Yesterday wasn't one of our better days.
First, there was no school for Kenzie. She had mixed emotions about that. She loves school and she loves staying home with mom. So which was she going to whine about? Still trying to figure that out.
Then, I had to go to the Social Security office to apply for Jia's social security number. The last time I was there, I was told the only other thing I needed was her Certificate of Citizenship. So, with that in hand, I go back and what does the clerk say this time? "You need to have her Indiana birth certificate before we can process her social security number."
I blew a gasket at that point. Doesn't anybody in government know what the $&%@ they are doing anymore? No one understands the rules, and they certainly don't understand how long it takes to go through the process of getting the Indiana delayed birth certificate for a child adopted internationally. AAAAUUUUUGGGHH! We need to do our taxes.
Four and a half years ago, when we got Kenzie's SSN, this wasn't a big issue. They took what we had and got us her number.
The man to whom my WRATH was directed said he'd go talk to his supervisor. Which is exactly when Jia decided to break out with all holy hell...
She decided that it was time to touch everything she could, try to run off with stuff that she had no idea what she was taking, and throwing Kenzie's coat on the floor over and over and over again while Kenzie is telling her to stop.
I picked her up and sat her down, to which she SCREAMED and slid down off the chair. So I picked her up again and put her on the chair... over and over again until I finally picked up her feet and laid her down across the chairs so she couldn't slide off. She screamed bloody murder the whole time. I never raised my voice, and simply told her "Jia, you need to calm down. Calm down, Jia. You want down? (nodding with screaming) You need to calm down. Mommy needs to talk with you."
I finally leaned down to her ear and whispered "Do you want to get done here and go eat?" She stopped screaming and brought it down to a whimper. She then began to calm down. I again whispered to her, "You cannot throw Kenzie's or anybody else's coat on the floor. You must not touch anything here except the toys we brought in. You can play with either toy we have. Are you ready to get down now?"
Nodding... no screaming. No more whimpering. Quiet.
I stood up and helped her get her boots back on (she had kicked them off in the fit she had thrown. Then she got up and behaved a little better. All I was going for was some sense of control so she wouldn't tear up everything.
I don't know what people thought of me, Jia, or the whole scenario. I'm sure some were horrified at her behavior, and others horrified at mine. I kept expecting to see the police pull up and enter the building because someone complained that I was abusing her. The other half of me wanted to apologize to everyone for the whole scene. I'm pretty sure everyone was thinking "Glad it's HER and not ME!"
I keep wondering what the hell am I doing wrong? I wonder if the austerity of the office reminded her of the orphanage.... and she reverted to what may have been her typical behavior she had displayed when living in the orphanage. Out of control.
How do I help this child learn how to regulate her emotions and actions? I am so ill equipped in this area. Roy and I knew that we wouldn't get as lucky as we did with Kenzie... Kenzie is easy going, and easy to discipline. Jia - totally out of control. She just doesn't seem to "get it". I can't let her run around destroying everything in her sight with the idea that "she just doesn't understand." She is a really smart kid. Really smart. But she wants to do what she wants to do and she doesn't want anyone to tell her NO. We can see she has a good heart... she wants to be a good little sister, and she loves us and wants to help wherever she can. She will out of the blue hug us and say "I love you" and generally be affectionate. And we have our good times... teasing and laughing and tickling and the gentle touches (me to her, her to me). So it's not all bad.
But the short bouts in-between when she is out of control takes so much energy. And yesterday left my right hand with a pinched nerve or tendon - something got twisted and now all I have to do is move the wrong way and I'm in pain.
Anyone with any book suggestions that can help here - or any suggestions from the BTDT crowd - feel free to jump in and tell me what I'm doing wrong. I just don't know anymore. I always thought I was a decent mother... NOT perfect, NOT exceptional - just good enough that I could at least make sure the kids made it through the day without killing each other. And perhaps we'd have peace MOST of the day. I am hoping that yesterday was just one of those days and it doesn't happen again. But if it does.... I am begging for insight.