Shock and denial – Pain and Guilt – Anger and Bargaining – Depression and Loneliness – The Upward Turn – Reconstruction of your life and Working Through – Acceptance and Hope. Sound familiar?
I think we work through those stages constantly throughout our child’s life, as do all parents of special needs kids. The reason I keep pointing that out (special needs kids) is because when you look at it from that perspective, we are in a HUGE group, we are not alone, and there are so many people experiencing the exact same feelings as we are. It’s not just “RAD” or adoptive parents, it’s all parents mourning the loss of the life they thought they’d had – and learning that (a) it’s ok to have had those dreams and (b) it’s ok to mourn their loss, it doesn’t mean you don’t love your child and (c) it doesn’t diminish your child in any way to mourn your expectations of life.
So work through those feelings, don’t bury them, or allow yourself to be consumed with guilt. See a grief counselor if you need to. There’s no shame in that! Allow yourself to mourn so that you can move on. And you can, and you will. This may not be the train you thought you were getting on, but that doesn’t mean it’s not going to be an enlightening journey, worthwhile, all the same.
Hang in there!