things have been so strange this year. after the fire Lil'K became very interested in fire. she informed us a couple weeks after the fire that she had been setting them in places around BFF's house. we had already had a very rough couple of months with her, so we headed up to a bigger city and brought her to a crisis unit.
I committed my child.
my sweet eight year old.
she stayed for 12 days. that is a long time in a crisis stabilization unit. she survived. although the first day walking away I was not sure if I would. there were lots of tears. she blamed me for leaving her. that I was not going to come back. begged and manipulated to come home. and was told no. reassured that we were doing what we had to for her to get help. it was a long 12 days. for both of us. she learned a lot of great tools and came home with new diagnosis codes. she was coded mood disorder NOS and reactive attachment disorder. they were leaning towards bi polar or schizoaffective with bipolar, but because of her age does not meet all of the requirements for a definite diagnosis. her meds have completely changed. and that has been good. her behavioral issues were addressed and it was felt that the number and strength of meds she was on had to do with parts of the erratic behavior. her mental illness had its hand in it as well as her bad behavior she made the choice to display. there are really a lot of factors in it. a good bit of it she can control. just making bad choices for one in her behavior. but there are parts she will have to learn to control. and then another part that she will never be able to control. it is going to be a work in progress her whole life.
she was in good hands while she was there. all of the staff there was amazing beyond belief. it helped me to be able to focus and not stay crazy the whole time. I stayed at the local Ronald McDonald House. THAT is an amazing place. I felt so strange hanging out with parents whose children were going through something I could never imagine. I kept to myself for a few days. BFF drove up with Big'K and Big'R and stayed for about 5 days. it was great having them there. because I almost felt guilty around the other parents I had not really talked to any of them. after meeting a few of them I understood. here I was feeling like I could never survive having a baby with scrambled eggs for a heart, or a child with a terminal illness... but after hearing our story a funny thing happened. they were all in shock. how could I live through it? it was amazing to hear these amazing strong beautiful women say that they felt the same way I did. I was speechless. it did not matter what we were going through as moms and families, we were all there struggling and praying and fighting together. for our children. it was truly one of the most amazing experiences of my life. I can tell you, if you live near one...GO. contribute. volunteer. bring your kids. cook a meal for the house residents. they are most appreciative. and your heart will definitely grow for it.
while all of this was going on Big'K had her diagnoses confirmed. definitely Asperger's, and anxiety. which we knew. they took away the depression and PTSD. but upped her OCD, saying it was much more severe than originally diagnosed at age 8. she was put on medicine and was going so much better. the counting had all but stopped. but she began to be more impatient. was more 'forceful' and assertive when normally she would shrink back and be quieter. and while visiting me at the RMH we noticed she had began picking. she would pick in her sleep and had a horrible spot about the size of a half dollar in addition to about half a dozen spots on her face. they were beginning to develop staph and were getting gnarly. we have since stopped the meds and will follow up right before Xmas to see if we can try something else. she is back to counting but the picking seems to have stopped. which is great. the forcefulness with her words is slacking off and she is doing better.
my eyes leaked for three weeks straight. not only was I not being able to mourn for my house and belongings (yes I know they are just things...but they were my things and I loved them), but here I was five hours from home having my smallest committed. needless to say it has been a rough 2013. I am so ready for 2014. and I do hope it brings better things for my little snafud world. we are doing better. no real progress on the house yet. it has been recommended that we do not bring Lil'K back to the house. but we also have to have her supervised 24/7 because of her firesetting tendencies (which thank goodness seem to have been quelled). so needless to say it is hard to have the time to get over there to work on it. very few things were salvageable so there is not too much left to get out. then the hard part. you see the structure is still standing but the inside is totally ruined. if not burnt, the heat, smoke, water and foam ruined it. so we have a lot of cleanup to do. and then have the house torn down. and then figure out where to go from there. the house was covered on insurance but not the contents. and after paying off the mortgage, the insurance money (minus depreciation), is thin to say the least. so whatever is next will have to make sense financially. we will look at all the options and go from there. it will have to do.
I have been having horrible anxiety at night about the fire. sleeping has become hard. everything looks like fire. smells like fire. and makes me think fire. the shadows coming in the window of the branches moving in the light, the electronics that have a flashing light, any noise at all. when I do sleep I have nightmares about everything burning. add to that the fact that I am a night owl naturally and the years of weird shifts I have worked most of my life and you have typical insomnia. yay!! I get up and check Lil'K so often I cannot actually get good sleep. I am so afraid I am going to doze off and she is going to start a fire. my heart races and sleep is the furthest thing from my mind. I can take an OTC sleep aide. but most of them after two nights give me restless leg so I have to stop them. when I take something I can usually sleep but then am left with the sleep med hangover. which sucks. I will get there. I spoke to Lil'Ks therapist, he said there is a good chance the fire gave me a sort of PTSD. nice. as if I do not have enough going on as it is. oh well. I will get past it. I always do.
all in all this year has blown. but the holidays are upon us. we have had so much to be thankful for. and more positive things coming in the future. we are all under one roof for now. myself, Big'K, Lil'K, the BFF, her hubby Juice, Big'R, Lil'R and Mid'K. it has been fun to say the least. everyone is learning the ropes. and they are doing well. Lil'K has done SO much better. and we are all proud of her. it has been an adjustment to say the least. but we will all make it through. and things will get better. just today I paid it forward to a family that Big'K is friends with. I actually went to school with the mother. and the oldest son and Big'K are tight like thieves. he is a sweet kid. they are going through a hard time right now and food has been scarce. I paid forward a little bit. just something small. a grocery card. so they can eat. I know what it is like to not have food. I have struggled and been in that same predicament but was too proud to say anything. there were weeks where we lived off of oatmeal or cereal. or just plain rice. times when I would eat oatmeal and let the kids have the 'real' food. these times were not too long ago. and my heart told me to pay forward. she almost would not even take the card. I told her you can take it or I will go grocery shop for you and bring it here. eventually through tears she took it. it made my heart smile. big.
things will get better. they certainly must. I have faith in Big G. and Baby J and Blessed Mother M. in my heart I know they will. there is just that thing...that says all of these trials have been for something. just please do not let them be testing me for something bigger and worse. just let them be humbling me for something awesome and amazing.
life is but a journey. and I most certainly plan on brighter times ahead. bring it on new year. I am definitely ready for something new.