So we began therapy. The practice we are going to only treats patients with abuse and trauma histories. They have very specialized certifications in attachment, trauma, and abuse. They did an amazing trauma assessment report that I feel will be key in the kids gaining permanency. The only downside is it's a good 45 minutes to get to at our appointment time.
The first night we met as a family we set goals. There were some good goals that had Therapeutic value such as only the parents can parent. And one to work on bed wetting and the shame surrounding that. There were also some that could be viewed as silly but probably were ways to say scary things. Like more naps. Which I believe for that family member was code for "I'm not sleeping well." More trips was also included. I'm taking that to mean more quality time together. My goal was getting the kids to speak up. They talk very quietly at times and I cannot hear them especially in the car. These were all goals "to make our family even more awesome".
Last week we did an exercise to see how we operated as a group. It didn't go as well as I thought. Our task was to draw on a giant piece of paper, our family, doing something together. Stella of course had ideas but the moment everyone else added to them and began drawing she shut down. She refused to draw. She kept saying she "didn't get it" "I'm confused". She was frustrated. I was frustrated. And then the panic attack set in. Tears, hyperventilating, and a totally helpless Mom.
It was a new side of her. Of course a few minutes after we got Stella back on track (sort of-she then decided she couldn't draw anything to her liking) Smiley lost her confidence and had a meltdown. Meanwhile Sarah started to copy what Stella was drawing and Simon continued drawing happily.
I'm really hoping this week is individual talk therapy. Last week was exhausting.