Yolie's World

Saturday, August 19, 2006

Picture Time

I looked just like this years ago in my Medicaid glasses (before they gave kids decent choices!).
CJ thought he wanted to help Mommy clean, then he decided Mommy did a bettr job.

Monday, August 14, 2006

Being CJ's Mom

CJ at 15 minutes old...love of my life!
This weekend I became aggravated at constantly being put in a position where I either have to defend my parenting or just ignore snide comments being made. I simply don't understand the crazy world we live in, where I am judged or laughed at for still nursing my thirteen month old son, where it's not good parenting when my son has separation anxiety when left in a church nursery with people he does not know. My Mom and I were discussing it this morning, and we came to the conclusion that people just don't seem to make children a priority nowadays. Call me old fashioned, call me boring, call me overbearing, I simply don't care. My priority is my family. When I was pregnant with CJ I remember people "giving me advice" about fitting CJ into MY schedule. I was "advised" by some that life doesn't have to end when you have a kid, and to make sure I taught him that the world does not revolve around him. Now, these people were well-meaning, I'm sure. I simply disagree with them. I did not have a child so that I could "fit him in." He did not ask to be born, and I believe I should focus on being his Mother. Why is it that in a nursery full of babies, the child who sits in a swing for three hours (Sunday school and church service), never making a sound and never demanding anything is looked at as the best baby in the nursery, while my son, who has very appropriate separation anxiety and who (heaven forbid) gets upset and needs to nurse is snickered at and thought to be spoiled? If meeting my son's needs and giving him extra love and attention is spoiling, then oh well. I find it offensive when people feel the need to make comments about him being "spoiled," as if I am doing something wrong by being a stay-at-home Mom who just happens to agree with scientific data showing that nursing your child is the healthiest and most appropriate way to nourish him.
Yes, my son may cry when left with a stranger, but he knows there are fifty or so people in his family who can take care of him, so he is very well socialized. He is also giving, sharing and loving. He plays well with all of his cousins and he is already sensitive to other people's feelings. Just this past week, as his beloved Aunt Sarah was going through a very sad time, he hardly left her side as he constantly was hugging on her and cuddling with her. Now, CJ is not one to cuddle when given the choice of that or playing with Tabby, Nando and RayRay, but as I said, he is already a sweetheart. So, if the proof is in the pudding, then why don't others just zip up and let me mother the way my heart tells me to. Or as my Mom always says, "if you can't say something nice, be quiet!".

Tuesday, August 08, 2006

Fearing Loss

My Mom recently had psychologicals done on several of my younger siblings. One thing that really stood out to her was the kids' intense fear of losing her (in a car accident, for example) and/or losing the family. Usually, the fear is that something terrible will happen to her and then the obvious fear is "what will happen to us?". I have had those same fears, so I knew exactly what she was talking about when she was talking to me about the psychs. Once I was adopted, and no longer had the fear of abuse and neglect, my thoughts immediately turned to when I would lose this family. You see, in my life, nothing was constant, nothing good ever stayed, and those things that looked good usually showed their ugly head as time went by. So, when I did let myself trust and love my Mom, it meant that I was opening myself up to a world of potential hurt and loss. I remember worrying about her. I worried that she would go to the grocery store and get in a wreck or that one day she would decide this was not the life she really wanted and that would be the end of it. I can relate to "irrational fears" of loss, as many psychologists put it, because to us it is not so irrational. Now, as I watch Tabby scream when Mom has to go somewhere without her (VERY RARELY, I might add), I understand. Her fear of losing Mom is so intense, yet she does not understand it nor know how to explain it to anybody. Her heart simply knows that loss is something she doesn't want to experience again. To many adoptive parents, the thought of a four year old acting like this is scary, but understandable. Transfer it to a twelve year old, a fifteen year old, even a twenty year old adopted child, and the understanding and empathy go out the window. Why can't they just act right? Well, much of that is just being a teenager (ugh!), but much of it is what I just explained. A four year old acts that way not remembering or understanding the losses she has endured (simply feeling them). Why then should a teenager, who remembers well each loss, who remembers well the absence of love and care, not be as much or more fearful of losing a good thing? Right now Mom has a couple of teenagers clinging for dear life to her and not wanting to grow up. Of course they don't want to grow up. That means you don't have a Mom anymore, right? At least that's how they think. At some point, they will have to make a choice within themselves to break off just a little bit, in order to become the adults they are intended to be. But they will, as I do, continue to need Mom, they will continue to fear losing her, because fear of loss is how we live. I find myself even now, as a Mother myself, constantly worrying about loss. I worry what would happen if something happened to me. I fear that CJ will have to know life without a Mom. These are terrible thoughts, and sometimes I have to stop myself and remember that God is in control and that I cannot control everything. This is just a glimpse into my inner thoughts. I was telling my Mom this morning that I still worry about her when she has to drive to Atlanta for something. I worry about what would happen to us all if something happened to her. Yes, I still have issues and sometimes I become that little girl again, full of anxiety and fear about losing everything I love so much. It's is not a paralyzing fear, as it often is right after foster care, I simply think about it more than the "average person." I know I am healthy, happy and I love my life, yet the damage done to me at a young age has consequences, and these feelings are some of them.

Sunday, August 06, 2006

New Readers?

My Champ, CJ
So I just talked to Mom and she told me that Claudia had mentioned my blog on a radio show she was interviewed for, which caused me to immediately run to the computer and begin a new post since I have not posted in some time. Mostly, I have been busy enjoying every second of my time as CJ's Mom. I can't believe he's thirteen months...it's flown by faster than I would have liked, but I am loving it all the same. Just in case anybody new is reading (what with Claudia making me famous and all), I thought I'd review my life very quickly so that people could catch up. Here goes...
The first eleven years of my life were spent either in a neglectful, abusive home or in foster care. At the age of eleven, along with my two brothers, I was adopted by the only woman in my life who has ever earned the right to be called Mom by me. We moved from Texas to Georgia (man was that an interesting trip) and have been here ever since. I am now a stay-at-home mother to the most precious child on God's green earth (in my humble opinion) and am very proud to have stopped the cycle of poverty, drug abuse, child abuse and neglect that was handed down to me by my birth family. There's a whole lot more to me, but in a nutshell that's my life right now. I am 26 years old, have a Masters Degree in Social Work and have chosen the best thing I can do for society right now is to be a good mother. I am passionate about sibling groups being adopted together, after all that is how they survived the hellish situations they were in before they came to the adopted home, how can anyone deprive them (and by them I mean me) of the right to maintain the only bonds that they've had since birth? Anyway, I can go on and on about that (and will in posts to come), but for now that is enough. I hope to update much more frequently now and my biggest hope for my blog is that I can help at least one person understand what it's like to be a child coming out of foster care, scared to death and full of rejection. I am very opinionated, sometimes overly emotional about the subjects I discuss, but most importantly, I have a story to tell. I am the child who was abused and neglected, I am the child who was in foster care, I am the child who was adopted, I am a social worker, I am a Mother, a Wife, a Daughter, a Sister, and an Aunt and I am proud to be all those things.