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In The Cut

So, been thinking for a while about sharing our story of adoption in the hope that it might help other families and because it is such an incredible journey, it feels somehow important to document. Maybe one day it will also be important for our daughter who shall remain anonymous as this is her story too and she may not want to share it. I’ll call her Angel as we called her our ‘angel child’ for the first six months of her time with us, knowing full well that as soon as she felt safe enough, a more fully rounded two-year old would emerge. She was also referred to as an ‘angel child’ by her birth mum and dad who had lost a previous pregnancy and so were very grateful when they fell pregnant with her.  Angel is 9 and will be 10 in July. Right now we are what I call ‘in the cut’. We have just come out of our longest spell of equilibrium (about 3 months) and I felt a new baseline of her self-worth had been reached. It probably has but when the wound opens up, it’s incredible how deep it g
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Angel is discussing plans for her birthday in July.  Angel - But I don’t want to be thirteen. Me - What age do you want to be? Angel - 11, no two, no zero, no one minute old! Me - And would you be with me? Angel - Yes and then maybe I wouldn’t be having all these issues. ‘All these issues’. I didn't know it then but Angel has APD - Auditory Processing Disorder. Never heard of it? Neither had I! It means she finds it difficult to process language. It came to light via the ‘Fast Forword’ programme. Our moderator emails me; ‘ We can now see that Kalya has a significant difficulty processing speech at the normal speed. This correlates with what we see in Jumper Gym. This will be having a major knock on effect to her ability to converse as well as her peers and also affects her literacy and comprehension. She is obviously very good at masking this as I remember you saying that nothing had really been picked up.’ Processing speech at the normal speed? I google it and find APD and LPD (la

Struggles with Secondary School

Angel is still struggling with secondary school. I think she’s gone through three phases:  One - terrified - it’s all new and overwhelming  Two - form solid friendships - actually it’s quite exciting and a laugh Three - oh shit, this is really hard, the work is way beyond me and the environment is actually scary. The scary part of phase three has been helped along by a couple of incidents. One; a classmate was being bullied by year 11s and was held up against the wall in the hall. Thankfully, this blew over quickly. Two; a boy in year 7 was accused of making a racist remark and three quarters of the year 7 boys wanted to beat him up. Then the year 11s got in on the action and Angel overheard one of them say he had a knife. She, understandably, comes home stressed. She says she was petrified all day and that we mustn’t say anything as she had been sworn to secrecy and, ‘in case I get held up in the hall by the year 11s!’ She is genuinely scared to go in. How do you manage that? Do we re

Starting Secondary School

  We have started secondary school. Angel has gone from a Steiner School of 20 to a state secondary of over 2000. It is a lot. Some days are good, some not. The homework is too much and totally beyond her. We plough on spending up to two hours a day doing it with her, while she becomes increasingly overwhelmed. We are having to google and learn stuff to teach her. We are overwhelmed too and as hubby grumbles, ‘I’ve bloody been to school and done my time.’ I feel she is being robbed of her childhood. I watch how she has returned to playing with her horse farm endlessly, clinging on to the innocence and freedom of childhood play.  We are both shocked by the draconian approach to discipline. Happy and sad faces on the blackboard at the start of lessons. Three strikes on the sad face and it’s a detention. Surely there is a better, less shaming way? Is this what I subscribe to now?  And don't get me started on the uniform? Shirt, tie, blazer, smart shoes, strictly no trainers. Who dress


Been a while since I wrote… too much going on but I feel the need to get some of it down. May  Angel - You're not going, I won’t let you! Me - It’s only a night. Remember I said last week that I might have to go for a night and you seemed fine Angel - Nope, you’re not going Me - What’s the worry? Angel - That you’ll die and won’t come back  Me - Well it’s no more likely there, than anyway Angel - But it's outside London and you don’t know it like you know London and someone might stab you. I am taken aback. I want to say, ‘actually I’m much more likely to get stabbed in London than in Windsor’ but realise that wouldn’t be helpful and that this isn’t a rational response. Me - That must feel really horrible that you think I might die and not come back   Angel - Yes! Me - I think maybe you feel that way because you lost people when you were little and so that feeling is buried very deep inside of you but I am coming back and this isn’t the same as it was then, even if sometimes it