Life Happens

I’ve been MIA for a few weeks now, and for good reason. Life happened. We got busy. I did some things for myself. I depended on family in times of need. Let me start at the beginning.

My car (that is so close to being paid off I can taste it) has decided to throw a temper tantrum. It kept running hot and I couldn’t figure out why. My dad met me on the side of the road and found nothing. A few days later it happened again. I made it to my brother’s place of work for him to look at it, and he spotted a leak. The tank for my coolant was cracked. Lucky for me, he works at a shop and could fix it in no time. Now it’s the tires…

Then we had Rae’s schedule to keep. A follow up with her pediatrician for her meds was scheduled right in the middle of this awful flu epidemic. We sat in a waiting room full of masks for what seemed like forever. After all of the flu patients were rushed through, we were finally seen. Her dosage was upped to 10 mg again, but everything else was perfect. Weight gain, progress, shared info were all what they needed to be.

After the pediatrician, we raced to her chiropractic appointment. She cracked and popped like it was her first adjustment. Poor kid wasn’t happy about it. But got the clear to come back in a month.

A few meltdowns this week, and she was back to normal Rae by Friday.

On top of the craziness, the weather hasn’t been on my side either. Rain, rain, rain…could be worse.

Friday at around lunch time I got a call asking if I could meet my sister-in-law at the ER. Her youngest fell at school and broke her wrist. Poor thing was so pitiful! I worked a smile and a few giggles out of her before going to pick Rae up from school.

The week ended with a rainy girl’s night and Rae spending time with her grandparents.

All in all, I have no complaints. Yes I was frustrated when things didn’t go right, but there was also so much positive to see. I have family to help me. I have friends to spend time with. We have all that we need and wake up every morning to another beautiful day. I guess what I’m trying to say is don’t take the small positives for granted. They count, too. Sometimes those small positives are all you need to make it to the next day. Enjoy the ups and downs life throws at you. They are all worth it!

The Infamous “I”…

Let me start by bragging a little on my kid. She received her report card yesterday and got so many good marks! I am one very proud mommy!!

Now, let me explain the “I” in my title… The kindergarten report card uses letters: P= Proficient, I= In Progress, and N= Needs More Time to Develop. There’s an “I” on her report card that has been consistent last school year and so far this year. Am I upset about it? Not really. Here’s why…

Rae’s infamous “I” is in the box marked Self Control. As any parent knows, self control is learned in life and isn’t an easy task for some. Rae’s struggle has always been in this area. We’ve done exercises, activities, research, therapy, you name it to try to help her with this. It’s gotten better over time, but there’s still those moments. Here are some things that we’ve tried to help her with self control:

1) Marshmallow Game / Bubble Pop: sit a marshmallow in front of the child. Tell them not to eat it until the timer goes off. (We did 5 minutes.) After the time is up, allow the child to eat the marshmallow. As for the bubbles, blow them around your child but tell them not to pop any by moving around. Of course after the allotted time of not popping them, let them have fun!

2) Make expectations clear and be consistent with consequences. Rae knows what is expected of her. I have tried to get everyone that interacts with her on a daily basis on the same page. There are still a few bumps on this path, but for the most part it’s smoothing out. This also coincides with the next item on the list.

3) Routine! She thrives on a stable and predictable routine. The slightest change can throw her whole day off. We talk about our day before we start it, and discuss the events of it before bed. If anything has to change from our norm, she is aware of it in advance if at all possible.

4) Reminders. When Rae has a “moment” as I like to call them, I point it out to her. Then I remind her of past consequences from this same action. This one has been tough because she tries to give a logical explanation for what’s happening and then talk her way out of the known consequence. (I’m in for a long road with this one! 🙂) I stick to my reminders and consequences, and usually we get back on track.

Side note: I like to create a maintain a good relationship with Rae’s teachers. This includes school, dance, etc. If she’s having an off day, they are made aware of it. Rae knows when this communication is made by either witnessing it or her teachers mentioning it to her. That connection between home and wherever she may be has been a huge help for her. I am so very grateful for the support she receives and the time they invest in her well-being.

I know her self control will come. It’s just going to take a little longer for her to establish. This is chalked up to not only her ADHD, but to her being a child. She is an emotional little bundle of love. And I look forward to every step we take to help her grow, even the tough ones.

It takes a village! ❤️

For Your Entertainment

I know I usually focus a good bit on Rae’s ADHD and the struggles we face, but this time I want to share some of our funny moments with you. So, sit back and enjoy snippets of our humorous life! 🙂

1) Every parent has that one go-to phrase they use in frustrating moments. Rae has finally picked up on mine…She was coloring in the car a few days ago and I hit a bump causing her to go out of the lines. She slams her hand down on the paper and growls out, “God bless America!” Hey, it could be worse.

