Sunday 29 May 2011
29/05 : History Repeats ItselfA lot of people call me crazy which I have psychological proof I am not. However, sometimes even I doubt my sanity. In the past year and a half, I've taken in two very troubled teens from two very bad situations. You have read about my son, but my daughter, well she's in a class all her own.
Matt asked me back in November if Carly could come live with us. I refused saying I just don't want another child right now. With all the stuff he was dealing with and things that were coming to light, I just didn't feel comfortable. He repeated his request at the beginning of January. I again refused because I just didn't think it was a good idea since she has a strong affinity for "the herb" as well as a bunch of other issues. By February, I'd met and talked with Carly a few times. She just seemed so lost and uncertain. I told her my house was safe for her.
Come mid-February and I get a call from the 15 year old girl's 20 year old caretaker. The caretaker explained that she just couldn't handle Carly any more. She said that the issues that she had weren't allowing her to take as good of care of the younger girl as was needed. I remember looking up at my ceiling and asking, "Really? Okay." I agreed to meet with Carly's mom.
After a lot of this and that, Carly arrived at my house on February 17th. The rules at my house are pretty easy.
- Keep your room clean
- Keep your laundry done
- Complete the chore of your choice. (She chose dishes, Matt does garbage and recycling)
- I will not tolerate the use of illicit drugs by children, so it's zero tolerance.
- Go to school each day and attempt to keep good grades, or at least passing.
- Be respectful to others.
- Don't forget to express your views. If you feel I'm out of line, calmly explain your reasons.
That's pretty much it. I don't even care if they curse as long as it isn't at inappropriate times. I figure that some of the things they came to me with are not important enough to fight about, plus, I cuss like a sailor most of the time anyway. I do teach where NOT to cuss.
As we've settled into family life here, it's been very challenging. I've called my Mama more than once and apologized profusely for what I put her through. Carly is so much like me at that age, it's eerie. Since I was text-book PTSD, that should give you a clue to her behaviors. Holy crap!
She goes from being so angry she looks like her head will explode to being so small and in need of a hug. She also makes a strong effort to make sure that I'm accessible at all times. Matt did the same thing when he first arrived. I couldn't go to the bathroom without him standing outside the door to talk to me. Carly's isn't AS bad, but it seems she just needs to know that I'm available. I've found that as much as I love her, sometimes she challenges that heavily. I'M SORRY MAMA! I can't stop loving her, so I'll just be patient and deal with the hurricanes as they arise.
She's whip smart, funny, beautiful, impatient, strong, and pretty much unemotional except for sadness and anger. My goal originally was reunification with her mother, but as time goes by, I suspect that the roots of anger are far deeper than I thought. Plan B is to get her through her teen years in one piece with a decent GPA so she can go to the college of her choice. I'd like for her to be able to commit the marriage between emotions and what has happened to her. That was the starting point for my healing. I hope it is for hers.
Carly, if you read this far, let me take this time to say:
I love you more than a rainbow or the home we share.
You are so wonderful that you've been a challenging blessing to my home.
The loss of you in any form would be devastating to me.
I may not have given birth to you, but you're my daughter in my heart.
Keep the faith my beautiful girl, we will make it through this together.
I will not surrender. I will not back down. You're worth way more than that.
I love you, dear one.