Category Archives: Life Coaching

When Foster meets Biological

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I haven’t been in the system as a foster parent for several years, but, it doesn’t seem to stop teenagers in need of a place of respite from coming to my door.    When all of my family was much younger, it was pretty easy with most of the foster kids who came into care.

Of course, we had rules, which, of course, we broke often in an emergency.  Most of the rules I broke, I was blessed by.  But, there were rules we had for ages of foster children for a reason.  Good solid reasons, like teenage boys coming into a situation with teenage girls.  Not a good mix.

One of the primary rules we had, and mostly stuck too, was that our foster children needed to be younger that the permanent or biological kids in the house.  When we started that was easy, our youngest in the house were fifteen and sixteen.  But then our first boys, twins, came at twenty months old, and we had to start to think about who or what ages could come in and melt into the potluck, or God given, family that He was creating.

I have to say here, when our teenagers that were resident in the house were asked about bringing foster kids in, they were very reluctant.  They had the same arguments that I hear every time I talk about fostering.  “We will love them and they will leave!”  But, love, is exactly what all of the children coming into a foster care situation need.  Even if they have layers of PTSD, are angry, unloving and yell at you, they are the ones needing your love.

I can say without a doubt, there were times that children came into our home and were not a good mix.  I always trusted my instincts on that one, and made sure I collaborated with the caseworker to find them the appropriate placement.  Ah, the good old days.  I think it has changed a lot since then, but never give up finding a child the right placement.

We have always had a rule in our house about kids coming in.  It is simply this: “Father God, we will take anyone you send as long as they are not a problem to the ones we have.”  We have stuck to that rule.  In fact we had to put that rule into place just recently when a young man just out of his teens proved to be a serious problem to the family.  It is always heartbreaking when this happens, but when it is obvious and clear, protection of the ones that came first is imperative.

Our last desperate young man was seemingly without family at first glance and needing so much, but unfortunately he mistook kindness for stupidity.  Drugs, alcohol and deceptive behavior is not acceptable in our house.  If he, or anyone else, is honest and open to help, I am there, but denial is a part of addiction and not what I can have in my home with my children.

So, accept and believe, nurture and love, but keep your eyes open and understand what is beyond your ability to change or fix.

IGNITE YOUR PASSION_FIND YOUR PURPOSE

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The extras we are thankful God sent to our table,

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Thanksgiving is a day but it is also a word that means give thanks for everything and everyone.

I am not only thankful for my family but the “family” not related but know who are, and trust they can come and be accepted, loved, laugh, cry and be exactly who they are, warts and all, and not be judged.

Yesterday, Thanksgiving, I was honored to have not only my amazing large exuberant loud family, but others who I feel like family and trust they can come in grief and sorrow, in loss, in rejection, and be loved and not expected to be anything but “RAW”.

They know who they are.  The young wife with two babies whose husband left, with her mom who has struggled through her own life and I am sure was totally in shock at the thought and experience of the Thompson family.  She didn’t leave, and although looked a bit shell shocked from time to time, did converse in the end.  Young wife had a blast, was gracious to ex when he showed with the children, and overall felt like she did not have to pretend.  RAW!

The next were precious friends who lost a husband and a dad, suddenly, and couldn’t face putting on a pretense for anyone.  They all were here together last year, and to come back and know their loved one’s spirit was here with us was hard, but they knew no matter what emotions they came with, they would be accepted.   We let them take the lead on that.

My grieving friends laughed, ate, talked, cried, remembered and were glad they came.  The were accepted just where they were, RAW.

Then there was the young man who lost his father too early, had led a troubled life, and has no real family as his mother is on the streets.  He came, ate heartily, sat by the fire pit with the others, was accepted, in spite of his past (not too good) and stayed until the end.  He felt accepted.  He came RAW, not expecting but spilled his heart to amazing hubby at midnight while we were cleaning up.  Not only up for being RAW, but feeling accepted enough to do that.

