Seven down, two to go! Tonight was on surviving crisis. Crisis is something that we will inevitably encounter when adopting. Of course, that's true for everyone in life, isn't it? What we learned tonight was that there are some predictable moments of crisis when rearing a child from the foster care system. Things such as holidays, anniversaries of events in the child's life (day they were removed from their birth family, for example), pre-placement visits, and at the finalization of adoption, to name a few. Things that might trigger emotions or memories, basically. We learned that the goal is to attempt to prevent the crisis whenever possible. Talk to the child about an upcoming event and how they might be feeling about it. (Of course, you can't predict every situation.) Pay attention to the child's "warning signs" and try to prevent the crisis from escalating. One of the main things is that you have to remove yourself from the situation--realize it's not about YOU. Then you will not have the emotion to get in the way and you will be more capable of being a bigger, stronger, wiser, person and be there for the child.
You might be wondering, "What kind of crisis situations might occur?" Things such as significant behavior issues, school problems, medical emergencies, the child running away, among others. Of course, again, some of these are crisis that any family will deal with.
Other key points from tonight were:
- Asking for help is a strength! Utilize the resources that are available to you
- Have a plan in place for dealing with crisis
- Crisis is time limited. It will pass (That reminds me of the saying "This, too, shall pass"; can't remember where that is from. Is that in the Bible?)
- All crisis yields opportunity--mainly opportunity to build a closer relationship with the child (that reminds me of the Bible for sure. How God will use everything that happens for good.) James: 2-3 says "Consider it pure joy whenever you face trials of many kinds because you know that the testing of your faith develops perseverance." I would think that would definitely apply here!
Next week is the last PATH class, sessions 8 & 9 combined. There will be a panel of adoptive and foster parents that will share their experiences and advice. We will be able to ask them questions that we have, too. The final week is our CPR training class.
On a different note, I think Todd is going to try to enter a golf tournament that will benefit AGAPE. He's getting more info tomorrow. We'll keep you posted on that. He will need sponsors to help him raise $1000! Hint, hint...