Wednesday, January 4, 2012

Time Really Does Stand Still

Seriously? 1-4-12. I think my idea of "time flies" is now history. Time is standing still.
In the past week I have begun my research of the different types of problems and/or situations that we could be presented with.

I have learned:
That a baby exposed to a drug in utero is less at risk than a baby born addicted to (or tested positive for) drugs at birth. So it's one thing for the social worker to say, "this baby was exposed to meth in utero" than "this baby tested positive for meth at birth."

Alcohol is the worst of all the "drugs" that can be used to an unborn baby. Fetal alcohol syndrome (FAS) is one of the most severe forms of mental retardation. Many physical signs are not present at birth, and the disability often doesn't show itself until the child is school-aged.

The reality of all this though is that we don't really know how our child will react to what they have been exposed to, if anything, until they get older. All we can do is be the best parents we can, and pray that God will bring us a healthy child.

I have also just skimmed the surface of things like autism, and detachment disorder. Detachment disorder happens to kids that are moved around from foster home to foster home and literally detach from the adults that are caring for them. This affects bonding and can turn into a lifelong mental illness. This is the reason that our system is getting so strict with placing children into "forever families." Birth parents don't have as long anymore to get their act together before loosing their kids. If the child is younger, the time frame is actually even shorter because it's so damaging to remove kids from a familiar enviornment to a new place time and time again.

We have a lot to learn. And I want to research it so that if I'm presented something I have (what we in nursing call) "an informed consent" which includes the risks and benefits of a situation.

I also pose the question to any of you reading this, what do you think about nature vs. nurture? There are quotes such as, "the apple doesn't fall far from the tree" but how much does your genetic code make you who you are?

Would I be who I am if I was raised by someone other than my mom? I don't know. I'm a lot like her in some of my mannerisms, but is that genetic or is that the way I was raised? I think it's a bit of both. But, as an adoptive mom, can I make the nurture outweigh the nature? Can I give my children a new heritage and succeed?

I hope so. Because if not, then what the hell am I doing here?

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