Saturday, September 23, 2006

Random Pictures....

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Calie curled her hair once. It looks great...but she says it takes toooo long to do.

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Claudia is so creative. Those are carrots for hair, peas for eyes and nose and pasta for a smile (the leftover peas are in her napkin).

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Carson--during his "blue" period at school. poor fella.

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Caden. Cute huh?

We Soooo Were Due For This...

No, we didn't win the lottery. Can't win if you don't play, huh?! But yesterday Carson brought home a GOOD note! I'm so excited I could scream. Yipppeeee! Goooooooo Carson! He had an "awesome day". The teacher told Moonpie, when he picked up the kids, that Carson had no "hard times" at ALL! No hitting, spitting, hiding or tantrums. He was able to participate in almost everything they did. He even helped a friend fold up his nap blankets after naptime. Without being asked! Moonpie took them out for a sundae after school. He was even able to stay on task almost all day. He was still hyper and very talkative but they were able to reason with him and get him redirected without bloodshed or headaches. What a prize.

The kids and I had a "sleepover" in the living room last night too. I try to have one every weekend. Me and the kids make a pallet in the floor and I let them sleep in the living room. I slept on the couch and Caden slept in the playpen in there. We all watched TV til we fell asleep. Everyone slept good--even me! This morning we had to get up and take Calie to drill team practice, so we stopped and got donut holes and pigs in a blanket. Everyone is in a good mood (at the moment) too. Oh happy day! Carson is playing with playdoh and Claudia is making a puppet with a brown paper sack. Caden in playing in the playpen. And I get a few minutes to chat with you.

Took Caden to the doctor yesterday. He doesn't have an ear infection (yet), but he has a horrible cough (back on the breathing treatments) and a runny nose--very nasty. Doc gave us a weeks worth of Singulair and a prescription for it. Hope it clears it all up. Poppy is coming down to the "river" for a few days--so we will go see him later. Poppy is my Uncle/Daddy. A paraplegic (Vietnam) who has had both legs amputated in the last few years (poor circulation). I adore him and so do the kids.

So it is looking like it might be a good weekend. It's about time.

Friday, September 22, 2006

I'm A Little More Edumicated Now...

I feel a little more educated on AD/HD and the side effects after talking to Carson's psychiatrist the other day. We took Carson off all meds Wednesday and will resume them on Saturday. Sure enough, his "emotional" bits calmed down. He has not had a "tantrum" since Tuesday (at school). His hiding under the tables has dramatically reduced as has his clingy (mainly to me) behavior. Mornings and drop offs at school have been almost pleasant!!

On Wednesday he goes to 1/4 of a tablet every 3 hours, instead of 1 in the morning and 1/2 at Noon(ish). We think that the emotional stuff was caused by that whole pill hitting him all at once--then his afternoon behavior was caused by the dramatic "fall off" of the meds. So, in short, smaller dose more frequently should (oh, please. oh, please. oh PLEASE!) help.

I have been reading and highlighting alot of stuff in my books--I want to loan them to both Carson's teacher as well as the school counselor, since they seem as educated as I (was). But before I loan them out I want to KNOW what I'm talking about. Ya know?

In other news...Caden is sick (again). Coughed his head off all night last night. Claudia can read (Pat ran. Pat can bat. Pat can tap. And so forth...)!! She is so excited. Such a smart girl! Kindergarten and reading. Boy, I learned how to color in the lines in Kindergarten...Back in the old days. Calie deserves her own paragraph....

Yesterday, when I went to the High School to pick Calie up, she wasn't in her usual spot. So I waited a few minutes and was looking around...And in my side rear view mirror I spot her: Walking down the sidewalk HOLDING A BOY'S HAND!!!!!! In public! At school!! OMG. Seems she got "asked out" yesterday. Her first High School boyfriend...Who happens to be the brother of a boy she had a crush on earlier (over the Summer and at the beginning of school. She has a class with her new boyfriend and would talk to him about her old crush...And came to like *this* boy better. I got to hear alllll about it--and how embarrassing it is to have sweaty palms. tee hee. AND Calie made straight A's on her progress report. Pretty good for never cracking a book huh? Turkey.