And just when we thought most were gone was the young mother of two who lives in an extended stay motel.  She knows my daughter through work and has not always done the right thing by a vulnerable teenager with her own issues.  But, she found herself at a church because she was desperate and invited the vulnerable teenager.  God at work.

It turns out they could not remember their last home cooked meal, and the children were enthralled with my piano which I taught them to revere, hold gently in their fingers and not bang, but love.  Their eyes were shining, their minds were open and hearts receptive.

They ate, they played my piano that I have had since I was seventeen, and their eyes were not just shining, they were hopeful, trusting and grateful.  And then the sad part.

There were a few, too vulnerable and not able to trust, who committed but couldn’t come.  Too RAW!.  They have built walls, large ones, that prevent happiness, love, and the biggest thing, being able to give out of themselves more than having to be stroked, cajoled and making others feel  responsible for their feelings.  The saddest and the hardest to help because they will not help themselves.

I hate that these miss the love, the family that is available, but that is the wall they choose to hide behind, the love they choose to miss, and all we can do when they are adults is love them and let them be. Allow them to be who they are and love them unconditionally without letting them own us and make us enter their sad world.  We pray and hope they can find their own path to happiness through loving God more than loving where they are.

But my own, my family, my twelve plus grands.  You are awesome, you accept, you love, you do not judge, you just roll with what happens and who comes.  You are my heart, and you give out of my heart and your own to those who need our love.  I’m blessed by you.

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BELIEVE IN

The Night Before Thanksgiving when all goes awry!

 

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Woke early, tis the eve of Thanksgiving and there is so much cooking

Got breakfast, and washing, and toasted the GF bread for stuffing.

Final list on my phone, including Vet trip and medicine for the dog.

Got Brandy, egg nog and finally stopped.  Driving.  End of rhyming.

I couldn’t possibly  begin now to outline just what can happen in a house as full as mine when you really need to get some things out of the way before the great day.

I left before some were up including one that had a red patch on her calf last night which I was lead to believe was bite.  She is the one that attracts the very last mosquito and has welts from every attack of the flying creatures.

But then also on the menu for today was the seventeen year old who had a red “mole” grow suddenly on her butt, that had been removed the week before.  Call from the dermatologist and it is a dodgy “juvenile melanoma, not dangerous, but has some oddities.  More butt surgery for her at 2.30.

Rog takes the dermatologist and I take the pediatrician.  Noon, still no cooking.

Then child with butt surgery informs, which is a way of asking without getting a no, that she has eleven people over for a fire pit at five thirty and would like to learn to make an apple pie, to impress them of course.

So I go to the pediatrician who orders hot compresses, and medicine to be picked up of course, for the cellulitis that is now forming around an infection, commonly called a boil.  Of course she is so incapacitated that she needs my crutches from knee surgery.

Arrived home, now the home made apple pie which I realize if I don’t start peeling granny smith apples we will be here all day and she has to leave for surgery in less than an hour.  Well at least I bought the pastry crust otherwise we would have never got done.

Enlist the other nearly seventeen year old to help and as I go to empty the peelings into one of the three sinks in my amazing commercial kitchen which I need, I trip over the sleeping blind, or nearly blind dog and in an effort not to damage the post surgery knee, slam three fingers on my right hand into the edge of my most amazing granite counters.

I am dropped to my knees.  I am crying, no yelling crying, not even ugly, just howling from the pain in my fingers which feel like they are severed from my body let alone my hand.  It wasn’t until later I realized there was a big bump on the bone of my arm where I somehow slammed it.  But, my knee is fine.

So, the wonder of family here is, that although they all wanted to, and were sleeping on the couch, watching TV etc, the moment I got hurt, they all rallied.  Butt surgery child reprimanded her father for not acting fast enough, and got the ice pack.  Made me sit and fussed over me.  Rog watched on, somewhat in shock, because he had never heard me howl like that.  He’s outside right now making sure there is not a full moon.

