Friday, August 15, 2008

Ridiculous: Take 2

That can of worms is starting to look enticing. Where do I even begin? Let's start with my expectations. Even I am almost laughing at what I THOUGHT was going to happen. For over 6 months now, I've been entangled in a mess of miscommunications about mental health, who it was that needed it, who exactly needed to make the referral, where to, and paperwork out the wazoo. FINALLY, 7 months after initial placement, I got an appointment at a child development center that I was ECSTATIC about. About a week before the appointment I received a thick packet of papers to fill out and information to read. The letter said the average appointment lasted 3 hours, and could last much more. It tossed around words like "full evaluation" and "head to toe assessment" and "holistic care". My excitement rose. As I sat rating behaviors on a scale, I began to get the idea that someone would be listening, taking every word into account and putting our baby's symptoms/behaviors down to form a care plan and guide us in beginning to heal her hurts and teaching her to form appropriate attachments. I envisioned a team of doctors watching her behavior alone, with just me, with other children, when strangers come in..... from behind a window. You can laugh. I don't know what I was thinking. Ridiculous. I know. I expected a doctor who would be decisive and truthful, some support, assurance, and applicable ideas. Someone who understands attachment disorders, children of abuse and neglect, and has a plan for them. I expected 3 hours of jointly designing a plan specific for my baby. That's what the letter said, right?

What I got was 20 minutes of eyes that blinked 60 times a minutes and said "What I hear you saying is____________" about 300 times. I'm not saying she wasn't genuine, but the calm softness of her voice could only be made, not natural. We were in a 4x4 room that was HOT. She asked me questions in front of my little one that the real answers would scar a regular child just to hear. I wanted to scream. I didn't want someone to repeat back to me what I was saying. Like I needed to know she heard me. I wanted someone to have some answers. Or ideas. Or at least, "Keep doing what you're doing, it is helping her, it's just going to take time". I ache for some kind of sign that I'm not screwing this kid up farther. I'm completely OK with however she will be all her life. I'm not OK with blindly stabbing at how to guide her. After our 20 minutes of fame, we were ushered out, paper in hand stating next appointment: more than a month away. Lovely. I'm already dreading a 2 hour trip, finding care for the remaining 4 for the day, for more of NOTHING. Can't wait.

4 comments:

chickadee said...

i guess the cynic in my would say why would we expect anything more than that for "children of the state"? it's a wonder they get in such a loving home at all (like yours). or am i being too cyinical? are most foster parents as loving, concerned and in search of answers as you are? and i just hear about the bad ones.

lou said...

I know it is frustrating. This sounds like referrels we make in the school districts. Mountains of paperwork. Taking to much time to hear an answer. Just hang in there. Persistence is the key

hsmomma5 said...

Been there. Done that. Got the T-shirt.

I am going to venture to guess that you waited for months to go to the same place we did. I was like you--I had heard such good things about the place that I thought we finally had found a place that would help us. Not so.

Email me if you need to vent some more! :)

Maury said...

Oh, what a disappointment. I am so sorry to hear that. I know that was so frustrating!!