Hi Ce–AKA, Child Whisperer,
I wrote an email for YOU today that I am afraid to send. Fear overtook me just as I slid my cursor over the send button. I felt silenced by the fear that YOU might feel betrayed by my opinion about who is the best candidate to adopt children. Some of YOU were probably not the best candidates for adopting the children you are now trying desperately to heal. I was not the best candidate to adopt children 15 years ago when I brought my two home. St. Patrick’s Day every year is our adoption anniversary. That day this year my family hugged and we stuffed our faces with Chantilly cake, but the celebration was bittersweet, as it always is.
At the end of the month we are moving, and our house is a chaotic mess of boxes for the new place and piles of stuff to go to Goodwill or the dump. I noticed my son seemed kind of melancholy. When I asked what was up, he said this:
I am just taking a little time to think. I have a lot of memories in this house. Not all bad ones. Mom, you probably think I am thinking only about the bad ones, but I have good ones, too. A lot of stuff happened in our house over the last five years. I am also thinking about our putting Phoebe down (today). I will miss her. There is so much change all at once and this is my adoption anniversary. I feel all mixed up inside. I feel sad and weird, excited maybe, about going somewhere new, and about leaving part of us behind.
Sometimes I forget how sensitive my children are inside, because their tender hearts can be so camouflaged by chatter, negative behavior, distraction and destruction. I won’t miss this house a bit. The last five years have been nothing short of harrowing for me. Life with attachment challenged children is beyond challenging at every turn.
These moments of quiet contemplation by my son are precious to me. They give me hope. They warm my heart. They save me. I am packing them in a box for the movers, because there will be harrowing times again, no doubt. When they come, I can pull this memory out and turn it over and around in my head to remind myself of the heart beneath the leather, mine and my children’s.
Ce Eshelman, LMFT and Mother
Attachment Specialist and
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