So now with fat fingers, I directed the cooking and we made a flourless chocolate cake, excellent, scalloped potatoes, cornbread for the dressing, peeled and cut up all the butternut squash for the roasted brussels sprouts, squash, pecan and cranberry warm salad with maple syrup of course.  Thawed the turkey for stuffing, the other gets fried, the hunk of rib-eye, and cleaned everything after cooking and prep.  Just remembered to get out the salmon!!

So fat fingers, a stitched up butt, and a swollen impending boil, is just how we roll.  Thanksgiving will be just that.  Thankful for all of my family and the ones that surround it.  The ones that don’t have family like the kids around my fire pit who I am feeding pizza on the eve of Thanksgiving.  Tomorrow a mere 35 or so.

Be thankful guys,  even when it doesn’t quite go how you want it to.  Make lemonade!

I am not a perfect person, I pick up the

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Adoption…. Fostering……When the paperwork creates overwhelm

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I remember very well the first time I was handed that huge wad of paperwork.  Talk about overwhelm!   Where did I start?  Lots of things ran through my head.

Ah, how much do I want to do this?

Surely there is an easier way?

What if I don’t measure up?

Why are they talking about fostering?

I just want to adopt, OK?

What do you mean parenting classes?

And so on, and so on.  But, for me, for us, the call was greater than the paperwork.  And there is a ton.  Not for the feint of heart, but worth every minute of the process.

The fingerprints, the home study, all those questions about you and how you think, what you think, DO you think.

In my day, some eighteen odd years ago, and then again about eight years ago, it varied between agencies.  And those have changed now too.  There are a lot more private ones over your local Department Of Children’s Services where we first went for our first training.

And the support or should I say WHAT support?

It was no wonder that after the first class some dropped out until week ten and only the die-hards were left.  We were among them.  You see, we cried in the first session and it only became more heart wrenching after that.  If I didn’t come because I wanted to, I would have stayed because of the need that was before my eyes and my heart.

I can honestly say to all of you who are wondering if this journey is for you, you will never look back again at the world the same way.  You will be forever changed even if you never foster, you will now know.

You will be now be informed

Fostering is not on my horizon at the moment, I won’t say never because when I do, that becomes a challenge to God.  But, I do want to encourage those who have that small voice in their minds, and their hearts are breaking for a child, to be led into this magical, heartbreaking, joyous, sad, meaningful, desolate, rewarding, misunderstood adventure.

Your blessing will be greater than you could ever imagine in ways you could never imagine

You will carry the joy and shed the tears for the ones you cared for, and the ones you are still caring for.  You will never forget their faces, and you will carry them in your heart forever.  You will suddenly realize this is the biggest achievement in your life and the life of someone who really needed you, more than you needed them.

Your heart may get broken a little, but you will put tiny broken hearts back together, piece by piece, a little at a time until they are whole again.

And if, or when they go from your life, you will hold memories, photos, testimonies that will remind you of why you did this.  Why you loved a child unconditionally, without restrictions or parameters, contracts or conditions.  You will never forget them, and trust me, they will never forget you.

It is a lonely life sometimes, the one of the foster/adoptive parent.  One that is not understood, one sometimes overlooked, taken for granted.

 But, that is the very reason I CHOSE to be Life Coach to foster/adoptive parents.  It is a journey not everyone will understand, but I do. You see I fostered over fifty children, and adopted eight.  I know what you face every day, I know what you feel, what you worry about and what you need in the way of encouragement.

Contact me for any reason.  I am here.  I offer a free session to anyone on this journey.  Just put your name in the email sign up and I will contact you.

I am not a perfect person, I pick up the

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Letting Your First Foster Child Go

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As vividly as I remember my first two arriving, I remember just as clearly the day the first one left.

The first of many, not to be the last, or forgotten.

This one went with joy!

I had sworn of course that I was not going back to diapers but, there I was with twins, and double diapers.  As usual the call came late in the afternoon, and this time he was a baby, eleven weeks old.  Not sure, I needed or wanted that, but there was no-where else for him to go.

