You know what happens when things start to improve in my family’s life? I have absolutely nothing to say.
Ok, that’s not true. I always have something to say.
But when things start going better around here, my well of interesting writing topics dries up.
What am I supposed to talk about when no one is throwing his shoes or the iPad over the back fence? What do I say when there are no Code Browns? When the biggest bedtime issue is Charlie having a meltdown over not being allowed to download an age 17+ war game, what do I discuss?
The past year has featured nine months of one boy’s relentless behavior issues, compounded by a second boy receiving his own set of cognitive and behavioral diagnoses.
It’s been a year when I mostly felt like this:
While much of the time I haven’t wanted to write so much as I’ve wanted to scream, rend my clothing, and throw things at the blinking cursor on my tablet screen, I’ve definitely had a deep pool of writing ideas from which to draw. As long as one doesn’t mind writing about strange/embarrassing/infuriating/weirdly funny things, which I apparently don’t.
We have spent six months tinkering with Jack’s medications to reign in the aggression that took over our lives. I’ve tangoed with the psychiatrist in this back and forth dance routine of Figuring Out the Meds.
Knock on wood, (*me, tapping my fist against my skull*) we seem to have found the sweet spot, with the right meds and the right dosing and some seriously improved behavior. Don’t speak of this in more than a whisper, though. I don’t want the universe to think we’re getting cocky.
Since last summer, we have also shepherded a second of our children through the arduous process of autism diagnosis. This time, instead of a weird, rare syndrome and the lowest of the low-functioning, we have severe anxiety and the highest of the high-functioning on the spectrum, sometimes referred to as PDD-NOS (Pervasive Development Disorder-Not Otherwise Specified, or Just What You Always Wanted to Hear About Your Kid).
Consider this diagram:
It’s a nice visual.
So, about the boys: tonight they were a handful. But compared to their behavioral track record of late, they were peaches and cream.
I may have to start writing about rainbows and butterflies. Maybe ponies.>