Monday, March 19, 2007

According to Huckle, I don't do anything right.

If he asks for grapes, he remembers that he wanted an orange. If I put his bowl down in front of him, he insists that oranges need to be on a plate. If I put his plate down at the kitchen table, he tells me he wants to sit at his playtable. If he asks to watch Dora, by the time I find the requested episode, he tells me that he wants to watch Dora after he watches Wonder Pets.

This goes on all day long. Good times.

About four o'clock, after 8 hours of this nonsense, I'll say to him, "Huck, even if I'd put oranges on a plate at the playtable, you'd tell me it was wrong."

We have a lot of "bless his heart" moments around here.


Huck is a bit screwed up, as we all expect him to be. Lots of progress around here in the last four months, of course, but I'm not in the mood to write about progress.

Even though I experience the manifestations of his issues every day, it is one sort of feeling to live it, and another feeling altogether for someone else to witness it all. Huck met his new-since-December SW today for the first time, and after hanging out with us for a few hours, Paul the SW pulled me aside and said, "He's really tough on you, isn't he?" I went into the "Yes, but....he's so much better now/he hasn't kicked me in the head in weeks/he's only rejecting me 4 of 5 times/anda anda anda." Then I stopped apologizing for Huck and said, "Yes, and it sucks." And then I cried. I was a big, wet, snotty, sloppy sobmonster. And I felt more hopeless today than I have in weeks. What seems like such huge progress to us, the things we celebrate and giggle over and call relatives to report, still don't add up to a kid that passes for "normal."


Huck's file is being sent on to an adoption caseworker this week. I called my mom to tell her that, in six weeks or so we should be able to read his redacted file, and that after that it would probably just be a matter of scheduling a court date for an adoption, assuming the paperwork goes through. My mom is Huck's biggest fan. Today she asked, "What if he never gets better?"


My heart feels a bid threadbare.


I used to be a holder-on-er. No matter what, no matter how much someone hurt me, I stuck it out, to the point of nearly destroying myself, because that person needed me. It took a lot of time and work to be able to learn to walk away. And, I mean the physical acts of walking away, not taking phonecalls, not going back to places where I knew I'd be able to find those people. Even years later, my mind can't fully disengage -- the only thing I'm strong enough to do is abide by my decision to leave by not putting myself back in that relationship. Once I'd forced myself to walk away, I got good at it. Walking away was safer, guaranteed a new adventure, and hurt just enough to punish myself for having been young and stupid and in love or whatever.

Last month, I told our SW that if a boyfriend treated me the way Huckle treats me, I would have dumped him a long time ago.

So now I'm learning how to hold on, how to let Huckle into my heart even when he's his most awful, when I just want to protect myself from his anger and his hatred.


Gawdessness said...

My eleven year old has some food issues and both he and his younger sister have been very hard on me in the past eight months.
Not physically but the emotional wear and tear is nothing to be sneezed at.

Just wanted to say that it is hard, hard, hard.

I too have been a holder on to - glad there is stuff that is good too, but I understand how that isn't what is holding your attention right now.

Baggage said...

I understand. I celebrate small victories but in no way does that add up to anything anyone would consider "normal."

Yondalla said...

Dear Lord you sound so like me. I got good at walking away. I have a threshold which if someone passes, I leave. Finding out that Evan was an addict was one of those things. My entire life if I found out that someone had a substance abuse issue I stepped away.

Deciding to maintain my relationship with Evan made me cry, tremble, even want to throw up. He wasn't even doing anything bad to me -- it was just that he was an addict and I knew I was supposed to run.

I've also thought about how caring for these kids can mean accepting treatment that we would never accept from someone else.

Al-Anon was the best training I ever had for being a foster parent. It taught me how to have boundaries while still in a relationship with someone. It taught me how to find a place where my options weren't just "taking it" or leaving.

I'm glad your wrote again.

We are here.

Amanda said...

I'm so glad to see you posting again. I wish that I had something great to say but all I can think of is to keep going. It sounds like you are holding up as well as can be expected. I've been thinking of you.

Maggie said...

It's got to be so hard. Especially since the things he does are typical -- they're just amped up by a million and the reasons he does them are very different. But I'd bet you have people (from outside of the foster/adoption world) that say things like "my son/daughter does that."

cloudscome said...

I am glad you are writing too. I miss you and I wonder how you are doing. Hang in there.

Lionmom said...

Your post brought home to me how it really takes someone who lives it to understand it. I could have written a similar post about my S. I feel for you!