The more I spend time around my boys, the more I'm convinced that in some way they know when something's going on, even if they couldn't possibly really 'know' or understand. It's like something in their spirits or souls picks up on the change in the air around them.
The week before OB's final contact with his birth mother was traumatic for us. Always prone to waking up in the night, screaming and covered in sweat, these episodes became a nightly event during that week, and sometimes I'd be in there trying to comfort a writhing, thrashing little boy several times a night. Maybe it was that I was unknowingly stressed about the event (I'm not very self-aware!) and he was picking up on that somehow. What I do know is that once the final contact was out of the way, these night-time episodes retreated back to their previous levels, and have improved over time so that now we have whole weeks going by without any problems.
Similarly, NB acted out in both the week before and after his final contact. Tantrums became an almost hourly event, and he frequently wet himself lavishly, despite having been pretty good at using the potty for months.
And now I have begun to broach the subject of 'new mummy' to NB and, although he seems quite pleased at the idea outwardly, he is clearly unsettled. Even before I began to speak to him about it, the wetting started again - sometimes 3 or 4 times a day. Today I picked him up from Playgroup and was handed a bag with wet underpants in it. Apparently he had weed 'on them' but not 'in them'!
We are experiencing a lot of changes in our lives at the moment. Unfortunately, they are unavoidable, and there's only so much I can do to shield the boys from the stress of them. We have had our adoption order from the court for OB, and of course the news that NB will have a new Mummy. In a couple of weeks, members of my family will come to stay with us so that they can attend our Celebratory Hearing. We are waiting to move house (at the mercy of the builders!) and I am already surreptitiously packing things away. The boys must surely have become aware that cardboard boxes are appearing in our house, and various things are mysteriously disappearing off the shelves.
Every so often, I take the boys up to "noo 'ouse" as OB calls it, so that they can play in all of the rooms and in the capacious garden - a big treat for us! I have taken some of their toys up there so that there is something familiar waiting for them, and they have loved the freedom of running around in a home with no safety gates!
My plan was that they would be thoroughly acclimatised before we moved so that hopefully it would come as less of a shock, but now it seems that the building work won't be completed before the end of May (not such a surprise as it hasn't been started yet!). The end of May was my mental deadline after which it would be too late to move. If we are aiming to transition NB at the end of June, then it's just not acceptable to move house a couple of weeks beforehand, and then jettison him off to his new home straight afterwards.
If even the mention of new Mummy results in a cluster of wetting incidents, then what would that sort of stress lead to?
So, no. We will hang on in our current house a bit longer, even though it means I'll be losing money like water through a sieve, and that OB and I will have to postpone our post-NB-recovery holiday while we do our house move (followed by renovating and renting out our existing house) in July rather than May. I can't help feeling that doing it that way round will be more stressful for OB, but at least I know he has the security that I will always be his Mummy, even if everything else around us is changing.