At this point I think I should talk about how we got here. In an earlier post I talked about how I had known long before his actual diagnosis that we had a special child.
So where did it begin?
As I said earlier it began right from his first steps, he was always a busy kid.
Once he turned three was when it became very apparent. I was told I was too hard on him, that he’s just being a boy, that I needed to go easy on him, but I couldn’t accept any of those.
If I went easy on him, he was like the Tasmanian devil (and that’s no joke!), if I let my guard down for even a second he would be jumping off the counter (literally), if I slacked off and eased up on the rules and routine, we would suffer for days.
Tyler’s Dad and I split when he was about 2 years old. We just didn’t work and with the challenges of Tyler added on top of it we just couldn’t make it work at all. So, every few days Tyler would visit his Dad and Nan. The break was a welcomed one, one that I really really really needed! But those first couple days he was back were torture.
Their routine was much different from mine and boy did I know it when he came home. Every little thing would set him off, his sleep was different, his eating was different and it would take those first few days to get him to be somewhat back to our normal.
After a while of this I began to google. And most things I was noticing were linked to ADHD. So, I made an appointment with a pediatrician in St.John’s. She told us he was too young to diagnose and to watch what he’s eating and drinking and to make sure he’s getting enough sleep. I thought to myself, well this is easy, he’s already a pretty decent sleeper and he’s not too bad of an eater.
The behavior continued…….
We made an appointment with our family Doctor. She recommended behavioral therapy through community health.
So that’s what we did…..
With only two sessions they referred us to a program called Strongest families.
http://strongestfamilies.com/ Here’s the link.
This program was awesome!! It helped a lot! And I completely recommend it if you’re having any behavior problems. The techniques they teach and the support from the coaches is incredible. I was finding that he was pretty good when I was around but when he was left to his own devices, he was a terror. He was swearing, hitting, lying, and misbehaving all the time.
Now, on to school life. Our first teacher was amazing, we both loved her so so much! She didn’t see it at all, she said that he’s busy and bright and just an active kid. His second teacher could see something, there were numerous notes sent home about him disrupting class and misbehaving. His bus rides were torture for his poor bus driver. At least once a week I was called to the school to find Tyler sitting in the office. We were told he was pretty close to getting removed from the bus for safety concerns. Then onto his principal. I will never be able to thank him enough. Lucky for us he was well aware of this mental illness. He brings me in one day and says “have you ever thought about ADHD?” And he will never know the flood of emotions that went through me that day.
It was like 5 elephants jumped off my shoulders. It was that long black tunnel finally had a pin hole of light to run to. I then proceeded to tell him about how we talked about it before but nothing ever came of it. I told him if he would back me up I would begin the process again.
This school has supported us ever since!
It was because of everything we had already done and the backing of the school that our diagnosis process went fairly quickly.
But a quick diagnosis isn’t always thes norm. So have patience, they want to rule out any other issues before this one because the medications could be very harmful to a child that doesn’t have ADHD.
Since diagnosis, it’s been a learning curve. I’m currently in the middle of reading a book called The Explosive Child. This one has already had so many “aha” moments. I’ll make a post about it when I’m finished, if it’s helped or not.
Next on the roster is What to expect when parenting children with ADHD by Penny Williams.
And that brings us to today. Where I’m writing these blogs and hoping to connect with those parents that are at a loss.
I’m also in the process of finding out more information on local support groups and programs, because it really does take a village to get us all though this journey.