If I could give you one gift it would be to see yourself through my eyes and then you would see how special you really are.

Monday, 22 June 2015

Child 1's tortoise analogy

Once upon a time a girl bought a tortoise for her mum, her mum didn't know how to look after a tortoise so she took it into work, a school where she was a science teacher and she asked if the school would take on the responsibility. The school said yes and for a couple of years they housed the tortoise, they gave her a name and they gave her lots of love and attention. But as she grew the school realised that they could not take care of her, they could not keep her safe, where she lived was not a good environment, during the holidays she was sent from pillar to post, passed from one carer to the next. Sometimes she was looked after well other times it was not so good. Many of those she came in to contact with did not know or understand the care that she required. The school recognised that they could no longer look after her so they hunted out a family that could take care of her. A family who learnt all about how to take care of a tortoise, a family that made a special place for her to live, a family that found out about tortoise groups and contacted people who knew how to take care of a tortoise so that they could keep her safe and looked after.

We are that family, we have taken on a 3 year old horsfield Tortoise called Marigold. We have build her a safe but fun outdoor enclosure and bought a large crate for indoors. We have read up how to take good care of her and have found a number of people who know how to look after her. We know what her favourite foods are, we have learnt how to bath her, we know how to keep her safe and we are all falling in love with her. She is quicker than you would expect, she tries to escape, she loves Kale and dandelions and she loves her bath, she is a right little character and she belongs to child 4.

Marigold is not to blame for her unsettled start in life and she has settled into our home very quickly, providing much entertainment for us all.

Maybe, just maybe understanding his very exciting pet and her history will help child 4 understand that he is lovable and deserving of a family that can look after him.

Saturday, 13 June 2015

#The best bits

For me there are three types of best bits, the bits that make my heart swell just because they are joyful, those that fill my eyes because they are just normal and I feel relief and those that make me appreciate life.

Having children is joyful. Feeding the duckerlings and the cyganets, chortling laughter when we jump in puddles, family days to the beach, the Secret Garden or the zoo. Splashing in the bath, bouncing on the trampoline, making cakes and cutting out biscuits are just to name a few.

Having three birth children has really highlighted the difference in some behaviours exhibited by adopted children, so when child 4 suddenly does something the older three always did naturally, well that's a best bit. - when child 4 first came every woman was called mummy until one day I became mummy and everyone else became Jan (our social workers name), the first time he cried because he hurt himself, at first he never cried, so, as a family we would always kiss his hurt better and give him a hug even though he made it very clear he didn't want us too. Now he sometimes cries when he hurts himself.  After months of asking when he was going home he told my mum and dad "this is where my home is" when they dropped him back to us.

As I finish this child 3 and 4 are asleep in their beds, child 1 is out at an end of exams party and child 2 is watching TV. The house is quiet and calm and I have an enormous cup of hot tea. Perfect, the best bit of almost every day.