He had an older sister and a a brother who were going to a young childless couple not far from where we lived.  But they had never had a baby, and this tiny one needed a little extra help, or that was the story.

I can tell you he needed MORE than a little extra help.

He arrived with a Child Protective Services worker as it was after hours.  He had dark hair that seemed to be oiled, a thin face, with large brown eyes that darted here and there.  His mouth seemed too big for his little face and he seemed very underweight.  I wasn’t sure exactly what I had here, but my instincts were, “something is not right”!

He seemed so fragile as I undressed him for a much needed bath.  His little body had hardly any fat on it, no chubby cheeks or rolls that are usual with a baby of this age.  He was agitated and I tried to soothe him, sing to him as I bathed him.  The bath water turned from clear to very dirty and after drying him off,  he was fair with blonde hair!

Comfort and snuggles were needed.  Amazing hubby took care of the twins and the older two at home got dinner together as I rocked this little one and tried to feed him his bottle.  The crying and agitation went on all night.  If I fed him he cried and cried.  I tried every position to hold him, he still cried.

By morning I was at the pediatrician.  By midday I was at the children’s hospital.  His ribs had been broken, he had been severely shaken.  He had gastric reflux, easier to fix that maybe the permanent damage that had been done to his body, and his brain.

I prayed over him, and for him again and again as I waited, just as we had done for him the night before.  This was my first experience of physical abuse, and in a child not even three months old, my heart was breaking for him.

Well, the story became a miraculous one.  After a full body scan to determine extent of injury and if there were any more breaks in his body, I was told they could not believe that his brain was intact.  Perfectly normal, but his ribs would wear large callouses where they had been broken.

He should have been permanently brain injured, but through prayer and the belief in healing, he was going to be fine.

I said goodbye to our little one three months later.  He was chubby, smiling, laughing, cooing, in fact a delight.  He went to be with the couple who had his older siblings.  I was so full of happiness because they told us they could not have their own baby and never thought they would be able to experience that wonderful joy!

He grew up to be amazing, and the young couple?  Well, they ended up getting pregnant against all odds, not once, but twice.  They gave not expecting and received and reaped the fruits of their love and labor.

Today, many of us are too busy to notice the growing number of children that stay in the foster system, some with no hope of a forever home, and some who cannot be found homes because they maybe a little “scary”.

If this tugs at your heart and you want to know more, or you have a child that you need to talk with someone about, please contact me.  I always offer a free mini session to see whether coaching is for you.

Until next time, next story, have a wonderful day and remember, “It’s better to build a child, than try to fix an adult” (Dave Thomas).

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The other side of adoption

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I fostered some fifty plus children, yet did not always meet their birth parents.  Some visited, some did not.  Each child was special and for the “token” subsidy per day, well I was not making money here.  I didn’t do it for that reason.  I did it because I walked into a case workers office one Friday afternoon and saw two little boys in desperate need of care, love, and a home.

Some of the kids that came across my path were etched upon my mind forever.  The baby who came into care, with dark brown hair, and olive skin, but upon bathing was blonde and fair.  A product of a  mom who had issues and oiled this baby so much he was unrecognizable.  But, that was the least of it.  He had been shaken, had the residue of broken bones on his ribs, and only through prayer, was normal.

Then there was the baby whose father had swung her around the room, he was intolerant of her crying.  Her femur was broken, she was in a body cast.  She was four months old, on the breast, arrived at my home at one in the morning and did not understand what a bottle was.  An angry, frightened, baby who wanted her mother.  She did go back, after much counseling that I think that father reneged on.

The little boy who came that was deaf.  The case worker had said (on a Friday afternoon of course at after 3p.m.) “Well he is hearing impaired,”.  I said “How much?”.  The week end did not go well other than I knew where this neglected child should go, but his older sister? And the baby who the five year old sister was a mother to?  Oh, so many issues and not enough parents or resources to deal with.

