Back to Cleveland that is.
We decided more is better this year so we are seeing our therapist for the second time and we are planning a third trip in November. Mr. Stinky and Mr. Screech seemed to have come a long way, but Mr. Happy is holding on to his mad and sad and not wanting to talk about it. I love to sit down with Arleta to talk about how the boys are doing because we really see how far they are progressing and what still needs to be worked on. Sometimes in the day to day it is doom and gloom when they are not "perfect."
Arleta started by running a new neurofeedback protocol to help Mr. Happy’s brain get unstuck in the trauma of the orphanage and then we listened to nice songs while he sat on my lap and looked in my eyes. When it was his turn to talk about his story he was tight lipped so she called in Mr. Screech. As soon as he came in, the door of her office, he sat hard on his butt and started a tantrum. She reminded him that his tantrums do not work and he regulated himself pretty quick, but stayed sitting on the floor. We told her Mr. Stinky wanted to go first today so he could stop stressing (he has performance anxiety) about talking to her so she called him in. He did a great job talking to her and did not throw one fit.
To engage the other two, Arleta went into some therapy using little people and placed a mama and papa people together. Then she had each of the boy hold their person and place it in various spots based on where they were "in the family" and that was based on how they were acting. She also went through their birthstories and acted them out with the little people. The boys liked it and were able to engage.
Mr. Screech and Mr. Happy are stuck mentally in the orphanage and Mr. Stinky is verbalizing all of his mad towards his birthmom, but Arleta is helping him connect that some of his mad is from living in the orphanage too. When babies are neglected they get mad and then the made gets stuck in them and comes out explosively over something little. To help give them visuals she had them watch video clips of babies/toddlers in the orphanage. This is the second time our boys have seen this video and they did a lot better this time focusing on the video. Last time, they would try and do something else instead of looking at the screen. Mr. Happy still tried to engage Arleta’s dog or pick at his pants or shoes. Shoes can be SUPER interesting when you want to avoid something painful.
This evening was very pleasant with our boys. In the past, I have feared getting kicked out of our hotel because of the raging tantrums going on. I am LOVING the progress my family has made in the past 1-year and 8-months. To think I tried this on my own for a year and a half and we went nowhere. My kids rejected me daily and tantrumed like crazy. I did not like being a mother, but tonight was wonderful! Mr. Screech was my biggest rejecter and tonight he was my sweetest most loving of all three. If you are still struggling after months or years I beg of you to call a reputable attachment therapist so you can get your sanity back. Our therapist will see us over a weekend so it makes it very doable even though we live 6 hours away.
Last night The Mr. and I had a good talk about our own emotional wellbeing and how we need to improve to help our kids. I have wanted The Mr. to try neurofeedback to see if it would help him. He agreed, but only if I would do it too. Arleta said I need the mood stabilizer protocol and I would agree. I miss my mom so much and I have my dad’s wedding coming up in a few weeks so yeah, that would be a fabulous protocol for me. Depression sucks and I'd like to have the fog lifted.