April 9, 2010

Is the Stress too much?

I don't like to write about negative things but I think the stress is finally getting to me. It's not just one thing, it's everything together. Each child has contributed to my stress in the last few weeks. The children are not really to blame, it's really the way I deal with the situations that come up. We will start with the littlest person in our home.

Flower is the baby that doesn't sleep through the night. I can probably tell what you're thinking - get up and put a pacifier in? Oh no, she doesn't take a pacifier she either wants to be held or she wants a bottle. We make sure she has a full belly at bedtime but she still wakes up every 3 to 4 hours and stays up for about 20 minutes to a half hour. So it's not just disturbed sleep, it's get up, stay up until you're wide awake then try to go back to sleep so you can work in the morning. The only thing she responds to is patting her bucket harder than she should like it. I'm really wondering if she was a drug baby. I know some of the drugs babies, that I've come in contact with, like more physical stimulation when trying to calming down. If you pat her bucket she usually goes back to sleep. At least she can't get out of her bed like Sugar Ray does.

Sugar Ray stays asleep but he has a heck of a time getting to sleep. I bet I had to go upstairs five times last night to put him back in his bed. I've tried to be comforting but kneeling down by his bed and rubbing his back until I thought he was asleep but it never fails - as soon as I get back downstairs he's back, at his gated doorway, crying. I have also tried getting upset with him and that doesn't work either. It wasn't any better when he was sharing a room with Ike. We had to move Sugar Ray to a room of his own because of what we found out at Ike's school meeting.

Earlier in the week Ike had another bad day at school so I decided to meet with his teacher for about five minutes to let Ike see that I talk to his teacher and his teacher talks to me. His teacher, Ms. Sped and I have been using a communication book so I know exactly what is happening at school. We made a deal with Ike that if he is a good boy at school he will receive a quarter when he gets home. Well, earlier in the week Ms Sped wrote down things that Ike was doing and it wasn't good. Ike starting yelling at her that I was going to see it and that Ms Sped doesn't ever write anything good. She tried to explain that what goes into the book is only things he does and he can control what he does. The therapist called DH at home to ask for a meeting in the near future but when I called her back I couldn't get a hold of her. So anyway, I wanted to meet with him and the teacher together so he knew we were on the same page. By the time I got to school the asst. vice principle and the therapist were also involved. We met for about a half hour without Ike in the room and brain stormed to get ideas to help him with his anger problem. By the way, we have not seen any anger issues at home. I also found out some things we were unaware of like this has been going on longer than just this school year. The therapist also told me that he had bad anger issues at his mothers home too. He actually tried to kill his little sister. Keep in mind Ike is only six years old.

When I got home, I told DH what I had learned and we decided immediately to move Sugar to another room. If Ike was to get upset with Sugar for not going to sleep he could try the same thing with him as he did with his sister. If he did that we wouldn't have a clue until morning. Scary stuff. We also called Linda at the agency to let them know that maybe this is more than we can handle.

Linda was totally unaware of the past actions of Ike and she actually thought he should be in a household without other children. We are not going to do anything drastic yet but he will receive counseling/therapy starting next week. I really hope we can solve his anger issues. I'm thinking between not getting a good nights sleep and the stress of his actions at school it's really getting to me and DH.

Princess's teacher told DH today that she thinks that the stress of these kids is too much for me. I'm wondering if I look that bad? He told me she has noticed that I look run down. It could also be that when I thought I was going to only have a five minutes meeting with Ike's teacher that turned into a half hour meeting, I forgot to pick up Princess from school. I was a half hour late and boy did I feel like a bad mom. How could I forget my own daughter? Then to top it off I forgot their parental visit the next day! They still made it to their visit but they were a hour late. I'm sure I will hear a comment from the anti-foster parent woman but if I were her I wouldn't bother.

Speaking of visits, we started the visits with Flower's other parent at the county facility. DH stayed with her though the visit and it went well. The parent held her the whole time. DH told me there is a good bound there. So far, the other kids are not included in that visit.

Little Prince is being a normal three year old brother. He copies everything Sugar does, good and bad. Sugar will do something that I will then tell him not to do and LP will turn right around and do it himself. LP has also had accidents in his big boy underwear for the last three days. I think that happened because he sees Sugar do it in his diaper. I'm hoping that Sugar will copy LP and be interested in potty training soon. Boy, he can make a diaper stink!

Princess still has to be reminded to go potty but she is doing better. She really has been a very good girl. She's doing well in school. She can trace her name and write two of the letters without tracing. We are so proud of her. She can dress herself but sometimes she puts her shirt on backwards and her shoes on the wrong feet but she has come along way. She laughs a lot and is very happy most of the time.

All in all, I guess it's not so bad. We just have to adjust to having five young kids in the house.


  1. Wow! Sounds like a lot of littles. You 2 are pretty out-numbered, huh? LOL! Would the baby respond to being swaddled tightly? Sometimes that makes them feel better. How many bedrooms do you have? It is nice that you can make adjustments to meet the children's needs. Wishing you the best and hoping you get some much needed sleep.


  2. De, I tried to swaddle her last night, boy did she get mad! So much for that idea. We have a large house. All the kids have their own room. Three of the rooms have two twin beds or bunk beds in them. The agency said we actually have enough room for 15 kids - that's scary. They won't place anymore than eight with us after May (six now).