My adorable, lovable darling red haired child who arrived when she was about 23 months of age, and was a virtual triplet to my boys, the one I fell in love with but knew she need more than I could give.  I gave her to the adoptive parent of my choice, because that was what was best for my darling little child who had suffered more than I could give back to  her.  I love her to this day and am glad to say we are still in contact.  That is the power of adoption without judgment or remorse.

My twin boys seemed like a dream compared to most of this, but my turn was coming.  After so many children, the ones God sent to me to keep were complicated.  Autism, cerebral palsy, learning disabilities, bi-polar, OCD, ADHD, the list goes on.  I call it the Alphabet syndrome.  But, while all  of that was part of who I adopted, it was also, or partly,  amongst my own birth children.

DO NOT EVER BE AFRAID OF SPECIAL NEEDS!  IF YOU ARE CALLED YOU WILL BE GIVE EVERY SKILL TO COPE WITH THIS.

Some of you out there have special needs kids that you did not adopt, they are yours.  Well, I’ll tell you a secret.  My bio kids are all special needs, that’s why I fostered, that’s why I adopted.  Do not ever be afraid.  If fostering or adopting is on your mind, it is for a reason.   You are privileged, you are called, you are about to be blessed in so many ways you cannot imagine.  And if you are reading this needing the help for your own birth children, then I am there also.  Please sign up on my email, let me know how I can help and I am there for you with a 15 minute free life coaching session.

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BELIEVE IN

The kill your reality series syndrome

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I am sad to read about the recent events of a real life reality series about a family of a lot of children.  But, did I ever believe that with that many children the house was always immaculate, and the children so ordered, no toys anywhere visible, and everyone so polite?  Ah…..NO!!

I live with eight children at home, twelve in all, and nine grandchildren.  On any given day the laundry can be out there.  I mean at least four loads, and if they forget to bring it down?  Ok, maybe ten.  But can I tell you we are real in our house, not pretending for a “reality” series.

I am the only real morning person.  My amazing hubby pretends to be, then goes back to bed, and has oh, at least two naps during the day.  Just saying.  It is like pulling teeth to get any of mine out of bed.  I get, “just ten minutes more, please!”.  I have, and am trying to make them make their own lunches.  Six of them.  Two are working for amazing hubby.  That’s a story on it’s own.

But, even amazing hubby, (cause he is ultra successful) knows how to make a well oiled machine work.  It works like this.  I yell sometimes, he yells others, but mostly we have a, “you wanna do that cause If you do,  I got your cell phone”.  That works every time.

Once upon a time, in fairyland, or the eighties, it worked differently because there was no electronics, no internet, no smart phones.  My first four were birthed and brought up here.  Threats were way more  threatening, and behavior from peers mostly not intrusive.

Now, we have this world wide internet that is so informative, and so invasive.  I am learning to parent teenagers in a whole new world.

I am learning to start a business with excessive amounts of laundry, the remains of last nights snacks in more than one room, another child who is a late, (night) potty trainer, and continual guests, who I love and cherish, that drop in often for overnight stays.

Can I say I like it when they go to bed. That can be late, midnight, hopefully eleven, but we (amazing hubby and I) are the only ones up at the crack of dawn.

Can I say I love our incredible family days, when the wine, the food, the laughter, the jokes (really bad), and the noise is over the top with not just the adults, but the grandkids screaming around having a riotous time.   Oh, and “bundy o”clock” arrives.  That is a rum, from Australia.  For all of the so called boys, or legal boys,  in the family this is a tradition.  A toast to the homeland so to speak.

I did rescue a child from a family who I think thought they might be a reality series.  If they didn’t they came more than close to the one that just “failed”.  The fallout was spectacular.  Not only for him but his older sister.  I was there for the moments they needed me.

This world of fostering or adopting is not for the feint of heart.  It is for the strong, the ones who know who is their God, because without that you will fail.  But, the “lost children” need you, need me, need our community, and our faith that they can find forever homes. It is better to build a child, than to try to fix an adult.

