Smorgasbord

Because hey, that's pretty much what it always is!

I'll give you the bad first, so that I can cheer you up at the end with the good. :)

First, apparently bio mom is already on a call-ahead basis, unbeknownst to me. I guess she is on a 24 hour call ahead, so she calls the day before to confirm there will be a visit the following day. Apparently she is calling the day before to confirm, then calling the day of to cancel. Very strange, methinks! They are looking at putting her on a same-day call ahead where she has to call by 10 a.m. to confirm that the visit will actually happen - if she doesn't call by 10, then no visit. This will be really nice for us and for the kids too.

I feel so bad because C asks to see his mom and I tell him that he will see her after nap time...then I get a call at during nap time that the visit is canceled. Of course, there are also many days where I tell him that he will see his mommy tomorrow, and then the visit gets canceled, and he doesn't see her. So I am always a liar to him, and I really hate that. He doesn't understand that it is HER fault there are not visits, and that I don't control the world and I can't make the visits happen. Then of course when it is time to go on a visit half the time he freaks out and doesn't want to go...what am I supposed to think about all of this?

Then the other crappy thing with him - Lately when I've been disciplining him or not giving him what he wants, mid-tantrum he begins screaming "I want my mommy!" It is quite literally heart-wrenching. It's all I can do to keep myself from breaking down and crying. I know he is still very attached to his mom. I also know that she gives him everything he wants, so she will always be the good guy until he is old enough to see and understand some of the things she does. There is a very real and very ugly part of him that wants him to want ME and to turn to ME, even though I am just supposed to be a substitute for his mom for now. Anyway...it's terrible, and I hate it.

In other GOOD news, C has learned almost all of his colors. It took him a long time to get white and red, the first ones we worked on. Then we moved to blue, which he picked up pretty quickly. He has learned yellow, orange and green in the matter of only a few days. We still need to do purple, pink, and black, which probably won't take long at all. But anyway...it's amazing! Focusing on one color at a time really helped him a lot I think. For the first few months I would talk to him about every color and it just didn't seem to help him learn colors at all, but going one-by-one seemed to work. So...yay!

I have also been working with him a little bit on number and letter recognition. I'm not sure that it's something a 2 year old necessarily needs to know, but it gives me something to do. In the bathtub today he pointed to a toy with a number on it that I hadn't even seen before and said "That's the number three!" and I checked...and yes, it was indeed the number three. Pretty awesome!

Y is talking so much, it's pretty incredible! A lot of it is mimicking what C says - it is really funny to hear him use the same cadence and tones with his speech as his big brother! And it's even more funny because C mimics Y's behaviors, but then here Y is mimicking C's speech.

D is doing good too. It seems like more and more he is choosing to be here rather than at his friend's house. I think that's good. He almost always is the one that reminds us that we need to do our daily devotion. And he wants to know the stories of the Bible, but doesn't want to read the little boy's toddler bible himself...so sometimes he will read it to them, or listen while I'm reading to them. He is an interesting kid, to say the least.

I have been trying really, really hard to be more patient with the kids. I definitely have days where I look back and think "Wow...can I get a do-over?" I feel like I did OK today. We stayed home because of the difficult day the boys had yesterday - I was afraid they hadn't fully recovered, and that they might need early naps...and that if they did, I didn't want to be caught in public with them going crazy! So it worked out OK that we just stayed home, because they did go down for their naps early.

I'm working on not raising my voice as much, and not freaking out when they freak out. It is so, so easy to lose control. I don't mean like beating them or anything like that, but just to let my anger boil up and become so frustrated that I can't even think. I have also been working on not handling them - asking them to go into time-out themselves, for example, before picking them up and putting them there, and that kind of thing. A blogger I follow said something like "If I can't control my own emotions, how can I expect my children to control theirs?" and I think it is a very valid point. I need to set the example for C to see how to control emotions and how to not freak out and have a tantrum when things don't go my way.

Tonight our daily devotion that we did with D during dinner was about what happens when things don't go your way, and how whatever fills you up inside will come out of you. One of the questions was something like "Name someone you know that has good things come out of them when bad things happen. How do you want to be more like them?" D said his mom, because she is always calm and pretends like nothing happened. Then I said my mom, because she has an incredible amount of patience. Then D piped up and said "I have one more!" and he said me, because I have a lot of patience. And my husband said me too, for the same reason. That was really uplifting to me because personally I have been working hard in this area but I feel like I have so much more to do.

It has just been an emotional couple of days and quite frankly, I'm exhausted.

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