I had restrained him improperly or was abusing him. In fact, I was not doing either but can't control his head in a basket hold so he is free to harm his neck. He turned out to be fine and just needed a bit of ibuprofen and to sit a spell. What if he had been really injured? That is always a risk with violent children. I am confident that he would tell the truth when he is calm but he is easily confused due to his low IQ. What if they didn't believe him? What if they didn't understand how ill he is and the damage he is capable of? It is always easier to blame the adult in the situation for abusing the child. It is hard to believe this sweet, almost angelic looking tiny boy can rage for no reason for hours. I can't get him on tape because he goes limp. I have no proof other that my word and the word of my children that he is so dangerous. I'm sure the hospital staff would see the marks on his body or the injury as a reason to report us. Another investigation would follow. Would they just glance at us and know or would they think that they've been called twice so they must have missed something the first time? We are in danger every time he goes off.

Monday, December 28, 2009

You Can Learn Things on Jerry Springer

As I was driving Cyr's BF home, the topic of religion came up. He told me his family was Catholic and they went to church several times a week. As we pulled in the drive way I noticed a bumper sticker about abortion. I kinda giggled to myself about a comment his parents had made about the size of our family and that we must not believe in abortion. As we drove home, Cyr and I were talking about the Catholic Church's view of abortion, abstinence, birth control, and marriage. She turned to me and said, "Girls have to stay with their baby's daddy when they are Catholic." Confused, I needed to her to explain what she was talking about. "On Jerry Springer, a girl was mad b/c her husband cheated on her and wanted to run off with his new girl friend. She kept saying that she had to stay with her baby's daddy b/c she was Catholic." Wow! What she was trying to say was that divorce wasn't an option due to her religious views. You know I couldn't stop laughing. She is the first person to learn something from the Jerry Springer Show.

Sunday, December 27, 2009

Cyr had a boy over! Manuel has been her BF for about 6 weeks and had spent an afternoon here when I was with Kiera and her family. I stayed out of their way but gave her a child that I knew could be trusted (even if it is only b/c it triggers her PTSD to see anyone kiss or touch). This child had to hang out with them any time they weren't with me. LOL It was genius, if I do say so myself.

Michael was much better today. He feels terrible about the marks on my hand, arm, and the ones he can't see on both my breasts. They are pretty tender and I winced when the kids tried to hug me or hang on me.

My sister, Kiki, and her girls are coming over tomorrow. I can't tell you how excited I am. We have decided to make a commitment to each other to get together every 6 weeks until we move, if we ever do, near her. Two of her girls will be staying a few nights. If I have anything to do with it, all week.

Friday, December 25, 2009

Food and Fun

A few kids woke up at 2 AM and made sure they woke the rest of them before sneaking down stairs. I hollered from my bed to "get back to bed until the sun comes up". I heard many tiny feet running for their lives back to bed. They managed to fall back to sleep after an hour or so and got up around 7:45. Most have handled their day very well. A few have whined quite a bit making a person wonder if they can be happy, ever.

We decided not to do a traditional large meal today but to put a few things on and let them nibble as they want. For breakfast, we always have French Toast w Strawberry Sauce and homemade Whipped Cream. I put on 6lbs of meatballs in a yummy sauce and am about to get busy on a Cheese Fondue with tons of bread and veggies and fruit to dip in it. We have cake, candy, and other goodies for or sweet tooth.

Merry Christmas to you all!

Tuesday, December 22, 2009

Christmas Pictures

Patches, Rosa, Cyr
Michael, Ava, Ruthie
Alyssa, Emma, Eddie
Kiera, Gia, Ella

It is really hard to get everybody smiling or in this case, looking at the same person. Yes, the 3 in the back are all about the same height, much to Rosa's dismay. Patches is smiling so much more lately, unfortunately, she forgot to here. Michael has a cheesy smile on. He was quite the prankster during this session. Ava refuses to smile and show teeth, ever. Poor Alyssa has only a few teeth left. We had the hardest time convincing Emma and Ava not to tilt their head every time they smiled. Kiera and Gia are smiling at me.

Patches 12, Rosa 28, Cyr 13
Ava 7, Michael 9, Ruthie 11
Emma 8, Kiera 2, Ella 7

Still no smile from Patches and some wild hair happening. Ava and her no teeth whatever that is supposed to be. Look at how tiny Michael is with Ava and Ruthie towering over him. Kiera barely made it in the picture. LOL

Monday, December 21, 2009

Several people have emailed me or left comments telling me they wish to send something to the kids for the holiday. One even mentioned something about being too lazy to send anything and it would be easier if the PayPal Donate button was back up. I'm not mentioning any names but thank you for being sooooo thoughtful. I'll be posting a picture of them with whatever I purchase for them and posting it here. If you have a suggestion for the gift, let me know otherwise I will do my best. I'll take it back down after the season. Send me a comment or email if you can't figure it out.

