So Spud is nearly a teenager but emotionally much younger. He is easily led, gets bored very quickly and has a huge need to impress his friends. None of these are a good combination for the long summer holidays. Spud is a delightful child but needs help making the right choices.
Back in January I decided that this would be the summer I needed to build my attachment with Spud, keep him from hanging around the streets and keep him busy. His peer group seem to be hanging about the streets for 12 hours a day everyday. His peers seem to spend all their time just hanging out and often getting into trouble. We don’t live in a particularly rough area but gangs do hang out.
This summer I have camped, camped and done a bit more camping. Spud is much better outside and away from electronics. We started the holidays at a large camp with other adopters that I organised. 28 adopted children with a variety of diagnosis, needs and ages. On paper it should never have worked but it did! It was a lot of work but @purdy2233 was brilliant and helped before, during and afterwards. The camp was so successful that next years is already being planned with a few more families joining us.
After the busy camp it was great to have a very relaxed camp with @purdy2233 and @twoplusmunch. The kids played, the weather rained but we had chance to chill. I love spending time with them as we just laugh!
A few day trips broke up the next couple of weeks and due to being away for the first couple of weeks, Spud wanted to be at home and not hang out with his friends – result! I was by this stage on countdown for the number of days I needed to keep Spud from getting into trouble.
At the end of the summer we had a week away with @purdy2233 and her amazing boys. We took the boys away abroad. We had a great week in the sun around the pool. For the days we planned the same routine. The boys sat at the same table for each meal in the same seats. We kept everything very simple. The boys did so well and at times, it felt like a proper holiday with moments of chill time. It was incredibly hard work being away for a week and keeping everything as regulated as possible. At one point I was going to take Spud to the airport and put him on a plane home!
Then the summer was over! Back to school and I could breath as I had managed to keep Spud out of trouble! 6 weeks of him having simple fun, building attachment, making memories and having fun but being kept VERY close to me.
I am still knackered, friends have commented how busy our summer was and I just smile.
Summer 2017 is already being planned and lessons from this summer have helped with the plans. Camping being organised with other adopters, holiday again with @purdy2233 but we have booked a villa for next year. It means more work for us but hopefully much more relaxing and regulating for the boys with less pressure from everyone around them.
There is a need for Spud to spend time with his peers but too much time would not have worked for Spud this summer.
This summer we laughed and made memories, positive memories.