by LaraMee

Little Britches ATF AU

March 31, 2004

Therapist's Notes
Date:  March 31, 2004

Session Notes:  This was the final session with both Vin and JD for the time being.  Things have been going well for the family, and they continue to work hard to make improvements.  The purpose of our meeting today was to bring closure to these sessions as well as to check in with all four members of the family.  While both boys have given some indication that there may be further need for therapy, for the moment things seem to be on the right track.  

William Lowery, PhD

[Tape recording]

Good afternoon, gentlemen.

Hi, Doc.

Hi, Doctor Will!

Hi, Doctor Will!

I thought that Chris was going to attend this session?

He'll be here directly. Josiah's bringing him in and we had to work late.

Yeah, we had t' go to Da's work and wait for a long time 'til Da an' Unca' Ezra an' Unca' Nathan an Unca' 'Siah was through talkin' an' it was real boring.

It wasn't borin' all th' time. We was with Jackie for part a the time an' she let us watch a movie an' gave us some juice an' a cookie.

Well, that was nice of her.

Nah, that's her job. She's a baby sitter.

Day caregiver, Little Bit.

Well, at any rate, shall we all talk together for a few minutes then?

Sure. We gotta make a circle?

Oh, I think we can just sit here at the art table. Maybe you boys would like to draw a picture while we talk?


What do we gotta draw?

Anything you want.


[Sounds of movement]

So, only one phone call this week, I take that as a good sign.

[Laughter] Yeah, it's been a pretty good week, Doc.

Me an' Vin's been gettin' along real good.

You have?

Yeah. JD ain't been buggin' me too much.

I ain't been buggin' you at all!

Well, you did a couple 'a times.


When you left all the toys out an' then I had to help you clean 'em up even though I didn't even hardly play with 'em at all.

That's just one time.

I ain't done yet.


An' then you ate the last chocolate puddin' cup even though you knew I wanted it.

I didn't know you wanted it!

You know I always take the chocolate ones, JD.

Yeah? Well, you bugged me, too.


You just did, that's all.

Tell me when I bugged you. You know we're supposed to talk 'bout stuff when it bugs us.

I… well… I can't 'member when you bugged me, but I know you bugged me.

JD, how 'm I s'posed to not do it again if you don't tell me what I done?

Hey, guys?

Yeah, Buck?

What, Da?

Maybe this is something we can talk about at the pow-wow tonight?

Well, I thought that's why we come here, Buck.

What is the reason you come here, Vin?

Ain't we supposed to talk 'bout things that bug us?

Yes, that's what you're supposed to do when you come here.

See, Da, we're 'posed to talk 'bout this stuff. How come you're smiling Dr. Will?

I was just thinking that you two boys sound more like brothers every time you come to see me.

We do?

'Course we do, we already 'cided we're brothers, didn't we?

We sure did, Little Bit. So what are you saying, Doc?

I'm saying that it sounds as if things are getting back on track for the four of you.

Yeah, I think you're right, Doc. Things have been going a lot better this week. Not saying they're perfect by any stretch of the imagination, but they're going better.

Is that what you're expectations are, Buck, that things will go perfectly?

Oh he- heck no, Doc. Can't think of anything that would go perfect that me and Chris are involved in.

Just wanted to check. Nothing's ever perfect, but hopefully things will go well enough that you won't need to come see me, for a while at least.

No offense, Doc, but I wouldn't mind it if we didn't have to come back at all.

None taken, and honestly, Buck, I wouldn't mind it myself. So, I hear some giggles and whispers going on over there, what are you boys drawing?

It's a s'prise.

JD! You ain't s'posed to say that, 'cause then it won't be a surprise.

I just telled Dr. Will it was a s'prise, I didn't say it was for him.

Well, then, don't tell me, okay?

[Laughter] You're funny, Dr. Will.

I try. All right, who'd like to go first this week?

JD, can you go first? I wanna wait for Chris.

'Kay, I'll be back after while, 'kay Da?

Okay, Little Bit, I'll be right here.

As the door closed behind the doctor and his foster son, Buck turned back to where the other little boy sat. He watched for a few minutes as Vin worked in his normally meticulous way at the picture he was drawing. From time to time the little boy would glance up at the door then go back to drawing. "He should be here about any time."

"Huh?" The seven-year-old asked and then said, "Oh, I know. Unca' 'Siah's gonna bring 'im here. Is Unca' 'Siah gonna go to dinner with us?"

"Imagine so, he'll need to drive Chris back home."

"Good." Little Tanner said, slightly distracted once more as he returned to his drawing.

"So, that's for Dr. Will?" The little blond head bobbed up and down. "It looks pretty interesting."

"It's a picture 'a me an' Peso an' Ringo. JD's gonna - oops!" He clapped a hand over his mouth. Then, a little smile peeking around his fingers, he said, "I 'most told y' an' it's s'posed t' be a secret."

Grinning, the brunet said, "That's okay, you caught yourself. Sometimes it's hard to keep secrets, isn't it?"

Barely stifling a giggle the little boy said, "Yeah." Just then the door to the playroom opened, and Chris moved past the threshold. Vin smiled, calling out, "Dad!"

With a smile, Larabee said, "Hey, Cowboy! Were you worried we wouldn't get here?"

"Nah, I knew you'd be here."

The blond looked over the child's head and locked eyes with his friend. When the big brunet winked, he said, "Good, glad you knew that."

"So, how has your week been?" Will Lowery asked after he and JD had settled into their customary chairs.

"'Kay. We ain't had too many arg'ments or nothin' and Vin ain't been gettin' mad at me too much, just a little bit are we s'posed to not argue at all?"

