Wednesday, October 27, 2010

Our New Doc

Before I tell you about the new psychiatrist we met with today, let me tell you about the first one we saw.

In May, after Charlie was having some major rages, his then therapist said it was time to get a psychiatrist involved. There aren't many to choose from around here. We made an appointment with the first available child and adolescent psychiatrist. Now I know why he had an opening within a few weeks of our calling.

Our initial assessment with him was, how shall I say it, um, not good. We were in and out with a diagnosis, prescription and follow-up appointment within about 18 minutes. Granted, I pretty much needed confirmation of what it was and how to help him better, but was not thinking someone who didn't know us from Adam could decipher what exactly was wrong in about 15 minutes. Even though I totally disagreed with his approach, I agreed with his diagnosis and medical treatment. So I started him on Depakote after a long (45 minute) talk with Charlie's pediatrician and some soul searching.

Each subsequent appointment was no more than five minutes and very clinical and matter of fact. Psychiatrists aren't counselors. I know their job is to diagnose and prescribe medicine, but there has to be some kind of happy medium out there that was better than this. This was not right.

After our second appointment (and after giving the Dr. the benefit of the doubt) I made an appointment for an assessment with a different doctor that is affiliated with the Child and Adolescent Bipolar Foundation. I figured he would at least be able to tell me without much doubt if in fact it is bipolar that we're dealing with, or simply an extremely strong willed child.

Today we had that appointment. For starters, the office is a little house downtown that's on the National Historic Register and it was so cozy and welcoming. His appointment was at 11. He came out to meet us and introduced himself to Charlie first. I thought that was pretty cool! Either he or I was in with the doctor for a total of one hour and forty minutes! Just that time amount alone made me so happy!

He was very thorough. He was kind. He was compassionate. He was validating of my parenting methods. He was very knowledgeable. He was helpful. He was positive. He was honest. He was thoughtful. He rocked!

His final verdict was bipolar-NOS and ADD. The ADD part was a bit shocking to me, but makes sense now that he explained it. The impulsivity, the lack or organization (at home and at school), carelessness in school tasks, procrastination, remembering odd pieces of info and not other more important pieces of info, etc.

We are upping his mood stabilizer for now. We are adding in Focalin and some melatonin for hopefully easier/better sleep.

Make no doubts about it, it has been and will continue to be a tough road. But I feel a little more confident now having someone who can make important, educated decisions with me about what's in the best interst of Charlie and our family.

I'm breathing a big sigh of relief!


Sunday, October 24, 2010

A Bible Verse

Ephesians 4:31-32

Let all bitterness and wrath and anger and clamor and slander be put away from you, along with all malice. Be kind to one another, tenderhearted, forgiving one another, as God in Christ forgave you.

This was the daily verse on my phone today. How appropriate for me and how I'm feeling! I was feeling so much anger towards my son for all of yesterday's happenings.

As always, I'm working on this and just wanted to share!


Saturday, October 23, 2010

What a Day!

Let me say that again and be more honest this time. That was just a horrible, awful, despicable, miserable, terrible day.

I can't rehash all of the little details, but what I can tell you is that it started with being spit at in the face, continued on with a consequence of not going to a neighborhood party, and just ended (fingers crossed that he goes to sleep well).

I am so wiped out and thankful for my mom who kept brother most of the day and my neighbors who watched over brother while he enjoyed the party.

This new psychiatrist appointment on Wednesday can't come fast enough. I pray that he will help us find some answers. I'm not sure how long this living situation can continue on like this.

Please pray for us that God will give us strength to get through this very rocky period in our lives.


Thursday, October 21, 2010

A Nice Calm Game

My boys and two neighbor boys are calmly playing Seattleopoly in his room right now. The door is open. No one is yelling. No one is fighting. No one is crying. There is cooperation. There is helping going on. Wow!

It's hard to believe the total shift in emotions he's been through in the last 48 hours. It's gone from crying in despair because he didn't know what was wrong to climbing on top of the van and thinking he's invincible to this. This is perfect. This is what I imagine normal to be like. I like this. A lot. This is his normal self.

