Tuesday, January 12, 2016

Social life at school through the eyes of a teenage girl.

People always told us "Just wait until you have teenagers".  Well here we are, in the trenches of  our daughters adolescence and lets just say I have a love/pain relationship.    My girls are amazing!!!  They are so much fun and make me laugh so hard I cry.   But there is a side to their teenage experience that is full of pain....their pain... which in turn brings pain to my heart.   With one daughter full of so much anxiety about grades, scholarships, "what will I be when I grow up" and what college will she go to, she has missed out on the fun of being a high school student.  While she is confident in her talent as a writer she is less confident of the way she looks.   As beautiful as she is, she looks around and see's what she isn't.....stick thin.    She compares her body type to other girls her age and feels less than who she really is.    I cringe as I realize many of the things she says about her body I have said about mine.   I also relate to her idea of feeling "less than" the other girls her age.  My whole adolescence was full of this type of mindset.  Jr. High was the worst for me.  High school it got better but in my junior year my home life took a turn downhill for a while and all I could do was sleep, eat, self-loath and repeat.   So as my daughter feels discouraged I hurt for her because I understand the her pain.

Our younger daughter is only 13 and loves to make friends.   This is great except once she becomes friends with someone,, she cares so deeply she starts to take and internalize any struggles or pain they may be going through.  Brad and I had no idea how deep her stress was until Christmas day when I felt prompted to check on her and found her with many many cuts on her upper legs.   She had held her stress and worries and pain in so much she wasn't sure how to overcome the struggle.   Cutting became her answer and to our surprise we have come to learn cutting seems to be the coping mechanism of choice for her generation.    This is a straight A, talented, beautiful, compassionate and obedient young woman.   She has parents who are happily married  and has great support.   And yet it still happened.   If you are reading this and you think all is well with your teen...take time to dig deeper, ask more pointed questions, read your teen's texts messages, emails and keep track of them on social media.   You will quickly learn what type of friends are influencing your teen.   There may be nothing to worry about, but what if there is?    Then you start talking and talking and talking some more.   You watch differently and pray harder.  You gather as a family and support your teen (or as in our family....teens).

There have been many tears from all of us and many sleepless nights.   But we are also gaining a stronger relationship, a greater understanding of what our teen and others face at school every single day.

 Here is what we have found out about life of a middle school student. Not all of this has happened to our daughter but all of it is happening to someone's daughter or son.

  • Boys are asking girls out, asking them for nude photos or even sex and when the girl keeps saying No No No....the boy says "If you don't go out/ send me the photo/have sex with me I am going to kill myself."   Pure manipulation!!!
  •  Then we have boys who use their sad life (and I am sure their lives are sad at home...too many reports of abuse and neglect etc) to manipulate a girl they like by getting their attention through their "poor me" verbiage.   The boys cut their arms or stomachs to deal with their pain but then they tell the girl they like all the details and they tell her they just want to die.   

So if the girl is like my girls they worry and stress over what to do, how to fix him, how to help him.  But  truthfully their young minds don't realize....they don't have the power to "fix" or "help".   The only power they have is to tell.  Telling an adult who can then call upon the people who have the power to help.   My girls are learning not to allow boys to manipulate them emotionally in this way and they are talking and telling and then Brad and I talk and tell the people who have the power to do something
The words said to students by their peers at the middle school is horrible.  
For example:
  • One teen is talking in class and another teen decides to say "Shut up!   Go die in a hole!".   
  • Phrases like "oh, look at it!" will seep through a mean boy's lips as he and his friends laugh at the girls expense.   
  • Girls are gossiping about other girls, spreading rumors and lies.
The examples could go on to make a very long list. The social behavior is a mess and not the best environment for learning.

I have watched my girls grow stronger the past 3 weeks.   Brenley is getting out of her shell and being much more social and worrying a little less about everything.    Haley is starting to see she is worth more than what her friends have given her and she is making new friends.   Both my girls are getting help  and moving forward.    Our whole family is in the process of learning and healing.   We are pulling back from things that are not as important and choosing our family.   We only have one shot at this and we hope to do it right!    With the Lord's help we know we will get through this stronger and more unified!!

