It's been a ok few days. Last Wednesday Missy had the longest tantrum after school that she's had, over an hour. By the time the social worker arrived late in the afternoon to see her, we were both exhausted and the SW could see Missy had been crying and I was fed up to the back teeth.
But then things changed for a while. I picked Missy up from school on Thursday, dreading the usual attitude I get from her, but no, she was fine and looking forward to our trip to M&S where we had hot chocolate in the cafe and picked out a new jumper for her. Back home, tea came and went without any issue, she played nicely til bedtime and I had my first evening in a long time feeling relatively calm. I think I even managed a smile. I'd spent the morning with a very good friend who has a non-adopted son the same age as Missy and it was so good to hear her experiences of parenting. Many of the things Missy does, her son has or is doing, the same tantrums, same hitting, same attitude. I came away feeling so much better and hopeful.
Friday and Saturday were pretty incident free too. We had one or two minor strops that last a minute or so but that was it. Daddy was off both days which was good. We visited my Mum yesterday, the first time Missy has been there, and she was on the whole really good. She was inquisitive, bright, ate all her food, chatty and played fairly well whilst me and Daddy chatted to my Mum. She loved a singing Father Christmas my Mum has and this brought out her gorgeous shining smile and infectious laughter. Bless her, she fell asleep in the car on the way home, probably the quietest non-bedtime 20 minutes we've ever had with her. And last night she was good as gold too. I naively thought we might be heading for calmer times. Ha! I have a lot to learn.
Today though Daddy was back at work so it was just me and Missy. The first part of the day was fine, a few minor strops but otherwise ok. We went to the pet shop to buy a few things, we went to the shop next door to find some shoes and came out with a lovely My First Nativity Book which Missy chose. We had lunch, we read the Nativity Book and played with the pop-out characters that make the Nativity scene, we did her reading homework (she can do it, but she finds it boring and so plays up - I actually think in some respects she's more intelligent than she makes out), we played fairies. It's hard work keeping Missy entertained she demands constant attention. I have to give her a countdown to when I need to go and do a job, like making tea. She gets upset but quickly gets over it.
One issue we do have now which has escalated in the last few weeks is wetting. Tonight she wet herself IN the toilet. I'm not sure how because I heard her weeing but she came out saying she'd also wet her knickers. I get the anxiety issues behind it and I try my best to keep her stress-free, but then she stresses out big time over getting changed and letting me freshen her up. I kept so calm for about 20 minutes despite her ranting millimetres from my face. In the end I have to admit I shouted at her, my patience ran out. I'm worn out. Even when her behaviour is ok and I'm feeling calmer, I still feel like I'm walking on eggshells.
When she came downstairs, still snivelling, she picked up one of the cats and accidentally banged him into the kitchen door. I pointed out what she'd done, not telling her off, but the tears started again, mostly because she thought she'd hurt him. She gave him a cuddle and said sorry to me and the cat. Bless.
I think it's probably tiredness (is it? or am I just finding an excuse). It's been a busy few days and it's school again tomorrow. When Daddy came through the door at 5.30pm she was over-excited and wanted to continue to play after dinner. It's good bonding for her and Daddy so I let her but gave her a 20 minute countdown to bedtime. Generally she's fine about getting ready for bed although today she flipped out over having a bath. She said she didn't like showers so Daddy started to run a bath, only for her to say she did want a shower and flipped out over potentially having a bath. Thankfully Daddy sorted it all out and got her to bed with relatively no problem. She'd wet herself again though.
Daddy has done bedtime the last three evenings. When he's not at work, he will do the routine, and today as I'd had enough he also did it. What a lovely Daddy. When he came down, he said Missy wanted to say goodnight to me so I went up to her room where she held out her arms for a hug and told me she loved me. It's little moments like that which I have to focus on, not the negative stuff. But it's moments like that which churn me up inside because I'm still not feeling an attachment and I just don't know what I want to happen.
For now though, she's sound asleep, I've had a cry, some Disaronno & Ginger and I'm watching the hype that is the X Factor. Jahmene to win.