I'm glad we still get glimpses of this. I don't know how we'd handle it all if we didn't get these glimpses of normality.

Wishing you a normal day too!

Wednesday, October 20, 2010

The Boy and the Van

This morning he was fine when he woke up, happy even. We ate breakfast and he disappeared into his room. When I went to remind him to get ready for school, he was hiding underneath his table and said he wasn't going to school. Literally, just moments ago, he was in a very normal mood.

Time went on and it was time to go to school and he was not ready. I told him I was taking Ryan to school and that dad would stay home with him until I got back home.

He now wanted to go to school, but wasn't ready and was very mad about that. He'd come to the van, yell at me, run back to the house, run back to the van and on and on.

Several minutes later he ran up to the van, that was now on the street, and jumped on top of it and got all the way on the top and wouldn't get down. He was up there 30 seconds or so, then got down. He then opened the front door and was trying to break it off by slamming it the opposite way it's supposed to go.

Now he got in the van, but would not buckle. We waited for a few minutes for him to buckle. He'd buckle, then unbuckle, buckle, then unbuckle. Finally he kept it buckled and we drove off. While we were driving out of the neighborhood he unbuckled.

I pulled over as soon as I could and called my husband to come and get him. While we were waiting, he ripped up and wadded up three of his school papers and threw them at my head.

He got into dad's car and I took brother to school. Brother was tardy due to his brother's actions today.

I went home and he had built a fort of sorts and was calmly playing with Legos. I told him that he would have a few more minutes to gather his thoughts and then get ready for school.

An hour later he had calmed down enough to go to school. He went and was fine the whole day and seems to be fine right now.

How is this child who is so far out of his mind that he literally climbs the van like he's King Kong one minute and absolutely fine and dandy the next?

His teacher emailed and said he had a fine day. What??? How could that be?? I want him to have a fine day, but how in the world can he go from downright crazy-acting to normal in no time at all?

I'm so confused!


Tuesday, October 19, 2010


"You're hot and you're cold. You're yes and then you're no. You're in and you're out. You're up and then you're down."

Thank you Katy Perry for that song that describes our life perfectly right now.

He sees a new psychiatrist next Wednesday and I hope and pray he can help us off this roller coaster. It's taxing on all of us.

Today I yelled at him. I should not have yelled at him. He's so bored and angry and I want him to feel well and happy and content.

I'm sorry you don't know what you want to do.

I'm sorry you don't want to do your homework.

I'm sorry you don't like it when your friend plays with your brother.

I'm sorry you don't like anything I make to eat.

I'm sorry you hate showering.

I'm sorry you hate brushing your teeth.

I'm sorry you are mad at the world.

I'm sorry life is like this for you.

I'm sorry you didn't put your laundry in the hamper for me to wash.

I'm sorry your friend throws the ball too hard.

I'm sorry you're too tired to get up and go to bed.

I'm sorry you're too tired to wake up and go to school.

I'm sorry you chose not to study for your test and failed it.

I'm sorry.

I'm so sorry.



Thursday, October 14, 2010

Youtube Video

Tonight I was looking on Youtube for videos about children with bipolar. I was very dissapointed in many of them. However, this was a good one and I wanted to share.


Monday, October 11, 2010

Tonight is Not a Good Night

As I type this, my son is trying to break my door. I've locked myself in my bedroom so as to practice active ignoring. Tonight he is refusing to take his medicine. Besides the natural consequences of one not taking their medicines, I've also told him (in a calm and loving way) that if he chooses not to take his medicine or allow me to give it to him, it will result in him having to take his medicine at the nurse's office (which we'd discussed previously at a more stable time) and also talk to his counselor tomorrow about him deciding not to take his medicine. I would think this would be huge consequence enough for him since he's not ever "real" with his counselor that he loves.

After 30 minutes of this nonsense, he's quieted down. I will go check to see if he's
ready to comply. To be continued....

Well that didn't go well; just pissed him off even more.

So much for a good night. Doesn't help at all that my husband almost eggs him on. Any of you deal with the spouse who is more harm than help?