This past weekend was the "Unofficial Start of Summer". You know what that means, right?
A great time to work on SECURE attachment. Getting your kiddo more connected and your family to HAPPY & HEALTHY.
May not have been the answer you expected, but really isn't that what you want as a parent - your kiddo securely attached and a happy, healthy family?
No better time to work on it...school's out which means less dilution of your relationship. Lots of opportunities for sensory input. And lots of time to build connections.
So...to kick off this summer, I'm making it easier for you. On June 12th I'm teaching a class all about a step-by-step plan for a SUCCESSFUL SUMMER. This class will be LIVE and FREE for members of the Intentional Parent Coaching Group. It's going to be packed with tools to get you where you really want to be headed this summer.
Seriously, this will be the best thing you can do for your kiddo, for you, and for your entire family.
Get started now and see what a HUGE difference it makes.
See you in group!
Today is Memorial Day here in the U.S. A day we remember all those who lost their lives serving to protect. I am SO thankful for all that these men and women have done for my family and myself!
As an Intentional Parent, it’s also a day that we have chosen to mark all those we have lost in our family. A day to remember. A day to honor. We remember my brothers. My husband’s Dad. Grandparents. And for my adopted kiddos…we mark the loss of their biological parents. Although they are still living, they’re not with my girls. It was a loss. A really deep loss. And definitely one that deserves to be marked.
Over the years, we’ve done a variety of ways of marking the loss. Having my girls draw pictures when they were little. Planting trees or flowers. Sending up balloons. Writing. Conversations. And sometimes just a quiet reflection. It really depended on what I thought my girls needed at the time. And what they expressed as they got older.
Reality is there are times it would have been easier to not mark it. Easier on me. Easier on my kiddos. But it’s important. And for some of my girls, they needed to be shown that they would be okay by facing it rather than not speaking about it.
The loss is there. It has impacted them. And no matter the circumstance, their loss deserves to be marked. And my girls deserve the opportunity to honor their parents. To remember.
What do you know now that you wish you would've known sooner?
We were chatting about this the other day on my Facebook page. So many great answers. I gave it a lot of thought and mine, without a shadow of a doubt, is...I wish I would've known more about the impacts of trauma before I adopted my girls.
Over the years, I've learned a ton about the impacts of trauma. I've researched and researched. In fact, I think knowing the impacts of trauma, how they look on your child, and what to do about them is probably the biggest game changer for adoptive, foster, and kinship parents!
All of our adopted and foster kiddos have experienced trauma. Some experienced real obvious trauma, such as physical neglect and/or abuse. Some experienced the loss of a family (or in some cases, families) at an age they were old enough to remember. And ALL experienced a not quite so obvious trauma...a break in their primary attachment, the one that began forming in utero.
Too often, those impacts can be misinterpreted. Are misunderstood. They look like behaviors. Defiance. Not caring. And lots of times...they are invisible. But they are there. They're impacting our kiddos.
We've been digging deep into the impacts of trauma in the Intentional Parent Coaching Group, what they look like on kiddos, and what to do about them. I have to say, it's a GAME CHANGER for parents. They're now parenting from a whole new perspective. They're armed with tools that are making a difference. They're on their way to HAPPY & HEALTHY! And guess what...so are their kiddos.
If you're parenting an adopted or foster kiddo, you really need to be armed with the information about the impacts of trauma. Knowing what they look like on your child. And...what to do about them.
If you're ready to empower yourself with the info that's going to have a BIG impact on your kiddo, and your entire family, join me in the Intentional Parent Coaching Group. I'd love to help you!
I can’t wait to see YOU in group!
Yesterday my husband and I celebrated our 23rd wedding anniversary. Twenty-three years – a pretty big accomplishment I think.
I’d always hoped that we would mark our 20th anniversary with a trip to Ireland and Scotland. Well…we reached that anniversary 3 years ago and didn’t make it there, yet! It’s still on my bucket list.
Life took different twists and turns. Our kiddos still needed us here. Yes, they were teenagers. Yes, they’ve come a long way. A really long way. But…it just wasn’t the right time for us to be across the globe for a couple of weeks. And guess what…that’s okay.
There will be a time that is right. A time that I can get on the plane and go on a trip of a lifetime. A time to see where my ancestors came from. Just not yet.
As Intentional Parents, we have to make choices. What we want to do isn’t always best for our kiddos. That doesn’t mean you need to set aside your dreams and goals. Sometimes it means putting them off a bit. Sometimes it means doing them differently. And sometimes the goals and dreams change, evolve.
So while we didn’t celebrate in the way I originally had hoped, we did celebrate the day. Dinner out. Remembering our wedding day. Giving ourselves a pat on the back for all we’ve done. And looking forward…with HOPE! And that’s success in my book.
