Mayhem and Stardust

We are the proud parents of, amongst others, Jig, who has a handsome collection of diagnoses (ADHD, AD, FASD) which probably mean nothing and a generous smattering of fairy dust which probably counts for everything. School was a huge challenge and so we decided, probably rashly, to move to the country and home educate him. No medication, no 'support', chickens, space, a farm on the doorstep and a beach nearby. What could possibly go wrong?

Archive for the month “June, 2014”

The Simba version

For the last eight years we have been telling all of our adopted children pretty much the same adoption story. “The people who made you (name and name) loved you very much but they couldn’t care for you so the judge had to decide what to do.  She thought about it for a very long time and decided that Mummy and Daddy loved you so much too and could keep you safe and so we would be your forever and ever Mummy and Daddy”  We wait for the next questions and answer them as and when they arrive, thus hoping not to overwhelm with uncomfortable information but not hiding anything either.  It is a bit of a balancing act but we were congratulating ourselves recently on this albeit small success.

Then Moo, placed with us at 7 months and now 7 years old, explained her adoption to a friend of ours. “My first parents weren’t married so they weren’t allowed to keep me.  The judge took me and held me up and said “who wants this baby” and Mummy and Daddy said they would take me so here I am…”

How did our carefully crafted explanation become such a scrum?  How did she become a small lion cub held over the edge of a rock for all to see? I am fascinated that she has absorbed such an outdated social judgement (certainly not from us) and added her own touch of drama to a story that she has heard over and over again and yet I am also well aware that this is exactly how she feels about it and am in awe of her ability to translate that feeling into such clear words.  Of course she felt like a cub on a cliff.  It is EXACTLY what she was.




Finding friends

Jiggy says he wants to go to school.  He has said that, occasionally, ever since he left but he has also said quite a lot of other things….!  Just because it makes ME nervous isn’t a good enough reason to attach too much importance to it I guess but I am and so it matters.  I don’t think he does actually want to go to school, he knows as well as I do that the challenge of sitting in a group that isn’t about him for longer than four or five minutes (which is real progress by the way) would overwhelm him fairly early on. However I do think he wants more friends. We have no neighbours, Home ed group only meet once a fortnight, Forest school didn’t work out as we had hoped and his week is, although pretty wide-ranging and undoubtedly useful, mostly a solitary affair. That said we play in the park after school most days, he has managed a street dance class once a week for two or three weeks now without any issue, he has siblings close in age (with whom he plays pretty well all things considered) and we take any opportunity that arises to mix with other kids.

But then again, that doesn’t always work out well either.  We went to France a couple of weeks ago on an off season Eurocamp bargain. Jiggy practically stalked any child that looked like a possible mate and it wasn’t long before I saw a couple of them hiding when he came looking.  I was sad to see it but I completely understand how they felt.  Even Jig seemed to notice that they actually didn’t want to play and although confused by it he wasn’t unduly upset.  Instead he set off happily for the organised ‘fun’ session.  There were about eight in the group and it went well enough, I gather, for the first part but then there was lining up, group games, a few rules and boundaries and it disintegrated.  You know things haven’t gone well when you come to collect your child and the cheery camp fun leader won’t meet your eye. I guess she was annoyed that I hadn’t warned her.  Sometimes though I like to give Jig the benefit of the doubt and a clean sheet to start with (especially when we are far away and never going to have to see them again…) and, to be honest, sometimes I just get fed up explaining.

In a perfect world we would find a small group that met every day that did the sort of wonderful practical things that Peter and Jig do, that could take the time to really know him, that could stretch and support him at the same time and that could offer him the sense of community that he is lacking.  Lets just hope.

Midsummer Fairy Ballroom

Midsummer Fairy Ballroom





Clean Screen

Well, the blip has faded.  We had a brief meeting with CAMHS who then sent me a thanks but no thanks letter and referred us back to the GP who had tried to shuffle us off to them in the first place.  I had wanted a referral to the FAS clinic in Surrey, really just to know what sort of tangle we were dealing with.  I find now that I need more determination to push through and am surprisingly, for such a cynic when it comes to “support”, disillusioned by the fact that the only thing CAMHS wanted to do really, within two minutes (which might be a record) was to re-medicate.  That’s a no so here we are again, sailing along in a clear blue sea with no visible points of reference but no obstacles either. It could be worse.




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