Tuesday, October 27, 2009

Moving forward...

I can't believe we have been in this home for a month now. We are still unpacking and settling in but it feels like home. The kids have resumed their happy noise making and are easing into somewhat of a routine. I feel like I can breath a sigh of relief once again.

We recently scheduled an appointment for Ryan with a psychologist. The appointment went really well and I thought the doctor was wonderful with him and with me as I explained some of our concerns. The outcome was that he didn't really want to get Ryan on a regular counseling schedule. He thought that Ryan was working through all that he has faced while we lived up north really well. The only problem that he saw was that Ryan was having a hard time processing through the stuff at night and it's getting stuck in his dreams.

So we have to encourage him to talk about his nightmares when he's up in the middle of the night. I thought this could be fun trying to form coherent conversation at 3 or 4 am. But it is important for him to talk about it so that this monster can get smaller and smaller. So that is what we are trying to do. So far, he hasn't been able to talk about them. He is afraid that it will keep happening over and over again so he refuses to say a word about it. However, the other night he did let it out that all his dreams were of my nephew coming after him. I guess that is progress. Baby steps.

He also keeps checking with me to make sure that they don't know where we live. So we have to do lots of reassuring and lots of reassuring. The doctor indicated this could be a lengthy process and to make sure he feels safe and loved. Big indicators that he does need regular counseling would be if he withdraws from the things he normally loves including the people around him, if he becomes sullen and does things out of character for him. If he starts hurting himself. So far, he's a happy little kid with great adventures to unfold as he continues to grow and learn with some horrible, horrible nightmares thrown in there.

We are continuing to pray that God will heal his heart and his mind erasing the terrible things that brought him to this point. I know that God will do that for him and we as his parents can love him and support him through this. With God, ALL things are possible and we hold onto that promise.

Tuesday, October 06, 2009

Safe Haven

I've sat here for about half an hour trying to decide how to write this post, restarting it over and over again. It's not one I ever wanted to write about. My heart is heavy and it is hurting in so many ways.

A few weeks ago, I was scheduled to take my mother to a doctor's appointment first thing in the morning. I got up, got myself ready and headed out the door. My 8 year old son discovered that I was about to leave and became hysterical, clinging to me as if his life depended on it which is quite out of character for him. He has really loved having 40 acres to explore along with the animals he's been trying to tame and become friends with. He usually asks me if he can come along but if the answer is no, I get a kiss and off he goes on one of his adventures.

This time, though, was very different. The more I tried to leave, the more he clung to me, to the car and was sobbing uncontrollably. I finally got out of the car and took him inside to have my husband help me so that I could leave. Once things were a bit more settled or so I thought, I got back into my car to head out. Ryan came running for the car crying and crying and stood in front of it so that I couldn't get the car out of the driveway. At this point, I was getting quite concerned and quite irritated but thought that we would deal with what was going on after I got home. So in my irritated voice, I firmly told him to step aside so I could get by.

At this point, he finally listened a bit, enough for me to get the car onto the road and started heading down it. Then I hear this awful, heart-wrenching, blood-curdling screaming going on. I looked in my rear-view mirror and there he was. My dear son was running down the road after my car begging me not to leave him home. I immediately stopped the car and ran to him. I knew at that point that something was dreadfully wrong.

I ended up taking him with me. While my mother was in with the doctor, I took him for a walk and we talked. He told me about some pretty bad things that had been happening to him to the point he did not feel safe, he felt betrayed and he was terrified. Let me just clarify that at this point, no sexual abuse has come to light but instead, Ryan felt his life was in danger. That is a terrible, terrible thing for a young child to ever experience.

When we first moved to my mother in law's home, we were the only family there at that time. However, a short time later, my two nephews moved in and then eventually their mother came to live there too. They haven't come from a good home situation which led us to have concerns from the beginning. We immediately put rules in place for our children to help keep everyone safe. No matter how many rules you have, or how safe you try to make things, sometimes bad things happen anyway.

My 14 year old nephew had been hurting my son to the point that Ryan thought he was going to die. My heart is aching and hurting for Ryan who is still struggling with awful nightmares and having problems sleeping through the night. We immediately began praying that God would provide for the situation and HE did.

God provided a tiny two bedroom home, a safe haven, for us to move into. So we moved quickly to get Ryan out of that situation. We are so thankful for the ones who helped us move again, for those who helped clean, for that crazy painting lady who loves to buy cleaning products and are rejoicing at God's provision of a home to rent. I am still in awe at how the events moved into place at just the right time for us to move and the provision that was poured out onto us to get us there. So we say thank you, thank you and thank you not only to you, dear friends but to our Lord Jesus Christ who is our Provider, our Comforter and our Deliverer.