As our family has talked through the issues we are facing we have developed a new phrase.
Friends Tell!  

So as a friend to most of my readers I am telling and sharing with you the few things I have quickly learned the past few weeks.   As I learn more I will share more.  I write this post with permission from my daughters and husband.  These are hard trials and writing is my coping skill.    It is our family's hope that this post and others to come will help your family.

*Note to family:  We would rather not go over this again on the phone or through a message.  Please send your prayers and positive support but please don't call to call to talk about this.   We are coping..and writing is my way of doing that. (Grandparents excluded in this).

Monday, August 10, 2015

Spencer turns 6!

Happy 6th Birthday to my tiny little boy!!!
If I could describe you in one word it would be Miracle!

Love makes little things grow!
I Love You!!!

Thursday, June 18, 2015

Alyssa Diaz Has Our Vote for Miss Utah 2015!

I had the privilege of doing a write up for one of my favorite young adults.   Alyssa Diaz.  She is talented and full of heart.   Another thing I adore about her is her love for Adoption.  
Our Family along with is rooting for her to take the crown!  

Alyssa Diaz, Miss Eagle Mountain 2014, is the sweetheart of the Utah Adoption community.  She believes in promoting the positive benefits of adoption.   She has witnessed first-hand the love between adoptive and birth families.   Alyssa’s Mother is a Birth Mother who placed her baby in an open adoption years before it was a popular to have openness.   Alyssa and her family enjoy an extraordinary relationship with this special sibling and have seen how adoption blesses all the lives involved.
This past year Alyssa has worked closely with various adoption organizations including United For Adoption, Forever Bound Adoption and Utah Adoption Association to help promote adoption awareness.    She has been involved with online support groups and local events such as the Adoption Walk with Me 5K.  Alyssa just held her own benefit run in Eagle Mountain to help a local family with their adoption expenses. 

Alyssa believes adoption is a positive option and enjoys sharing her love for all involved in adoption by sharing her family’s story.   Alyssa’s Platform “A Choice of Love” is centered on creating support and awareness surrounding the blessings of adoption. 

Alyssa will be competing in the Miss Utah Pageant June 17th – 20th.   
We love the energy Alyssa brings to this heartfelt cause and we are rooting for her to take the crown!
Good Luck Alyssa!!!

Friday, June 12, 2015

Friday Funny ~ How we roll.

Photo by: Brenley Horrocks
Yep!   My kids are a little crazy.   
This is how we roll at our house....in carpet.
I am crazy about this silly girl!

Life is happening all the time.

I guess my goals for my blog were a little lofty.  I was ready to write, ready to share and ready to jot down memories we were making here in our little home.   But life happened.   And then it happened again, and again until I realized....this IS life!

To give you a basic run down this is how life has gone from Feb. 5th until today.

Spencer has surgery on his burn scar, less than a week later I get a bad virus, a week later Spencer (who is still healing and we are taking many trips to the burn center) gets sick.  We go to the ER due to major asthma attack brought on by the virus.   He starts to get better then is hit with a new virus the next week.  We are back to the ER where I finally say "hey we need a nebulizer at home people!" (Ok so I didn't say it like that but honestly wanted to.) Spencer improves just to in time to get a brand new virus the next week (yes, if you are counting that is 3 weeks in a row of different viruses).  This one gives him very high fevers, massive headache and a week full of yuck.   Thankfully this virus didn't trigger the asthma.   But wait....it doesn't end there.   During a moment of feeling better, or so I thought, Spencer's Orthopedic doctor had him cast on both legs to help stretch out his tendons in the back of his legs to help him be able to walk on his whole foot/feet.  So here is this little 5 year old with only one truly working limb.

 We are still making trips to the burn center as we go through the long process of helping prevent new scar tissue where they did the cutting for the zplasty. He wears a pressure glove on his hand.  He also now wears leg braces and has to go back to get his legs rechecked soon.  Last time I counted, on top of the surgery and 2 ER visits we had over 20 office visits just for Spencer since Feb 5th.   It is well over 20 by now.  

But wait....Camden is now in his 2nd round of influenza virus.

