Posts Tagged ‘bipolar teen’

Oh well!

November 9, 2015

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I am finding myself in this new phase of parenting. I truly believe that the core of ones parenting is in the formative years, and now at 12 & 14, I find myself not having to “parent” so much as guide and support. I believe my children’s person has been there since the day they were born, I also watch in awe at the person they now are.
As the parent of a high needs child, I look back at where we were, I see where we are today and I look forward with hope.
Parenting is chalk full of not knowing 100% what to do and how to do it.
All one can do is try. And I believe that oh wells are far better than what ifs!

Travelling the journey we have with dude, we’ve been faced with numerous hard decisions, when all we had to go on was crossed fingers. Yet we always dove in, if it couldn’t hurt, we’d do it.
Should we try this therapy? This medication? This test?
We have had a lot of oh wells.
But we’ve also had a lot of ah has!

Without taking those leaps, being willing try, we wouldn’t have our child here today.

I appreciate that diagnosis and treatment can be overwhelming and scary.
Often our first defence is denial, because truly in our hearts we wish perfect lives for our children. I also appreciate that the sooner you can work through that denial and onto acceptance, the better off it is for your child.
Denying the illness, disorder, etc will not benefit your child.
I also completely understand disagreeing with professionals from time to time, I know I have.
I always like to remember what my sons doctor explained to us when he was very young, and pass it on to parents ; diagnosis of children is extremely complicated. It may be years before the final and most accurate is made. Children’s brains develop differently, they also change while doing so.
With that information it’s good to remember that diagnosis can change as the brain develops. That doesn’t mean that a previous diagnosis is incorrect, it means that at that time it was a fitting one.
For example my sons doctor will seldom  diagnosis certain mental illness before a certain age, bipolar is one in which he airs on the side of caution when diagnosing. The only reason my son was diagnosed at 12, is because we had worked closely with the same doctors and therapists for 6 years, and his symptoms had always been the same, but at that time they were very clear cut bipolar symptoms.
Some diagnosis are made young, as they should be (autism, aspergers, SPD, etc).  Those diagnosis are imperative to early intervention and treatment. We had a handful of those and more as well. But others you have to bide your time to get to.
Along the way you may have a diagnosis that fits the symptoms present at that time. Another example ; my sons initial diagnosis included adhd, which is now taken out as those symptoms have evolved and are encompassed in his current diagnoses.
It’s tricky and complicated, and at times damn confusing . And a lot of work!  The journey tries your patience, it drains you. But honestly, as difficult as it all is, accepting and trying all you can, is worth it. Your child is worth it.
I will always take the oh wells over the what ifs when it comes to trying to help my child grow to be successful in his journey.
If it doesn’t all work, oh well!

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The big bad conversation.

September 10, 2015

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Suicide prevention day.

To me, and many it’s not a day.
We don’t just talk about it for a day.
It’s life. It’s semi normal conversation, albeit a crappy conversation. But a real conversation that must be had.
It’s a conversation we find vital, and as important as any other. It’s a conversation that must be had.
It’s not just a conversation, it’s so much more. It’s a touch, a hug, a tear, appointments, meds, doctors, frustration, anger, heart break and unimaginable sadness, it’s support and love, smiles and laughter. All in the hopes of keeping suicide at bay. Or yes ultimately preventing it.

Yes it’s a difficult subject to talk about but one we must have. For so many reasons,and one that should be had by more people.
So many have been touched, but it’s still such a taboo topic, and those who haven’t been affected simply don’t, can’t understand. So the conversation is important. Don’t tell me it’s not. Suicide is a topic that in my opinion should be discussed, as much as diabetes and cancer. To take away the shame, the blame and the non accurate assumptions and the judgement, the all mighty judgement that goes along it.
So start talking. Today gives you the perfect opportunity.

Our reality, the hardest of all realities for us to understand or accept is: we don’t know. We don’t know how long our loved ones will be able to fight, battle, suffer and try before they can’t anymore.
All we can do is support, love and guide. All we can do is hope. Every single day we hope we can some how prevent the tragedy that so many, to many, suffer.
And to accept that we’ve done all we can, and will continue to do so and acknowledge and accept that sometimes we can’t prevent suicide.

But please remember those who die of suicide or are thinking of it, haven’t just had a bad day.
A day didn’t bring them to the last resort as a day won’t stop it.
Prevention is everyday, not simply a day in September where we band together. But if it can get the conversation started, and  resounding voices around the world, I am all for a prevention day.

http:// https://bestkids.wordpress.com/2014/09/10/lets-talk/

From caterpillar to butterfly.

August 18, 2015

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Just like that, those 8 seconds are gone. I’ve missed writing, but so enjoyed those moments of just being.

