Friday, August 24, 2012
Recycling Thrills and Chills
My excitement today revolved around the massive pile of recycling, each of these boxes contain two weeks worth of papers and flattened cardboard, the bin is full of plastic milk jugs, tin cans and glass jars. That every two weeks I keep this much out of the landfill is something that I personally find thrilling and immensely rewarding.
It seriously doesn't take much to keep me happy. But file this under 'purposeful intentional living.'
I routinely remind my children that if they go to school under-dressed for the weather, someone is likely to call DFACS and report us. To say something cowardly and snarkily in an anonymous phone call like, "I guess she can't afford to buy them winter clothes." If you really believe that about me, then identify yourself, talk to me about it, man up.
So stupid. But foster and adoptive families, especially large families, are immediately subject to intense scrutiny by those who flat out couldn't do what we do routinely, and usually joyfully, so they think something is wrong with us.
So CPS will routinely come out here, I've often told them to just drop in unannounced, as I am what I am, if they just drop in then likely my house will not be as clean as if they'd called first, but it'd still be very acceptable.
So then I got accused of 'threatening my children with DFACS' based on my first sentence in this post.
Seriously. And I know who made that call.
It is terribly unfair to hound people like me who are only genuinely trying to help.
I've also seen divorce cases where exes make false allegations, blindsiding some very good parents. A philandering ex accusing his quiet wife of everything under the sun to justify his own mid-life crisis. That poor woman took years to recover from his betrayal on so many levels, his teenagers never forgave him for that.
I gave her the only comforting words I then knew, "What goes around comes around. I've never ever seen malicious people happy with their lives."
Yolie, with her Master's Degree in Social Work, sat in a mandatory training session for the elementary school volunteers who were told what to look out for, and that they could be charged with a misdemeanor for failing to report, thus arming a bunch of scared-they'll-be arrested junior detectives.
I want suspicious instances to be investigated, of course, had Yolie's original family been investigated years and years ago back in Texas, she and her brothers wouldn't have endured what they endured.
But nowadays it appears almost as a witch hunt where innocent parents get the tar frightened out of them, children like mine get scared to pieces when the 'people movers' appear at the door of their forever family.
Caseworkers themselves try and explain away scratches on their own children dropped off at day care., knowing they too might get reported. Everyone is afraid. And some major meth addicts, crack heads, and deranged mentally ill folks don't get investigated because DFACS is worrying over stuff that isn't real, wasting their time, sometimes even on clearly ignorant and malicious calls.
I know adoptive families where their older birth kids, or older emotionally ill adopted kids would make false claims because they resented having to share an imaginary inheritance with others.
Every morning, reading newspaper accounts of murdered children, or toddlers found wandering the streets of Atlanta because their parents are passed out, I can't help but think about going back to school my own self, and becoming a lawyer to sue and get some laws and policies changed. But really, I'd rather just weed, it soothes my ragged nerves.
I get emails from y'all who've had That Knock At The Door that sets your adopted children back emotionally for decades, leaving psychiatrists with a gold mine to harvest, emotional scabs brutally ripped off and children regressing, robbed of all their progress up to this point.
And, as foster or adoptive parents of severely emotionally troubled children, it won't be unusual to have some insanely ridiculous allegations lobbed at you by those you're simply doing your best to take care of each day. You'll be flabbergasted, astonished, and very deeply hurt by this event.
It'll be difficult, if not impossible, to repair the relationship completely, because you won't be able to trust anymore.
As a retired teacher, a Preacher's kid, a home body, I've been shocked and outraged that CPS would then question me. That anyone would think so little of me has stunned me.
If nothing else, what you see with me is what you get. A rather boring, staid, solid hermit who is trying her very best to raise decent children uphill against some very tough odds.
And if I have an Oppositionally Defiant kid going out of here not wearing the sweatshirt that I insisted upon, knowing someone's liable to call DFACS and say I didn't dress this 150 pound kid properly, then it is what it is. I can't force an ODD kids to do anything, I've tried, I've secured tons of resources for the children, and still often it is to no avail.
This is what ODD looks like folks. At least he is loved, well fed, has a closet full of clothes, is taken on vacations, and treated very well.
That's all I can do...and it's more than the critical, mean-spirited naysayers ever tried to do for anyone on earth.
While Tabby's team practiced soccer I again got in a good couple of miles walk, Lily and Nando riding bikes to keep up with my long stride, when I walk, I walk, fast and furious, letting off steam, feeling oh so much better.
I'm really enjoying all that I'm learning in Sarah's yoga teacher taining class, to us nothing is learned unless it's shared and applied, I never thought I'd be willing to give up cheese, or to even try. I'm only mostly vegan, but have cut my consumption about 95% at least, going several days completely without dairy products.
At my age and with all the stress I've absorbed, cortisol so often flooding my body and damaging my internal organs, I need to be very proactice in regards to my own health, radical even.
And with Sarah? The student has become the teacher, I raised her in a nutritionally sound fashion and she's taken it a step farther, becoming very influential in my own food choices nowadays.
In the book, Healing from Hazardous Parenting: How to Fix Yourself When You Can't Fix Your Kid, Dr. McCreight addresses the damage done to our bodies via cortisol. Most importantly, she speaks into our very damaged souls, the validation is priceless. To order the print version go here.
These are the shoes Lily'd chosen for her birthday, along with those weird Yeti hats. She's expressing herself, I'm good with that. She's a super great young lady, a 15 year old who's sweet, smart and lovely.