I don’t often write about the foster/adoption of our younger two. Trust me…there is soooo much I could share, but at the same time, it is difficult.
However, we seem to have hit a milestone today.
The Princess has some pretty big obstacles to overcome. Coming from a neglected lifestyle, she constantly strives for attention; any attention she can get. It is difficult to watch because she just wants someone to pay attention to her. She struggles with it in a family of ten. She struggles with it at school. It’s like…finally she can say, “Hey, look at me….pay attention to me” and she doesn’t know how to turn it off.
We’re working on it.
But how do you convince a child that she is loved and wanted when there are days when you absolutely just need a five minute break?
I am an early riser. My Sunday mornings are my Sunday mornings. That sounds selfish, I know. But, I get up early, have my coffee, read my Bible and just try to get a grip on myself as I finish out one week and get ready for the next. It is the one time a week where I can just have…me, all to myself, no interruptions, just a few blessed moments of peace and quiet. My crazy job and my crazier family dictate that I NEED to have one morning a week to just have a few moments of uninterrupted quiet!
The Princess is also an early riser. And when she wakes up, there is that built in, “I can’t be alone-I don’t know what to do with myself, so let me wake up everyone in the household, even though they’ll get mad at me because they’re trying to sleep in on the one day a week they can, but I need to have someone pay attention to me syndrome.”
And so, she’s gotten into the habit of waiting by my bedroom door until she hears me stir. Or, she’ll stand at my bedroom door staring at me until she wakes me up. I’ll admit, there are some mornings when I am afraid to breathe because I am not even out of bed yet and am about to be bombarded. Selfish, I know.
But there is that split second of me moving in my bed and she bounces in with a loud and lively, “Thank God your up now pay attention to me” attitude. Um….ok.
I’ve tried asking for just five minutes.
I’ve tried to be patient and understanding. I’ve tried letting her come down stairs with me, her with her Bible and me with mine and spending some quality time with her without her waking up the entire household.
I’ve tried and tried and tried.
I finally gave her a rule….On Sunday mornings if you wake up, you have to stay in your room until 7:30 am. Read a book, color, play a game, draw, whatever you want…but stay in your room and enjoy that time to yourself.
I know, I know…it sounds mean.
On the other hand….she’s just not quiet. And trust me, it is worse when others don’t want to be woken up and she’ll have to suffer the wrath of tired, grouchy, siblings….
And we’re talking 7:30 am on a Sunday morning, people!
But this morning…..
As I passed by her room, she was sprawled out on her bed, completely sound asleep. She didn’t even move when I shut her door.
I cannot begin to tell you the relief that I felt when I saw that.
And NOT because it meant I might have a few moments of peace and quiet.
I felt relief because FINALLY she is sleeping. Something in that little body is allowing her to just relax and sleep.
Because the bigger issue is that sleep has not come easy for her.
It took forever for the nightmares to go away.
It took forever for her to just sleep through the night.
It is now 8:13 am….and I’m about to go check on her.
I haven’t heard a sound. The door hasn’t opened and she’s not moving upstairs.
I hope she’s not sick.
Edited to add:
She wasn’t sick….and she slept until 8:47 am.
And now…she won’t stop talking. ha ha ha