A weekly blog from a family made by adoption, warmed by the laughter, broken by the sadness, held together by love with a big dollop of hope, oh, and often soaked in mummy tears.
So now our holiday time is well established and the children are happily hanging out at home. Initially they are happy to remain in the home environment where things are familiar and safe and no pressure is being applied. They like to watch television as a way of unwinding and escapism.
We have the luxury of having two televisions, well we’ve actually got more than two (four *embarrassed lowering of head*) and we still get arguments about who’s watching what where. However, when people can agree, you often find Small sprawled on the sofa in the lounge, watching some American tat and Tall snuggled into his cushion corner, in the dining room, watching an action movie. Some days I know they would stay there all day if I let them and on the odd occasion, I do.
I often feel guilty about the amount of television that is watched in our house, I was never a slave to the oblong box, before children. Once our treasures were safely ensconced in our lives, it didn’t take long to work out the merits of CBeebies, especially once daddy had returned to work. Nought to two children over night was a time juggling feat I struggled with and the delights of Postman Pat often gave me time for a toilet break, cup of tea or even a small amount of time with one child, whilst the other spent time with nanny TV.
So nanny TV is still part of our lives, she now allows me the time to tidy the kitchen, sort the washing, make meals, answer emails go on twitter, crotchet… ok you get the idea. As I said there is a feeling of guilt for not constantly stimulating or interacting with my children, or just turning it off and saying “right you two can go and play now”.
But how long do you think it would be before I’m being called to sort out a disagreement, scuffle or a full blown fight? On average about half an hour I reckon.
Again don’t get me wrong there are times when I do insist on alternative activities, however I ensure I’m on hand to help.
So if we are going into the garden, we all go into the garden to either play together or I’ll do a spot of gardening whilst they play. Or if they go upstairs to play, I’ll ensure, as much as possible, that I’m doing an activity which I can easily come away from if I’m needed.
A friend said to me recently that I worry too much about how my children behave. She was not being unkind; she is a good friend with three very energetic boys of her own. I agreed with her and explained that for me it’s not the point of crisis that worries me, for example if one of the boys hurt themselves or they have a fight. For me it’s the aftermath, the fallout from the event, which is harder to deal with.
So if Tall hurts himself, say he falls off a swing, I’d want to help him, check if he’s okay. However, he may very well pull away from me, feel embarrassed about the incident and embarrassment, for him, is only one teeny tiny step away from shame. Once shame is accessed the mood, Tall’s mood, can be altered for an extended period of time. Shame will also bring a sense of vulnerability, which then means he won’t trust me, or anyone around him and therefore will refuse to cooperate with requests made of him. From here it’s a downwards spiral which many of you will recognise.
If Small is involved in a fallout with his brother he cannot move beyond the point of disagreement. He finds it very difficult to see an alternative point of view to any situation, especially when he feels under threat. So requests to apologise for the part he played and move on, just don’t happen. Instead he stews on the matter and becomes increasingly angry and upset about the incident. We end up with,
“You are always on his side”
“You love him more than me”
“This is the worst day ever”
“I hate you”
So rightly or wrongly I spend a lot of the holidays trying to avoid a crisis point, in any of our activities and yes we do occasionally watch a little too much TV. However I do remember a summer holiday when my sister watched Grease, on video, at least once a day and you know what, she turned out just fine.
In Other News
Tall went off to adventure camp for the later part of the week; however I had to collect him early as he wasn’t coping. More on that next week.
Small and I managed to squeeze in one of our fun shopping trips and as always it did not disappoint. He ended up with a bear armoire, for his all his teddy’s clothes and I got new makeup and beauty products. Everyone’s a winner.
Counting down the sleeps until we fly off to the sun, only four left now and everyone is very excited.