Sunday, March 6, 2011

Seeing Kids After Reunification

Just 3 days after sending him home last week, Baby 3 turned 1yr old! It was hard not to see him that day, but I was trying to give Dad some room to get adjusted to having his boys home. Brandon and I went to the tattoo parlor to get Brandon's Baby 3 Batman piece done on his birthday, which was special.

All done (with a little editing for confidentiality)

Before the boys went home, Dad had agreed to let us host Baby 3's birthday party on March 6th. I was very nervous about seeing them after a whole week apart. When we picked them up, Dad handed Baby 3 to me and it was as natural as if they had been gone just an hour. When Baby 3 saw Brandon, he spit out his binkie and put his arms out for him. I was a little offended by the preference, but it made Brandon's day. Baby 2 came out next and walked to the car and got into his carseat like having his 2 families together was an everyday occurrence. It was awkward to make conversation with Dad and his girlfriend  and try to include her kids when all we wanted to do was snuggle our babies and explain why we left them.

At the party, it was difficult not to correct and direct the parenting flaws I saw. My family was alarmed by how the baby was being held and the aggression we saw in our usually mild mannered Baby 2. It was hard to be happy for the reunified family when I could clearly see that my kids' new life was chaotic and largely unsupervised.

Brandon keeping Baby 3 out of the cake
I am stuck in a conundrum where I want to be supportive and happy so I can stay connected to the boys and build relationship with biofamily, but I also want to spare myself some heartache and not be around people who treat my children as less than royalty. I chose to separate just a bit by asking Dad if we could see the boys on Wed, but I told him we would bring them to our house for dinner instead of sharing that time with the whole biofamily.

While I am still pretty emotional about our first post-reunification visit, I feel very blessed that we have a bioparent who is willing to keep  us around. In the end I will accept feeling angry or awkward if it means I can see the boys who own my heart. I never had a visit with Baby 1 after he went home. I do think that helped me heal, but my personal opinion is that I rather heal slowly and see my kids than to never know what they look like or where they are- even if that means keeping my mouth shut if I don't like how they are dressed when I see them.

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