Thick skin, patience and alcohol :). Just kidding, i rarely drink. But thick skin for sure. I have a 17 yr old daught. After 5 boys... they seem like a breeze! I always say, all five of them together, dont even come close to how difficult she is. Patience, at this point is basically deafness and a wondering attention span. As she rages on about this drama, or that drama, or about what i don't understand, or why shes so right and I'm so wrong and how unfair her life is compared to her friends... I find myself redecorating my bedtoom, or wondering what ill have for breakfast the next morning in my head. It is exhausting. And a survival tactic. After a week of being dumped on, she wants to go to her friends house, everything screams at me...she doesnt deserve to go, but if she goes i get a few hours of peace and quiet! Its not all bad, 90%....well 80%, ok...75% of the time shes great. And that sweet little girl still pops in to say hi and gives me a hug. And i remember i will survive this. She will survive this. "They" say that kids brains dont stop developing till they are 25. And that was true for my boys. 8 more years to go! Luckily (hopefully) she'll go off to college soon, and i can sit and cry about how much i miss her. Hang in there!
My adoption story is a older on. My husband and I could not have children of our own, and figured that would be our life. But then we met some people who were foster parents and decided that's how we would have children in our lives. Our very first foster child ended up being our very first son. A beautiful little 18 month old boy with sparkling brown eyes. I can still see him sitting in the backseat of my car when I brought him home, with those big scared brown eyes. We were lucky enough to be able to adopt him 32 years ago. A couple of years later we learned his birth parents had given birth again, and lost custody. We sought him out and were able to adopt him also. This time of beautiful little blonde haired boy. Then it happened again another beautiful brown haired boy! A couple of years later, and again, another beautiful little blonde boy! All together we had 4 full siblings. We learned along the way that they also had two more boys but we weren't able to adopt them. I lost my husband to Cystic Fibrosis 22 years ago, so its been interesting, bringing up those beautiful boys who have turned into amazing, intelligent hardworking young men. And i thought it was the best time of my life, but grandkids are coming now... :)