Category Archives: Speaking

The Scary Part……Neurologist

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So tomorrow we see the Neurologist.

She has had a headache since the seizure last Saturday night.

She is on anti-seizure medicine, but what is causing this?

In hindsight, I have seen unusual behavior from her in the last six months.

I saw the same thing when she was coming out of the seizure.

The behavior is gone.

After taking anti-seizure medicine.

I thought it came from just “teenager” behavior.

She is almost 16.

She has never had a behavior or discipline issue.

She is sweet, respectful, determined, stubborn, but that is her.

If she wasn’t strong, she would not be alive.

So, how has the last few days been?

Watching like a psycho person.  Wondering if she will seize, knowing she won’t because of meds, but terrified of the next event that will make me and her helpless.

I am wondering now about the studies on seizures.  Is this epilepsy or something else?  She has a brain bleed from birth which has caused concern about learning disabilities, cognitive ability, and all sorts of other unpronounceable diagnosis’.

I am remembering about my eldest child who had strange episodes going through puberty that were diagnosed as temporal lobe epilepsy events and recognize some of the behaviors and symptoms.

I am digging, digging, digging because I am her only advocate.  Even if she was still a foster child, I would be her only advocate.   There is no-one else other than the mother involved, foster, adopted or biological.  No-one else is invested.  No-one else is going to dig, and dig and dig for the answer.

Although this is on some level stressful, on another it is not.  I am a seeker for truth, answers, and my mind and thoughts kick in knowing there is an outcome.  You see, I can think desperate, or I can think, “there is an answer and I will find it”.  I can think hopeless, or I can think, there is an answer.  I can think like this is a valley or I can think like this is knowledge leading me to have power over this situation, and end up on the mountain top.

You can too.  I learned this through a few years of learning to be a Life Coach.  I have such a different perspective on all emotions and thought patterns.

That doesn’t mean I don’t fall apart in the moment, it means I have an insight into my thoughts and how they lead to my feelings.

My thoughts when this event happened were panic driven.  Not rational, not tapping into my knowledge of this disease, just feeling driven thoughts, emotional driven thoughts, not thoughts I could evaluate and consider if they were the right ones.

I was in emotional mind, not wise mind.

This happens, but should not stay there.  You should always come into a wise mind, one that enables you to think clearly, rationally, and know precisely how your thoughts are going to lead to your outcome.

So, if this a new concept, something you don’t understand, please email me, I would so love to help you understand.

Keep connecting for the update, which will come in as soon as tomorrow or the next few days.

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A Seizure in the middle of nowhere?

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So, I have a couple of kids who have epileptic seizures.

Scary, but I know who, maybe when, never where.

I have a birth mom to four who is epileptic.

Needs meds to this day.

I have two out of four that I know are epileptic.

I know they have an older sibling who is also.

So, driving down the road, when I hear ” she’s having a seizure”

I expect it to be the known two, not the unknown.

My miracle child who has beaten all odds, like not walking, not talking, not learning, a brain bleed, a leg brace supposed to be forever, is having her first seizure in the back of our airport shuttle in the middle of nowhere and I don’t know why?

I am shocked!

I have forgotten everything I know about seizures because she doesn’t do this!!

I am in full on A type personality mode of “you will come out of this” and now!!

I am not patient!  I am not thinking!  I am in panic mode!

I forget the positioning.  I forget that this is temporary, she will come out.

I forget to soothe.  I forget everything, because I am panicked.

I forget, because the overwhelming love and need to be her everything is not what she needs right now.

I forget because she hasn’t done this before.  She is sixteen.  Although she has a history, she hasn’t presented these symptoms.

I forget because I want to.  I hope and believe all the past issues have gone before me and I don’t have to deal anymore.  But, because of this, I do, and I will.

That same “A” type personality will find out why, what, when and where this could happen.  I will find out what meds are needed, and I will be there when and where every time.

I am reminded of when she was so little, so needing, so unable to even let me know what she wanted, and that is what a seizure is like. In the midst, they don’t know, they can’t tell, can’t express anything that is happening or what they are feeling.

We have more happening here than a seizure or epilepsy history, we have diagnosed Cerebral Palsy, and a brain bleed.  I don’t for one minute think we will not overcome this because knowledge is power and we sure have than on our side.

