Monday, September 24, 2007

In the city by the bay...

Our weekend trip to the city by the bay went well. We left Saturday afternoon after Deidra's cheerleading game. I think we were on the road by 1 pm. We got hung up in Austin for a bit because there was a game at the University of Texas. Finally got moving again and we made pretty good time for the rest of the trip. We checked into our hotel just after 8 pm. Took the kids swimming at the pool for awhile. I was so proud of D. Bathtime is so traumatic for him, that I just didn't know how he was going to handle the pool. I took him over and just said that we were just going to dip our feet in it. And so he did. We sat there for a couple of minutes and Andy took J in the water and Deidra hopped right in. I asked him if he wanted to go in if I held him the entire time and we just took things very slowly. He looked a bit apprehensive but said "k." So, I picked him up and we went in and he started splashing a bit and having fun. He made a little progress with Andy as well and even gave him a hug and a kiss on the cheek in the pool. We swam until the boys started getting too cold. Then, Andy ran over to the Denny's and got us some dinner. The boys were a handful in the hotel after being cooped up in the car for so long and with it being so late, I didn't want them disturbing anyone. Finally, we got some dinner in them and tried to put them both down for bed in the pack and plays. They both screamed bloody murder. I took D out and sat him next to me on the bed, while I sat J on my lap. D fell asleep on the bed and J fell asleep in my arms. The minute I tried to move either of them, they both started screaming. So, I decided that I was going to leave them in the bed. D slept up by the pillows and J slept at the other end of the bed and I just put blankets and stuff around the edges so they wouldn't fall off. I didn't sleep the greatest as I kept waking up to check on them and so forth, but they slept great all night long.

Sunday, we got up early and took our baths and showers. Went and checked out and ate breakfast at the hotel. Couldn't find a seat and there were several people just eating alone at the big tables. I took the kids over to an empty bench to try to eat their breakfasts. Andy was finally able to get us a table for 2 and so we squeezed over there to try to get the boys to finish their breakfasts. One couple told us we could take their seats if we wanted and they would stand, but we told them that we were managing ok. It was nice of them to offer though.

We headed over to where J's mom is for her visit with him. I had told her counselor a couple weeks back that we were going to be down that day and let her visit with him from 9-12 as then we had to head back home afterwards. We got there and I took J in and apparently that counselor had just went on maternity leave and there was a lot of confusion about the visit. They told me that visiting hours weren't until 1:30 and I'd have to bring him back. I explained that we lived about 6 hours away and that I had a daughter who had school in the morning. She said that I had to attend a visitation training program from 12:30-1:30 and that he could visit her at 1:30 for 2 hours. I had to explain again that I had prior permission to bring him from 9-12 and that nobody had told me that visiting hours were any different. She told me that I could bring him down and he could visit as long as I would allow and taht they would have staff available to supervise the visit. She said that she'd have to talk to the new counselor and she showed me the visitation room. While I waited, someone had told his mom that he was here and she showed up and I handed J to her. She got in trouble for being out of her room and they explained to her the confusion with the visit. I spoke up for her saying that she hadn't seen him since June and I again explained what was said by her counselor and that she was going to be letting the new counselor know the situation. They were having trouble getting a hold of her new counselor. It was looking like we were going to have to come back. I got permission to go out and tell Andy what was going on as we had been in there close to a half an hour already. I felt stupid that I didn't realize that the doors going out were on lock down too and so I had to get someone to let me out. I told Andy what was going on and he was irritated with the confusion. I told him that I'd be back out when I knew more. I grabbed the camera to take a couple pics of J with his mom and I grabbed my cell phone. They let me back in and I was told that the camera and cell phone couldn't be brought in, so I left those at the front desk. His mom and been told that she could have the visit from 9-12, but that I had to stay with her as they were short staffed. I started panicking a little bit as I had already told them that I was not comfortable supervising the visit as we had never met before and I still don't really know why she's in care. I prayed about it and felt at peace and so we went for it. I said that I needed someone to sit with them while I went and told my family what was going on. Andy was upset when I told him as he knew that I had said that I wasn't comfortable supervising the visit and we were going to go to the beach while J was at his visit. I told them to go without me and come back for us at noon.

