Tuesday, May 27, 2014

This Mother's Day

Yep, another Mothers Day went by where I qualified for celebration. Me, and like, a billion other people. In the past, the day has sucked so bad that once I actually announced a do-over. Then the do-over also sucked and I came upon an important life truth. Mothers Day means, go bug your father. And make him take you somewhere.

This year though, was so good it is going in the Hall of Fame. They can argue for 97 years about who gets to be the first name on the marquee. I'm serious. They were great. 

When I got up Genea had made me- as she called it- Breakfast On The Couch (instead of Breakfast In Bed). She took so much care setting it up. She got out a big casserole dish to use as a serving tray. The main entrĂ©e was Cherie-oos ala Honey de la shoobie Nut. She had a little cup with milk, another cup for sugar and the spoon. She had gone to the trouble of digging out my favorite cereal bowl- how she remembers stuff like that I just don't know. I haven't used it in years.  Anyway, it's an awesome bowl because its tiny at the bottom therefore the cereal doesn't get all mushy and disgusting right away, and she set it all up with an empty coffee cup to be filled upon my rising.

She made a couple art projects too. One was a big flower in my 2 favorite colors. The other was 2 paper flowers in a paper vase with a poem.

Roses are red,
Grass is green,
I hope on Mothers Day
You're treated like a Queen.

So much cute! She told me her Occupational Therapist helped her with that one. I knew I liked that woman. A lot.

Teena wrote me a book. It is hilarious what is important and notable in the mind of a 9 year old.

"A Mom is...."

A Mom is someone who lets you watch your favorite Minecraft videos, even when she says it is the voice of the devil. Which it is not.
(that man's voice, makes me want to stab out my ears with a knitting needle. Stampy? Something like that)
A Mom is someone who takes you to the lake and swimming in the summer.
A Mom is someone who lets you stay up late sometimes on weekends.
A Mom is someone who lets you take gymnastics and piano lessons and even watches you do the recitals.
A Mom is someone who notices when you are responsible and rewards you with things like hugs and a KINDLE!
A Mom is someone who sometimes makes your dad do the dirty work, like when she makes him clean the cats' poo!
A Mom is someone who will love you forever and ever!

It was a great one. OH YEAH- and they got me a red velvet cheesecake! One pound per hip per bite, it was fabulously delicious. And, their Dad took them out for a few hours. Perfect.

So, if your Mother's Days have always been a sucktacular chaos fest like mine, there IS hope!

Monday, May 19, 2014

Meds Like Candy

I contacted Genea's psychiatrists office and let the nurse know we were having some issues.

This is not a seamless process. Her psychiatrist used to have a local office but moved across the state. Now we do "tele-med" with him, and our visits are a live video consult.  I requested an increase in our Awesome Med. Then the nurse calls me back to tell me what he prescribes. Here's how it goes:

1. I call and leave a message for the nurse stating clear details
2. She calls back to verify everything I just said
3. Nurse calls the doctor and leaves a message
4. Doctor calls nurse back
5. Nurse calls me back to tell me everything the doctor said.

(a side note, they asked me to fill out an opinion survey and I was all like, HELL YEAH this is great! I'd rather tele-med than go on a vacation to see the castles of Ireland! Its SO GREAT! I want to do all our appointments like this!  Actually, I don't care for it. However I am not about to lose access to another child psych!).

Anyway, I would love to know where are all those doctors who hand out pills like candy because I have never met one. Seems I'm forever reading crap about that as news. Nobody wants to "throw a bunch of pills" at my kid. We have a hundred hoops to jump through and that's okay.

He recommends a small increase, as I thought he would, then wants to see her in a week.

At that appointment, he asked me for an example of the explosiveness. The other day, Genea was sitting at the kitchen table taking her medications. She stopped in the middle to ask me if she could try on her summer clothes to see what still fit. I could have told her "yes, after you finish" in a therapeutic parenting way but really, she had screwed around so much already,  I told her instead to focus on her medicine. Besides, I put out the girls summer clothes a week earlier.