So, I am encouraging you to see the light through the darkness when all seems like it is crashing to something unexpected

I know my fighter, daughter, teenager is an overcomer.  She has proved this already, she will prove this again.  I have no doubts.

It’s me that struggles through these valleys only to see God on the mountain top, calling me, and telling me I can climb to any heights he calls me to.

If you are struggling, know, that all things are possible through God who strengthens me.

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Somedays It Sucks, just sayin’

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Well, somedays it sucks.  You know, or maybe you don’t, but as a positive, a focused on going forward person, there are days.  There are valleys, and peaks, and crap  walking through the valley.

When you are on the peak, or the mountain, all is rosy, wonderful, all looks positive and amazing.  But, when you are hiking, as I do every morning, you go up the hill, or mountain, and then you come down.  Down to the valley.

I have noticed when I am hiking up the hill, I am sometimes looking for the resting place, focused on getting to the goal, like the top of the mountain.  Why?  Because when I get there I get to recover and go down the other side.

But sometimes, when the bottom of the climb goes on a little too long, I am yearning for a challenge again.  If it did not come, as it always does in hiking, I think I would feel a little let down.  You see I had built my adrenalin to a peak, then needed a well earned rest, but didn’t want to lose the momentum or the exhilarating feelings I was having.

When we stay on the the bottom of the valley too long, we lose momentum, fire, exhilaration, motivation and desire.  The valley robs us.  Makes us feel small.  Why?  Because in the valley we look up at the mountains and they “feel” out of our reach.  Unattainable.  Impossible.  But that is an illusion.

The benefits of the Valley

Rest

A new perspective

Renewing of our mind

Renewing of our faith

Leaning on a higher power/God

Seeing the mountains as a challenge

Seeing the mountains as our new achievement

Valleys in our emotional life can be debilitating, devastating, and hard to recover from.  But valleys have a purpose.  A purpose of rest, renewal, and yearning.  Seeking for the truth, the next thing.   We cannot do that in a state of exhilaration, because we are not in desperation to get out of a place where there seems to be no light, or is cold, and dark.

As a foster or adoptive parent we come to the valleys in our walks with our children.  I want to say here, the valleys are what they are, as I said above, don’t make them anymore than that.

Challenges,

Rest

Renewal

Leaning

New faith.

As adults, we get this, as children we do not.  Come to understand that.  And, it is ok to lose your mind occasionally, just try not to do that around the children who have been a valley for so long they don’t understand the mountain tops, the fire, the motivation, the love, the desire fulfilled, or why their lives have been turned upside down.

I’m gonna say something radical here

Love is not all it takes

Help outside you is what it takes

Find your people

Find your village

Find everyone who is invested in your child/children

Find Faith

Find your God

Find joy in everything

Find your focus of moving forward

Find the future not the past

Find everything, and everyone you need on this journey

There are always valleys if you chose to climb mountains.  Fact.  Understand that the valleys are part of the journey.  Fact.  Never, never, give up on the climb, the resolution, the answer, your faith.

You got in this journey for a heart, spirit, mind reason.  Your very being told you to do this amazing journey, don’t give up, climb the mountain, climb the hill, renew your faith, find the future over the past, and believe that if that child is placed with you even for a moment, you  have a purpose to fulfill in their lives.  You will be amazed at the outcome.

When the valley is too long

Look up

Because the sun is shining

It is warm and fuzzy up there

And the climb is not impossible

AND

To get to the valley

You climbed the other side of the mountain

You climbed down

You are resting

You are not defeated

You are renewing

You are beginning the climb again.

NEVER NEVER give up climbing

Because

Each time you have the stamina to climb higher than the last time

If you think you would like a free fifteen minute coaching session around parenting, as a biological, foster or adoptive mum, please contact me.  Sign up on the email  and send me a note.  After fostering some 40-50 kids and adopting eight there’s not much I have not been through.  I would love to be your support.

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What IF?

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What if?

What if there was peace in the world?

What if you never know what you are here to do?

What if you had been born to a different mother?

What if you didn’t struggle with day to day stuff?

What if it was all perfect?

What if the grass really was greener on the other side of the hill?

What if you could leave your story behind………………….?

You know, the one that you can’t get past, the one that makes you feel guilty.

What if there was more love?