Sunday, December 20, 2009

Lots of This and a Little of That

I love it when they wake me screaming at each other. It sets the mood for the day. When they move on to punching, you know you gonna have fun. My son rammed his body into the wall above his bed and we now have a small boy's body sized hole in the sheetrock. Good times, people. At least he showed the kids first so he can't come back and say one of us did it to him.

We have decided to pursue the same meds that have changed the life of Patches, for him. Have I mentioned what is going on with her? She allowed me to take her photo first thing in the morning, she had her hair pushed back off her face, and she smiled on purpose! ALl of those things are firsts for her. SHe hasn't had any major tantrums since Thanksgiving and is sharing her feelings with us. SHe actually tried to help Michael when he was in a rage Friday by telling him how she used to feel before the meds and how she does now. SHe was trying to give him HOPE! He couldn't hear it at the time b/c he was too busy trying to convince us we were trying to "get him". His paranoid and delusional thinking is getting way out of control and is scary to work with. I have found that agreeing with him throws him off but is dangerous if I am not careful what I agree to. He is no longer fighting with Patches b/c her's is gone. He can turn anything into a plot against him. If Eddie gets out of the van and grabs a hand of a nearby child, Michael will say he hates Michael and Eddie never wants to play with him again. If I ask the kids to "run through your chores", it becomes "I hate you Michael. You have to do all the chores. No one here loves you or likes you. YOu are stupid. You are dirty. You can't eat here ever again." I'm not kidding, those are things he yells back at me, swearing that's what I meant. There is only one way to fix it and it is with meds, hopefully the ones Patches' is taking will help him cope with this distorted thinking.

We spent the evening at Gorges' house (my Mom and it's pronounced gorgeous) to do our holiday thing there. It was great! She made all my kids PJ bottoms and matching pillow cases. Rosa's got the bottoms. Mine was the best, she made me an adorable basket with cool goodies, tons of homemade cookies and breads, and she made me a sit down dinner with several courses of the most incredible food that I didn't have to clean up after. Since Rosa moved in, there hasn't been room at the table for the adults so I end up standing. It was fantastic to relax and not worry about kids. I was miserable when dessert came. We decided it wasn't my fault that my extra large bra smooshes my stomach and causes me to feel full too soon. I asked several members of my family to hold them up to relieve the pressure so I could continue with the feast before me but no one accepted. Someone offered to tie a scarf around my neck and under them to help but there wasn't one long enough. That needs to be invented for holidays for large breasted women. Can one of y'all get on that?

My MIL came to get Patches and Ruthie to purchase their birthday gifts. I can't believe they are 11 and 12 this year.

We have spent a great deal of time talking about the time they have been with us. We are half way into the 4th of everything, birthdays, holidays, and such. The twins are having a hard time recalling their last foster mother's name and remembering living with their parents. The bad memories remain clear and vivid but the day to day stuff is almost gone. They remember the visitation center clearly but only Cyr remembers any holidays. I knew they would forget some things, that's natural. I am surprised at how much they are forgetting. It seems to have taken a huge leap lately, too. They want to talk about traditions here and how it is different than their previous life. Ella and Ava seem to need to hear how they have changed, too. I do that with all the kids but they are asking me about it more and more. Both have changed tremendously, I barely recognize the old posts about them.

Kiera is changing, too. Her anger is subsiding and becoming more of a desperation for me. She can even let strangers talk to her, she won't respond but she'll listen. That's a huge step above throwing things at them. SHe understands that Santa is bringing presents. SHe knows she loves presents. She let Santa hold her b/c of his promise to bring them. SHe thinks the tree is the coolest toy holder ever. She plucks the ornaments off and cooks them for me in her kitchen. SHe tears out the pictures of the kids on them and kisses them before throwing them down. We have had to redecorate more this year than all the years since Emma was born. If I must complain, I'm glad it's about this.

The flu is still keeping us down. My DH now is feeling it. I am up moving but a fever still hits me every night. I just can't shake the sore throat and deep cough. Life must go on though.

Friday, December 18, 2009

We managed to get a picture of all the kids yesterday and they will be ready Monday. They aren't great. My son was driving me crazy the moment he got home and continued at the studio. He thought it would be funny to add ears to the other kids and make faces while the guy was snapping pictures. When I corrected him verbally, b/c several Mom Looks didn't do any good at all, he slid to the ground leaving an empty spot in the picture. At least he didn't destroy the set or attack me, again.

Today I have 5 elementary school parties to go to. Rosa will be going to her kids so I will be able to focus on mine. I'm so glad to have her around again. At this point, I am keeping my fingers crossed and head down to the end of 2009. Please let us get there without drama....

Wednesday, December 16, 2009

Dear Santa,

We received your package and were so excited. The note in the package confirmed my previous stories that you and I had a high school love. They assumed the present was sent ahead of schedule b/c they are special to you. The stories that have been swirling around here about you have cracked me up. As far as they are concerned, when my DH dies I am to be your bride. I am taking extra steps to be sure that he passes from natural causes many decades from now.

It was a thoughtful gift and I can assure you they will be loved to pieces.



