If You Paint Your Name on the Tree, We Know it Was You

Having special needs children is a challenge. Having special needs children who have been foster care and adopted is another challenge. Having that as a combination can be quite interested at times. We often times have to find the patients that we don’t truly have inability to bite your tongue. Sometimes it is a day of perfection and sometimes the day of disasters. There are meltdowns. And please note I said meltdowns not tantrums. There is a difference.

We call our younger two, the alphabet kids, because of all their diagnosis’. There is ADHD, PTSD, RAD, ODD, OCD and toss that in with degrees of autism, plus the possibility of bi polarism, you have a hell of a cocktail. You have meds, counselors, caseworkers, Dr of Psychiatry and just a good ole pediatric doctor.

I love these two children with all my heart but I have to admit these our my two hardest. They still carry battle scars from their bio parents. In my sons case not understanding why he had to move foster homes, 11 times and why no one wanted him. When you hear him ask, why?, at the age of 15 it tears your heart and want to rave at the system and some foster parents. 

The Princess and the Teen both have food issues, they lie easily and often. They each have their own pecularities and individual issues. Some that are foreign to me but vividly real to them. Which can cause social issues and morality problems. Please understand they aren’t horrible children possessed by Satan. Even though at times we wonder. They are children with problems.

The Teen is belligerent and obnoxious at times but a lot of teen boys are that. He can be lazy until he wants something. The something this week is a new video game. When Dad is home he relatively obeys him. But when he isn’t this child baits me into anger…and he is good at it.  He has lost his phone and laptop due to his behaviour.

But tonight the star of this story is the Princess, who we are rethinking of nicknaming her Bandit, Raccoon or Sneaky Pete. She sees something shiny and she wants. She sees something she wants and she takes. After the taking comes the hiding. She has hidden a variety of things;food, makeup, art supplies, scisdors, forks, spoons, glue, tools, art paint, markers, highlighters, flashlights, batteries and the list goes on.

She is a cat burglar, you never see her take the things. We have to periodically (every third day) check her room and her normal hiding spots and the abnormal ones. She has slit her pillow and hid things inside and even her mattress. (Where did she learn this? Has she been watching too many prison documentaries.) 

As you hold the item that you found in her room, she looks at you innocently and says, “Boy, how did that get there?”

My mind works instantly with sarcasm but I so often force myself to hold back and not say what my mind is thinking. And of course she doesn’t know when she took, why she took it or what she was going to use it on or do with it.

Today, I took her with me to a hair appointment. I have been down six days with something but I couldn’t cancel the appointment again. I take Princess with me. She is being excellent as we go through the process of color, pedicure, waxing and haircut. She even tried on an outfit that I purchased for her. I rather had too, she put it on and left it on when I was processing. After 15 minutes, I thought it would be tacky to return the outfit.

In the middle of my waxing (face only, shame on you), my phone blows up. The Teen is messaging me, actually he is snitching me. My dear darling girl had got a hold of the yellow spray paint for the last two chairs. I asked if he was sure it was, he said yes.

I then contact the hubby. Yes it was her. How could he tell? She sprayed her name on a tree. Ummm, yep, that would be a dead give away. She also painted her play house and part of the neighbors white fence. Dad then checked inside the playhouse.

Davy Jone’s might have been jealous of all the Treasures in there. She had taken her stuffed animals out, a sleeping bag, blankets..those are normal things. Then there were a rake, shovel and hoe. There was lawn fertilizer, brake fluid, oil for lawnmower, power steering fluid and of course the missing can of yellow spray paint.

How did she get all those things without us knowing? We watch her closely, we really do. If you have read earlier blogs, you know she can wander so we watch and check on her often. We have no clue how or when she could have done it. We have the shed and play house in line of site of the kitchen. Admittedly, we don’t stand and stare at her all the time.

She showed me today her army sneak crawl (The was before the discovery). Is that it? We didn’t find hunting camouflage in the play house, so I don’t know. Dad did do a room check and did find his multi tool under her mattress. I don’t even want to know. Hopefully She wasn’t going to use it as a shiv.

She doesn’t understand the severity of what she has done and not just this incidence but the overall stealing and lies. At this time; she has no screen time, she has to go apologize to the neighbor (what a great way to meet your neighbors), and her play house is going away. She will be having extra chores to compensate for the loss. We will be padlocking the shed.

Someday we will laugh at this. That is what I keep telling myself. Sometimes I wish I could see what she is thinking and her thought process. But then I think I am better off not going down that rabbit hole.

My niece told me today that  we never have a dull moment. I laughed. Then I asked the Princess what the marks on her arm were. My niece wondered too.

Princess answered, “oh that is where I suck my arm when I am bored and watching tv.”

Yes just another day in paradise. No dull moments here.



I am a wife, mother, and pastor. We moved from Bowling Green, Missouri to Idaho Falls in 2016. I am a native of Eastern Washington state. In 2013 I had 2 strokes in 8 days and this is my journey of faith, family and health. I believe no matter what happens in your life that God can use it for His glory.

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