What if there were no orphans?

What if the homeless, and lost children were taken care of?

What if there were more foster parents?

What if all the children who were hungry got fed?

What if there were more arms to love them?

What if there were more resources to feed them?

What if we thought about others more than ourselves?

What if wishes turned into reality?

What if reality was taking a child into your home?

What if you had a message or a testimony to tell that child?

What if you had a love inside you that was bigger than yourself?

What if you shared that?

What if it became a seed?

What if that seed grew and became multiple seeds of love?

What if those seeds of love burst through every condemnation?

What if those seeds broke the walls down?

What if love, the truth, became the way of the world?

What if it starts with you?

What if it starts with one act of love?

What if that act is being a foster parent?

What if that child you take in becomes a hope for others?

What if you have a calling you can’t quite hear?

What if you are listening, but don’t believe what you hear?

What if the call in your heart is to give hope?

Then you can count on knowing that all the “what if’s” are just that.  Because anything that is birthed in our hearts are a sense of knowing, not a what if?

Last one.

What if we all worked together for good and there were no orphans?

God is always working, we just need to listen.

valentine45

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Do You Have The Heart To Foster Or Adopt?

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I didn’t want to be a foster parent.

I thought my heart would be broken.

I also thought I didn’t need training.  I had four grown kids.

Fostering seemed scary and transitional, not permanent.

But, they were thoughts, not the actuality of my experience as a foster parent.  I’ll explain a little more.

The thought (note I said thought) of children coming and going was a little off putting, something I did not think I would like, or be able to parent/cope with.

When in fact, it was the complete opposite.   When we had finished our training and were waiting for our approval to become adoptive parents, I was called about fostering twins for the weekend.  I had to make a decision quickly, and the first thing out of my mouth was we weren’t approved.  Well that was done in an hour.  That happens when there just aren’t enough homes and it is late Friday afternoon.

That was quite a story but it was the first of many.  Those twins that came for the weekend turn twenty-one in August.  They became my forever children, birthed from my heart.

Not every child stays!

But, not every child that you foster stays forever.  Some are re-united with their birth families, some go on to be adopted by other families better suited to the child’s needs.  You see, my heart was never broken because I quickly realized every child that came had a broken heart, a broken spirit, and was confused, sometimes angry, but hurt, and definitely broken.

How would you feel if you were suddenly uprooted?

I mean, just think about it.  How would you feel if you were suddenly taken away from everything you ever knew?  A child doesn’t know whether they are living in poverty, neglect, abuse or in the biggest shiniest house in town.  They just know their surroundings, and the people who are feeding them, looking after them.  They don’t judge.  The don’t have that choice, or that freedom.

They become lost.

I have had a lot of children that I have had the privilege to care for.  Some for a few days, some for a couple of years, some for a month or two.  All were lost.  All had lost everything they knew.   And, unfortunately, some become lost in the system, staying there until they age out.

At eighteen we send our kids to college, but not so for most of the foster children who are “set free” at eighteen.  They are suddenly transitioned, if you can call it that, into fending for themselves.  Sadly many end up on the street, or in prison, not having the skills or education to survive.

This becomes a generational cycle.  I ask you the question, “what can we do to intervene?  What can we do to love and help these lost children?”  In this day of internet, social media, and a lessening of face to face interaction, these children are becoming invisible.

I wonder how many people I could ask on the street, if they knew about the growing numbers of foster children waiting for forever homes?  I am sure most of the general population, and most of the congregations of our churches are oblivious, and uniformed.

If this information has you thinking about being a foster parent please don’t hesitate to contact me.  You can leave me your email address and I would love to answer your questions.

Some of you know that I not only speak about adoption, I write and sing about this as well.  I would to give you a free download of the title track single from my last CD.  If you would like a copy of the song “Broken Hearts And Broken Wings” please download here.

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The Joys Of Teenagers or The Monster In The Drain

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As a mother of twelve, four grown with families, and eight at home, I am constantly alarmed at what six teenagers can do to their rooms.  The two twin twenty year olds are a whole other scenario.

Lets start in the basement.  Four girls, two nearly eighteen with their own rooms, and two (twin) nearly sixteen year olds in a shared room.

One bathroom.   Disaster.  Could call the Health Department.

