Friday, April 16, 2010

Father/daughter tea

Our church has a father/daughter tea tomorrow and Michael is bringing the girls- they are so excited! It is actually set up as a royal tea and it is a formal event, meaning the girls dress up and dads wear suits.

They have to come up with royal names and titles which they write on the ticket. When they arrive, they give the ticket to the royal page who announces them to the king and queen and the royal court. They have valet parking, a village where each girl can use a "penny pouch" they receive and purchase delicacies and crafts from the citizens, and several other things. How cute is that?

As a youth worker in my professional career, I have read a lot of research and been to a lot of trainings and conferences on healthy adolescents. One of the most key factors to a teenage girl not going down the wrong path, is their relationship with their father. Imani is very close to Michael, they have a very special bond and I want this to continue to flourish and grow.

Akila is a different story, obviously. With her FASD, relationships are difficult for her, even within the family. She has always been obsessed with me, often only I can give her the meds or do things like that (unless I have recently said no to her, and then I am the living version of satan in her mind and she only loves daddy- you know the game). She does have a good relationship with Michael considering how her brain works, but there is always room for improvement.

I will take pictures before they leave and post them on the blog. I can't tell you how much I wish I could be a fly on the wall at this event.


Blessed said...

Hi Barb,

I have been reading your blog off and on for a few months, after finding it through Urban Servant.

I am so sorry for Akilah's struggle, and so sorry you have to go through it with her, and yet I am really glad you are doing it. I pray for you and Akilah and your family too.

You said something in this post that made me pause-you said Akilah has always been obsessed with you. Hmmm, I don't understand the FASD brain at all, or adoption attachment issues at all, but I am very interested in learning about them (I would love to adopt, if God moves my husband's heart in the same direction). Your wording made me wonder if obsession is actually a sign of Akilah's bond with you--even if it is hot and cold. The worse her rages against you, the more potentially her deep down love for you? Or maybe a wish to love, which cannot be trusted and so she lashes out all the more at you, her mom, to protect herself?

You do not have to respond to my questions. I just feel so much pain for these children and would like to understand more. And maybe I am wishing that her increasing (it seems?) violence against you is a sign of something hopeful deep down, yet to be freed. . .

Your cyber fan,

Lisa aka Blessed

Linda B said...

You are very wise to nurture this father/daughter bond. It broke somewhere along the line for DQ when she was 5th/6th grade. It is the reason she wants out of here. Listening to her you'd think he is a vicious abuser. I knew that bond was important, but couldn't get either to try. I see her looking to guys to make herself feel better and worth something. She totally loses herself with a boyfriend-that she just met hours ago. I'm happy to hear your husband will nurture this too. It's a very good thing-