30 April 2008

It's the little things in life.....

Not a huge amount of stuff to write, but I did have a great thing happen today. My friend Kim, whose son is in Seth's class (they've played together quite a few times) and who does recess monitor duty a lot, stopped me today to tell me that Seth has been playing kickball at recess with the other 2nd grade boys.

Now, you may ask yourself, why is that so great? Well, I'm glad you asked :)

Seth is the type of kid who wants friends and wants to play with other kids, but doesn't always know how to ask. For the last couple of school years, he's played mostly by himself at recess, because he hasn't been into the sports like most of the other boys. He's into Pokemon or some elaborate game he has concocted in his head, that nobody else understands, nor do they really want to. But for him to be included by the other boys, and for him to want to play kickball, is a major advance in his socialization. It may be a fluke and he may be back to playing by himself next week. But I will take it! Baby steps....

It's something to report in our group this week, if nothing else. And this afternoon, I took him to school for the First Communion pics and it just warmed my heart to see him horsing around with a group of boys, just like a normal kid. See? Labeling is SUCH a bad thing....it's even got me thinking he's not normal. But....I guess he isn't, is he?

Blah. Anyway, I had an incredibly busy but good day. Now I need to go start another book for class, and think some more about this paper I have to write that is getting scarier by the minute.

29 April 2008

Catching Up

Here it is again, over a month since I've even signed in to think about writing anything. What's new in my world?

The oldest offspring has been diagnosed with ADHD (predominantly inattentive type) along with warnings of behaviors consistent with Aspergers syndrome and Non Vebal Learning Disorder. There isn't enough to warrant a clinical diagnosis, apparently, but enough so that the doctor made a point to put it in the report.

I have a ton of conflicting emotions. On one hand, I feel relieved, that there is at least part of an explanation of his "quirky" behaviors. On another hand, I'm sad because of the challenges he faces, and I have a problem with labeling kids. On another hand, I'm embarrassed because there is so much chatter out there about how most of these "ADHD kids" are just brats whose parents don't care to discipline them. And there is a part of me that wants to blame myself, as if there was anything I could do to that made this happen, or things I didn't do that created who he is. I am not putting him on meds right now, and we agreed to wait until we see how next school year starts. I'm so leery of the meds. They change the child's brain chemistry. Arguably, some kids need to have their brain chemistry altered, but I am not sure my kid is one of them.

We're in a group therapy thing at Children's right now, and it lasts eight weeks. The parents meet in one room, and the kids in another, once a week for an hour and a half. So far, it's going well for both of us.

But Aspergers? That is on the autism spectrum! I about fell out of my chair, I was so shocked. Yeah, he's what anyone might call quirky, but autistic? What the school psych said about Aspergers doesn't really seem to fit him all that well, but the Non Verbal thing absolutely makes sense. The poor child just doesn't get social cues. He's always been socially awkward and I've always written it off as shyness. But he hasn't ever outgrown what seems to be social immaturity, and I don't just mean a little bit immature.

Anyway, I'm trying to figure out what our next step is, but does there really need to be a next step? He's doing alright for now. I think I might just let the poor kid be, over the summer.

Spring quarter is a fair amount of work for me....math and a higher level history course. I have a 15 page paper as my project in the history class, which should prove interesting. Math sucks, like it always does. I'm just trying to survive this last class, then I never ever have to do it again. I almost don't care what my grade is either. I do care, but then again, as long as I pass.....

Turned down a part time gig at work yesterday. I thought, sure, I can squeeze in two days a week. Yeah, no. Between the husband's crazy schedule, the kids' activities and school, it ain't happenin'. It's just too much. I felt bad for about a second, then I was relieved I had said no.

And now I must be off to finish reading a book for class tomorrow. My professor expects an intelligent discussion. It's funny....last year, he was the TA for the history professor I had for American History, and this year he is a brand-new PhD and a professor in his own right. And I know, that I know, that I know, that he is younger than me.