We had a BBQ for M this Saturday. Some people didn't show up, but the ones that mattered did. Friends and family came from faraway to help us celebrate the new addition to Team Paxton. M was a little withdrawn. He gets nervous around strangers. (Stranger Danger as he would tell me). So he would take off on his own and ride his RipStick around the park until he felt like coming back. He did start to loosen up towards the end. My friends and family are amazing so they didn't push him too much. He bonded with my BFF Terri as he tried to teach her to ride the RipStick. Until she biffed it. Which, actually made them closer I think. He's getting closer to my sisters. Bit by bit. It takes time. He has reason to be apprehensive. It's OK. We have the rest of our lives.
He's such an amazing young man. He has so much good in him. He is witty and charming when he wants to be. And around us he is totally relaxed and we get to see a side of him no one else does. It makes me feel good to know that he can feel safe with us. Safe to be himself. I do sometimes catch him in an unguarded moment, like if he accidentally breaks something, or makes a mistake. I see his defenses go up, the worry pass over his features. He waits for the backlash, maybe for me to blow up? I understand that wariness. I remember it well even after all these years. So in those moments I laugh it off, help him fix it/clean it up whatever it is and I rub his back or head and say, "Bummer dude. No biggie". And I see the relief on his face, in his body language. Hopefully someday he will understand that this is his safe place. He never has to worry about our reactions. Whatever he does we will deal with it. Hopefully calmly and with patience and love.
We were talking the other day about something or another. Some sort of paperwork we have to do or rule we have to follow and he said, "just until after the adoption right?" It made me happy that he still wants us to adopt him. Yes, I sometimes worry he will change his mind. He's old enough to do that. I worry he may decide we aren't good enough for him. 4 more months. I count them down with bated breath. Will he still agree to adopt us? Will the courts judge in our favor. I can't wait until he is all mine. We get lengthy court documents that mention his family stating they think he shouldn't be adopted. I read it over and over. What if the courts agree? I couldn't take losing him. I love him too much already. I see the love he has for Sara. It's the little things he thinks we don't notice. The way he plays slug bug with her, then when he hits her too hard he rubs her arm gently. Or when he's lying on the couch and she sits at the end and he rubs his toes on her. Not even realizing he's doing it, but craving that physical contact. She's his mom. She's the one he's embarrassed to be seen with at school, just like a real mom, cuz like he told her, "don't feel bad some boys just don't like to be seen with their moms". He made them matching friendship bracelets. "These are mom and son wristbands", he said. And he hasn't taken his off.
Sara was so nervous that they wouldn't bond. She didn't need to worry. He loves her, anyone can see it. And she is a great mom. She does the shopping, always getting him his favorite things, she does his laundry, we take turns straightening his room up behind him. She takes him swimming or to play basketball. When he has a hard day she talks to him and always seems to know the right thing to say. I feel like that's my weak point. I don't know what to say sometimes. When he tells me he's mad at his previous foster mom I want to reply, "yeah she's a bitch!" But I don't so I kinda stumble around trying to be politically correct. I hope I get it figured out soon. I don't want to be the weak link. He loves to tease me about how old I am. "Ancient!" he tells me. "Like 1000 BC". He thinks it's hilarious. I'm like oh thanks, next time I need to feel bad I'll just remember you said that. "You want me to write it down?", he laughs. Yeah, he's a smart ass. I think he get's that from me.