Have hope friends. Look forward.
To the momma who’s struggling…I see you.
To the momma who’s doing whatever it takes…I see you.
To the momma who feels alone...I see you.
To the momma who feels like she’s messing up…I see you.
To the momma who knows she’s the right parent for the job, but knows her kiddo is struggling…I see you.
To the momma filled with doubt and worry…I see you.
To the momma who’s completely exhausted and worn out…I see you.
To the momma fighting with all she’s got to help her kiddo heal…I see you.
To the momma who wants her kiddo and her entire family to be happy & healthy…I see you.
I see you. I hear you. I understand you. And…you belong here. Surrounded by those who truly understand. Armed with a plan and tools that really work. Encouraged. Empowered. Filled with hope.
You belong in my Intentional Parent Coaching Group. You're not alone!
I can’t wait to see you in group!
With love & dedication to you and your family,
A little gem for Foster & Adoptive Parents...
Love You From Right Here: A Keepsake Book for Children in Foster Care is a wonderful little tool that will help fill in the holes so many children who walk through the Foster Care system end up with. What an easy way to truly gift each child their whole story.
However, in addition to children in Foster Care, I think the story itself is wonderful for ANY CHILD trying to navigate the emotional hurdles of joining a new family. It shows the not so pretty side of things as well as eventual comfort and happiness.
I just wanted to be sure you knew this tool was available for you. The little effort it would take to use it to it's full potential would make such a powerful impact on a child's life - useful tool!
Here's a link to save you some time - check it out and share this Love You From Right Here with other families too. Just click here to go directly to the book http://amzn.to/2qKA29i
Mom...oh, that word/name encompasses so much! It's just 3 letters, but the power it holds to heal, to guide, to teach, to shape self-esteem, to fill with joy, to assure, to love, and so much more - is just awesome.
YOU are awesome!
My hope for you this Mother's Day is simply that you KNOW that you are ENOUGH. That your child's struggles on this special day, or any other for that matter, is not a reflection of whether you are a good Mom or not. YOU are a good Mom.
My advice for you is to go forward into Mother's Day the same as any other...fighting for your family, eyes wide open about how bittersweet this day is for your child, and armed with an Intentional Plan that takes into account your whole child.
So many of our children are caught between their desire to celebrate and the hurdles of their own wounds of loss, loyalty struggles and self-worth questions. It doesn't always come out looking pretty or sounding sweet.
Actually, many times the bitter of the bittersweet is aimed right at us, the Mom, and is much louder and uglier than the sweet. But does that mean you don't matter? Does it mean they don't care about you? Should you let it ruin your day?
No, it's NOT about ruining your day. The ugly and loud is not really about you at all - it's deep grief, pain, fear, longing, and confusion. What it IS about is needing YOU to be the best Mom you can be especially on Mother's Day. It's about needing you to use your MOM POWERS to get all of you through.
YOU can do this. YOU. Are. The. MOM! You are Enough.
This Mother's Day...use your Mom Powers to take in the sweet because you deserve it and help your child get through the bitter, reminding yourself it's not about you.
Happy Mother's Day,
10 Things Happy Adoptive & Foster Parents Do
Two of my kiddos will be graduating from high school this spring. Along with the feelings of excitement, anxiety is creeping in. Stress about completing a senior project. Anxiety about the future. Should I go to college and where? What next? For my son, he was getting more anxious and feeling stuck. He needed a plan.
So…as an Intentional Parent, I helped him come up with a plan. An action plan. Guess what? His anxiety is down. He has a plan. He is now excited. And hopeful.
As parents, we can feel that same way. Stuck. Anxious about the future. Not sure what to do. When it comes to parenting adopted and foster kiddos, it can be challenging – and exhausting. Often, parents are just hanging on. Reacting.
I know what that feels like. When I began this journey almost 17 years ago, I spent a lot of time just getting by. There was very little research about parenting adopted and foster children, and even less support. It became a survival game. Hanging on til bedtime. Going to bed exhausted and starting all over again the next day.
But…that kind of functioning was not getting us to where I wanted my kiddos and our family to be. We were not getting to HAPPY & HEALTHY. I needed a plan. An action plan.
Every week in my Intentional Parent Coaching Group, that is exactly what I am helping give parents. An action plan. A plan based on THEIR kiddo’s needs. THEIR family’s needs. A plan tweaked just for them.
With an action plan, they are no longer just hanging on. They are PROACTIVE rather than reactive. They are feeling empowered. Relieved. Hopeful. They are seeing success. Progress. Healing.
If you’re just hanging on or if your plan isn’t working, let’s get you an action plan to get your child & your family to HAPPY & HEALTHY.
YOU belong here...This is where it happens!
Join me in the Intentional Parent Coaching Group - JOIN US TODAY!