Thursday, August 2, 2012

fostering honesty- remy

Honestly I have to tell you, we're just over a month in, and this little guy we have here is draining me fast.

Honestly, he is a sweet, sweet, little boy.  He can be quite the little flirt and his laugh is amazing and his one-year-old toothy grin is adorable.
Trouble is, we don't see that nearly enough...

Because just as honestly, he is incredibly needy and unhappy.
Understandably, of course, not having any idea of his previous life.
And wants someone with him (holding him) at all times.  If not, -and half the time even if you are- he's whining and crying and eventually throwing fits.

He has no words, he has no signs, he has no way that I'm seeing that he's trying to communicate with us, other than whining and crying and throwing his body around. (and he does some scary thrashing!)

And I understand that.  I'm trying to be patient and understanding and comfort his loss and give him the security he needs and give him the stability he needs and I'm trying to help give him the words he needs and be consistent with sign language and other things helping him learn to "tell" us when he's upset or needing something and I'm trying to just be with him.
But it's just so hard.
Just so draining.

Today's been better.  Yesterday was hard.  Really hard.  I had to leave the room more than once.
There were more than just his tears flowing once or twice.
But today's better.

When he first came to us, he hardly made a peep.  When he did cry, it was a soft whimper of a pathetic little cry.  Like when left alone or unhappy, his instinct was to cry but it wasn't worth it.

Now that he's (I think) comfortable with us and trusts us and has the routine and stability of our family, he's really letting it all out.

Honestly he whine/cries all of but about two hours a day.  Sometimes closer to just one.
He whine/cries during meals.
He whine/cries most of the time we're playing.
He cries/screams if you dare walk away from him.
He cries/screams in the bath.
He full on yells/cries if he doesn't want to be put down or if you don't pick him up (up, all the way up, standing up) when he wants you to.
And will throw a full on scary thrashing kicking screaming not-to-be-consoled fit if you let it escalate.
I don't know if I can accurately convey the amount of crying here.
The amount of sadness... that can turn on a dime into blind anger.

Honestly I know he just needs more.
More patience, more attention, more touch, more interaction.

But just as honestly I'm wondering if I can do it.

Seriously, yesterday half of my tears were because I don't think I can do this anymore.  And the thought of saying we can't do it, saying I can't take it, saying he needs to go somewhere else... the thought of failing this helpless little boy?  That's a horrible, horrible thought.  One that makes me cry harder.

I tell myself, it's only been a month.  It's just one of the first bumps to get over.
He'll get better. I'll get better at loving him right, it'll all get better.
(and then probably worse and then better and so on...)
But this has honestly been the longest five weeks.
And the daunting thought of this going on for the next 6-9 months (which is looking like the time frame he'll be around) or more?  Honestly overwhelming.

Whenever anyone is over or we see them at the pool or at church or out to lunch, they comment on how quiet and laid back and easygoing he is.
And it makes me want to just pull my hair out because when you leave he's not like this!  The minute the attention isn't on him, the minute everyone's focus is somewhere else, the minute he is encouraged to play independently for even a moment or eat in his highchair next to me while I make the rest of us dinner or sit in the bathtub without you in there too... he's falling apart.  He's happy when you see him because we're holding him or because you're talking to him or because he's the center of attention.  

I'm honestly kind of fearful of the kids going back to school and leaving me all alone with just me, myself and I to console and entertain Remy.  Just me and him.  All. Day. Long.
Honestly, I'm about the furthest thing from naturally being a "babywearing" attachment parenting kind of parent.  So this is hard.  For both of us.
Plus, he's not a light little guy to lug around all day. ;)

He (finally!!) has dr's appointment next week and I'm anxious to talk to the dr about a few things.  One of which being I suspect he may have some pretty good reflux going on.  So maybe recognizing and treating that will help his demeanor a little.  I hope.

Otherwise, we just forge ahead.
I know he needs this.
And I know he's worth this.

Honestly, this is where I don't know how parents do this job without leaning on Someone Else.
As overwhelmed and helpless as I feel, I can't imagine where I'd be without the promise of God's strength in this.  Seriously.

Thanks for letting me be honest.


Chrissy said...

I know exactly how you are feeling. Exactly. There are days I want to send one of mine back. :) It gets better, it really does, I promise! FB me if you need to talk!

Annie Schilperoort Photography said...

Oh Heather! I'm going to be praying for this sweet boy to be able to bond quickly with you and the feel secure/have healing in his heart, but in honesty I know this just takes time. I love you and will be praying also for strength, patience, and great resources to come your way. God has entrusted this precious boy to you & he KNOWS you can do this!

Cass. Just Curious said...

Hi Heather. I keep on reading - sadly it's probably been years since I've actually commented. I read this post tonight though and I just wanted to say how incredible you are and how lucky this little guy is - for the time he's had for the time you're giving him. I'll be praying for you guys.

Mom said...

Such encouraging words from friends ...we have faith in you.Have faith in yourself.With God All things are possible!XOXOX

anne said...

Wow- you have my deepest respect. I don't know how you do it, because it's hard enough dealing with frustrating behaviors in your OWN kid, much less a small boy that you barely know. Thinking of you!

beanski said...

You are amazing, Heather. He sounds a lot like my little guy ... he's mine and I often wonder if I can send him back! :) Hang in there. You are giving that little boy an incredible gift. Truly incredible.

jenny said...

i'm so glad that even though you have serious doubts about how you can keep going on like this, that you have the strength to know that you can do it ... it's just going to be hard. really hard. he's already had such a different life than most and the fact that he is now in your care is the BEST thing that has probably ever happened to him. i'm hoping that the doctor can help a little bit. tell him everything. they see so many children that that advice could surely help. in the meantime, you have all of us praying for you all. i don't know if i could do what you're doing. it really does take a special person to give like you are. :)

Debbie said...

You are definitely a special gift to this little guy. I will be praying for you and will ask my "growing" Bible study group of over 25-30 ladies to pray as well. You are honoring God in what you are doing. I hope you are able to get some time to yourself, at least a nice bubble bath or a night out or something relaxing or fun need it! Hang in there -- God will give you the strength and patience and reward you in one way or another. You are amazing! Big hugs for you!

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