Thursday, February 10, 2011

Home for a Long Weekend

Yesterday we picked our son up from school for a scheduled long weekend home.  It had been a little more than three weeks since we had dropped him off.  Originally, he was supposed to be at school for a little more than five weeks, but after week one we had to bring him home due to an ear infection.  After he recovered and went back to school, the three weeks he was there have been the longest he had been away from home.

For the most part, he has done better during the week when he has class.  He has struggled most on the weekends when he has spent most of his time in the dorms.  His weekend struggles have been particularly tough on my wife and I.  So much so that we have almost dreaded calling to check up on him on the weekends.  This past weekend, we got one of the better weekend reports that he had been eating better, interacting with peers, and cooperating in general.

When we picked him up yesterday and spoke to his teacher, she said that as of last Wednesday, my son seemed like a different child.  He had been performing his tasks without resistance and had been eating three meals a day.  Prior to that he would only eat lunch in school and occasionally a little breakfast.  This was a major relief to us because we had been particularly concerned about how little he had been eating, especially on the weekend and evenings.

He was pretty excited to be coming home.  The whole way home he was yapping away a mile a minute.  It was kind of funny because he would go into some of his rote conversations.  We would start to do our role in the conversation, but he had so much to say that he would quickly move from one topic to another.  He has been keeping me pretty busy doing things when I am home from work at night.  I will be burning him at least one or two DVDs over the weekend.

I have had a couple major concerns with him adjusting to living away from home.  A couple of them I have chronicled here previously.  His eating and drinking have been a major concern.  Another was that he would not comprehend or understand us taking him to school.  My fear was that he would think that we were abandoning him.

Yesterday, my wife asked him a question.  I can only hope that he didn't fully understand what she was asking him.  She asked him if he thought that mommy and daddy had forgotten about him.  His answer was "yes."  If he understood her correctly, then another of my biggest fears has been realized.  We have told him without equivocation that we would never forget about him.  My prayer is that he will know we will always love him and be there for us.  

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  1. I know it's heart-wrenching, but he will learn that you always come back for him. We've all had to go through this separation anxiety thing- just most of us did it when our kids were 2 or 3 years old. Steve was a screamer, and leaving him at the church nursery was "hell" (not exactly what one wants in church) for everyone involved. But he eventually began to trust that I would come back to get him... we all wished it would have been weeks sooner than it was.

    Adoptive parents (such as we are) also experience a lot of guilt over this. We think "the child has already been abandoned once (or more). How can I do this and add to his anxiety?" But the truth is, they have to find how to function as separate individuals or they don't mature.

    Hang in there!

    Maybe he is afraid he will forget about you, and by turning the question around that's his way of expressing that fear.

  2. it takes him a while but eventually he adapts. he does have a way of reflecting things back. frequently if he wants to say something he will ask you a question. When you tell him you don't know and ask the question back to him, he says what he wants to say.



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