I may go back to work after the first of the year. As I am sure many of you do--we have an embarrassing amount of credit card debt...And our goal is to have NONE. But playing the lottery hasn't paid off (at all). So, if I ever want a new(er) vehicle, or my kids to go to college I may have to (gag) actually WORK outside the home as well as in it. Moonpie can't work anymore than he already is...64 (and sometimes more) hours per week is his limit. Oh well. I will surely survive, tho barely!

Hope you all have a great weekend. Supposed to rain here--and boy do we need it!!

Tuesday, September 19, 2006

I Hate The Not Knowing...

I hate not knowing the answer to things...Especially things I should already know. Like, if Calie tells me that she knows what I'm getting as a gift from Moonpie--it kills me. I will bug the heck out of her until she gives me hints or caves and tells me. Or if someone says they know more about a subject (like why one of the pediatricians resigned) I plead or beg until I get the low-down.

Last night Carson's teacher called me at home. Carson has been spending alot of time under the table in class. She is worried about him. Is it the meds? Part of the ADHD? Part of his manipulative mind (he IS pretty smart)? Or what!? Yesterday he crawled under the table and they decided NOT to spend time pleading and trying to get him to come out and sit/listen/watch what ever they were doing...she said he stayed under there for over an hour!!! Doing NOTHING. Just sitting there. Not really listening. Just "veggin'" under the table. The slightest little thing can set him off. At home he doesn't sit under the table--but he will say "I'm scared. I'm scared. I'm a scardey cat." and then run off to his room and hide under a blanket. He is non compliant (if it is something he doesn't want to do). He is more opositional. He even kicked his teacher on Friday and on Monday because she was "squeezing the blood" out of his arm. Really she was (gently) trying to get him to line up or sit down. Yesterday afternoon he hid from the student teacher (under a small table behind the door) and she had 3 teachers helping her "find" Carson. I imagine she was FREAKING out thinking "I have lost this kid! How do I tell his mother that I LOST him!?" I got him to come out (Claudia found him) after I sat on the floor and talked about him outloud. "I wish I could get Carson to come out here. I missed him today and I want to hug him. And I was going to take him to the park, too." He came out slowly and just crawled in my lap. We talked quietly for a few minutes--not about his being under the table, then we got up and left. He was fine the rest of the day (that I can remember).

I called his psychiatrist today--and they said it may be this evening before he calls me back, after he sees his patients. I really wonder if this is so NOT the right meds!? Or what? More time? Is there something I can/should be doing? Besides all the things I AM doing? Or instead of? uggghhhhh.

Today I dropped his meds back down to half in the AM and half in the afternoon. He had a good day at school...Today. Geez...I dunno....

PS: I just ordered "ADHD for Dummmies" from Barnes and Noble...should get it by Thursday...

Saturday, September 16, 2006

Homecoming 2006...

We had our homecoming game last night. Our local team played a rival of theirs. And we spanked their butts! Yippeee. Calie's first homecoming as a Star Stepper (drill team). They did a high kick routine. They looked great.

A friend of mine (I helped a little) made a HUGE/Gorgeous mum for Calie.
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A darling one for Claudia (and for *her* 2 daughters and a friends 2 daughters) and a garter for Carson. All 3 of us have daughters in kindergarten this year--so she made the teachers mums too! She is amazing. She worked SO hard. The kids looked fabulous. We picked all of our kids up early from school and took them to Calie's High School for the pep rally. The girls wore cheerleading uniforms (just for dress up--none of our girls are *real* cheerleaders) and we were a huge hit, everyone thought our kids were adorable (and they were). Check out the picture!

