Progress and Hope
- Toileting: When we got her, she was in pull-ups and not using the toilet. She has been accident free for two weeks. The last three days, I have let her monitor when she has to go, instead of taking her every hour. She still managed to be accident-free.
- Aggression: She has not bitten anyone in 5 days. She does say ” I am going to bite you” when angry. Replying “We don’t bite in this family” seems to keep the biting at bay.
- Physical aggression is way down- unless she is raging, it is once a day, or even one day none at all.
- Sleep: She is off all the medication that was used to knock her out. She still takes .5 mg of Risperidone at bedtime. It takes her longer to fall asleep, but at least she is awake long enough to establish a bedtime routine. Hope sleeps through the night, but is still sleeping in our room. The new bed arrives in 2 weeks. I probably won’t try to move her until all the bedrooms are ready to go.
- Trauma: She is showing no interest in talking about her old family. Every couple of days I bring out the pictures the family sent with her and her picture book about her adoption and try to engage her in some conversation. She hasn’t told me her Texas mother is dead since last Saturday.
- Attachment: She calls us Mommy and Daddy without any problems. She wants all the cuddles from Daddy. The only time she wants a cuddle from me is when GB wants one. I am still enforcing cuddles on my schedule, but haven’t pushed it beyond 2 minutes. She echo’s everything GB says, so I do get a number of “I love you”s everyday. Honeymoon?
- Development: She is capable of being completely independent in her self-help skills. If Daddy is home, she wants hin to do everything for her. I regularly offer her help, but I am usually turned down. Cognitively, she is at 24-26 months. She sporadically can name some colors, she can count by rote to 7 and can say some letters. She doesn’t recognize any numbers or letters that she sees. She can’t give me one of something (although we are working on it) and she doesn’t recognize her name (Ms. Teacher is working on it.)
Progress and GB
- Sleep: GB is back in her own room and is happy to have Ellie sleeping with her. She fell asleep faster than Hope last night.
- Aggression: GB is a passive/aggressive type, but as Hope’s aggression becomes less physical, you can see that part of GB lessening.
- Trauma: GB is initiating lots of conversations about her birth mother, and why she didn’t stop drinking/eat right/ breastfeed/ take care of her. I think part of this comes from having a new born in the house and part of it is that she hasn’t been finalized yet (STILL waiting for a court date). Could be wrong, though.
- Attachment: Adopting Hope has made GB insecure. It has gotten better, with conscious effort on our part, but she is still keenly aware of what Hope is doing/getting.
- Developmentally: Emotionally, GB is usually more like a 5 year old. She has regressed since Hope’s arrival, but is slowly stabilizing. Her self help skills are back to where they were ( I have to wipe her after toileting, still not dry at night ) but her need to be in control is on overdrive. Academically, Mr. Teacher believes in communication and answers emails. GB reports more help is available than last year, but with 6 kids and three adults, I expected that. She is bringing home no HW and I haven’t found out why yet. I am not ready to incorporate it into our afternoon routine yet anyway.
The girls can usually play 30 to 45 minutes without a problem, but I still make sure that I am in the same room as them. We found a therapist that as experience with adoptions and attachment and we all go to Manhattan to see the psychiatrist Monday. The girls are thrilled. Mickey D’s for lunch. Ugh.