382 days

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She’s been home 382 days.

382 days and nights of rules and consistency when it comes to mealtimes.  382 days of requiring manners and sitting nicely through “family time” even if she didn’t want to eat what was put on her plate. 382 days of screaming and throwing food. Of redirection and removal from the family table. Of plain not eating. It has.been.exhausting.

But tonight. Tonight she sat. She used the manners of which we knew she was capable of using. And she ate. And she didn’t scream or throw food. And we didn’t have to redirect or remove. And it.was.glorious.

Friends, this is reality of fostercare. And while it is so very worth it, it is so very hard. So tonight we celebrate Day 382. Because the frustration of mealtimes during days 1-381 has suddenly melted away, and tonight feels pretty darn amazing.

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About lesliecrosby

I'm surrounded by kids, coffee, and chaos. And I wouldn't have it any other way!
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10 Responses to 382 days

  1. Congratulations! Food issues are so hard for our kids. It looks like you are conquering this one trauma trigger! I wish you many more successes.

  2. Steve Cody says:

    Wow, it’s nice to see perseverance lead to success. Hopefully there will be many more days like this. My wife and I are new to fostering and have two great kids, ages 2 & 3. Dealing with dinner time yelling, throwing, etc., has become a regular part of our day. Looking forward to calmer days. 🙂

    • lesliecrosby says:

      We’re hopeful for that, too!!!

      Welcome to the crazy ride! You already know it’s not easy, and it’s so nice to know that others are fighting the same battles.

      • Steve Cody says:

        Yes, it is nice to know there are others with the same issues. I’m interested in what others are doing to cope with a 3 year old with frequent tantrums, hitting, head butting, kicking, throwing plate at dinner, etc… 🙂

    • lesliecrosby says:

      Are you dealing with any sensory issues? Or are the tantrums more “typical” in nature? We have one of each, and to be honest, I have much more patience in dealing with our sensory kiddo’s tantrums than I do the typical ones!

      For one of our son, a lot of his tantrums are born out of sensory issues, namely vestibular (generally speaking the input you get from spinning or rotating) and proprioceptive (deep muscle work) senses. He lacks both of those, so when he starts to get amped up, he can’t calm himself down because he lacks the senses to do so. For him, we use tight bear hugs and squeezes to give him the input he needs to help calm. More often than not, that’s enough to help him.

      On the other hand, our daughter’s tantrums are more typical toddler behavior. For her, we remove her to one area of the dining room where I can see her, but I don’t interact with her until she’s stopped screaming. Lately she’s taken to kicking and hitting the walls if she’s not getting attention, so when that happens I move her to her crib until she shows that she is trying to get self control. (At this point moving her to the crib works more as a time out for myself because I generally am starting to lose it by this point, too!) She hates missing out on what her siblings are doing so after consistently doing this, she now chooses to get self control much more quickly than she did when we started this technique.

      I know the removal to her crib is controversial because of the isolation (we don’t close the door), but it has worked for us.

      • lesliecrosby says:

        As far as throwing the dinner plate 😝, our rule is once she does that she’s done eating. We remove her chair from the table and (in theory) she needs to sit until we’ve finished eating. But her throwing her food/cup is an automatic done with the meal/snack, and nothing else is offered until the next time to eat.

  3. Annie says:

    The food issues are so not easy! Great work persevering through it!

  4. ifosterlove says:

    Amazing journey ❤️

  5. Sarah says:

    Wow! Thanks for the comments! We have done EXACTLY what you are doing (if food is thrown then that tells us you’re done eating till the next meal and the two stage “removal”). The one thing we may or may not do a little differently, when I “remove” them I don’t look at them or give them physical contact but I continue to use my voice to help guide. I do this 1) so they are not isolated and know I’m still there and still care and 2) to help them learn to respond to my voice instead of me always having to physically hold their hand, etc. I’ll say “you can come back when you are calm” or “breath in, breath out” to help guide. It DOES work! It just takes FOREVER.

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