Friday, April 18, 2008

Stamina need a lot of it to parent any child. You need extra doses of it for a child with RAD. They seem to sense when you are weak. If you are tired, not feeling well, distressed over a situation those days they come after you full force. Are they really that mean and vindictive? No they are really that scared. Sometimes it is the sameness of every day that is so wearing. Knowing I have to face this not only today but again tomorrow, and the next day and the next day. So where do we get our stamina? Today my allergies are really flaring up. I know I must take care of myself while the kids are gone to school and allow myself to rest. The laundry can wait. Vacuuming can wait. Tomorrow they will be there. These opportunities to love my children are important because when we lose our temper or refuse to work with them we let them know they are right about adults. We are not strong enough or smart enough to handle them. Right now my youngest needs much more mom time. I need to touch his shoulder as I walk by, smile at him with my eyes and use a soft and gentle voice to his angry and stressed voice. He is anxious. He is afraid. He is very much a tiny little boy in a monster suit. I also think stamina comes for me from doing this for so long. I know what works. What does not work. I know they need gentleness, love and understanding and yet firmness, boundaries and natural consequences. Grandma Schwarzenegger I believe Nancy Thomas calls it. Don't feed into their attempts to suck you into an argument. If you see an attachment therapist they will teach you how to talk with your child and what to say during these times when nothing seems right. This is an invaluable tool. So isn't easy. It is very hard. Do what it takes to have stamina. Rest: During really tough times I add an hour of sleep. Support: Find a group, other adoptive or foster parents who understand RAD to talk too. Find professional help. Start with an Attachment therapist. Self care: Emotional. spiritual and physical care of yourself is vital when you have a child draining you daily. You can parent this child. You are strong enough. Use the tools available to you, but not alone.


Coffee Bean said...

This blog is such an excellent source for those wanting to understand RAD and to those who are struggling through it. A real blessing.

Now about stamina. I need it. That's why there is Starbucks.

Coffee Bean said...

Oh my goodness! I just got an e-mail notifying me of a comment you just left on my blog and I was here on yours leaving one for you! What would that be? Blog ships passing in the night???

Brenda said...

I was just at Starbucks last night. Love the sugarfree skinny cinnamon dolce latte.