I do check this, please note that.  But, I do other things in my life.  Mothers have lives too, so they cannot always collect all the washing, or clean up every mess in the lives of eight between the ages of thirteen and twenty.

Well last week, I had a cushy life.  It was spring break and I took the five, somewhat easiest, to the beach.  The youngest four were obviously the messiest, and the least to clean up.  Note to self that this should change.

I was assured in my absence, that the bathrooms were wonderful, the washing was done, the house was immaculate .

They lied.

After I got through the twenty odd loads of washing from home, not the beach -I did that before I left- I ventured down to look at rooms and said bathroom.

The drains were blocked.  In a week????  So I got the plunger from behind the disgusting toilet, covered in long hair, dust and stuff I won’t name here, and I plunged that sink.

CRAP!!!  Up from the bowels of the sink drain came this rather large, almost huge, scary, creepy many legged creature!  It flew out as I plunged and almost hit me!  I dived, flayed the plunger at that sucker and got it back in the sink.  My heart was racing!

I kept my cool.  I’ve watched those scary movies.  Heck I played the scary role in a film about to be famous.  I breathed in, pushed that hundred legged wormy creature back down the drain and drowned it.

The water was still not going down the drain.  I closed my eyes and plunged.  The monster was back in the drain, or the lock, or the sea that belongs at the end of the drain.

Can I say I am dramatic?  Yes, I am an actress.  A real one, with an agent.

I got myself together.  I retreated almost hearing the Bach’s Tocattta and Fuge in Dm.

Then in trepidation I approached the top floor.  The home of the twin twenty year olds.

Words fail me.  They have real creatures.  Like lizards, and flying things in cages.  The rats (pets) have gone because of my begging, but, any live creatures are smelly at the least.

Then there are their wet towels from the hot tub. Yes we live on what some would call a resort with hot tubs and heated pools.  Underneath monster cans, snack packets, gym bags, pistachio shells, crap from the two flying foxes (Australian), and the cage, which is double storied,  I find a pile of smelly clothes.  I think they have lost these.  They have become part of a lost Kingdom.  Underneath that, are coat hangers!  Oh the cry of my heart.  Do you understand how many coat hangers you need with eight kids??????????

Millions.  That’s all I’ve got to say about that.  It’s like a box of chocolates.

I could barely find their beds.  At least they had sheets on them, but the blankets and comforters were hanging in all the other mess.

Quite frankly I couldn’t walk through any of it, let alone know where to start.

This took a week to make.

Of me not being here.  I cleaned before I went.

Me not cracking the “whip” so to speak.

Speaking in a nice, kind Mrs Doubtfire voice that tells them to clean it up dears, is just an illusion.  I scream like a rabid animal caught in a trap because they ignore me, through the nice request.  Then they have the audacity to ask “Why is Mum so crazy?”

Oh I wish.  But.  And this is a BIG BUT!

If you are called, or find yourself in a large family, then this crap happens.  I am a little OCD or CDO as I prefer.  If you want to keep peace, some of this has to go by the wayside.

If you want to be something other than a Nazi cleaner, and a mother who yells about the mess, then you have to let some things slide.

Not to chaos, but to living.  Sometimes things get away.  Not the end of the earth here.  Sometimes, as a mum you get overwhelmed, but it’s not the end of the world either.

Learn to be flexible.  Learn to understand the laughter along with the endless mess, washing, animals, huge family gatherings which leave another mess, but leave a lot of memories.

Today, I made some really funny memories that I will tell my children’s children and everyone will laugh.

It’s called family.  In my case, blended, beautiful, big family.

Lessons learned.  While I have this many kids at home there will always be some, or major mess.

It is my job to teach them to clean it up.  Even if I am tearing my hair out.  Because if I do it, I am not teaching them.

Now, to chill out, after the 20 loads of washing.

Join my email for more fun and adventures in the blended family.

WILL BLOOM

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So… Why are we parenting differently from a Galaxy far far away?

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So, we are coming home from the beach today.

Need to set alarms early, like, 6a.m. cause I got five kids with me.

Sheets off all beds, towels in the wash, all bags packed as well as food.

Breakfast………….mmmmm………… different story.

Two get up.  GREAT!  Three are dragging.  One has personal stuff.

Make-up, hair, appearance.