An Accomplishment

After 17 very long weeks, Rosa graduated from the Police Academy. She has been getting up between 2 and 3 AM five days a week to study and prepare for school. She has been beaten by the other officers, tazered, been peppered sprayed, learned to spin a car around without flipping it, run for miles, done thousands of push ups and sit ups, and role played the heck out of some scary situations and survived it all. She is physically worn out and emotionally drained from all the hard work. She could have quit at any time, many others in her class did. Some days she cried from exhaustion and from being endlessly picked by the "boys" in her class. In the end, she was the most talked about in the class speech. She had been the backbone of one of the recruits. She is the one that got him through. I sobbed with tears of pride as she walked on the stage. The minute it was over I ran to find her to wrap my arms around her. I couldn't be any more excited about her future and having her home!

Monday, December 14, 2009

My life sucks right now. I fear I may be dying from the flu. I have kids melting down, refusing their meds, Rosa's graduation, I can't get to the store for groceries, I don't have the energy to alter Rosa's suit, a couple of kids are getting sick, and I desperately need to shop. Did I mention that the organization that wanted to help us with some of our Christmas burden this year has disconnected their phone number? Patches, Michael, and Ruthie may very well drive me to the edge of my sanity by the end of the week. Cyr's boy friend came to the house and survived. He was surprised at how big and mean looking my DH was. LOL I just got back from a family visit with Kiera's family. It went better than expected and I will have to post about that later.

OK, so at least I have a start of things to update on when I can sit up more than 10 minutes.

Sunday, December 06, 2009

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.

Friday, December 04, 2009

School Issues

I think someone should do a study about how kids seem to take turns driving their parents insane. I swear, except for Ruthie, they take turns. Perhaps it is my fault, I work diligently on one child's issues only to neglect the others, forcing them to give it back to me tenfold. Patches is holding her own while she is in the partial hospitalization program while Michael is losing his grip. I have returned to a whisper when I speak to him. He still insists I am yelling at him all the time, I hate only him, I am trying to make him have a bad life, I took his parents away from him, and he wants to live in the hospital forever. EVERY DAY. I take that back, I hear that at least 5 times any given day he is in school.

His teacher called me a few minutes ago. He was caught stealing. Moved his stick to yellow. He was caught hiding in the classroom. (This is a big No-No in our family due to the sexual abuse. The very fact he was hiding says he was slipping fast.) Moved to red. She talked about how he was shutting down, refusing to reengage, and getting frustrated. I felt sorry for them both, he had to have his cover blown and she had to see it. He looks like a tiny little boy when it is all over and you wonder if what you saw was real. How could this adorable, affectionate child become so enraged? We are in uncharted territory for him. He doesn't let his guard down in front of the school. Should be a fun afternoon.

Yesterday he lost complete control on the bus when Eddie spit and some hit the seat or him or both, I'm not sure b/c it gets bad after that. He took Eddie's head and rubbed his face in it. He refused to stop. Eddie became very upset and began crying. He humiliated the poor boy in front of every one on the bus. No consequence from the driver, of course. The second the bus stopped, Ava and Michael raced to tell me what happened. I quieted Ava since she had no business in the conversation and asked Eddie to tell me what happened. He went through the whole thing being interrupted constantly by Michael denying everything. I then asked Michael to tell me his side. It was exactly the same as Eddie's. He admitted to everything. He was still enraged claiming they were ALL lying about him. He is delusional and paranoid. I hate this illness. I hate what it is doing to my family. After an hour, he slipped back into our daily life without a trace of the child that raced to tell me his side and how the world is out to get him, eager to make it up to me. He and Eddie went on to have a great afternoon playing together.

Ruthie and Alyssa are both having their own issues. Not a concern for any one's safety but annoying none the less. Alyssa is fine if I keep her busy every waking moment and right by my side. Ruthie is fine if no one else gets in trouble. If they do, she flips out and begins raging, threatening me, and destroying things. The other day, I had to pick up Kiera under her arms and move her to time out for hitting someone with a toy, hard. She was throwing a tantrum and I never raised my voice or became angry, in any way. Ruthie threatened to report me to DFCS for abusing Kiera. She threw a chair at the window and screamed on our front porch for an hour. Typical Ruthie crap.

You'll love this one, Ruthie complains about things for attention. It is so much better here at home but it flares up at school occasionally. One way is that she tells them her head itches so they will check her for lice. Weird? I'll give you that. She seems to be trying to embarrass me in public lately, too. She waits until we are in the middle of the check out line and announces she may have lice or that her warts are growing bigger. She talks about her privates itching and even the color of her boogers but only around strangers. Never at home or the privacy of our van. I try to come up with colorful comments but it is hard when everyone is staring at you b/c they think I am unaware of birth control. I'm working on it though. I told her she was part witch and that's my the warts are growing. She doesn't have lice, she has bed bugs. The only time to worry about a booger is when your mother sees it it is on your finger. The best one so far has been when she complains about her privates, I remind her if she would start wiping it wouldn't itch and we will put baby cream on it when she gets home. I am sure she will continue to reach all new highs over the holidays and I look forward to the challenge.