Today dawned a crisp snowy morning, I am one with my shower and waiting for all the kids to arise and face the new day. After last night's drama, I am read for a new start.
I didn't sleep much last night, along with Dominick's bursitis flaring up and keeping him awake (doesn't THAT make us sound old?) I was of course replaying everything in my mind, doubting myself, wondering what thinking was going on in another room in the house.
I came to the conclusion that in some ways, perhaps last night needed to happen. In an orphanage, your behavior becomes survivalist. A kid who is not mean spirited can at times act in a less than understanding or compassionate way in order to appear tough on the outside and keep from being gobbled up by others. There also has never been a single adult person in Angela's life who has EVER been emotionally invested in her. That is a totally new experience. Maybe she needed to see that her words or actions have the power to wound adults, that finally there was an adult in her life who actually cares deeply about her that they could be moved to tears and not just turn their backs and walk away...and I think it shocked her. That may not be a bad thing, for she is having to reframe what adults mean in her life, what their role is. Dominick and I are not just disinterested bystanders wrangling her as every other adult in her life has been. We are fully invested in her mind, heart and soul.
It was not about physical rejection, last night was more about disrespect. There is an inner anger at women and when a safe man is around, that anger is more easily exposed. Daily her behavior changes somewhat when Dominick is home, and it hurts my feelings. Yea, I know, I am supposed to be dispassionate about it all, distanced...and often I can be. Last night, I just couldn't. It had stacked up and overflowed.
We flit in and out with the emotional and physical closeness, that is to be expected for months...if not years to come. But much of yesterday began to border on disrespect, it went downhill from the moment we left the swimming pool. I don't blog about every single action, ever nuance, every moment of our lives. I blog about the highlights, the pieces and parts that I manage to pull together to share...or want to share. Sometimes much passes by that doesn't get blogged about, simply because I don't have time to get to a keyboard or want to even talk about it because the moment has already passed and we have moved on.
Breaking through to someone's heart is the single hardest thing I have ever done. Sadly, we are not rookies in this area as it has been only about 3 years since Joshua was still in the active rejecting stage at times having come out of a truly horrific infancy and toddlerhood of anger and physical discomfort with touch. We made it then, I have not a single doubt we will make it now.
That doesn't mean it won't often stink, that I won't be in tears many times, that it won't hurt like hell...on both sides. No pain, no gain.
But this blog is a place to post as much of our journey as I feel like posting. I WANT you to see that I am not Supermom, that many times things don't go as planned, that I am not perfect. I know that over and over again many of you might be saying to yourselves because of my honesty that "I wouldn't have done that" or "She misread that". GOOD! Because through my failures you might be able to see that YES...you too could do this, and probably a lot better. Your heart might be opened to see that those who adopt older kids are not saints but are people just like you. We make mistakes, we succeed sometimes, and we get up and try again. The collective set of experiences usually means that our mistakes are overshadowed by our successes. But others can do this too, we are not special and many more kids should have a shot at a family and not be discounted because they are over 5 years old. Many, many of you who read this could do this, and a darn sight better than we can...I know that and applaud anyone who feels called to do it. Wish you were around so we could chat over a cold Diet Coke and I could learn from you!! Hahaha!
I hear feet walking back and forth down the hall, the chicks have arisen...time to get back in the saddle, today will be a good day!