Well today I hit my limit. 2.50am is not a time I can cope with being awake from on a regular basis.
After crying down the phone to hubby for the millionth time I/we decided that I just can’t take it any more and middle girl needs to go back to her own bed, we’ve tried everything, there is nothing left to try. Through my tears I called our GP and requested the sedative the sleep clinic recommended, Circadin, for middle girl. I moved her bedding back to her bed and cried some more. Her early morning antics are tearing our family apart. I’d tried to create a solution. I failed.
I spent the rest of day sat on my sofa staring at the floor feeling nothing but despair and anger.
Anger that middle girl has pushed me this far, anger that I’ve allowed myself to become angry instead of sympathetic towards middle girl, anger that no one has supported us, anger that the professionals who should have known about trauma and how it breeds and feeds, still allowed my girls to be placed knowing they’d have to share a room and anger at my self for letting baby girl down, I can’t protect her.
Baby girl has been a completely different child since we moved middle girl in to our room in November. ALL of my ADD/ADHD concerns for her have gone, she was just tired, so tired that she didn’t know what she was doing, or even where she was. A feeling I’ve got to know these last few months. I’ve loved getting to know the real baby girl, I’ve loved that she hasn’t felt the need to control my every move, I’ve loved that as the chaos inside her dissipated, so did her need to created chaos around her. She’s thrived and I’ve loved her more and more each day.
As I kissed her goodnight tonight and stroked her sleepy face, I kissed good bye to my lovely baby girl and prepared myself for the return of tired, controlling, chaotic baby girl.
At 3 am this morning I was sat on my sofa feeling very sorry for myself, unable to sleep in my own room due to middle girl, I once again followed a very unsettled pussy cat down the stairs. This is becoming a regular occurrence, it was 3am today, yesterday was 4 am, the morning before 4.20am and I can’t even recall the times from the previous mornings but needless to say it was early.
I generally bring myself downstairs, pillow in tow, feed my cats and settle down on the sofa with a blanket and my pillow. Its not ideal but I can’t sleep through her constant thrashing about. It takes me about 40 minutes to get back to sleep on the sofa and then hubby wakes me when he gets up for work at 5.40am. So its not great.
This morning I came downstairs and after so many nights with hardly any sleep I just couldn’t hold back the tears! I was shattered but for some reason I just could not sleep. We have goldfish in our lounge and I’m convinced they were trying to escape their tank by chucking stones at the glass. So when hubby got up at 5.20am after giving up trying to sleep through the constant thrashing about, I thought I’d try my luck with my bed again. Middle girl had other idea’s, if she wasn’t banging her feet or coughing she was messing with the plastic material on the underside of our divan bed.
At 6am I made the decision not to send the girls to school and sent an email to the school office, I didn’t feel I was alert enough to drive in the snow and ice and I barely had the energy to speak never mind walk to school and with no one local I can call upon for help with the school run (not that the girls would cope well with being taken to school by someone else any way), I had no other choice but to call it a snow day. The downside to this meant I still had to deal with 3 little people and their constant demands and needs all day.
I’m sat here, on my sofa, feeling really rather ill, stressy, fed up and utterly exhausted. When will this end, where will this end. It can’t carry on like this, we can’t carry on like this, I can’t carry on like this!
All of the professionals we’ve seen about this say middle girl needs a room of her own, but our finances won’t stretch this far and the placing authority will only offer us sympathy. In my opinion, adopted siblings should never be put in a placement where they have to share a room, trauma breeds trauma and they need somewhere they can escape from it.
Perhaps someone will take us seriously when the girls education starts to suffer through tiredness, stress and lack of attendance!
Or maybe our family has to fall apart completely before someone will take note!
Today was middle girls appointment with the CAMHS sleep professionals. Our camhs family therapist made the referral because she didn’t know what else we could do/try to stop middle girl waking up her sisters when she wakes in the early hours.
I really don’t have the energy to explain the whole 1.5hour appointment, but what I will tell you is we discussed bedtime routine, night time drinks, exercise (I was surprised to hear exercise 4hrs before bed is a no no) snacks and
TV. Needless to say, aside from friday evenings swimming class they were happy with everything we do.
Which meant that there wasn’t much else they could suggest we try aside from sedation. I have to say I was quite shocked at this as getting to sleep isn’t a problem for middle girl. Staying asleep past 4am and being content to allow others to sleep however, is an issue. So his suggestion of sedation was for short term use, around a month, with a view to break her body clocks habit of waking at around 4am and 5am. He said it was a long shot. I concur.
Middle girl was present for the entire appointment, she zoned out, sat at the table in the corner with a fisher price nursery rhyme toy and a colouring book. In fact the only time she lifted her head to listen was when the suggestion of her having a room to herself and baby girl sleeping in our room was made. At this point she physically lifted her entire body and looked up and listened, and smiled! Even the therapist/Dr noticed this change in her body language, so I filled him in on her foot stomping demands of ‘I want my own room’. He agreed that his suggestion was no longer appropriate. He made a few general comments to middle girl throughout the appointment and she happily responded, however whenever he mentioned the bedtime issues we were having, she just smiled and refused to talk, just like she does at home.
So he sent me away with the name of a sedative I should try and persuade our gp to prescribe (Circadin) and a letter that says if we’re still having problems in 3 months then to ring them back and we can go on their 18 month waiting list for their 6 month intensive sleep programme. (even though ‘sleep’ isn’t her issue.)
First of all let me explain why I’ve decided to name this Part 3.
Part 1 was the first family therapist that we started seeing January 2012. In July 2012, he left.
Part 2 was the replacement family therapist that we started seeing September 2012.
Part 3 is the Child psychotherapist that appears to have taken over from the family therapist. I say ‘appears’ because, at our last appointment the family therapist invited along a child psychotherapist to join us and said he would be joining the ‘team’. However, this appointment, was just the child psychotherapist and I and there was no reference made to the family therapist joining us anytime in the future.
So, back to today’s session. He was late, only 4 minutes but when your limited to an hour those 4 minutes are important. He started the meeting by discussing the arrangements for a meeting at the end of February that he’s managed to persuade the placing authority to make the 8hour round trip to attend, impressive! That should be a good meeting.
We then talked about how christmas had been and more specifically how it must feel to be mommy to my girls. ‘Empty’ was a word he used quite a lot and I felt that was quite a good description.
We chatted about baby girl and middle girl the most and we discussed the challenges I face parenting ‘compliant’ children. We chatted about their early experiences and how birth mom had been an attentive mother for the first 3 months of their lives but had then become very unpredictable and emotionally unavailable and how this had been the pattern of care for all of her children.
He said he felt that listening to my description of the girls behaviours and knowing that piece of information from their early experiences leads him to feel that my girls are suffering the effects of loss and more specifically, abandonment. He feels long term therapy is what’s needed.
Moving forward he asked me what I would like to happen. I requested cognitive assessments on baby girl and middle girl and some long term support from the placing authority to ensure we can meet the needs of long term therapy. He told me he agreed with my requests and would make arrangements for the cognitive assessments, he would also ring the placing authority to stress the importance of them supporting us long term. He also added that he wanted to conduct some assessments of his own with the girls to ‘see where they’re at emotionally’.
Now I don’t want to get ahead of myself, but this guys promised more at this one appointment than the other 2 promised over the last 12 months, so, I’m hopeful that this isn’t just another carrot.
I emailed our MP last night on the advice of a friend as I was feeling I needed some extra clout to get some support, I might hold off for a few weeks and see how things go?!