They let me back in and I went and sat with J and his mom. The 3 hours went fast...she asked me a lot of questions, made observations, and she told me bits and pieces about herself. Overall, I liked her. She's still torn on whether to try to get him back or whether to place him for adoption. She said that her heart tells her one thing and her brain tells her another. Her family wants her to give him up and a lot of her counselors that stopped in to see him kept telling her what a big responsibility he is and that it's different being with him for 3 hours as opposed to having to take care of him each and every day and taht she really had to think about that, but if she decided to that if she got her behaviors together that she could be back with him everyday or at least know that he was being taken care of well and that she was welcome to see him when she wanted to. She noticed that J called me Mommy and I felt awkward about that when she asked me about it, but thankfully she wasn't offended at all. I told her that she'd always be first mommy and that I tried to bring the camera in to take a picture of them together so that I could hang it by his bed so that he could remember her. She didn't think he remembered her at all, but once he warmed up to her he interacted with her just fine. She drew him a picture and crocheted him a blanket and she is a beautiful artist. I'm going to frame it and hang it by his bed. She got permission from one of the other workers to let me bring the camera back in and so when Andy got back, I went out and grabbed it and I took some pictures of them together. That meant so much to her. She kept promising that she wasn't going to cry when he left and I told her it was ok to cry. She didn't think that J needed to see that and her counselor told her that boys needed to be taught that it was ok to cry and that it really was ok for her to show her emotions. We took the pics and we came back to collect his stuff, she had bought him clothes and stuff and she started to wipe her eyes and she got really quiet. She wrapped him up in her arms and I patted her arm and told her it was ok. She walked him down the hall and she openly started to cry. One of the girls came up and hugged her and I patted her arm. She handed J to me and told him good-bye and she looked at me and said "I don't even know how to say thank you" and I told her that wasn't necessary. We'd be back in another couple of months and in the meantime I'd send her pictures and she asked me if I'd write her letters. I told her that I would and I wanted to give her a hug, but my hands were full with J in one arm and his stuff in the other. So, we left. I walked J out to the car and I thought I was going to start crying myself. Maybe it sounds weird, but I'm glad that I got to supervise the visit and that we feel comfortable with one another now. When J fell asleep on her lap finally, one of the girls had brought her down her blanket that she was making for him. She was almost done with it and they thought she may want to finish it. Her counselor thought maybe she'd want to do it later as she'd want to spend time with the baby more. Well, she asked me if I thought that would be big enough for him and I said yes and so she picked J up and handed him to me so that she could finish the last little bit of it for him. She was so sweet to in trying to show me how. She's very crafty and I could really see her in art school.

We left the visit and Deidra tried to tell me that they had sat in the car there the whole time and I started getting mad at Andy. Finally, Deidra told me they had gone to Wal-mart and they had waited for us so we could all go to the ocean after his visit. Stinkers!!! Anyway, we drove to the gulf and since we didn't have a whole lot of time to swim and stuff since it was so late, we just decided to wade in for a bit. Andy convinced Deidra to try the water...she didn't realize it was salt water. J kept trying to drink it and he didn't seem to mind the taste. He kept wanting to dig in the sand and so I took their clothes off so they wouldn't get all wet. D was a bit scared of the waves, but I kept reassuring him and he did fine. He started splashing in the water and I'd point out the little fish and he'd giggle. Deidra found a lot of shells and even a small piece of coral. She totally submerged herself in her clothes, but she was having a ball. I wish we could have stayed longer, but we had to get on the road. We took the kids back to the car and changed them and we piled in to head back home. We were all acting goofy in the car on the way home. We got back home around 9:30 last night. Put the kids to bed, watched a little bit of tv, did the boys progress logs, and then headed for bed.

Hadn't been sleeping very long when Deidra came to inform me that she had thrown up in her bed, although she hadn't meant to. She asked me again to make her the appt with the tummy doctor and I told her that I was just waiting to see if it had gotten any better on the other meds I was giving her. She got up a few more times in the middle of the night to throw up and then I started wondering if she had a tummy bug. She's not running a fever at all, but she looks horrible. I'm going to see how she's feeling when she gets up this morning and depending on that, I'll see about getting her into the doctor.

D has a visit today too and he's got a really runny nose and feels slightly warm and just wants to lay around. I kept Deidra home from school today as it looks like I have a house full of sickies today. We have our quarterly monitoring for foster care on Wednesday night and I just want to get the house really deep cleaned so that we're ready for that, so I hope that I can get all that done today too.

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Blogger TimandKim said...

I wonder if Deidra swallowed some salt water and it made her tummy sick. Maybe that is why she kept throwing up.
I admire you for supervising the visit. I don't know that I could have. I am sure that it was a wonderful experience for his mom too. She was able to see how well taken care of he is.

1:47 PM  

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