Sunday, August 11, 2013

Welcome to our Life!


I’m the single working mom to a son adopted from foster care and this is our story. Welcome! I chose to write this blog to share my story in the hopes that it could help other moms (and dads) facing some of the challenges I’m experiencing. I could really benefit from a community of like parents and since I haven’t found one in existence already, I thought I’d take steps to create one myself. So here goes.

Plus it’s just therapeutic to get everything out. Who needs expensive therapy when you could just write a blog for free?

So about our story…. A little history: As a single woman in my 40s, I’d never had the opportunity to have children, so I decided to see if I could adopt as a single parent via the foster care system. I really wanted to be a mom but without the right guy in my life and with my own fertility waning, I thought this might be the best way to go. I knew there were so many children looking for a good home so why not choose foster adoption over other private adoption, which was highly competitive and very expensive.

With foster adoption, everything was free to me and that was definitely a selling point. My reasoning was that the more money I saved on the adoption process, the more I could spend on my child. 

Christopher, a three-year-old foster child who had been taken from his mother when he was two, had bounced around seven foster homes before coming to live with me. Yep that’s right; seven foster homes. This poor kid never spent more than six months in one place and was devastated when each and every placement disrupted. My heart broke for this adorable little man who desperately needed a mother’s unconditional love, stability and consistency in his life. I knew that no matter what happened, I would NEVER give up on this child. He would be my forever son…for better or for worse.

Christopher and I have definitely had our ups and downs over the last two years. He has great days where he’s sweet, loving and listens well. But then there are the rough days. He has a long history of trauma (mostly due to the instability of his early childhood) and has been diagnosed with PTSD, for which he receives different treatments on a weekly basis. I’ve also gotten a referral from Christopher’s pediatrician to Children’s Hospital because I’m pretty sure he will be diagnosed with ADHD and Oppositional Defiant Disorder. He hits, bites and scratches kids on the playground and sometimes just seems to have no impulse control. He used to run out the front door of my house, scaring me that he’d get hit by a car. Also, sometimes he seems to be going 120 miles an hour and it’s impossible to stop or even slow him down. Channeling all that hyperactive energy can really be a challenge sometimes, especially when I’m tired. 

Because of everything going on with my little guy, parenting Christopher can be a challenge. Sometimes I think I handle it well but other times, I feel like I just can’t take anymore. I’m doing this all on my own too and so getting support or even just a break from the stress is not easy. But I think probably just being Christopher is even more a challenge. I marvel at his ability to succeed amid all his struggles and I vow to do everything I possibly can to ensure that he grows up to be a happy, healthy, grounded man who knows how well loved he is.

In this blog, I’ll be sharing our journey all from the perspective of a working, single mom raising a wonderful son adopted from foster care. I hope you find our story helpful and interesting and please feel free to share your thoughts and questions anytime.

1 comment:

  1. Hi Jackie, I've always wanted to know more of the story of you and Christopher so I'm delighted that you've started this post. I do hope you attract others to form a support network.- Emily