Two (twins) who are the youngest think they are exempt.

Phones are really important.  Like what are their friends doing?

Like in my grandkids, also coming home from the beach.

Finally out the door, made it in just over an hour.  Record time.

Anyone with large families will get this.  Two, one, easy peasy.

Then, oh then.

I get the over usage of data message.  I try to say nicely, NO FACETIME!!  Of course using my nice voice doesn’t work, but on the second over usage of data, I guess I elevated my tone to make it work!

Bored!  All bored.  They all have cell phones, a flat screen TV with video and a large bag full of videos to watch.  They have pillows, reclining leather seats (we drive an airport shuttle with all the bells and whistles) and they are still thinking “BORING!”

About that time I thought I should tell a small story, but one that was a  wee bit telling about the age we live in.

I reminisced.  You see when I was a kid, up until I was about ten or so, and I do know I am dating myself here.  We didn’t have a TV, there were no cell phones, no internet (90’s I believe), and no I Tunes, FaceTime you got it etc.

When I was going and coming from holidays it was like this.  We all got up around 3 a.m.  Dad read the paper, delivered to our door, Mum started the packing.  There were no fast food restaurants, and buying food in any form was pretty rare.  She had to prepare for our holiday at a remote spot on the beach understanding we were going for three weeks.

Food for a family of five (sometimes six because our grandma would come), clothes for all of us, games we could play, fishing rods, hats, flip flops (we called them thongs, and yes I know), warm and cold extras because it was Fall, or Autumn as we called it.

And, my daddy loved to go out on the boat fishing, so extra stuff for him.

I wish I could remember if he took his banjo-mandolin with him.

Then the journey. Yup, what a trek.  Gosh, well, we got up at 3.am. but Dad had to read the newspaper.  Very frustrating for Mum, who made his cup of tea, toast and eggs, and had all of the other packing to do.  Boy do I relate.

We had an old green van.  A “Comma”.  It was almost like a seven seater these days, but wasn’t.  It had two benches which wasn’t enough so we had a couple of extra back seats.  No seatbelts at all.  I’m not even sure that were not two front seats and a bench.  I was really young, but did remember that old green van.

The roads were not that great in 1957 plus, and many bridges were not built at that time.  To get to our holiday destination (which was also mine for some forty years plus after that) we drove 200 miles at around 45 miles an hour, crossed three rivers by driving on a ferry, and and it took us about 12 hours to get to our destination.

It was worth it.  We played “I Spy”, and all other sorts of games.  We asked “how long until we get there” more often than my parents could have stood, but we did get there.  And, we made lots of memories.  Without phones, TV, FaceTime, Face Book, The Internet and constant communication.

Was it worth it?

Oh yes.  You see I took my own kids there for multiple holidays before I moved here.  They made memories they will never forget.  I have taken this blended  family to this very place, across the many miles, to Australia.  They have not forgotten.

So, why are we giving in to phones, Face Time, Face Book, Snap Chat, Instagram and many of the apps out there that are affecting the innocence of our children.  Why are we becoming subservient to our children’s needs for what?  Just putting this out there.

Maybe parenting has become old fashioned and if it has, then maybe that is why we have a lot of “Lost Children” in our foster systems, our  adoption rolls, and our international issue of children without parents.

And I do know a lot of  those children are not the products of electronics, they are the products of hunger, alcohol, drugs, war, neglect and ignorance.

I encourage you.  TV, phones, electronic instruments are not the answer.  Sometimes, a good old fashioned game, or just a family dinner around the table has the answer.

For the “Lost Children”?  We are their answer.  They do not have a voice.  They feel invisible.  Those children are on our streets, around the corner, in foster homes, in the “projects” and overseas in orphanages.  Orphanages that do not love or hold these children, places in Africa where children roam the streets hungry, alone and uncared for.  And the numbers are growing.

All I ask, is this.  Pray as a family, eat as a family, laugh as a family and play as a family.  Other than that, pray for those  Lost Children who do not have a family or anyone who prays for them.

If you would like more of this, please join my email list.  I am about to give out amazing interviews from Parents who thought they could not ever find a forever child and much more information for your journey into the foster/adoption world.

Also, I am about to record my new song “I Feel Invisible” which I am giving away to those on my email list.

Keep tuning in!

 

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