This round is a little easier than the first.
And now we come to me.  
Apparently the weeks and weeks of helping my youngest took it's toll on my body.  I ended up in an ambulance/ER with heart palpitations.   All is well....my body just can't tolerate stress so it likes to kick out many many PVCs.   They are common with most people but mine appear to be stronger and they cause symptoms like dizziness and shortness of breath so after following up with a cardiologist we have a plan of action with medication and life style changes.   I am suppose to simplify my life and let some things go.   My only problem is some of those things I can't let go of permanently.
 So I am not sure what I am to do when I have to pick a few things up again.
I am a little nervous.
Any Advice?

Monday, March 16, 2015

Fresh Start

Hi there awesome friends!   I have missed you!  I have missed blogging!    But I'm back with lots to chat about.   I hope you like my blog's new look.   I wanted a fresh start and I wanted to simplify my blog and my life!  I am smack in the middle of raising my amazing kiddos and everything is about family so I decided a great way to celebrate this stage in my life is to give my blog our Initial.   In our family we says Horrocks rock!  I am so thankful to be a Horrocks!

I wanted to share what I have been up to  the past few months.

I have been busy being a Mom, a Wife, Library Tech (I work in and out of my home for over a year now), Adoption Blogger for Forever Bound Adoption Agency and I just got called to serve in my church congregation as Young Women's 1st Counselor.   I get the awesome opportunities to work with my congregation's 14 and 15 year old girls.   They are sweet, fun and keep me laughing and teach me more than I ever imagined.   I have also been acting as a nurse to my little Spencer (who is now 5) but that story will be shared later.    Needless to say,  I am one busy woman,   but I love it!

Take a moment and peek at my blog posts over at Forever Bound.  I have had lots of fun creating them and I hope they are helpful to their readers!

Wednesday, December 17, 2014

Our Christmas Baby ~ Camden's Story

In Doctrine and Covenants 88:119, the Lord tells us to “prepare every needful thing.”
Sometimes we don’t know how to prepare because
we cannot see what is ahead. But as our
family learned this past year, the Lord helps us
as we listen to and act upon His promptings. He
steps in and prepares “the needful things” that
we cannot prepare for ourselves.
Christmas 2006 was extra exciting at the Horrocks
house. We received a call from a girl who
had first contacted us through parentprofiles.com one year earlier.

When we first heard from Samantha (Sam), she was 17 and was struggling with the decision to parent or place her baby for adoption. We felt a connection to her from her first e-mail, and over time we developed a special friendship. She told us she was thinking of naming her baby Camden if it was a boy. That was the same name we had chosen. In the end, she decided to parent. We continued to talk, and she even called us the day her baby was born. She named him Camden.
When another adoption fell through for us, Sam was one of the first to call and say how sorry she was. Sam would also call periodically when she needed to talk. One call she made on Dec. 11 changed our lives forever. She had decided to place with us after all. Following a crisis-filled week and many miracles, Samantha placed her beautiful eight-month-old baby boy in our arms. We
cried tears of joy.

We had always had special feelings about Samantha and Camden. We knew they were in our lives for a reason, but we had no expectations regarding the baby. We just loved Sam because she is a wonderful daughter of God. Looking back now, we see all the preparations the Lord made for us. We find meaning in every aspect of our year,
from our feelings about Sam and our pending adoption that fell through, to the foster care classes that taught us about bonding with an older infant. And yes, we even see meaning in the eight months when Camden was not in our family.
At placement, we were informed of some legalities that would apply to Camden. But when he turned 240 days old, those issues no longer applied. Samantha’s worker unknowingly ended up calling LDS Family Services headquarters to get clearance for the placement on day 241. Camden came to our home on just the right day and not a day sooner. The Lord knew the end from the beginning, and He lovingly prepared Sam and us for this miracle.

We testify that the Lord knows each of us. He knows our hearts and our heartaches. He is preparing each of us for blessings we cannot prepare for by ourselves.
We hope that in 2007 each family and each birth mother will find what the Lord’s plan is for them. Let us move forward and have faith, keeping our eyes on Him and remembering that He gives us the best gifts!