Thursday, January 6, 2011

Mother of Pearl.

So, those of you who continue to read my blog must think I am such a whiner.

But really, I am a pretty happy and optimistic person. I have grown to be that way. As a teenager, I was just as sullen as any other, maybe more so, but as an adult, I have become pretty strong and positive.

However, sometimes, I do get down. And my blog, as unfortunate as it might be for my readers out there, is a way for me to get out my frustrations before I end up jumping from a bridge or running away to stay at a hotel for a few days, telling no one of my whereabouts (I've done that before, by the way. College.)

I don't sugar coat motherhood on this blog.

And of course, it is all about motherhood. Particularly, being a mother to a child with a few more needs than other children. Now, don't get me wrong. I feel incredibly grateful for my children. They are both healthy and happy and such blessings in my life. But, having a toddler with sensory integration disorder and developmental delays can be exhausting. I feel selfish sometimes for getting so exasperated with him, wanting to "check out" for awhile, or wishing I knew for one day what it was like to have a typical child. I mean, at least he is healthy and his conditon could be much worse. And none of it is his fault. But, nevertheless, it is difficult, and some days feel dark and hopeless.

We had his occupational therapy evaluation and he tested off the charts for most categories, especially sensory integration, hyposensitivity to movement, fine motor skills and visual motor skills. I am so grateful that he is going to be getting help for his needs before he goes to public school in 3 or 4 years. I want him to be happy and functional, to be able to control the aggression towards his brother and others, and the frustration he experiences in everyday life, and I want the same for myself. I may need therapy to learn to control my own anger and frustration. But, that costs money we don't have. Until then, crying into my green tea may be my only release.


My life revolves around Max. More guilt, by the way, because I know that my 4-month old, Harry, sometimes gets ignored and can't possibly get all the attention he deserves. We are homebound most of the time because it is impossible to take Max to a restaurant or a movie. It is difficult to take him in public. Period. He has to be strapped down in grocery carts and he is getting too big for that. Plus, if my newborn is with me as well, he needs to sit up front in the cart. So, where does Max go? If I let him walk, I lose him the minute we walk in .

I spend everyday either taking him to preschool, taking him to various therapy appointments, trying to entertain him and keep him busy with "work" related activities, like carrying heavy objects, helping with housework, raking leaves, etc. (these types of activities seem to relax him - I have since learned that this is because heavy work patterns contract a large number of muscles and compress joints, thereby providing activity that helps calm him down), trying to keep him from hurting Harry or our dog, Meeko, constantly supervising his meals so he doesn't throw his food across the room or against the walls. By the end of the night, I have nothing left to give Harry or my husband. I am completely spent.

Some mothers wish their kids wouldn't watch so much TV. I would give almost anything to have mine sit still long enough to watch a Disney movie. Or a whole cartoon from beginning to end.

And I am terrified that Harry is going to grow up timid, untrusting, and frightened of the world around him because he is everyday being hit or having some hard object thrown at him by Max. Harry is much more sensitive and needy than Max ever was.

I have been learning a lot about sensory processing. An inefficient processing system can result in everything that Max has: attention problems, frequent aggression, unpredictable explosions of emotion, poor social skills, poor balance, over response to various stimuli, difficulty maintaining an alert but relaxed state. He is very hyperactive and there were signs when he was a baby. but of course he was too young to know anything back then. As a baby, he would constantly spin his feet when he sat in his stroller or in his highchair. He would also constantly shake his arms and hands while he was in his highchair. He could not be still AT ALL.

My days are really hard and most of them end up with me crying or with a stomach ache because I am so stressed out. I just pray that his therapy helps him and teaches us, as his parents, the skills we need to help him here at home. Our lives can't go on like this. They just can't.


Our sweet Max

Thanks everyone for listening. I appreciate it. I will try to write some more uplifting posts in the future!! But, Mother of Pearl! Can I get a freaking break? Oh yeah, and a money tree? Thanks.

8 comments:

  1. This is the point of a blog...it's your blog. To release what you need to release. And I really hope it helps. It sounds like you are overwhelmed...and exhausted. I truly hope things improve for you...thinking of you.

    ReplyDelete
  2. Let it out! And if crying into your green tea helps, do that too! Here's to hoping that money tree sprouts up overnight. And if it does share the love. xoxo

    ReplyDelete
  3. It's totally ok to vent here. This is your place! I can understand how day in, day out that would have to be more than frustrating to deal with the challenges. I'm really glad you're getting some help now while he's still little!

    ReplyDelete
  4. I totally understand. I don't know how I would have managed my son if I had another baby in the house.

    You may want to look up body socks on ebay - they are stretchy sleeping bag kinda things that can help kids like Max calm down.

    My son used his and it helped. It kind of squeezes him in, so his arms are close to his body. Sometimes that pressured touch helps them calm themselves.

    ReplyDelete
  5. Writing is a therapy for all of us one way or the other. Sending good thoughts and hugs your way.

    ReplyDelete
  6. You write whatever the hell you want (sorry for the language!). I come here for your honesty. It's refreshing! I live with a toddler too and though our situations are different, we are still mothers. I appreciate reading your adventures, misadventures, struggles and hopes.
    Keep it up and I hope our comments help!!

    Hugs to you!
    And I'm so sorry you were sick over Christmas.

    We went to go look into a part time home daycare the other day and when we walked in the lady said Sorry I have the flu and I forgot to call you! I was like, WHAT?!!! We are leaving! Don't talk ANYTHING!
    Great.

    ReplyDelete
  7. That's what a blog is for-it's your place, so don't worry about letting feelings go. Getting them out and leaving them somewhere is probably calming (it is to me too!) The weekend is here so I hope you can relax a little...

    ReplyDelete
  8. Remember you are not alone, check out this video about a boy named Ryder and see him learn to organize sensory information with the help of pediatric therapy bit.ly/eazxtF. Another great resource would be to check out Pathways Center http://www.pathwayscenter.org/!

    ReplyDelete

I love your lovely thoughts...