Saturday, April 25, 2009

Did I make it?

I was so close. Scott had to call for backup and get a ride to church. I really almost made it. I have driven downtown many many many times, but not to Northwestern and I chose to follow the directions rather than my instincts. Rand McNally listed the wrong exit and I ended up on 55 south in stand still traffic for 25 minutes until I could turn around. The good news is I got the xrays where they needed to be and the assistant ran down to meet me and I didn't have to park!
Naturally the day didn't end there. While I was making my way down Michigan ave (do you know how many people are walking downtown on Friday at 3:30? It's madness!) the bank called. They forgot to have me sign one of the forms. Could you get back here before 6:00? Sure- as we know, I am not bound by the confines of time or space. I picked up Scott and the boys at the church at 4:30 and got to hug the girls before they left. Made Sveta sad that we couldn't wait until the bus left- had to go to the bank, and drove away as she stood at the end of the sidewalk with a forlorn look on her face and her arms stretched out toward me. More on that in a minute.
Picked up drive-thru for the boys on the way to the bank, signed the paper, stopped home to get baseball gear, and went on to practice. Before I left for practice, Scott had the audacity to tell me that "he was beat". Really? You're tired? How can I make it better? Yeah, he's beat.
Picked up 2 movies at Redbox on the way home, put the boys to bed and finally I started to relax. 10 minutes into The Changeling, the phone rings. It's Sveta. She just got there and she is homesick and hurt by the other girls who are making an imaginary line in the room and dictating who can cross it. She just really misses us.
Who's phone are you on?
My councilor's.
Let me talk to her.
She is standing next to Sveta while she is talking to me and lets me know that she thought everyone was having a good time, this was the first she had heard of the "boundaries".
Why don't you look into that.
At this point, Sveta is back on the phone and I hand it to Scott. I have nothing left. I knew from the look on her face when I drove away that Sveta would be manufacturing some drama tonight. She is suffering right now as she navigates her adoption story and creates different ways to get fulfillment from us. It is difficult for me, because nothing is going to fill this void for her. She has to embrace her story before she can move on. I know it will take a while and there isn't much I can do to help. I believe she is a strong girl deep down, but this pre-adolescent to adolescent stage takes it's toll on even the strongest who don't have the additional weight of adoption baggage. We all know women who have never recovered from it and are trapped there. I pray constantly that Sveta will make it through and I fret over her choices.
Take the imaginary line situation from above:
Here's the problem- nice girls like Sveta and her friends don't know how to handle people who are mean. They respond most of the time by being pleasers. They think if "I do what they want, they will be my friend and everything will be ok." But it's not. The mean girls are still mean, and she is restricted to half of the room. She doesn't understand that if the girls wanted to be her friend, she would already be on the other side of the line. (of course I wouldn't want her on that side...) I have talked to Sveta since kindergarten about the fact that nobody has power over you unless you give it to them. She struggles with it because she can't understand the meany's motivation.
How do you teach your child to have backbone? Because she has bought the bill of goods that says that girls are supposed to be "nice", she hasn't yet figured out how to be nice without being a doormat.
This is how strong I want Sveta to be. When this situation happens, I want her to be able to say, "You know, that's not nice. I won't be playing this game. If you girls wish to limit yourselves to that half of the room, feel free, but I will be going where I like." And walk on.
Here's the problem. Because she is seeking to fill that void inside, she is choosing to be victimized for validation from us. I worry that she will get stuck here. Someone I love very much is trapped at the age of 12 because she couldn't/wouldn't accept her story and move on. I am sure Sveta will get through this, but what if she doesn't? I am a fixer and I can't fix this.
Needless to say, I didn't sleep last night.
I tend to lean on my own understanding here and forget to rely on my Heavenly Father for His strength. Please pray for me and pray for Sveta and Biruk and Andy and Mel and Hanna... most of all, pray for Scott, because after all, he's beat.

(OK, that last part was snarky. I just thought is was funny. Please pray for him too. He is distressed as well, it just doesn't wrap the post up with a smile when he's not the butt of things.)


ShannonC said...

you made it. and here's my reminder that I'm sure you've already remembered... She'll get through the the horrid years. Somehow, she'll make it though. No. She will not make it through using ALL of your insight... because... well, she hasn't lived it yet. You have. She will make it through. And all of your advise, regardless of her not intergrating it into life now... WILL Matter. Will somehow, teach her how to be a stronger woman. She may sometimes be the 'doormat' (that many of us were) at this age, but she is still your daughter. Look THROUGH this time. Not at it. Through it. You know this. You live this. I've read your blogs and you've helped me to learn this. She lives with you. All will be OK. PS- I BIGGEST FEAR IS TEENAGE GIRLS! So feel free to tell me where to go...

Meg DeZutti said...

Oh boy Traci, you are dealing with TOO Much!! I know you are giving everything over to God and are strong in your faith, but I wish I were there to just give you a huge hug and a strong glass of red wine my friend!
You are a strong, independent woman. Sveta will eventually learn this from you. It's just taking some time to sink in. She will be fine, I know it. I pray for her and the anguish she is facing due to her adoption story not being what she would like it to be. But she will come through this stronger in the end.

Cannot wait to see you guys next weekend! Big cyber hugs in the meantime!

traci said...

Thanks ladies, your words are so kind. I hope I haven't painted Sveta in a weak light, this is just starting and I want to give her the tools to be strong. We love her so much and as parents, it's hard to watch your child hurting, esp. when simple choices can make all the difference.
Now that I am not so tired, I read the post and think I was a little over the top, but still...

ShannonC said...

Traci. Sorry. I awoke this morning and realized I should never operate a "keyboard" on pain meds.