Archive for adhd

Too Much

Posted in Mental Stability, Motherhood with tags , , , , on January 28, 2009 by Ms. Ex

I want to stay home.  I really do.  But somehow, between getting the teenager to work, the four year old to school and OT, and me to my own therapy (which includes, on occasion, knitting at the Starlight Cafe), I end up in the van.  A lot.

Sometimes it’s just a distraction from the difficulty of keeping big brother from gnawing off his little brother’s arm, or knocking the head off of another nine iron by swinging it into the 100 year old pillars supporting the porch.  And sometimes it’s just life.  Appointments, obligations, errands.

Today, when I gave middle guy the run down of our afternoon, he said, “But mom, I just want to go home.  That’s too much for me!”

He’s right; it’s too much for anyone.  I have to find a way to slow down the attention deficient brain in this head, to quit just trying to get through each day and waiting for the end.

What makes a person able to be still?  A skill I’m learning in therapy (Superlagirl, you are not alone!) is mindfulness.  I’m supposed to be fully present in each moment, not eating a Butterfinger-crunch pie from Burger King organic hummus with a fork while I drive my kids around town listening to “Another Phonics Rule” and Trout Fishing in America.

So for the first time, I would like to pose a question.  How do you make yourself stop and focus?  Is there some inner signal that tells you it’s “too much” before you need a straight jacket and I.V. Jack Daniels?

I’d like to learn to stop before it’s too late.


Alphabet Soup

Posted in Mental Stability with tags , , , , , , on December 8, 2008 by Ms. Ex

I am afflicted.  I suffer from an assortment of letters that include: ACDBPODDD. In no particular order. I’m sure if I was feeling attentive or ambitious I could cobble together a word from all those letters, but I think there are too many disorders and not enough vowels.  If I include those maladies belonging to my children, well then. Now we’re getting somewhere.  ASDADHD and, for good measure, Tourette’s syndrome.  I am not particularly fond of advertising my children’s issues, but from the anonymity of them internets I feel fairly safe in discussing them.

The reason I bring them up at all is that a friend,  in response to my observation of the brain being capable of going haywire in so very many ways, said he is surprised it isn’t even worse.  That the brain is so complex, a multitude of little things in it could go awry…and usually don’t!    So when viewed from that stance – that things could be much worse – my family’s alphabetic quirkiness seems just a tiny bit easier to bear.

A Family of Autists

Posted in Autism, Motherhood with tags , , , , , , , , , , , , , on October 29, 2008 by Ms. Ex

“Artistic?  He’s artistic? Well, I guess he gets that from you.”

“No, Mom. I said autistic – they told us he’s autistic. And he has ADHD, but I guess we already knew that.”

“Oh. What, because he has tantrums? He’ll grow out of it, you’ll see. Your brother was like that, he would hold his breath until he turned blue and passed out, and now he’s perfectly…um…well, anyway, I’m sure he’ll be fine.”

And maybe he will be.  Little E of weaponry atop the china cabinet fame. Little E with the big personality, with the adorable quirks, with what looks like a slight touch of sociopathy. My baby, my little guy.

I always say he was different from the very first day he was born. He cried inconsolably. He did not look at me. He never smiled. He would push a baby stroller around our driveway for hours on end, all by himself, no matter how cold or miserable the weather. I’m talking fourteen months old, here. It was the only reprieve I got from the incredibly overwhelming need for touch he had.

I realize that is a different thing for an autistic child, needing touch. But it is not that he’s affectionate, necessarily, but that he’s touching me to fill his own black hole of…something. Craving?

We spent hours with the doctor, his resident (intern? I got confused in the introductions part of the journey today), and his nurse.  I went hoping to finally get some direction, some idea of what E’s issues are, if any.  And I got some direction, some ideas. And some extremely difficult news.

It’s really not as if I didn’t know. I think I have known on some level for a long time, but I also kept believing that I must be wrong. It is so mild, surely it must be something else. Something less…permanent. You see, I went in with this child that, despite the soul-sucking challenges, I have managed to parent fairly well considering our personalities. Mine being obsessive, his being the same about different things. I went in thinking that maybe this crack team of experts would say – “AHA! We know exactly what you need to do to keep E from dislocating the arm of his little brother and giving you another corneal abrasion, while simultaneously convincing him to eat something that is not brown.  Or white.”

I left knowing my son is a hair’s breadth from geniosity (geniusosity? geniousness?), but cannot draw a circle. That he can learn to read, but might not fare well making friends. That my gorgeous, precious, spirited boy is now my gorgeous, precious, spirited, autistic boy.

It is a relief. It is a sentence of some kind. It is the end, the beginning, the middle of long roads ahead. I cry. I stop. I form plans. I research. I cry some more. We mothers, we like to know. But, by the very nature of our jobs, we also sometimes like to play pretend, just a tiny bit longer.