1. M had a visit with her biological mom this week. It was the first time M had seen her mom in 18 months. I requested to be allowed to attend, so M could have someone she was familiar with, and the worker reported that the mom said she wasn't trying to be a bitch or anything but she didn't want me there. I'm choosing to look at it this way: The mom knows the termination is coming. She will almost certainly wait until the last minute and then surrender her rights, because if she surrenders she can request visits. She's comfortable with the worker (they've known each other for about five years) and it's scary as hell to start visiting a child you haven't seen in over a year, but a lot more scary to do so when it's at the whim of the strangers who have been raising that child. I'm trying to be positive about this, because of course it would be better for M to have a relationship with her mom, but damn does it suck to see her wrecked by visits over and over again. The night of a visit she cycles between being super clingy, and naughty on purpose, and silly and manic. It's rough. And now that she's able to communicate, she tells us she doesn't want to go on visits, and it really sucks that that doesn't matter to anyone but us.
2. Other than visits, nothing is new with her case. The worker reported that the termination paperwork was "half done" but I have no idea what that means in terms of time. Our next court date is scheduled for January, but the worker remains optimistic we'll be in before then to have the first hearing about termination. Oh, and the dad attended every single visit for a whole month (all of October) for the first time ever, and then canceled his first visit in November. And they're changing the visit times AGAIN because of the dad's bullshit, so that's pretty cool for M.
3. We're in the new house and it's starting to feel like home. The stuff we need for daily living is all unpacked, so now we have to decide where we're keeping stuff like outgrown baby clothes or Christmas decorations or whatever. We are making slow progress, because by the time both girls are in bed we're both just ready to collapse, and it's hard to make ourselves do stuff like paint all of the ugly celery-green trim in the upstairs hall when there's a new season of Parks and Recreation on Netflix.
4. Nora is still awesome and funny and huge - she'll be five months old this week, and she's wearing six-to-nine-month clothes. She discovered on Thursday that she can get her foot to her mouth, which is pretty funny to watch. She laughs when she sees me and my heart just about explodes every time.
5. This past week has capital-S Sucked. Being at work and away from the girls was harder than it's been in a month. Work has been annoying and I've been tense and grumpy just about every minute I'm there. I cried when M's mom showed up for the visit and there was no call from the worker that the mom had changed her mind and I could come. And then I got my period for the first time in over a year and it all made sense. I don't really know how to have a period anymore. I got super indignant that this shit happens every goddamn month, too. What is that about?