There are now three forks left in the house.

They are becoming a metaphor for my life: forks as allegory for our lives.

She packs one when she takes a salad to school. Then she just throws it in the bin because ‘her bag is heavy’. Then she screams when she needs one, because there are no forks in the house; with utterly no clue about her role in that.

Because her amygdala, her trauma, her attachment, her FASD all think that forks – like everything else (money, socks, coffee sachets, homework, friends, me) – are magic and ‘should just be there’; available, ready and waiting the instant she needs them. Be there seamlessly. Be there unimpeded by thinking, or planning, or asking, or decision making, or responsibility, or action; no obstacle or challenge blocking the way. Sometimes, even the opening of the cutlery drawer is too much an obstacle; too much a challenge. There can be no intermediate steps to the fulfilment of the need, because they too are experienced as threat, and their very existence summons her amygdala into protective action.

The lack of a fork – directly to hand, exactly when it’s needed – is perceived as a clear and extreme danger that will be fought with the same all out ferocity of hand to hand combat with a lunging sabre toothed tiger. Any interruption to her thinking process, any delay in a need being answered, and her amygdala is there to fight her way out of the problem.

It’s not just things either. The train she needs to catch, the movie screening, the skate session timetable, the click of the boiled kettle, the Saturday job shift, the dinner arrival, the lift; all required by her amygdala to be available and ready exactly and only when she announces she is in need of them, the instant she needs them.

Like magic.

And likewise, if she doesn’t like the bread in the crock, her amygdala throws the whole loaf away. If the shampoo smells funny, her amygdala empties the whole pot somewhere in the bathroom. If the season of her favourite programme comes to it’s end, her amygdala smashes the controller. The mince I defrosted yesterday to cook with today has already vanished like magic because … her amygdala must have seen it, decided it doesn’t want it, and thrown it away.

If it’s night when she needs it to be day, if it’s Monday when she needs it to be Thursday, if it’s Winter when she needs it to be Summer; amygdala springs overzealous and armed to the teeth to her aid. This amygdala – her protector – was once her biggest friend. It is now her greatest foe.

Her home, her life, her body, her actions, her thoughts – as well as mine – are ruled and ruined by this tiny almond shape misfiring button in her limbic system.

And it hates forks.




Blogging helps me feel connected. It helps me rally and collect my own thoughts. It helps me feel stronger about my parenting, and it helps me grow and learn and find better ways over time. It helps repair my shattered psyche when events have destroyed my confidence and morale. Blogging helps me hone in on what is important to me as an adoptive parent. Blogging helps me seek answers to what is often unanswerable in this conundrum that i live beside – and often within – called trauma. Blogging helps me gain insight to my actions and my thoughts from others as a single adoptive parent with no one to talk to or help me reflect. Blogging helps me feel less alone in the wee hours of the night after a day that has taken me to the very brink of despair. Blogging provides an outlet to my frustrations, my hurt and my wounds. Blogging helps me gain perspective when my world view of a situation becomes distorted and destructive. Blogging often helps me find the humour in the bleakest of moments, and reminds me to see the strange beauty that lies hidden within the torments. Blogging helps me take a place amongst my peers in this fraught and flawed community made up of adopters and adoptees. Blogging breaks the silence in the times when I experience suffering at the hands of the trauma and a wider world that doesn’t understand it or care about it and it’s carriers enough. Blogging helps me feel like the trials, tribulations and lessons of what my family goes through can have some tiny effect on the shape and style – the politics and framework – of ‘adoption future’.

Blogging sometimes is the final shovel full of dirt that buries me beneath the weight of my responsibility that makes it all too heavy to bear. It can reveal the subjects that are still fully taboo – or at least too scary – to talk about, and lay bare the things I’m just not ready or equipped to talk about fluently.

Blogging gives me – the me that lies beneath what cht requires of mumdrah – a voice to my needs when my day to day experiences demands they sit unanswered in silence.

But most of all, blogging helps lift the weight of the thoughts and the challenges that I carry. Blogging reminds me that I am the writer of my own thoughts, and I can chose to take the blue pill or the red in how the extreme demands of my everyday sit within my soul.