2) We had communion during Sunday service this past week. Rae has always had questions about baptism and stories she’s heard, but this peaked a whole new interest in her this time around. She would quietly ask about the bread, and I’d whisper that she could listen to the pastor or I’d explain after church. Then came the juice. She listened, but apparently when he mentioned “the blood of Jesus”, she thought we had blood in our cups. She tries to quietly tell me not to drink the “blood”. After I partake in the juice, she gets a worried look and tells me to never drink blood again. It was very hard to explain the semblance when she was determined that she heard the pastor correctly.

3) New babies in our family always brings up fun questions. Rae inspected my stomach one day looking for where she was “extracted” from. Apparently she caught a glimpse of her aunt’s c-section scar, and that’s the point of extraction. (I had a natural delivery…tiptoed around that conversation.)

4) Has anybody else’s kid pretended to have another name? Rae’s alias is Coral. She has signed her name as Coral on artwork, told me I called her the wrong name (in public!), and even had people believing that her first name was Coral. I just throw my hands up at that one now and leave it alone.

Share some of your funny moments! A good laugh never hurts the heart.

I’ve been slack…

Ok, I know I haven’t written lately, but life happens. Rae decided to cheer for the town, and a lot of free time goes into that. With that being said, let me bring you up to speed:

Rae went back to her pediatrician a few weeks ago. She was starting to develop a small tic and slight stutter. I brought these up to him (she was on 10mg of Focalin XR) and he decided it was best to cut her back to 7.5mg. She had also lost some weight, so I bought her Pediasure to try to keep that from happening. She drinks it fairly easily every day, but now she is having trouble at school again. Talking, arguing with her classmates…seems like we are back to the impulse control issue also. I know these things come with ADHD. The thought running through my mind now is, “could something in the Pediasure be affecting the medication?”. Anybody have any insight?? I’ve tried researching this, but came up with nothing. For right now we will go back to trial and error by saving the Pediasure for bedtime. I’ll keep y’all posted. (On the plus side, the Pediasure seems to have helped the tummy aches!)

On to cheer! Her coaches are so very understanding…🙂 by the time she gets to practice her meds are long gone. She enjoys the games, caught on to the routines quick, and has made a lot of new friends. The season is coming to a close and competition is approaching. Her meds will be on board that day…

As for me, I have been working on a personal project. Not going into a lot of detail, but hopefully by next summer I will have something bigger to share with y’all. A clue: I enjoy writing and have set a HUGE goal for myself. This one has been brewing for a while. 😉 Send me some motivation!!

Tough Life Lessons

Here it is, the end of August. This month has been full of ups and downs for myself and Rae. My biggest ups are Rae’s accomplishments. School: she’s gotten good colors every single day so far. That’s a big difference from last year. She’s reading books to me every day. Her chore chart is filling up with stars for daily jobs. And that’s just the tip of the iceberg.

My greatest down has been watching Rae face disappointment and losing her fur friend, Chloe (or Miss Kitty…it depends on the day. 🙂). She celebrated her dad’s birthday yesterday. The second one since his accident. We sent up balloons with some of the family and she sang with her cousins. Then she had to wake up this morning to learn that her outside cat had been attacked by dogs. This was another big deal for her simply because it’s the cat that showed up not long after her dad’s death. This leads to my point of this post…

My five year old had to learn today that not all animals are nice and sweet. She’s never had to deal with mean or vicious animals. She couldn’t wrap her brain around why these dogs wanted to hurt her kitty. Time for her “big girl” discussion.

I explained to her that sometimes you have a bad animal that doesn’t care who or what they hurt. There’s also some people in this world like that. God didn’t make them that way (people or animals), other things in this world did. Her innocence in this situation made me feel like dirt because I couldn’t do anything to help the poor cat. In my heart and mind, hurting those dogs wouldn’t have made the situation any better. I would’ve then had to try to justify those actions to Rae. She’s watching my every move. If I can show her what difference a hint of grace and compassion can make, even in tough times, then I hope they stick with her. I don’t want her to think it’s ok to let this often cruel world shape you into a different person than who you want to be. The Golden Rule has been a recurring topic since school started (thanks K5 teacher!!). Maybe…just maybe I can help inscribe that on her heart.

*Dont get me wrong, I am a firm believer in defending yourself and taking up for others, but don’t cast the first stone. It’s not worth the long term effects. Oh, and the dog situation is being dealt with by Animal Control.