My heart has adopted eight of the most beautiful, wonderful, talented, amazing kids.  They are mine, as much as I have birthed, from my womb,  any of my biological four.  And those four, have adopted everyone of those kids as their own brothers and sisters.  We do not speak of half brothers or sisters, step brothers or sisters, or adopted brothers or sisters.  We are one.  A family who loves each other and looks out for each other.  Do we fight?  Hell yeah!  Do we get in each others business?  Hell yeah!  But do we have the most enviable family get togethers where we invite all and sundry to?  Hell yeah!

Our extended family is something I cherish.  I totally acknowledge that they are the reason we chose to foster and adopt many children.  Everyone of those teenagers, that are now adults and you know who you are, are part of the reason we chose to speak into the lives of so many children.

If you are out there, reading this, and wondering, I can tell you a few things that are real.  Fostering, being a foster parent is the most amazing rewarding thing you can ever do.  You will wonder about your heart, whether it can stand it if they leave, their hearts are already broken into so many pieces.  If you can put some of them back together you have done something miraculous.

And adoption?  Oh my.  There is no difference between a child birthed from your womb and one from your heart.  In fact, as a mother of both, my children birthed from my heart have never felt any different at all.  Sometimes in fact, I felt way more protective because of the circumstances of their births.  I didn’t do drugs, or alcohol when I was pregnant, but my adopted children suffered all of that in pregnancy.

So, if I put a camera in my kitchen?  Oh wow.  It would not look like any of the reality shows out there.  But is it life abundant?  Oh hell yeah!

If this tugs at your heart and you would like a 15 minute mini session about this topic, please contact me on this page.  There are so many children awaiting you, yes, you, to help them out of being part of a “system” forever, instead of a forever family.

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Your first foster child

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I remember that first call.  It was a Friday afternoon about 3.00p.m.  My caseworker said there were two little boys, twins, in her office that needed a home for the week end.  First reaction?  We’re not approved yet.  We have plans to adopt a couple of kids from the My Turn Now program.  The answer?  You will be approved in an hour, can you take them?

Amazing hubby was on a plane coming home from Colorado.  Mother in Law who was not happy was holed up in her room thinking I was the enemy (that is another story).  Two teenagers had places to go and I was THE driver.  But, out of my mouth came “of course, yes”.  It was the twin thing that got me.  I had lost a twin on my second pregnancy and had always hoped I would conceive another set.  I had one amazing boy, but the twin thing was in my heart, my head, my spirit.

Of course, I said yes.  And then in an hour, we were approved as a foster home (we had done all the work, just waiting for approval) and I was about to pick these precious babies up from our local DCS. My amazing hubby was not there, but motivated MIL was.

I walked into her room and explained what was happening.  I have never seen an eighty two year old move so fast.  She now had a purpose, and we now had a bond.  She truly was my kindred spirit.  A woman in her own time who listened to her own inner voice.

We walked into that office to find two little boys, confused, with blank faces, in too tight clothes, clutching dirty bottles, the only thing they had from their twenty month existence.  My heart melted. It wasn’t supposed to, I had learned that, but it did anyway.  My tiger mother instinct kicked in and I was away.  I might add here MIL was away too.

Car seats were provided, not anything else.  First call was to #3 child.  I need some hot dogs and mashed (familiar food or so I thought).  Please get that together.  Followed by, a Mum I need to be here at this time and #4 child needs to be here at that time.  And of course amazing hubby is coming in at the airport around 10p.m.

The whirlwind began.  Well the older kids got where they were supposed to go, MIL and I got to the local Kmart and purchased clothes, strollers, and new bottles that were clean.  A small step forward.

Can I say here that the energy, the smile, the purpose in my Mother In Law’s life changed that day.  She became useful again, and I needed her, the little ones needed her, the whole family needed her,  she gained a new lease on life.

