ADHD Life-A bad day

This is an older post that I wrote on a bad day. At the time I had decided not to post it because…*what would people think?!* But if you have read my blog, then you know that I try to be honest…sometimes to a fault.

I am going to post this today because well, I cannot be the only mother who has ever felt this way at one time or another.  This is not a constant feeling, it was just a feeling in the moment. This does not make me a bad mom, it makes me a REAL mom. A real PERSON.

A Bad Day

As I sit at the dinner table all by myself, tears falling into my untouched plate of food, I wonder if anyone else has ever had a moment where they hate their child?

It sounds so awful. I cried just thinking it. But I have had moments, like right now, where I have hated my daughter.

Maybe it is not hate towards her, maybe it is hate towards the life that we live or the way that we have to behave or the uncontrollable screaming and name calling that is coming from the other room.

It only lasts a few minutes. I should be able to handle it. But when your child is calling you an awful mother, screaming it at you with such venom, saying they don’t want to live because you are so awful, over and over, it is hard to keep your composure.

When we have a good day, it is SO GOOD. When we have a bad day, it is SO BAD. Sometimes it only affects the time that the ‘BAD’ takes place but a lot of time it puts tension on the entire day and it is so hard to shake it off.

Patience mommies…patience. It will get better.

-3rd Generation Mommy

Life With My Daughter-Giving Up Is Hard To Do

Today I watched my daughter give up on something she is Completely in love with. One of the things that she has worked so hard for (outside of school). The one thing she was so excited to do every week. It was the one thing that, after she had done it for a while, you could see the change in her (for the better). Today I watched as my daughter’s disability took over.

My daughter has ADHD as you know. She also has another, yet to be diagnosed, ‘learning disorder’ that affects her ability to cope with changes, deal with her emotions and regulate the way she handles some of her responses to external stimuli (among many other things). Going to new places, trying new things, doing regular family stuff that involves being out in public or just around people in general (even our own family) and any kind of quick change of plans or change in routine…these things are excruciatingly difficult for her.

Over the years we have tried many different extracurricular activities; soccer, dance, Girl Guides etc.  These were all her choices of what new activity to try next. And while the idea of doing these things really appealed to her, the social aspect of these activities threw her for a loop and she hated them ALL. We are not a quitting family, so yes she had to finish out the season or the session of whatever she had chosen to try but after each session was finished she was not required to go back unless she wanted to. The only one that had stuck, for a while at least, was Girl Guides and that was because I became one of the leaders in the hopes that she would be able to feel more comfortable with me there to support her if she needed it.

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Feeding Ginger

Then came horseback riding and it was love at first trot.  She was scared at first, who wouldn’t be? But then she flourished. Horseback riding constantly brings her out of her comfort zone, pushes her to do things she didn’t think she could do. It makes her work on things that she normally struggles with like independence or trying those new things. It built up her confidence, helped her with leadership skills and to learn responsibility.

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Playing with Houdini

 

Within a few weeks she was blossoming into such a different girl. She was coming out of her shell, she was happier, less likely to ‘freak out’ over the little things. She LOVED horseback riding and her Ponies, Ginger and Houdini. If she wasn’t riding at the farm or doing her chores at the farm, she was talking about riding, making her dolls ride their ponies, building “jumps” at home and pretending to ride a horse while galloping at full speed and jumping over them herself. Obsessed is the word I would use, but that was ok with me. I LOVED that she loved something this much. I loved that when we left the farm she would ask how many days it would be before she would be able to go back and ride again. Nothing peeked her interest quite like horseback riding did.

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Yes she is backwards on her horse. Around The World builds confidence.

And then one day, just a few weeks ago, she froze atop her horse. Anxiety is what I am guessing it was and it stuck. She froze like she was terrified. She started to cry and she couldn’t move even with her trainer right beside her talking to her. None of us know why. We’ve asked B and she doesn’t know, she just all of a sudden is scared and cannot handle it. We tried going back to the basics, no riding just brushing her ponies, walking her ponies, playing with her ponies and bonding with her ponies. She loved it. She wanted to ride. She was ready she said. So we got her back up on a pony and she froze again. Didn’t even get a single step in before tears started rolling down her cheeks and she had that same panic attack all over again.

