This entry is going to be the hardest one I have ever written.
I post this some time ago. My best friend, Sara, has had Brianna since last October (or around there.) She is 7, and I adore her with my whole heart. She is the first person, outside of our family that Solomon recognized, loved and talked about non-stop. She would cuddle him, try to wrap him up in his blanket (which didn't go over very well, condidering he's a very active little big), and he adores her like he adores no one else. I feel like I have this connection to her...I cannot explain it, but, aside from Solomon, no other child has touch me the way she has. I love her so much!
She has had a slew of issues well before she was given to Sara (Sara also fosters and is in the process of adopting 2 of her other sisters, Melody, 5, and Kimberly 20 months. She has had both of them since Dec 2006). In the first two weeks of Bri being with Sara she was put in a psyciatric hospital on a 14 day hold for suicide attempts. It has been a really long road for Sara. She has constant episode with Bri, where she literally consumes every ounce of her strenght, causing Melody and Kimberly to fade to the background. Bri is violet, hits, kicks, bites, throws things, screams, tries to hurt her sisters, kicks the living crap out of Sara, becomes like a tornadoe and just rips through the house. Sara has to restrian her in, what looks like a straight jakcet hold for up to 15 minutes at a time to keep her from harming herself and others. Sara is an angel. I don't know how she does...did I mention she is single...yeah...again, I really don't know how she does it.
Things with Bri have been getting progressivly worse, where there are no triggers and each fit bring a new high. She used to be very remorsful, now, she isn't. Tuesday, Solomon and I went to Sara's to hang out with her and the girls, go the park and just have a nice day together. We all started piling into our cars to head for the park and Bri starts complaining that she doesn't want to sit in a damp seat. The day before, she purposfully poured a bottle full of water in her sisters seat because she was mad at Sara, and was told that because she made that choice, until the seat was dry, she would be the one sitting there. Anyway, Solomon wanted her to come in our car, she the potential blow out was avoided there. We stopped at Jamba Juice b/c I hadn't had breakfast, and while I was inside Bri started ranting about how unfair it was that she didn't get to have a Jamba and she was mouthing off to Sara. I told Sara (who I was following) that I would have a talk with her. I firmly told her that she had two choices. She changed her attitude, apologized to her mom, and acted kind, or we would go home and she would sit in her room. She said she wanted to apologize and she did. We played at the park for a long time. Bri started complaining that she doesn't want to play with her sisters, Solomon, or me or her mom, she wants someone her age. Sara and I both said we were Sara that she was unhappy but there were lots of kida to play with and she needed to be thankful for that. We gave a 10 minute warning before leaving and here, my friends, is where it began.
"Mom, I AM NOT sitting in a wet seat!!!" (I was going home straight from the park)
Sara looks at me and mouths, "Greeat! Now what do I do?"
We talk about it for a second and decide since we want Bri to succeed, we let her know that if she has an attitude change, and talks kindly, we will find a blanket or towel for her to sit on.
Sara calls, "Bri come here sweetie."
I say, "Brianna, your mom called you. Get up and come here please."
I say, "Take Solomon, I'll get her over here." Ha...so I think.
I give her 2 choices, come when she is called or get a consequence, she goes.
Sara explains that if she changes her attitude we will keep her from being wet with a towel or blanket. She says, "I am NOT choosing ANY OF THOSE" and proceeds to kick her mom in the shins and run away.
Sara walks away, comes to me and both of hearts begin to pump a little faster. This isn't the first episode that I have been present for, but it's been awhile...they are more infuriating that I can adequatly express. Never have I wanted to knock a 7 year old upside the head more... It is jsut so rude, so defiant, so angry, no matter how kind you are, how much time you give her, how many choices you offer her, how stern you are, literally, everyone has tried everything!
Bri climbs to the highest point of the jungle gym...this is the place that encloses the highest slide, so that sweet little ones do not get hurt, and she is, indeed, on TOP of it. Sara tells her to get down. MAGIC, she listens. I think she was a little afraid. Im holding Kimberly, Melody is playing momma to Solomon, and Sara is pleading/demanding that Bri come to the car because it is time to leave. She is getting nasty no's from Bri. Sara climbs the jungle gym, I stand at the bottom of the slide with Kimberly in tow, and we pretty much flush her out. By this time, Sara and I are devestated, sad, angry, pretty much wanting to collapse and cry. I grab Bri by the arm until sweet Sara crawls through tunnels, braves bouncy bridges, and makes it down the slide. Bri instant unleashes all furry on Sara with kick, punches, "I don't have to listen to you"'s, scratches, hair pulling and any other pain causing action she can manage to get in on the 20 second walk to the car. Sara is trying to carry the 7 y/o turned attack animal, protect her from hurting her and herself, and let's just say she is out of breath and sweating in about 20 seconds. Bri is flailing...and completely out of control. It is like something takes her over...it's the only way I can explain it.
