Another year done…

As the school year has come to an end I would like to reflect on Danny’s time in Year 4, I am delighted to say has been a success. We were lucky in the fact that Danny’s teacher was fantastic (in fact most of the teachers he’s had have all been very supportive).

During our last parent’s evening we spoke at great length about the things he’s improved on and the few things he requires extra support on. He’s also moved from being in a small group out of the classroom to being in the classroom, to which he’s adapted too very well.

I was told the quality of his homework is great and they understand that he gets help with it but can still see he’s put his own stamp on it.

We do worksheets at home of the main things he struggles with and that is helping ease the difficulties at school. I’m lucky that Danny likes doing work with me so it doesn’t seem like a chore to either of us.

His teacher was very complimentary towards me when I explained what he could/couldn’t do when he first came into our lives. She said she was starting to well up at the progress he’s made through all the work we’ve done with him. I feel quite honoured because my parenting skills have been complimented by a few people recently so I guess I must be doing something right.

I’m so proud at how far Danny has come in the last 4 years to say he has Global Development Delay we’ve had a lot of ‘wins’ recently. We were always told they didn’t know what the future had in store for Danny. Will he struggle throughout his school life, yes. But that’s what we are here for.

Last week we got his school report and while this was as expected we were so delighted about the comments we read in regards to his personality.

We were 1 day off 100% attendance but kept him off one day in the winter cos he was up all night coughing, let him have the day off and he didn’t cough once – typical!

Congratulations on another great year at school Danny, I love you.

Adoptive Mummy xx

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Report time…

It’s that time of year again…. School reports.

As we stand in line waiting for Danny’s school report Danny looked at me with a nervous smile.

Me: “Have you tried your best this year?”

Danny: “Yes”

Me: “Then you have nothing to be nervous about, all I ever ask is that you try your best. The report doesn’t mean anything it’s just an update”.

Instantly his face relaxed, and I wasn’t saying this just to ease his nerves I really meant it. During our adoption preparation I always said that I wasn’t bothered about results and wouldn’t force my child to be the best at everything but I would provide him with encouragement and support.

Danny has Global Development Delay. This is something we’ve known from the very beginning. He has made fantastic progress in the last few years with the help from us and his school but most importantly his own hard work. We’ve always said if you try your best that’s all we ask for. I don’t need straight A’s and trophies I just want him to enjoy school and give 100%.

When we got home from school I finally opened his report and loved the comments that I read. It was as expected in regards to his level of ability but the comments about him as a person were lovely.

“Danny is polite and respectful, he approaches all challenges with positivity. It is always a pleasure to be greeted each morning with his enthusiasm for all things.”

“It’s been a pleasure to see Danny grow into a mature young man with a great personality. I have enjoyed establishing a rapport with Danny, sharing many laughs and memories.”

I can’t thank the school enough for everything they’ve done. They work really well with Danny and engage us in the things he needs extra help with at home. The partnership definitely helps Danny.

I don’t want you to read this and think I don’t care about the school report, I understand the importance and value their comments as this helps us understand the areas we can help him with but also I know Danny tries hard so I don’t want him worrying about something that doesn’t need worrying about. I’m proud of everything he has achieved and the person he is turning into.

Well done Danny!!!

Adoptive Mummy xx

Thank you!

As I write this I’m coming to the end of Lent which means I will be able to post this soon and also be back on twitter. It sounds daft but I actually think giving up social media was harder than giving up chocolate! Not because I’m interested in what the latest trend is or because I can’t live without knowing what a certain A lister had for their breakfast but because I can’t talk to the adoption community I’ve grown to know and care for over the passed couple of years.

So I want to say thank you to everyone who follows and interacts with me on Twitter because I’ve missed you guys loads. They say you only truly appreciate something when it’s gone and I’ve been without you all for 6 weeks and it’s been strange.

There has been times when I’ve thought oh I’ll ask Twitter, they’ll have an answer for me and the the realisation kicked in that I couldn’t, not right now anyway. I’m glad with my decision to give up both chocolate and social media for Lent, it has been good for me BUT I’m glad I’m (almost) back!

I’m hoping you are all in good health, enjoying the abundance of chocolate that is given at easter and most of all happy.

Looking forward to catching up with you all and thank you again for being an amazing community!

Adoptive Mummy xx

It’s time for self care

I’ve decided that 2018 is going to be my year to start thinking a little bit more about myself. Not in a selfish way but I really need to care as much about myself as I do about others. In the last 18 months I’ve battled with anxiety. Some days I don’t struggle at all, other days I feel like my inner self is falling apart.

I’ve decided that I’m going to eat healthier at work (easier said when I work in an office) and that I’m going to try and do some sort of exercise in the evenings, well not every evening, I’m not turning into a fitness fanatic, I leave that to the hubby!

I had a lot of trouble with my stomach last year and after having the dreaded camera down the throat invasion they said there was nothing wrong and it was down to stress. I’ve now been given tablets I can take if my stomach gets bad which does get a handle on it but I don’t want to be relying on them when I know the root cause.

My main problem is that things have to be perfect, and as you all know life isn’t perfect, especially parenthood. I remember on our adoption journey when we were doing our work sheets and I didn’t want to hand over one of our sheets to our SW because I’d made notes and wanted to type it up again and our SW told me she didn’t need it perfect and was happy with how it was. I need to be more like that.

