Friday, 22 November 2013

It's not always easy being mum!


I haven’t blogged in the last couple of weeks about our lives as things have been a bit up and down and I think I have lacked the motivation to write anything down.





Our story continues.

At the beginning of last month I wrote a post named ‘I need patience and I need it now.’ I hoped at the time of writing the post, with the advice that I had been given, that I would be better at keeping calm and be able to parent in a more therapeutic and empathic way.

Well, a few weeks on, I can say that I feel no further on. Don’t get me wrong, professionals, family and friends have listened to me, given me advice, supported me and even helped with some aspects of childcare, all of which have been helpful and I am grateful. However, I have found myself making perhaps some progress, feeling that flicker of hope and then feeling as though it has all been snapped away when I feel impatient, frustrated or angry.


Questions such as, ‘why I feel as though I am struggling to bond with my youngest daughter’, ‘why do I have a range of emotions that I never knew a mother could feel’, ‘why can I not always parent in this calm therapeutic way that we are taught’,  ‘do we need to parent in a empathic way or can we parent as our parents taught us’ and ‘why can’t I take time to well and truly relax and recharge’, frustrate me.

It would be lovely to be able to easily shut off, chill out and not over analyse every behaviour and every response. I would like to have faith in my own abilities and to trust that it will all come together with time. I must find a way to stop judging myself and weighing myself up against other people and parents.

I have sought advice from an adoption advice forum and another adopter. Both of which suggested listening and reading some of Bryan Post’s information. I have started to look at his work and again I am beginning to see that there is some hope that I am not alone and it is possible to get through these feelings.

Our Local Authority has been helpful and so far state that they are pleased with how far we have come in a short space of time. The Social Worker seems to have every faith in my/our abilities. So then why do I feel so frustrated and irritated by my own shortcomings? Our Social Worker has arranged for some further in-depth support from an adoption charity. Again, I am hopeful that this will offer me the help that I need to cross the bridge from desperation to hopefulness. 


I wanted to document and share this part of our journey to confront, discuss and lose some of the taboo and shame, which can be associated with ‘not coping’ and feeling as though you are not being a ‘good enough parent’. 

This blog was written for The Adoption Social, this week's theme is 'Stories'. #WASO. 


Monday, 4 November 2013

Fireworks!!


This weekend has been a weekend of firsts. Friday night we took the girls to their first bonfire event. It was lovely to see their excited faces as they were handed a toffee apple and a sparkler each. As they tried to write their names with the bright white sparks it brought back a handful of happy childhood memories.

As we watched the fireworks go up one by one and explode into an array of bright colours the girls jumped up and down in excitement. Our youngest daughter clung on to us at first, as she wasn’t sure if the bangs were a good thing or not. But after some gentle persuasion she relaxed and began to enjoy the show. 



The second experience the girls had was to attend their first wedding. Friends of ours got married yesterday and the two older girls were excited to see the bride in her beautiful dress. They kept asking questions about when the bride would enter and what would happen during the service. Again, it brought back childhood memories of how excited I would get if I saw a bride or a bridal dress and dream of one day that being me.

National Adoption Week 2013 - Could you give a child a home?




This week is National Adoption Week, a chance to raise awareness about adoption and an opportunity for people to ask questions about the process and all that is involved.

I wanted to write this post to encourage anyone thinking about giving a child/ren a home. Adoption teams and Local Authorities at times receive a lot of bad press about how drawn out the adoption process is, how long the wait is for a child, the possibility of a lack of support and the possible endless problems the family may encounter pre and post children arriving.

Like most things, nothing is perfect. However, our experience has been largely positive. From day one we have been open and honest about who we are and what kind of family we wished to create. Our adoption process was slightly different as we approached the Local Authority about a sibling group of three that we knew were soon to receive their adoption orders. I think that the Local Authority couldn’t believe their luck that a couple matching the children’s identities had approached them to adopt all three children. However, they made us wait and jump through all the same hoops as everyone else has to.

I think a lot of people worry about if they would be accepted, how intrusive the questioning and the background checks will be. Don’t get me wrong, they do ask you questions about every aspect of your life. But my husband and I did not feel as though we were asked anything that was too personal and we built up a good working relationship with our Social Worker before the in-depth questions began. To be honest, I think she was more embarrassed than us.

To anyone thinking of adopting I would urge you to pick up the phone and contact either your Local Authority or a Charity to have that initial chat with a professional. There are a range of organisations out there and it may well be worth contacting a couple of them to find the right organisation for you. There is a list of various agencies on the BAAF website. Each agency’s criteria can vary slightly. I feel it is important to stress that agencies are very open to receiving enquires from a diverse range of people. One of the questions I would ask early on in the process is what the post adoption support consists of. It seems as though every adoptive family needs some form of support or advice and it is important that the agency takes this aspect of the adoption seriously. 



A good starting place would be to contact BAAF  (http://www.baaf.org.uk) or Adoption UK (http://www.adoptionuk.org) they have helplines and a range of information on their websites. There is also a good amount of social media support through Facebook, Twitter and Pinterest. The Adoption Social is a place were adoption blogs are placed on a weekly basis from prospective adopters and adopters of their journeys and every day lives. The community is very supportive and the posts give a good insight into the realities of adopting.

There are some good books out there for people thinking about adopting the three that I would recommend from our journey would be. 

1.     Sally Donovan – No Matter What.
2.     Maria James – An Adoption Journey.
3.     Hedi Argent -  Related by Adoption.

If you wish to contact me to ask me any further questions I will be happy to try and help answer them. You can contact me directly on threediamonds123@gmail.com

I wish you all the best in your journey if you decide that adoption is the right path for you.