I, while somehow holding Kimberly and Solomon, take Kimberly's carseat, load it into my car, get both toddlers and Melody buckeled up, and all the while Sara is still trying to negotiate a plan with Bri to get her into her car. She gives her another mintue to decide and then asks for my help to get her into the car. We put all the child locks on (as she has attempted jumping from a moving car before) and as she tries to attack both of us, the secure her arms and legs and spend a good bit of a struggle trying to get her into the car. (there isn't really a happy or funny side to the story, but on a lighter note, I cannot imagine what the other mom's at the perk were thinking about us!!!)
Once Bri is "safely" into the car, Sara starts to drive. I immediately follow. I can see, from a few car lengths behind Sara's car, Bri kicking and punching Sara full force. She pulled out a huge chunk of hair and proceeded to play with the hair for a moment. She tried to rip Sara's earrings out. I am seeing Sara swerving, trying to avoid Bri's attacks. This 7 year old has more rage in her than most 26 year old's can imagine...and rightly so. She has a drug addict birth mother, who has no parental rights, gave her up, and God only knows what kind of abuse she has endured from men in her birth mothers life, and any of the ohter horrible adults in her life that have caused her heart to be so maimed.
Melody told me on the drive home, "I get so angry at Bri when she acts like this Auntie Amber!!!"
"I know baby. I am angry right now too. It's ok to be angry. What happens to your anger?"
I just hold it all in until it disappears..." Uhhh...yikes...serious issues, creating more serious issues.
We pulled up to Sara's and Bri wwould not stop hitting her. Sara was hysterically crying. She has called the social worker and he was on his way. I get the other kdis in the house and start making lunch for everyone. Sara calls from outside, where we have to, again, with all of our might, restrain/drag her into her room. She had the chance to walk in. She chose otherwise. Sara had to sit in her room with her, in the "straight jacket pose" for about 30 minutes.
When the social worker got there...his advise was beyond useless. He said she should have done the straight jackt pose at the park. I don't think it was really my place but I couldn't take it. "Wait she has a toddler. She can't be having a physical brawl for up to 3 hours at a park while her other kids take off." He said he knew it wasn't practical but... and but was about all he had to say. No practical solutions at all!!! I was furious. These should be the people helping her, giving her solutions...NOTHING!!! Apparently it has always been like this...I had no idea. I felt like a lousey friend.
Sara ended up talking to another socail worker who asked if she wanted an honest opinion...UH YEAH!!! She told Sara and Bri will be a teen that pulls a knife on her. It is extremely unsafe for Sara and the other girls for her to be living there and if Sara hadn't wanted to adopt Bri, they would have taken her out of Sara's home after the first incident!!! Wow...ok...well there were some very obvious miscommunications...but at least everyone was on the same page now...
I got a text from Sara t bout 7 pm. "I cannot believe this. Bri is having another massive fit. My mom just got her and 2 social workers are on thier way."
You're kidding? No... Bri was trying to light the house on fire using the burners from the stove, and any random thing she could find to throw on the stove...so after a warning Sara had to restrain her again!!! Bri bit her so hard that she bled. Sara's mom helped her out some and when the social workers got there, they decided she would go to a respite home until they can all have a meeting. Bri will likely not be returning to Sara.
I am angry. I am angry at all the adult who have injured Bri. She is only 7. She, in a perfect world deserves more than she will ever know. I am angry that she wont let people love her. I am angry that her heart is broken. I am angry that Sara has put her life on hold to help this little girl who will not allow anyone to help her! I am angry that Bri hurts Sara so deeply. I am angry that Bri's sisters are feeling pain because of her actions. I am angry because I am going to miss Bri with my entire heart...I love her so much...and I am completely devastated. Those three girls are the only "nieces" that I have and I will miss her terribly!!!
I am at peace. I know that Sara has done far beyond what she ever could have tried. I know that Bri needs something far more than I think ANY one person can offer...she needs an army of people! I am at peace because I know God has his hand on her. I know that only He can heal her little shattered heart. I am at peace because I know that God's strength is big enough for all of us to tap into and help us get through this hard time...Oh God help us...we love her so much!!!
Please pray for Jen and Justin lost a close friend, Chris Laurie, in a car accident today. He leaves behind a wife, Brittany, who is 6 months pregnant and a 2 year old, Stella. Please pray for them!! Their lives will never been the same...