The first part of the week is when I let the cherubs know that they have a weekend visit coming. I try to keep things low key but I do want them to know it's coming. We don't talk about it much.
By Wednesday and Thursday the topic pops up more. Still, I try to keep it low key. Dude doesn't want to go. Dolly is horribly conflicted. She does want to go...yet, she doesn't. It's more like Dolly just wants to meld our two families together. Dolly wants to be a part of Dallas and she wants us to be her family too. Ya know, like when a child of divorce wants their mom and dad back together again – even if they've remarried. Dolly wants to keep us AND she wants to connect with her family in Dallas. Through it all, Dolly misses her mom the most. All of this is a constant reminder that she'll never have what she had before coming in to Care.
As much as these cherubs love me, they are – and always will be – drawn to their biological family. It's how we humans are wired. Like it or not, it's truth. Anyone that thinks otherwise has blinders on.
Dolly spends most of Wednesday and Thursday bouncing back and forth in her big feelings. She'll tell me that she wants to live in Dallas. I always validate her feelings. Then, as soon as I validate that side of her big feelings, Dolly will spend the next two hours telling me every 5 minutes that she loves me.
Dolly has a lot of big feelings.
Dude does too. But his swing the other direction. Dude gets very firm in his, "I don't want to go to Dallas" statements. Then, when Dolly says she does want to go (even if it's just to visit) Dude gets even more firm. The poor thing feels so strongly about not wanting to go it's almost like he'd rather say goodbye to his sister than go to Dallas. They don't actually argue about things, but I have seen the back and forth get emotional enough that I step in and tell the kids, "It is up to the judge cherubs. But you need to know that the judge is not going to separate you two. You'll either stay with Mamma L*** and Papi S*** or you will go to Dallas. But you will stay together."
Both Dolly and Dude like to watch me pack for them. Dolly has a lot of self talk that she says out loud. Things like, "You keep us safe mommy. You make sure we have clothes. You buy us things." As I pack for them she needs to go over all the realities of life with us.
By Friday morning big feelings are rampant. Believe it or not though, they are biggest in my forever kids. Dolly and Dude are most excited about not having to go to school. They didn't have any problems finding things to do this morning and getting engaged.
Bart however was a brat. He fought with Dude for no reason until I separated them. Dude tried to pick a fight back but I busted him immediately. When I went upstairs to try and talk to Dude he told me yet again that he doesn't want to go to Dallas. I held him close and told him that he would be coming back here.
When Minnie got here to pick up the kids Dude and Dolly both were very excited. This is difficult for me. (VERY difficult for me.) Dude has spent the entire week telling me he doesn't want to go. But then he looked at Minnie and said, "I want to fly on the airplane." Minnie proceeded to then tell me how much Dude loves flying. I wanted to scream, "Sure, Dude loves flying on the plane. It's different. It's novel. But believe you me – the child does NOT want to live in Dallas. Just the thought of it freaks him out. He hates all conversation about living in Dallas!!!!" Why, oh why, oh why can't Minnie see the reality?!!! Why, oh why, oh why won't anyone do anything about the reality of this situation?!!!!
As I buckled them into Minnie's car Dude very earnestly said, "Mommy, you are coming back?" I wish this statement would mean something to Minnie. She does not want to see that the children love us and want to stay with us. Dude needs constant reassurance that I am not going to leave him.
Minnie told me that this weekend's visit is going to be a good one. The kids are going to have a Christmas party. Grandma is doing Christmas early for the kids. I casually threw back, "let's hope Grandma puts them in clean clothes this time around." Minnie told me that she had talked to Grandma about that. Grandma told her she didn't get in to the clothes I sent because she didn't want to mess them up. She said she had clothes for the kids there.
I'm confused. Minnie has told me that Grandma didn't have any clothes for the kids. The children both told me that they wore the same clothes for two days last visit. The children told me Grandma didn't have any clothes for them. But Minnie said, "I know Grandma has clothes for them there." Really?! 'Cause every other time you've said the exact opposite and I've always said that I don't expect Grandma to have clothes for them because if they end up in Dallas they will come with a huge wardrobe. We've had this conversation every single month!! But now all of the sudden Grandma has clothes?! I call bullshit! Minnie doesn't care. Minnie just wants this case over with.
They left. I walked back in to the house. Big feelings abound.
TT has got himself so worked up he's "sick" again. He told me he needed to stop doing school so he could lay down. He went in to the living room and climbed up on the couch. He's been there for almost two hours now. He's acting horribly pathetic. I just called him out on it. I just told him that he's got big feelings because Dude and Dolly left. I told him he's going to need to take care of himself and move on. He's not sick. He's getting himself some lunch now.
Here's to hoping I can squash the big feelings this weekend. We went to Six Flags their first visit. On the second visit my family was here so I was incredibly distracted. Last month my husband and I went on a date out of town. This is the first time Dude and Dolly have left and we've all stayed behind like normal.
Sunday will be a mess. The cherubs are always horrifically dysregulated when they return. Here's to hoping I can keep the big feelings at bay for the next three days and we can recover quickly. This is the last visit before court. Honestly, January 7th can't come soon enough. I'm ready to be done with all this!!!