Your first foster child may not stay.  You may not even want that, you may be looking to be just that.  A foster parent.  That is precious.  The most sacrificial thing you can do in this life.  But, some stick.  They are meant to stay, they are meant to be part of you, birthed in your heart, and become part of your family.

I said good-bye to a lot of kids, but I knew I made a difference in their lives and that was enough.  I trusted God for the ones who were meant to stay.  There have been more that came for a moment, a haven, a place to renew, but , never one that was not meant to be in my life, or in my home.

Please go to my music page and listen to Broken Hearts And Broken Wings, a song dedicated to my amazing, wonderful, sweet identical twin boys who are now twenty.  I am blessed they are in my life, part of my incredible family of kids, grandkids, and extras who are always welcome.

If this relates to you, you are thinking about being a foster parent, or wanting to adopt, please contact me for a free 15 minute session.  I would love to connect.

IGNITE YOUR PASSION_FIND YOUR PURPOSE

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My Sweet Autistic Child

 

 

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I so remember when my sweet, big bouncing daughter came into my life.  I had fostered a number of kids at this point in my journey, and was on the path to adopting our very first arrivals, identical twin boys who were nearly three.

I stumbled on this path, or should I say pushed onto the path of fostering by someone a lot bigger than I.  God.  Not my intent, but I am so happy it was His.  By the time the boys were nearly three, and I had of course vowed never to go back to nappies (that’s diapers for most of you) I was well entrenched in several changes a day.  I decided I would bite the bullet so to speak, and put my hand up for a newborn if there was a need.

Well, there is always a need because newborns cannot go to care for the fist six weeks, and I was a stay at home mum.  The call came pretty quickly and I was on my way to the store to buy a bassinet, the first in nearly twenty years, and all that went with the precious little girl I was to pick up from the hospital the next day.

She was beautiful! Eight plus pounds, chubby and so sweet, until.  Forget what they tell you about the baby being not positive for drugs.  If Mom uses, then baby is unhappy for about three weeks.  Nights of sleeping with her upright on my chest, swapping off with amazing hubby.

About a week after she came home, there was an instinct, maternal or probably spiritual, that just knew there was something I couldn’t put my finger on, but the sense of knowing was intense.

She grew, and as she did, it was almost like she was diagnosed with what I call the Alphabet Syndrome.  ADHD, Dyslexia (Visual), and then came the ticks.  Tourrette’s I was told.  We got therapy, group, individual, but there was still that knowing underneath that there was the “biggie”, the part we didn’t have, maybe the part that ruled everything else.

She was seven when we took all of them to Australia (there were now eight, including three sets of twins).  She loved the flights, and hated the airports.  The meltdowns were massive.  We found corners to rest, or should I say hide, and it was becoming obvious we needed to find the place where this inability to change feet, or mindset, was coming from.  And, how do we make life better for her?

This little voice inside me whispered  “Aspergers”.  I knew it was on the Autistic scale but had little knowledge of what it was.  While we were still on our trip  one of my long term friends, who was now teaching children with this diagnosis, asked did my daughter have Aspergers.

Years have gone by since then and some of the other things that trouble my precious one become magnified by the high functioning Autism.  It is not just a diagnosis, it is a lifestyle, one all of us have had to come to understand.

As a teenager, she struggles with peers and relationships, rules and consequences, and the fact that her mind doesn’t think like most other people.  She hates therapy, but knows it is necessary.  You see, therapy is about words, lots of them, and words are not her friends.  Yelling to her can be just a smidgen above normal speech, discerning expressions can lead her into relationship failure.

It took becoming certified as a Life Coach, and then continuing my studies in this field to learn to “allow” my sweet, autistic child to be who she is, understand and lead her into better choices.  It is a process that doesn’t have an expiry date, but as we learn together, life becomes easier.

If some of this sounds familiar and you would like a free fifteen minute coaching session please feel free to contact me at, kate@theaodptionthing.org.   I would love to help you.