I haven't posted anything about Katherine because things, including how I perceive things are changing constantly. We have gone from nothing is wrong, to holy crap she is really sick, to she might die, and back to nothing is wrong. Sometimes several times in the same day. And right now I still don't know what is going on but at this moment I am in between nothing and really sick.
Several times over the past year she has complained of belly aches. No other symptoms at all, but she claims to be in terrible pain. I thought if anything it might be a dairy issue so we played with that a bit and didn't get any consistent results. It was so infrequent and passed so fast that I wasn't (and still am not) concerned.
About a month ago she started to complain that she had trouble swallowing because popcorn was caught in her throat. There was nothing visible and again, it just wasn't consistent. Twice she said she didn't eat any lunch at school because it was impossible to swallow. Every time she came back from a friend's house we were told that she didn't eat, and what she ate at home was less than usual, but I didn't connect all the dots and thought that she was just being picky. Remember, it wasn't consistent. Most things went down just fine. She will even say that she never had any trouble with chocolate. And she never complained that she was hungry. I should add here that she has a face that she makes when complaining that makes me feel like she is being manipulative. Every time she complained about her throat she had that face.
Last week she started complaining of belly aches. She actually started moaning in the wee hours of Tuesday morning and wanted lots of attention. Gary and I could relate with all the crap that we were going through so we figured this was her manifestation of the pain of loosing her sisters. On Wednesday she was still not feeling well and complaining about her throat again and asking to see the doctor so I thought that perhaps after having the doctor proclaim her healthy she would start to recover. I made it very clear to the doctor that there was a lot of stress in our house right now and she agreed that was most likely what was going on. She told Katherine, "I can't find anything wrong with you, I am prescribing lots of one on one time with Mom."
By Thursday she still hadn't eaten ANYTHING. I decided to get her up and moving in an attempt to improve her spirits. I started by helping her into the tub. I planned to wash her hair for her and give her some special lotion. When I put her in the tub I was SHOCKED at her body. She looked like she had lost 10 pounds. There was nothing left to her. Then I remembered all the times she wasn't eating at friend's houses and how when she got dressed for the doctors we made her change her pants because they were hanging off of her.
We took her out to lunch and she ate about 5 french fries in an hour. I bribed her with a cookie to eat another and she just couldn't. We got her a cookie anyway and it took her another hour to eat it. I won't go through all the diagnoses going through my head but there were plenty of scary ones. That night we went out to dinner with friends and they were shocked by how terrible she looked. They tried to feed her peanut butter pie but she wouldn't eat it. Gary gave her a pep talk and she did eat her food from dinner but I stayed behind with her for awhile after everyone else left, then packed up what was left and she sat at home eating if after everyone was in bed.
The next morning I took her back to the doctor with the new information and she agreed it was disturbing and scheduled some tests for this Thursday. In the mean time we weren't sure what to do with her because she was now attempting to eat but taking ages to do so. And now she told us that there were times that she was very hungry but it hurt too much to eat.
We worried about sending her back to school because we wanted her to have time to eat, and we worried about keeping her home because if she needs a particular procedure she will be out another week. I decided to talk to the school about making sure she has plenty of time to eat. I went in and met with the assistant principal and made arraignments for Katherine to sit in the office for as long as it took for her to eat. I then went to see her teacher to explain the situation. I have been less than impressed with this teacher, and that is putting it mildly. We go into the classroom and she turns her back to me and completely ignores me. Finally I walk right up to her, excuse myself and tell her who I am and why I am there. She gives me a hard time about sending Katherine back to school at all. What the heck? Then I tell her that Katherine has a lot going on with the girls leaving and all. She says, "Well thank god they are leaving so you can finally focus on your own daughter!" WTF?!?!?! I didn't react because I couldn't believe she had said that, and thinking about it after the fact I think there is a part of me that is so hurt right now I wonder if that is how others are perceiving the situation. Is that what people think, that I have been neglecting my own kids? Well, she probably thinks so but I don't think so highly of her either. She also minimized the need for Katherine to do anything different for lunch because "they give the kids PLENTY of time to eat and most of them are done in 5 minuted then talk for the rest of the time. She should be able to finish up with all the time we give them!"
That afternoon Katherine came home very upset because despite all my efforts at making special arrangements for her lunch, the lunch ladies told her there was nothing wrong with her and wouldn't let her leave the cafeteria. Katherine told them that I had come in and spoken to the AP and her teacher and they just kept telling her to sit down. Boy was I pissed. Gary called the school and left a message for the principal who called back but had no understanding of the situation. He promised to rectify it anyway. Ugh. The nurse also returned our call and the official diagnoses making it's was around the school seems to be "takes two hours to eat breakfast."
So I have no idea what is really going on. If we find the problem we think we might on Thursday then all will make sense. If not, I have no idea if there is more going on or if it really might be stress/attention related. I just don't know.
I know that I am stressed and just want this week to end. Things the girls are doing that aren't any different are getting me upset. I think it's because everything feels pointless. Why correct something that most likely won't be corrected ever again after Friday, instead I'm just being annoyed by it.
What I am not going to miss: What's for dinner? What's for dinner? What's for dinner? What's for dinner? What's for dinner? What's for dinner? What's for dinner? What's for dinner?
I usually answer once then ignore. Gary takes a different approach. The first time he answers correctly if he knows. Every time after that he gives a different answer. Usually they will say right away, "But I though you said (insert first thing here)!" Then he will say, "I did. So why did you ask again?" Then they will say, "I don't know!" then ask again a few minutes later.
I lied. I most likely WILL miss stupid stuff like that. It has driven me nuts for a year and I bet I'll miss it when it's gone. Like Anna EVERY TIME we go someplace doesn't understand where we are going. "Let's hurry so we aren't late for soccer practice!" "But WHERE are we GOING?!?!" Or "We will be home in about 5 minutes!" "How much longer until we will be home?"
The girl who signs them out at the club asked me today if it was true that they were moving to another foster home. I told her it was. She asked, "Are you a little bummed out that they are leaving?" It was so tempting to make a snide remark but I bit my tongue and just said, "yeah." Seriously, what did she think I would be feeling? People!