 

It was awful to watch her react that way to something that she loves doing. All the way home she cried and said ‘I hate myself’, ‘I hate my body and brain for not letting me ride’, ‘I want to ride but I am so scared now and I don’t know why’. It

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Riding Houdini with no lead rope.

was absolutely heartbreaking. It was heartbreaking because nothing happened that should have made her scared. It was heartbreaking because a ‘normal’ kid wouldn’t have these difficulties. A ‘normal’ kid would be able to work through their fears. It was heartbreaking to see B not being able to work through those fears. It was heartbreaking to watch her give up on something that she loves so much even when she knows she wants to do it.

 

Today I watched as my daughter cried while she brushed her pony, knowing that we wouldn’t be back (at least for a while) until we could figure out why this was happening. Today I watched as my daughter gave up on one of her dreams. Today I watched as my daughter’s disability took over and the only thing I could think of was; is this what the rest of her life, our lives, will be like?

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

Life With My Daughter-ADHD at it’s finest

ADHD Primarily Inattentive formerly known as ADD. With the possibility of Non-Verbal Learning Disorder.

This is the diagnosis we waited for. What we searched for. What we knew in our heart of hearts that would affect my daughter, and us, for the rest of our lives.

This is the reason for our struggle for the past 4 years of school, before the official diagnosis. The one we bypassed the school system for. The one we paid for out of pocket instead of waiting another 2 years just to find out what we already knew.

We knew. We were decently prepared. We read up on it, learned about it, set changes in motion at school and home for it. We thought we were ready. But if we were so ready, and so prepared, why does it feel like everything is falling apart now?

1 full year after her diagnosis of ADD. 2 years after having special IEPs (Individual Education Plan) in place to try to help her without medicating. 8 months after starting on medications that seem to be working to help her focus. This is where we are.

The learning is going well. She can focus. You can see it in the excitement that she has when she gets her grades back on a test or project. Grades that she prayed for and cried about when she just couldn’t get them no matter how hard she tried. The grades that never came in her first 4 years of school (Jk through the end of grade 2). 1 year ago, she would give up immediately because she KNEW there was no point in trying. She literally couldn’t focus enough to begin trying.

She gets the grades now. The A+’s, the B’s, even the C’s. We celebrate anything that isn’t an incomplete. Those are the grades we were looking for, for so long. Now she gets them. Those grades are showing that she can focus that beautiful brain of hers and is actually trying to do her work. That she can actually BEGIN to try. She is so happy when she brings home those tests, projects, and report cards. So proud of herself, just as I am of her.

The grades and school are great. The issues we are having now are with an emotional and behavioural demon that we have no clue how to deal with. I know that kids go through stages and ‘phases’ in their lives where they behave differently. I know that. But this…this is nothing like that.

She had bouts of it when she was younger too. The “I hate you” or “your ruining my life” statements at 3 years old. We thought it was cute then. It’s not cute anymore. Those statements now come daily. Screeching and screaming and other awful things being said “I wish I were never born”, “no one loves me”,” I hate you”, “you are the worst mother in the world”.  Throwing things, punching, kicking, those come when you are putting her on ‘time out’ in the corner or in her room for 5 minutes.

It is like when she is being defiant, she is totally irrational. She has no control over what she is doing or saying. She doesn’t start off at a debating tone of voice. You know that a bit louder but still controlled voice you use when you disagree with someone? No. It automatically starts at an ear piercing pitch that is unimaginable unless you have heard it before. The tears automatically start flowing. She looks terrified and terrifying if I am honest with myself.

She was never the kid who got everything she asked for or got to do whatever she wanted. She was never the kid who was allowed to talk back to her parents or be rude or disrespectful. She was and is still the kid who is so kind hearted. So wonderfully playful. So beautiful inside and out. So genuinely concerned for everyone else’s wellbeing. That’s why this is so difficult for us.

They say that when there is a diagnosis of ADHD: Inattentive there is almost always another disorder lurking. Hence the possible Non Verbal Learning Disorder that they say she may or may not have. It could wait to show its ugly head for a while, but it’s there. And in a way I’ve always known that it was there. It has just recently become a big issue. A huge enough issue that it is affecting our entire household. No one really knowing what to do. Everyone on edge.

There is no way to know what the secondary disorder is, or if it really is anything at all, until we re-test her. Re-testing will not be done until after she has fully reached puberty. That’s another 3 years at least.

For me, this is both terrifying and hopeful. Terrifying because I have to wait so long with this crazy behaviour that IS taking over my house. Hopeful because maybe there is a reason for this crazy behaviour that has taken over my house. Hopeful also because then there will be a way to help her. A set plan that we can work with. For now, we try anything and everything we can think of, that we read about, that are suggested to us. For now, we wait.