I know this blog has been sorely neglected, but that’s just a fact of life around here. Just like the housework is being neglected and the big jobs like closet cleaning and backyard maintenance and catching up with that friend you meant to have over to dinner six months ago.
The kids, on the other hand, are not being neglected. I’m spending just about every waking moment interacting with one or more of my five, teaching them how to navigate life in this new family we’ve created. Five months with our new foster kiddos and I can definitely say that their negative behavior patterns are decreasing rapidly. Five weeks with Midge home and she can once again stay in time out, take no for an answer, obey (now & then) and follow our routines (mostly).
School is in full swing and I’ve finally gotten a handle on how to do homework with a kindergartener, first grader, and second grader, two of whom can’t read and all three of whom doing their homework in spanish, which isn’t a first language for any of us. (The fourth grader is on his own for homework…phew!) There’s lots of driving with all the school drop offs and pickups (we have too many car seats to be involved in a carpool right now) and not to mention visits five days a week. But at least we’re into a rhythm.
But none of that describes the discomfort I have with where we are right now. I had expected to be more emotionally attached to our newest kiddos by five months in, and it’s still something I’m struggling with. Older child adoption is definitely something where you fake it ’til you make it, I think. We’re putting in the work of the action of loving, knowing (hoping?) that the feelings will come with time. The decrease of difficult behaviors makes it easier for us to begin to form the attachments you want to have within a family, so I’m thanking God for that. And we have seen so much progress with sibling relationships! I think the problem is my self-imposed timeline and thinking that I am “behind” when it comes to feeling attached. Another friend mentioned that when there’s still the uncertainty of foster care it’s harder to form those long-term family bonds. So hopefully when their court date happens in November we will know one way or another about whether they’re here long term or not. Maybe that will accelerate our attachment, too. We’ll see.
So between the non-stop activity at our house and the difficult feelings that I don’t want to place out there too much for the world (and my kids in the future!) to read, I’m just keeping this blog a little quieter than usual. And that’s fine with me. We’ll probably only have Midge another week or so and then the family dynamic will change once again. I’ll just take it one day at a time.