My son. Where to start? First of all, he is smooshed between two sisters. There are times I can see in his face that being stuck in the middle of two girls, one with raging hormones is just a tad too... nuts.
When he was four years old, I knew something was really off. I'd seen some odd behaviors before then. Actually when he was a newborn. For the first three months of his life, he only would sleep in his car seat. He hated being held unless it was to be fed or changed. Everything HAD TO BE on his terms.
But at the age of four, things were really very peculiar. He would "order" things. Anything he could get a hold of. Books, CD's, toys. You name it, he ordered it in odd ways. Everything had to line up perfectly, be color coordinated or "numbered right". Sometimes all of the above.
Then, I came to note that he rarely if ever made eye contact. When he did, it was for only a few seconds at a time. Even these days, to get him to really look you in the eyes as you speak to him can be a chore.
His hyperness was another "abnormal" thing I noted. As was his violent tendencies. I'm talking "watch your back" violent moments.
Of course, I kept on FEELING something was quite wrong with my child. Compared to his big sister, he was just completely off the hook. I honestly at times feared for my life. And for a year, I pushed to have him tested for ADHD, being his activity primarily fit that specification.
After at least three repeated attempts, his Primary Care doctor REFUSED to let him be tested. So I forced them to give me a referral to a specialized group of Psychologists, Psychiatrists and Therapists that specialized in Mental Disorders and Illnesses.
Finally, after the testing was all said and done and the Psychiatrist and Psychologist really got to see my son in action...quirks and all, there was an official diagnosis. Actually, more than one.
ADHD (Attention Deficit Hyperactivity Disorder), OCD (Obsessive Compulsive Disorder), Sensory Disorder, Anxiety Disorder, Manic Depression, and the real shocker, Bipolar Disorder (which for now is labeled as Mood Disorder due to his age of only nine years old).
As of now, he is on Vyvanse and Intuniv for the ADHD, and on Seroquel for everything else, including as a sleep aide.
Believe me, as his mother, and a mother to two other children, I can and do have my days. Some days, he and I are seemingly at one another's throats. Other days, it's as if he is having a "moment" of clarity. Those are the days I cherish, since they are seemingly far and few between.
After reading this, I hope you will join me on my journey of documentation of his life as a child with mental disabilities (being that they DO impact his social, behavior, maturity and daily living skills/abilities) and maybe gain some knowledge of what life is like for kids like him and the parents like myself that care for and love them.
Until next time...