As my boy plugs through this life that so “kindly” cocoons at every corner he turns, I’m amazed often at how he works desperately to knock them off and fly.
His life is a constant caterpillar /butterfly effect. And that quite frankly sucks. But the beauty is so worth it. Those moments of anguish and pain are out weighed by those of pure and simple joy.

I look back 10 years ago, then 5, then 3, heck even that many months and I am amazed at where we are today.

Don’t get me wrong, bipolar definitely still lives here, anxiety and ptsd still reside in our walls, they’re not going anywhere. What amazes me is his acceptance, understanding and knowledge of each and how damn hard he works to overcome them. And how doing so has changed not only his life but ours.

For a 14 year old those things are astounding.
The fact that he can now tell us what he needs (to be left alone, a walk, to talk etc) depending on his mood has been a huge shift! The fact that he is able almost all the time to describe his moods (and if they’re just a bad day or cycles) is monumental in our world.

Often this summer I’ve watched him battle, literally you can see it on his face, to overcome and ultimately conquer things he would have easily avoided in the past.
It’s exhausting for him, and it’s heartbreaking for us to let him break those walls without being able to help. Wishing so bad that it could be easier, wishing so bad he could conquer the things that are so minimal to most, yet monumentus to him.
Watching the cautious steps he takes forward in his unsure steps makes my heart smile.

A lot of it has to do with having accepting and kind people around (even strangers!) while he’s taking them. The little words of encouragement from those who don’t even know our story, the family that just simply let’s him be until he figures it out , no pressure, and the people who actually make an effort to see past an illness that a) makes first moments sometimes a bit shaky and b)even when or if they don’t understand  they make no assumption or judgement based on an obviously big kid full of nerves they’ve never met but instead of an odd look they give a smile. And those that do know our story and don’t care, or do care enough to look past it, and realize there’s so much more to the kid than an illness.   His knocking those cocoons off isn’t nearly as difficult with you along the way.

But he continues to overcome the caterpillar and soar, and we’re proud. As so many parents are proud of the trophies and medals, we are proud of the simple things taken for granted.

Typically after the “butterfly” moment, we endure a week of the return of the “caterpillar”. But I will take all the caterpillars in the world for an hour with the butterfly!

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Scared, proud, sad, happy

July 20, 2014

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How can 13 years go so fast, yet so slow?
There were days I thought that would last forever.
Doctors visits, therapy sessions and hospital stays that seemed endless.  In fact I was sure at those moments they were the end of the world.
Dude turns 13 today.  And yes I shed a tear (or more ).
I look back on the moment I first became a mother.
I remember the joy, the fear most of all the love.
My first little (literally ) miracle baby. With a head full of jet black hair and old eyes.
I remember almost instantly becoming a protective mama bear.
I was young (21), and I was scared.
Could I do this? Would I be good at being a mommy?  What if I had more clue? I didn’t!
As the years passed and we learned our boy was not going to be the typical child, I realized I really truly didn’t care. If we had him, that was enough.
I learned that each day truly is a blessing, because you really never know what tomorrow will bring.
You see there are moments that I wish he could be as free as other children.  Moment’s my heart physically hurts for him. Moment’s that having the weight of bipolar and other illnesses is almost to much to bare for him.
But there’s moment’s of accomplishment, moment’s of strength and Oh so many moment’s of courage.
And there’s love.  Endless love and caring and kindness.
We don’t know what to expect as the teen years come.  OK we know kind of what the general teen years bring. 
But see I’d be lying if I said I wasn’t that scared mom all over again.  We know these years will
be our toughest.  We know That life will throw us some huge curves in these years to come.
And I’m scared.  I’m scared I won’t have the words, and the comfort he’ll need.  I’m scared even if I do they won’t be enough.
Yes I understand I need to embrace this stage.  Yes I am loving and looking forward to the young man he is and will become.
But there’s a piece of me that’s petrified because you see a teen /young adult with bipolar is a very scary, very real thing. It’s not the normal ups and Downs.  Not the normal attitude.  No it’s very realistically life or death.
So yes say what you will, I’m scared.
I’ve shared that I’ve been having a hard time with the looming 13th birthday, but o haven’t shared why, because it’s not a great or easy thing to share.  And it’s a lonely place to be with a fear you’re not sure people will understand.
But you don’t need to understand. 
Actually I’m glad most people don’t, because that would mean you are going through it.
But I’m proud. So extremely proud of my son. I love his compassion, his acceptance, his understanding, his loyalty, his old soul.
I love that if he let’s you see that twinkle in his eye you know your special!
I love his perseverance, his strength and his bravery.
I love his heart, his wisdom and his elusive laughter.
I am so incredibly proud he chose me for his mom.
I am so incredibly proud to call him my son.
May the stars shine bright just for you buddy, may your worries be small and your days bright.
May you receive all the happiness you deserve.