Not for me, oddly enough, but for my son. He’s not your normal ADHD kid with enough energy to run a small city if he were running on a treadmill hooked to a generator. No, he has some other issues knocking about in that blond head of his to keep things interesting.
He has behavioral issues which drive poor unsuspecting teachers mad. These same issues make for tense parents and grandmother. My mom, Dave, and I cringe when the phone rings during school hours. We just know he has done something that requires them to call us to come get him. This was very true in kindergarten, first grade, and part of second grade. He spent time on suspension until we started poking the school faculty into following our request.
Jackson Elementary was not the school for Colin. They were extremely slow in doing their own testing after we filled out the paperwork. While they wandered around figuring things out, he was ostracized by not just the students in his class, but by his teacher as well. This happened in Kindergarten. No wonder he needs therapy now. I mean, what teacher, in their right mind, ostracizes a child, knowing he cannot help what he is doing, and encourages the other kids to do the same. If another kid started something, naturally Colin would react, but he would get all the blame. The other kid is given a pat on the head and left to do what they wanted.
Colin was labeled a bad kid because the school took so long trying to get things set up. We, his parents, had no idea who to talk to or where to go to have him tested. The counselors could not, or would not, tell us anything. He may not have been the best student, but he aced his academic testing at the end of the year and they gave him nothing but grief. Jackson is a school which should be closed down and the teachers sent back to school.
My mom and I decided to put him in another school. Skelly, his current school, is just across the street from us; a five minute walk. First grade was rough, but the school started pointing us in the right direction once they saw what he was like. Other circumstances also had us seeing the proper doctors and putting him on medication.
Now, almost three years later, Colin has blossomed in so many ways. His speech is clear, he can form complete thoughts and articulate as if he had never had problems before. His handwriting is what is difficult for him now. We could see the changes within the first few months of speech therapy. Each of the therapists he’s had have done a wonderful job and he enjoys these sessions.
Occupational therapy took a bit longer to get started. The first assessment he had shown problems, but it took a bit more paperwork from not just us, his family, but observations from his teachers, too. His OT sessions have him working on gross and fine motor skills, things we never really saw until they were pointed out. Thanks to his first OT therapist, we were able to get him over that final hurdle of potty training. Those last steps were the hardest and he’d use bathroom accidents as a way to go home early.
His second grade teacher, wonderful woman who did everything she could to help, would not allow him that luxury. Unless it was a bad accident, he put on a change of clothes we kept handy and stayed the whole day. Also, during second grade, he had a change of medication which turned out to be the right mix and dosage, which made things much easier on all of us.
Looking at him today, I can see he isn’t the child who skipped ahead of me when I’d walk him home from school back in Jackson. He is a special little boy. He’s made so many breakthroughs in this year alone; the one I am most proud of being the three friends that he has come looking for him almost every day. As much as I love my boy, he needed kids his age to interact with instead of a video game or the television.
Now, we’ve added in Behavioral therapy. This is making for a long day for me. Long enough that I must have the day off. It just wouldn’t be worth the effort to go in for a few hours leave for four or five hours then come back for one hour and go home. Wouldn’t be fair to anyone. Due to circumstances at work that have temporarily taken me out of the pharmacy, I have requested Thursdays off for therapy and doctor visits. As much as I hate to split my days off, I need to for my little boy.
Seeing him improve, I wonder if I should seek psychological help for my own mental problems. I’m not bipolar, or something like that, but thanks to the torture I endured in school and what my ex put me through for years, I’m not exactly the most stable person. Working on the registers on the front end is a nightmare; one I care not to repeat for the safety of the customers. Claustrophobia, agoraphobia, probably a few others, maybe even a dash of ADD, needs to be addressed. With all these characters talking in my head, some more demanding than others, multiple personality disorder isn’t something I need be concerned about until they decide to take over all at once. (Just kidding)
Where, or when, I should work those sessions in is beyond me unless they can do after hours or Sunday visits. Somehow, both seem very unlikely. Good thing I do have my writing to keep things straight in my head. One day, I’ll write a story all about Colin. Who knows, that could launch things into a whole new life for me.
Yes, therapy is good. Very good.