I have posted about educational issues I deal with, with both Hannah and Caleb, just to give an idea of some of the things we deal with on a regular basis with our schooling. Since the kids came home, I have researched educational issues for both of them and am sometimes overwhelmed with what they will face and the daily challenges we will encounter as a result of past trauma and pre and post natal malnutrition.
Some of the new reading I have been tackling is from the Post Institute, to be found at: http://www.postinstitute.com/ After reading an article this weekend on trauma and the development of the brain I gained a little insight into how the kids stress systems (my words) are working constantly in the fight, freeze, or flee. I had never seen the 'freeze' put with the others and I think that was what really clicked for me, because that is exactly what the kids do. Put any small amount of stress, real or perceived, and they totally freeze up.
It was explained that the portion of the brain that the part of the brain that receives the stress or threat develops prenatally, whereas the part of the brain that tells how to regulate that stress or fear develops in early childhood. So if there is too much stress and not enough calm, parental influence in those early months, the ability to regulate the stress response does not develop properly and the child lives in this constant fight, freeze or flee, without the ability to decipher whether a situation is serious or not.
So from what I can gather the idea is to help the kids live in as stress free an environment as possible to allow that portion of the brain to develop. What I am still working on, is how much this can repair over time, or will this be a constant factor for them.
Now understanding all of this, imagine trying to produce a totally stress free environment for children who live with so much real and imagined fear, added to the top of this that they are still dealing with attatchment issues and you have an interesting deliema. For now we are trying to reduce the number of questions, not raise our voices and smile even though you feel like saying "why?" in a very loud voice with frustration on your face.
Hope to post more on this later, but my mind is in overload and I need some time to process all I am learning.
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