Tuesday, September 14, 2010

Reflecting on Corazon...

We have been home for a little over a month now and the dust seems to be settling. I must admit I have been waiting for the other shoe to drop as far as RAD behaviors go. Corazon has done remarkably well most of the summer and even in the transition home. While we were away we celebrated her 10th birthday with a "luau." The most amazing thing that happened is that she held it together the entire day--throughout the prep, during, and after. There was NO fallout. None. at. all. That is amazing. More importantly there weren't even any "bumps" or redirection. She seemed so happy and relaxed. Of course it helped that there weren't too many other kids besides close family and she was able to "ignore" her need for adult attention. We just had a great time!

She is growing so much and so fast and in some wonderful ways. I am aware of the pushes and pulls that are more "normal" than "RAD" much of the time. She still struggles with trusting us to know what is best and her need to control and dominate almost every situation still surfaces. And the DRAMA and "forgetting" how to do things is still a big issue. Her need for attention (any attention) is still high and she doesn't seem to distinguish between positive and negative attention. There are still days she is so dysregulated that she cannot function but there are many more days when she can pull it back together. Her sense of herself as a "good person" has grown but she still has doubts. She will ask me if I like her or if I think other people like her and she truly cares to hear the answer (although I don't think she always believes that she is quite likable.) When she loses it, there are more genuine emotions and feelings expressed and the fact that she can articulate them is HUGE. Managing those emotions and feelings is tough for her but we are so much farther than we were a year ago. It is possible to see that she is actively WORKING to counter her RAD and be a more typical kid. She asks questions like "do I do this because I have RAD?" or "If I didn't have RAD would I do this differently?" and she will say "I wish the RAD would go away already!" at times when she recognizes the struggle. Her attachment to me is secure (anxiously) and is growing towards C. although she views C. as a threat and competition for my attention.

All in all she is doing so very well. I have been trying to write my usual birthday letter to her but am at a loss for the right words to convey all that I see and feel. My guess is it will appear here whenever I do finish it and hopefully before she turns 11! When I think about where we have been with her and how far she has come I can't help but be a very proud mama.

5 comments:

GB's Mom said...

I am so thrilled that Corazon is doing so well. You are doing a great job :)

Lee said...

She is so beautiful and I love the luau pics (in part because KC had told me a couple months ago that he wants one so I have begun mulling ideas!) LOL

I think Corazon's insights into her own RAD issues and insecurities is impressive. We are starting to see a bit of these progresses with Fiona and it is so amazingly exciting to see the growth, yet also , so often painful. I find myself hurting for her so often.

Dia por Dia said...

GB's mom. Thank you. She is doing well. It ebbs and flows but she is so much healthier and I feeeel her attachment!

Lee,
It was so easy and so much fun. Xmas tree shopps was helpful in inspiring our theme. We picked up paper lanterns, plaques,and a few paper goods to set the stage then rounded it out with other party stuff. Even downloaded a cheap luau music kids cd for atmosphere. Easiest party I have planned...
I get what you are saying about Fiona. The pain of the growth is worth it but it is palpable!

J. said...

reat pics, she is beautiful and you can see her pride in her smile. It is amazing to me how much they can change and grow.

Bryna said...

Our 9 y/o is asking questions like that about ADHD. Every time he's starting to be hyper he asks "is this ADHD? Am i being hyper?" and talks about wanting to be normal. Some days he doesn't want to take his meds because he "wants to be normal". Some days he denies having ADHD. Some days he asks who else we know that has a "racecar brain" like him (that's what we call it). He is definitely TRYING to be "normal", but he can't keep at it very long.

BTW, if you have any feedback about my allegation post I'd love to hear it. Don't know if you've dealt with this or not.

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