Danny isn’t the cause of my stress and anxiety but I do put myself under unnecessary pressure to try and make things perfect for him and our family. No one asks too much of me but I feel myself that I need to strive for perfection.

I didn’t want to accept the fact that I suffered with anxiety because I used to think I had failed but now I realise that isn’t the case.

So here’s to 2018 and me being a little kinder to myself.

Adoptive Mummy x

Party success (for both of us)

Before I tell you about last night, let’s rewind a couple of weeks when Danny came out of school with a party invitation. I’m not sure who was happier, me or him! He’d had a couple of invitations previously but none he was able to attend for one reason or another and he hadn’t been invited to a party for about 18 months. I’d seen boys in his class going to parties but Danny hadn’t been invited. So when this party invitation came I was making sure he went.

Fast forward 2 weeks and it’s the day of the party. Danny had written his card and we’d made sure we got him a decent present as well, that was wrapped nicely and placed in superhero gift bag. Football gear on and it’s time to go to the party.

Danny was super excited, I on the other hand felt sick, this was Danny’s first party despite being at that school for 3 years and to make matters worse I didn’t know any parents. No one really talks to me in the playground so I tend to just keep myself to myself. I didn’t know what to do as I walked into the venue. Do I stay and try and make small talk with strangers for 2 hours or do I politely excuse myself and have a latte in the café?

Only a couple of parents stayed so I hung around like a spare wheel until it was me and another Mum left as all the children had gone outside to play football. As we couldn’t stand the repetitive drone of match of the day theme we decided to go to the café. We found a table and she kindly offered to buy me a drink. One of the dads then came and sat with us and we spent a good 90 minutes talking about random things. It was fantastic. We then went in to sing happy birthday to the birthday boy and stayed in the room with the children for the remainder of the party but stayed in a corner chatting out of the way of the chaos that was 12 boys playing tig in a very small space!

All in all I don’t think it could have gone any better and hopefully now I’ll have someone to say hello to in the playground at school. Danny had a fantastic time at the party and what I thought was going to be an awkward 2 hours for me was actually a lovely evening. I’m glad I took myself out of my comfort zone because I feel a lot better now I know some of the parents.

Danny has now asked if he can have a birthday party there next year and who am I to refuse him! Time to get saving – haha!

Adoptive Mummy xx

Priorities

To give you a little background on me I am in my early thirties, been married for just over 9 years and have worked for the same company for well over a decade.

I was never a career girl but have always been keen to do my best and progress within the company. When going through the adoption process I couldn’t wait to have 6+ months off work and I said I would be reducing my hours and working part time upon my return. I was lucky that this was an option in my job and I wanted to make sure that I would be there for Danny every day after school. I didn’t want him going to childcare, I wanted to have that time with him myself.

I loved my Adoption leave as it helped me create my bond with Danny, however as he was a school aged child when we adopted him he was at school and I found that in the last month of my adoption leave I was craving the normality of office life when Danny was at school.

When I returned back to work after adoption leave I found the development path I wanted my career to go in. What I didn’t realise was that I wouldn’t be able to do the role as it is a small team and they need full time people due to the nature of the role. I remember being told the 2nd time I applied for it that they couldn’t accept my application due to my hours. When I told my boss I wouldn’t be getting an interview I started to cry. I honestly didn’t know I felt so strongly about it and it took me a long time to get over it. The one thing that helped was Danny, regardless of if I couldn’t have this job at work I had the best job in the world, I am Danny’s Mum.

I do not regret my decision to reduce my hours because I had wanted to be a mum for a lot longer and a lot more than I wanted this role. That role will always exist, Danny will only be a child for a short period of time and that time seems to be flying by.

I am also a firm believer that everything happens for a reason and that right now isn’t the right time to be starting a new job. Danny needs my support and I want to be there for him whenever he needs me. If its meant to be I’ll get that job when Danny is older. In the mean time I am going to prepare myself as best I can at work and increase my experience and enjoy those extra hours at home with Danny after school.

That boy is my life and a lot more important that any job.

Adoptive Mummy xx

Siblings… 

National Adoption week has been centered around siblings and while we didn’t adopt siblings Danny does have a half sister who has also been adopted. 

Before we adopted Danny we were advised he had a little sister who had already been adopted by another couple and Social services wanted us to ensure the 2 of them would have contact with each other. 

I remember the first meeting we had, it was in a in a play centre. Not only was Danny seeing his sister for the first time in 12 months but we were also meeting his little sister and her Mummy and Daddy for the first time too. 

Would we get along? 

Would they get along?

Was it going to be awkward? 

Would it be possible for us to keep up the face to face contact? 

I’m pleased to say that it did go well and we meet up a few times a year and have a day out together. We also exchange Birthday and Christmas gifts and Danny takes great pride in picking out a Sister card each time, he makes a fantastic Big Brother. I couldn’t wish for a nicer couple to be the Mummy and Daddy for Danny’s sister.

I can’t stress how important it is to keep up contact with the birth siblings providing the circumstances permit. Danny has never lived with his sister but you can see the genuine love he has in his eyes every time he sees her.