Mad, Sad, or Bad

 Chasing Lilly, Children, Foster children, Fostering  Comments Off on Mad, Sad, or Bad
Nov 282014
Children need to feel safe.

Children need to feel safe.

Lilly seemed to always feel mad, sad, or bad. There wasn’t much in between. She didn’t trust anyone, because nobody in her young life  could be counted on or trustworthy.

John Simmons is a very real parent of children with many issues, and he has an informative blog that I like. Here is a link to a recent one that he did about RAD children and their emotions.

A Few Things to Try with an Anxious Child

 Children, Foster children, Fostering  Comments Off on A Few Things to Try with an Anxious Child
Nov 252014

Sometimes a child’s anxiety comes out in ways that mask what’s really going on. Maybe he or she is crying over something seemingly unimportant, or he is extra irritable and acting out. It could be that you are seeing those things because he is anxious about something.

Try to pin-point when the anxiety first began. What happened around that time? Was he exposed to new people? Alone with someone who could have hurt or scared him? That’s thinking the worst, but go from there to exploring a possible school bully, trouble learning a subject in school, maybe a dog in the neighborhood that makes him want to stay inside.

Kids sometimes do not want to say why they are anxious or afraid, or maybe they couldn’t put a finger on it if you asked them.

Try to make one-on-one time where things are calm and quiet, and play with the child and see if you can eventually get him to open up. Consider seeing a physician to explore other possibilities if the answers do not come. Also, Play Therapy has helped many children.

Let your child know that you are there to listen to them and protect them, and that they can come to you. Keep your antennas up, but don’t allow yourself to become anxious as well, because that will make matters worse.  💡  -Nealie

Nov 182014

I remember calling a friend once, and her little girl answered the phone. I asked if I could speak to her mommy, but the child responded, “No. She sitting on the potty.”

Even after all these years, I still never know what Lilly is going to say. Truthfully, it scares me sometimes. She can say something so sweet about me, and when that happens, relief sweeps over me and I can breathe again. Or she can say something about me that is totally unexpected, and whether or not it is actually true, it settles down into the minds of those who heard it, and they make their own assumptions.

If something is really off-base, and I feel totally misrepresented, I will take it up with her -usually in private. The neat thing about Lilly is that she will admit when she is wrong and apologize. For example:

We are at a store, and Lilly sees a woman straighten out her unruly child.

“Hey, you do what you gotta do. My mom here, she don’t take no crap from me. No -she’d kick my you-know-what if I did that!”

I look at Lilly, horrified.

“Oh, I’m sorry Mom. I should watch my mouth around little kids. But I didn’t SAY the word.”

No mention that I don’t ever kick her whatever.

The mother looks carefully at me. (Well she should, because I am capable of violence. Just ask Lilly.)

I am staying calm . . .I am trying!   😥 Nealie

Do You Know Any Teachers?

 Chasing Lilly, RAD parenting  Comments Off on Do You Know Any Teachers?
Nov 142014

If you know any teachers, please forward this to them, because many teachers are not aware of Reactive Attachment Disorder and how it creates havoc in their classroom.

I found a link to a short and informative little lesson on Reactive Attachment Disorder. It describes how it happens, and what a teacher might see in the classroom. It also shares what a teacher can do, which is something very helpful. We all know some things, but what do you DO?  BONUS at the end it has links to a lot of great resources!  🙂  -Nealie

Nov 092014

Gram and I

I haven’t been doing this blog very long, and I want to say how much all of your great comments and support has meant!

Here is my biggest fan, my Gram, who is 98. She reads all my posts and has interesting comments. Thank you, Gram, and everyone who is subscribing!


This week I am working on finishing up a short curriculum to go along with Chasing Lilly. If any of you have ideas about what you think would (or should) go into that, please let me know in your comments. The curriculum will be used alongside the book for college students studying Intervention Specialties (Special Education), or any  variety of social services areas. It can also be used by people taking classes for fostering and adoption. Please feel free to give me some input.  😉 Nealie

Nov 072014


I have a pretty container that is filled with slips of paper in all shapes and sizes. On those pieces of paper are things that I don’t ever want to forget. Things like the time God answered a specific prayer in a specific way, so that I knew that there was no “coincidence.”

Whenever I am going through a tough spot in life, and I think What’s the use?, I go to that box and place it on my bed and open it and read what is written on slip after slip of paper. I gain strength from remembering how good God has been -and continues to be.

Begin remembering today. Write the good things down -the things that you are thankful for. Keep adding to it, and you will find that when you are in need of some encouragement you can open it and remember . . . the things you should never forget!   🙄  -Nealie

Nov 042014

You know you’ve got a problem when you are reading a book to your child, and he automatically looks up at you when your cell phone begins to ring, because he knows that the story has just ended.

When you abruptly end a story or a conversation with your child because the phone rings, and you have to jump and grab it, what are you saying to that child? You are saying that the call is more important.

I remember when I drove across town without a cell phone. I remember when I left the state without it! I remember when I took walks and had no device in my hand or pocket. Imagine that. I remember when NOBODY had a cell phone. Life was different then.

There is no going back, and phones, like cars and computers, are here to stay.

I challenge you to put the phone away and enjoy the time talking and reading and walking with your family. You can catch up on your calls after you have connected with them, and they know that they are valued.

Don’t take it for granted that they know that.  💡 Nealie