So many times as a therapeutic parent (my distinction not social services) the trials outweigh the triumphs. Yet there is one recent moment that I want to remember in all its’ glory. At dinner the other night S made the comment that she had lost brain cells that day. Of course, Tim jokingly said she better watch it, she didn’t have many to lose! She looked at him and my first thought was she was going to get mad. But she smiled and said, Daddy. She then got up and went to him and put her arms around his neck and laughed with him. Huge. This is so huge. She took a joke at her expense, reacted appropriately and then got some reassuring physical touch, initiated by her. I was so proud of her I cried, not in front of her, but later when I told her therapist. My therapist’s response! Praise God! My sentiments exactly!
On the other end of the spectrum we have M. Since I separated the two of them S has flourished and M has gotten worse. I did it to enforce boundaries, not knowing how much it would help S get better. So we fight a spiritual battle with M. In devotions yesterday he filled in the blank of “In God’s design I am _______.” M’s response? In God’s design, I have a plan for my life. We looked at him and I said, son that’s exactly the problem. You have a plan for your life. Not, God has a plan for your life, but YOU have a plan for your life. There is no God response from M. Our therapist K told him today that I have done all I can to help him. He’s asking everybody, God, family, anybody but him, to do the work. She told him to stop talking and DO something with a servant’s heart. He is empty and feels unlovable because he’s never done anything for anyone besides himself. Until he takes the first step to DO something for someone he will never feel lovable. It is truly heartbreaking and pathetic at the same time. He has been through the least amount of trauma of my two at home yet S wants the relationship with me and M just continues to push me away and blame me at the same time.
I let S come with me to visit my mom tonight and we picked up Wendy’s frosties for a treat. She was practically giddy with joy spending the time with me. She cuddled up to me and rearranged my mom’s drawers and cleaned them out. She was little Becky Homemaker. Her energy level is so positive and wanting desperately to please. The transformation is amazing. This from the child that two months ago stayed with K because she didn’t want to be a Walden. K believes she has made the last shift and won’t be going backwards. I’m sure we will have plenty of stumbles in puberty but she is “getting it.” I rejoice over S and cry over M. Would the world fall apart if they ever did well at the same time? I’m not sure I’ll ever know the answer to that.