At any rate, the explosion came. Screaming, stomping, banging, throwing, crying and general hysteria, so I sent her to her room to calm down. When she returned to the table, within mere seconds she had another shrieking fit when I told her to finish up instead of refilling the cats water dish.

So, he increased her anti-anxiety medication too, and wants to see her in another week. So far, no significant changes for bad or for good.

It's a good thing I'm not working right now. I don't know how parents with paying jobs do it. She has had 4 medical appointments in the past 2 weeks, but she is not alone! Her sister has had 2 as well. Not to mention my contact lenses have turned to crust so I had an eye doctor appointment today.

Tuesday, May 6, 2014

Bipolar Every Day

There is never a day where we can predict, upon waking, what mood will strike. It could be fun and silly, or wails and shrieking. The only way to find out is to get up.

It would be great if Genea could submit a scaled number prior to going to bed. (1) being awesome and (10) being the hardest, she could give us a slip of paper saying tomorrow will be an (8).  Surely someone could invent an app for that. Along with the alarm in the morning, a number would flash on the screen. Grit your teeth, today is going to suck! Or, get your giggles ready, tomorrow is scheduled to be a (3)!

Bipolar Disorder is never something we can forget about. No relaxing with a day off. Even when Genea seems stable we have to watch, try to anticipate, and wrap our daily choices around predictable triggers.

She's had a rough few months and I'm struggling with what to do. She takes a medication that she started about 2 years ago. This one medication has made an immense difference. While other meds have helped, they typically fade after about 3 months and lose all "power" after about six. This has been the  one that has helped and kept going.

The recommended top dose is 6 milligrams and she is currently on 2 mg.  If I call her psychiatrist and ask for  an increase in dosage, he'll probably go to 2.5. Being as this is the one and only thing that has worked long term I feel like I should be hoarding the increases. 7 more years until she turns 18 and can legally make these decisions for herself, for whatever that's worth. If I'm crawling across the desert with one big sip of water left, should I wait until I am almost dead to drink it? Or should I use the last of it to push me on a little further than I could have gone otherwise, even if that means I might run out too soon?

Of course a medication increase is not up to me. However when I describe recent changes, that is most likely what her psychiatrist will do. I'm not interested in, god forbid, adding another medication. It's a tremendous gift that Genea's psychiatric team considers me a deciding part of the package. I read so often about parents who are rigidly told, instead of consulted.

The nature of Bipolar Disorder is how it cycles. The current low that we're in has been going a little over four  months- and 3 months is typical for her.  She should have pulled out of it by now. I thought she was on the upturn for a week or so until the violence returned just recently. But sometimes the lows ebb away on their own. Well, not often. Ok, maybe once. And it's possible I miscounted. Somehow though, despite 7 years of this, I hold on to hoping. Probably stupid.

Am I letting her brain damage itself? Marinating in neurological chemicals equivalent to pouring gasoline on a burning building? Is it better to increase an outside chemical with potential side effects that may or may not have long term effects?

I find myself glad I stalled signing her up for extra performance lessons in May. When her control cannot be relied on inside the house, I do not let her participate in extra things outside the house. That's always been my criteria anyway. We might do short term, inexpensive activities where if she has to miss or if she blares symptoms over a metaphorical loudspeaker, we can back out, social damage minimized.

Between the ups and downs are periods of reasonably expressed emotion. Its hard, almost as hard as the severe parts, to see balance. Because if it's in there, where does it go? Where the fuck does it go?

Then of course there is "the line" conversation I have with myself constantly. What line is this crossing? Is this a RAD thing? A  puberty thing? Is is Bipolar or that she's 11 or that she's sick or tired or what?

And the other line of my own making. Who am I to sit here with the luxury of my (presumably) logical brain thinking up all this shit to worry about? The child needs help. Get her the goddam help.


Related Posts Plugin for WordPress, Blogger...