As anyone who has children with Reactive Attachment Disorder knows, progress is slow and you are almost afraid to hope to see more of it. I have seen some though lately!
Yesterday, Jacob was crying (who knows why since he refuses to talk, but let's stick with the positive!) and wanting Destiny to comfort him. This would be his "normal" since he lived in a residential facility full of other kids prior to joining our family and because RAD kids don't like to seek comfort of affection from their parents. She tried walking away from him, since he was irritating the crud out of her. He still followed her though. I walked over and said "Jacob if you need hugs or comfort you have to get it from me, not her". HE ACTUALLY HUGGED ME AND LET ME HUG HIM BACK FOR SEVERAL SECONDS! It was a willing thing, not the many times I hug him and it feels like a board in my arms because he is so stiff. Those times have gotten fewer though and now he usually just lets his arms fall and pretends he doesn't notice he is on my lap or getting hugged. This was REAL though! A few minutes later when he was back to playing quietly, I said "Jacob are you ok now?" and he NODDED HIS HEAD! This was actual communication and acknowledging of my asking about his FEELINGS!
Then there is Andrew. His progress has been so slow over the years to get to a point where he is doing better. He still requires constant regulation by me or he finds a way to sabotage himself, but can at least accept that regulation. He has had the same mattress for months now without tearing it to shreds. He has a few blankets and sheets now without trying to use them as a grapevine to hang from the ceiling fans too. The best progress has been that even on his "not so good day" he is initiating "Goodnight Mom" and a goodnight kiss. He even says "I love you"! These are big things around here when they are initiated by the kids with RAD!
Crystal is sleeping back in her own room tonight. We've had to put an alarm on her door so she can't "stuff food" while we are asleep and risk choking. We also have a lock on the closet door so she can't mess in the clothes and get herself into trouble. She is doing so much better about not tearing stuff up that she is able to move back in with Destiny and hopefully not destroy her things or get into major mischief. She also stopped at my chair after dinner tonight and gave me a big hug and kiss. I nearly died of shock, since I couldn't see which kid it was or ever dream it would be her! I nearly cried because so badly I want us to have a close mother/daughter relationship and that gives me hope.
Now I realize that if you've made it this far and you aren't a parent of a child with RAD then you have to think I'm nuts. I do apologize if you are in a state with your mouth hanging open and a fly flies in it. I didn't even realize how funny it sounded until I typed it out I don't think. Children with Reactive Attachment Disorder make you really appreciate the simple things in life I guess. They make you practice extreme self control during the rough times and I've actually gotten to the point where the bad moments don't shock me. The good ones are awesome though and sometimes they catch me by surprise! God has blessed!