Thursday, April 9, 2009

It's not all in my head

I realize many of my posts have been about Nate, but reality is he is always on my mind. We love him dearly and have come along way this past year but there is something there, something I can't put my finger on. I went to a counselor yesterday and just let it all out about our struggles with him. I felt so scared she would tell me "of course he has issues, he's an orphan from China, your expectations are too high" or that she would give me a list of things to try to modify his behavior. Let me tell you we have tried just about everything we could creatively come up with and I didn't want to sit there and be a know it all to her, "yep we've tried that one, yep that one too and it didn't work..." Instead at the end of my free flowing vomit of words spilling from my mouth as quickly as I could spew them forth she said "Oh my Katie, you need help with him, from what you are telling me there are big warning bells here. He needs to be evaluated by a child psychologist." I could have fallen off the sofa. "Thank you Jesus" I said to myself, "it's not all in my head" I have a professional here telling me that something is just not right with this picture. My feelings are a strange mixture of "oh sh*t" and "thanks be to God."

I just want to cry right now. The stress on our family, including Nathaniel, has been significant and we're ready for some help. My husband who is a pediatrician is a little leery about having him evaluated because he doesn't want him labeled. He sees kiddos all of the time in his practice who have been labeled/diagnosed with a disorder and I'm not sure if it's out of his sense of pride or his sense of protection. Maybe a little of both. For me I just want to know so we can move forward with a plan of action. Give us something to work with here 'cause we've got nothin'.

We pray every night, "dear Jesus please bless our efforts and fill in the gaps." Hopefully soon one of those gaps will start to be filled.

Monday, April 6, 2009


There have been times that I welcome Mondays. I see Monday as a chance for a new beginning, a chance to start anew each week. I like to plan my week, make my goals and try to accomplish them. The feeling at the end of the week when I look back at my list and see the majority of my goals accomplished is awesome and I feel like I'm living my life instead of just existing, succumbing to all of the external forces.

This past year my Mondays have been a struggle. I try to look forward to them as usual but get frustrated because they more often than not, end in behavioral issues with Nate.

Nate has been really making great improvements in his behavior over the past 6 months or so. The first six months after he joined our family were really, really tough for him and for us and we have worked very hard to help him adjust to a new family. One area though that is still really hard are Mondays. You see, he hates change. I mean really hates change. It totally disrupts his little world if something is out of order in it. It bugs him if a light bulb is burned out or if there is something on his bedroom floor before he goes to bed, or if the sheets are off his bed getting washed. Most of all he hates having his favorite person in the entire world gone, his daddy, and that happens every Monday. Bob goes off to work and the older 2 girls go off to school and Nate falls apart. He wakes up in the morning just sensing that it's Monday and is all gloom and doom. His behavior is just terrible, refuses to use the bathroom(control), is physically aggressive with Dominic, says no to everything, controls his food, on and on. He really struggles and it's he*l around here until Wednesday, then the heavens open up, the birds start to sing again and he is back to his happy, vibrant little self. The kicker is, I'm not. The first two days of the week are so emotionally draining that I'm still recovering and really trying hard not to be "ultimate disciplinarian mom" and relax into the family and the flow of our days. Thursday I'm back to normal then Friday is here before I know it, then the weekend, then the vicious cycle starts all over again. Yuck!

I don't feel productive at all. I don't even make a checklist anymore because I hate seeing all that I haven't accomplished. But really I have accomplished something. We are accomplishing love, security, trust and it's hard to check those items off my list. They are an ongoing checklist, forever. This little guy is trying so hard to love us and allow us to love him. To feel secure in our love and to trust that it will always be there.

So maybe Mondays aren't so bad after all. My checklist just needs to go by the wayside a bit longer because I am working on goals much more important than grocery shopping, laundry, organizing the kids clothes. I'm working on a family for Nate.