Monthly Archives: April 2014

Swimming Certificate

My son handed me a damp Red Cross certificate after his swimming class last Saturday. It said he has now completed Level I, and is ready for Level I. 

Apparently, he is not comfortable enough in water to actually learn to swim his way through Level I and into Level II. Not so unusual for an SPD kid without coordination and lots of fears. So next winter, he and his brother will be in swimming class together, as his brother is a year younger and has to start at Level I. 

This is the best thing, I think. Because, most likely, they will be trying to drown each other, and thus they will learn to swim by necessity. If not that, then seeing his brother surpassing him will help with motivating him. It’s going to keep happening, in his life with his siblings. If he can roll with it now and apply himself, maybe he can make a habit of it. Maybe he won’t be left behind, like so many special needs kids are. 

Swimming is one area I desperately want him to master, as it is a lifesaving skill he might need someday, not just a sport. We are going to spend a great deal of time at the shallow lake again this summer. 


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Daycare Director

Today I am signing out my kids at the daycare, before I fetch them from their rooms. The director comes up to me. 

“I hear you got a new kid.”

“Do I get to take someone’s kid home with me, today?” I ask her. I am excited, because I am not having any more children, and probably the only way I can get another is if someone gives me one. I want more, just I am too tired to make one. 

She tells me “I mean your middle child. Everyone says he has been a different kid for two weeks.” 

The medicine works.

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Yesterday my son wanted strawberry shortcake. I make it very simply, with slightly sweet biscuits, strawberries cut and mashed, and a whipped cream on the top of it. I told him, he could have it, if he helped. Cutting all the strawberries is a bit of work, when you have arthritis.

Last night after I sent him to bed, he remembered. He asked for his strawberry shortcake. I told him it was too late at night, if he wanted it, he would have to make it himself, as he was supposed to be in bed.

He took out the strawberries. He washed them. He got a plate, to cut on. A bowl, to put the cut berries into. He cut strawberries, maybe seven of them. I brought over the biscuit and warmed it for him, we put the strawberries over the top and added the cream.

He ate the bowl and for once did not ask for more. He asked to watch television, I told him it was bedtime. He got into bed, smiling.

Maybe tomorrow I should ask him to make bread with me.


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Last Resort Is A Great Name For A Lakehome

Today my son bit the bullet. Well, he swallowed the pill. Okay, HALF a pill. I let him take half of the lowest possible dose of Tenex. The psychologist recommended it, a few weeks ago. That was a few public meltdowns, one one-block runaway incident, several heartbreaking cries, eight bad reports from daycare, a hundred statements of self blame, and fourteen-plus nightmares away from today, when I fulfilled the prescription.

When a young child has ADHD and PTSD, the impulse control really suffers. This is an understatement, this is a mother’s politeness. This is a nice way to say, after two years of behaviour therapy and countless changes made in environment, schedule, parenting style, nutrition, and exercise, I think it must be impulsivity, times five. No child WANTS to be in trouble, day in, and day out. No kid makes negative statements about themselves, defining statements, daily, unless they believe it to be true. My son is convinced he is bad. But he is not. He is a sensitive and caring child, who cannot seem to control his hands or body. He catapults over everything, or goes upside down on it. He will poke you, pinch you, hit you, or throw you to the ground. In a second. He knows this is wrong. He does not want to do it, he has consequences for such behaviours, consequences he desperately wants to avoid. He just cannot stop himself, in time. Finally, I am really listening to him. I am medicating him, when I said I never would. His good days are much too few, to expect him to overcome this on his own any longer. 

The doctor told me this medicine is supposed to give him enough time to make a choice. To keep his adrenaline from flooding his brain, and allow him to choose to not lash out in anger. Because I could care less about the catapulting over the booths in Subway. This is not socially acceptable, I understand, but no one gets hurt. I just give him his redirection or we leave if he cannot get it together. But the lashing out, using his hands on people, that has got to stop. He cannot start kindergarten like that, it will doom him to an IEP, suspensions, and in first grade it will expel him. I take medicine to keep my adrenaline under control, to keep my heart rate down, to stop the panic that overcomes me when my cortisol goes up. Mine works for me, it still seems, miraculously. This drug is said to be similar, and I hope the same result for him. 



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