"No, JD," Lowery said with a smile. He was happy to see the little chatterbox returning. "Everyone gets angry once in a while. It's okay if you have an argument from time to time. That's part of being in a family."

"Oh, okay that's good 'cause I don't think we can not have arg'ments sometimes."

Will chuckled. "I don't think you can, either, JD. Most people can't. So, would you like to choose a picture for the board?"


The therapist retrieved the folder of emotion pictures and handed them over to the five-year-old. He watched as the child sorted through the folder for a few moments before settling on one. Holding it out, he said, "This one."

"Would you like to put it on the board?"

"'Kay." Accepting the thumbtack, he placed the final picture on the little corkboard while the doctor held it for him.

"So, can you tell me a name for this feeling?"

"Sure. Happy."

"You seem pretty certain about that."

"Yep." Little Dunne nodded. "Happy."

"Can you tell me more about being happy?"

"Sure. I been happy 'most all week 'cause me an' Vin ain't been arguin' an' we've all been talkin' 'bout good things at the pow-wow an' Da talked to Mr. B. and Mrs. R. 'bout Freddy an' he ain't been so mean this week an' me an' Da went to Denver all by ourselves on Friday an' Vin stayed home with Chris. Then Da took Vin on Saturday an' I stayed with Chris."

Lowery was extremely pleased to hear that the little family's dynamics were changing in a positive way. He hoped to hear more about how things had gone, especially while the typical adult - child combination had been changed. "How did that go?"

"It was fun. When me an' Da went to Denver we spended the whole night at Unca' 'Siah's an' we went to the pizza place for dinner then we went to the movies then we 'tended we was campin' out at Unca' 'Siah's in his livin' room and' we had root beer an' s'mores an' Unca' 'Siah telled stories. We sitted on the floor an' we 'tended there was a campfire by havin' a big candle with a bunch 'a them little strings… "


"Yeah. Wickses an' we turned off all the lights 'cept the one in the bafroom an' the stories wasn't too scary 'cause Unca' 'Siah says his heart's old and he can't take scary stories then when it was real dark me an' Da an' even Unca' 'Siah sleeped in our sleepin' bags but Unca' 'Siah went an' sleeped in his bed part of the time an' Da sleeped on the couch part of the time 'cause they said I gots young bones an' can sleep on hard floors."

"Sounds like you enjoyed your night out then."

"Yeah, but I ain't done. When we waked up we went to this little res'rant an' had break'ast an' I ate a lot 'cause I'm a growin' boy an' Da said I'm growin' both ways then we went home. Now I'm done."

Lowery smiled. "Well, how did things go staying home with Chris the next day?"

"It was fun, too, but we couldn't go no place just in the yard but Chris throwed the ball an' helped me learn to hit it with the bat 'stead of duckin' an bein' scared an' we played some vid'o games an I winned an' we ate popcorn an' watched two movies Shrek an' Spirit an' we had root beer an' we had a contest to see who could burp the loudest and Chris is real loud but he said we can't do that in public but Shrek an' the Princess did it, too, an' they was in public but Chris said there wasn't no one else there but Duncan so that makes it diff'rent then I got to sleep on the couch an' have the TV on all night 'cause it was too quiet with Vin not there an' in the morning I fed the dogs an' helped Chris fix break'ast an' we fed the horses an' then I watched some TV and played with Ringo an' Elvis an' then Da an' Vin came home."

"Sounds as if you had a busy weekend."


After a brief pause the therapist said, "Do you have any problems you'd like to discuss today?"

The little boy frowned, his eyes squinting nearly closed as he considered the question. Finally he shook his head and said, "I can't think of none." Then, sitting back in his chair and crossing the chubby little legs that stuck straight out on the chair he said, "Do you gots any problems you wanna 'scuss, Dr. Will?"

With a grin the doctor said, "Not at the moment but thank you for asking."

"You're welcome."

"Well, before we finish up then, I'd like to see how you're feeling about your emotions… your feelings. Are you doing okay talking about them with your father?"

"Yeah, me an' Vin picks out a picture on our chart when we come home from school. Sometimes I can't 'cide what picture to put the little frame thing on, so I talk to Chris 'bout it or I talk 'bout it when we pow-wows."

"And does that help?"

"Talkin' 'bout it?"


"It works good. I thought at first I was s'posed to pick a diff'rent face every time, but Chris said no that I could pick the same picture lots of times if I wanted an' I was worried 'cause sometimes I picked the same one as Vin but Chris said that was okay, long as we don't copy is it okay?"

Taking a few seconds to realize that he had been asked a question the therapist said, "Uh… oh, that you have the same feelings sometimes?"


"Sure, that's fine. Like Chris said, as long as you don't copy."


"Last week you were feeling pretty confused and frustrated because you weren't certain about what was going on. How are you feeling about that this week?"

"Well, sometimes I still get a little f'ustated, but Da says 'what's goin' on Li'l Bit' an' I say 'I don't know what's happ'nin' an' he says 'well let's talk 'bout it' an we do an' he helps me know what's happ'nin an I ain't f'ustated no more."

The doctor hid a smile as the child's voice changed during his description of the conversation. His voice went high to indicate his own words, and then very low to indicate those of his father. "It sounds like you're feeling pretty comfortable with things right now, that you and your father can handle the feel bad thoughts when they come up. Is that the way you see it?"


"Well I'm very glad to hear that, JD. So, do you want to discuss anything else?"


"Well, then, would you like to go back into the playroom?"

"Yep, then you can talk to Vin, right?"