I have a dusty old Bachelor's degree in early childhood education that I thought would easily prepare me for what I'd face in the adoption of older children world
But I was wrong.
Behavior modification and/or redirection is impossible, is actually a joke in my world, and it took me a very long time to understand this idea
"There you go again being logical," my caseworker would say when I'd be so frustrated that nothing I attempted was working
I just didn't understand mental illnesses, nor the pathology I'd witness, but most importantly I didn't comprehend the damage done by trauma.
I had a long phone conversation yesterday with a grown son who wasn't difficult to raise. His behaviors were frustrating though, because I then didn't understand why anyone would make poor choices, didn't they realize the ensuing negative fallout?
No, Cindy, they didn't.
"Just focus," I'd stress aloud, as if they were capable
Nowadays I get it a little better.
He's way grown, past 30 and still struggling each day, but now both he and I recognize it for what it is, it manifests itself in him as depression, anxiety and frustration.
He'll call fairly regularly, as if talking to Mama grounds him, helps screw his head back on tighter. It's not that he needed to be talked back from the ledge, he just needs some emotional reassurance.
I cracked a few jokes and we talked about Chipper Jones, and then he went on about his merry way
Another grown son texted me photos of his new and pretty girlfriend, another on-the-cusp of being grown called just to talk, and I hunted post season playoff tickets with another grown one.
A person here yesterday in the family room was looking at family photos hanging on the wall, and said what I hear all the time, "I just don't know how you've done all of this."
I don't really have an answer. I don't know either, other than just getting up every day and doing what needs to be done, whatever satisfaction I get I give to myself based on getting it all done to the best of my abilities.
Today is errand day. Yuck.