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(L-R, back row: Carson, Claudia, Kaylee, Hannah & Ellie
front row: Alyssa)

I took snacks and gatorade to the game for the kids so I wouldn't have to buy any concession stands food (chaCHING). The kids were good about sharing everything with all the kids around us. The girls had a good time shaking their pom poms at Calie everytime they took the field. Moonpie showed up about 7:30PM and stayed until after half time, then he took Claudia and Carson home with him (he has to work a 12 hour shift on Saturdays). Me, my Mother-In-Law (the best one on Earth) and Caden stayed til the end. I made a few new friends...A third grader, a first grader and a Pre-K student--all girls. Caden was fascinated with pulling the youngest ones SOFT hair. She was the most adorable, talkative black girl I have ever had the privilage of meeting. I may even eat lunch with her next week! Me and my new friends ate some nachos and shook our pom poms the hardest!! Goooooo TEAM!!!

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OH! Caden had us all in stiches. He kept "blowing" his nose on a baby wipe and then trying to wipe the baby wipe on the man sitting next to my Mother-In-Law's leg!!!

We finally made it home about 11PM and crashed. It was a happy, hectic day and now I am glad it's over. Thank Goodness my Mother-In-Law went with me. She is the best.

Thursday, September 14, 2006

Right NOW! Now! (I am so impatient...)...

I want results, darn it, NOW! It has been a week now since we started Carson on his pills and I am seeing a difference...but not fast enough, long enough or good enough. I am impatient. Even tho I KNOW it will take some time.

Carson is taking one whole pill in the AM and half at school now. And he has recieved a half at 3:30PM twice (not every day--just on the really "hard" days). Yesterday was a pretty OK day. The day before (picture day ) was awful. He took his shirt off at school a few times. Hid under the class table when things weren't going *his* way. Was extremely "wild" at home... I am so tired. He is really good at taking his pills too. We give him the pill and a spoon of chocolate pudding. He puts the pill on top of the pudding and then he uses his finger to push the pill under the pudding then he eats the bite of pudding. Letting him put the pill in the pudding gives his some control and responsiblity in taking his pill. Seems to work.

I haven't seen any "zombie-ness" at all. So even tho he is sometimes easier to reason with and seems more focused...he is still a wild one. But not so wild that *I* wonder if he has contracted rabies, tho strangers may wonder...

Claudia is doing great--tho sometimes you can tell she is pushing my buttons since I am having to spend some extra time with Carson. I bought them Play-Doh the other day. It is something that Claudia the artsy crafty one adores...but the intresting thing is...Crson will sit still and play WITH Claudia and the Play-Doh for about 15-20 minutes!! So it is a good thing to do after school to unwind and settle down. I have to buy Carson a new Leap Pad--his old one (bought for Claudia 3 years ago) is broken (that's hat happens when you carry it around by the PEN! Oh well--they are relatively inexpensive in the grand scheme of things-- and that is another activity that Carson will sit still for.

Well, gotta dash-- time to take the little ones to school. Have a good one my friends...

PS: Homecoming is TOMORROW! The kids are sooooo excited They don't even know I had mums and garters made for them!--and I made huge cow bells for them to ring at the game (I feel a huge headache in my future).

Saturday, September 09, 2006

*A*. *D*.amn *H*.eadache *D*.amnit.....

September the 6th. Carson was diagnosed with ADHD. We weren't surprised--heck we even had diagnosed him at home MONTHS ago! We saw a local child psychiatrist that my pediatrician recommended. We were there for 3 hours. 30 minutes was paperwork and the rest was spent with the doctor. Me, Moonpie (w/Caden) and Carson.

Dr S (no, not for "shrink") is a good doctor. I like him. He made us feel like we understood it all. He would ask us questions and then listen to us talk about Carson for a good while, then he'd ask another question. He tried talking to Carson (haha). Carson was his regular self--no good behavior just because we were at a doctors office! He pulled half a box of Kleenex outta the box. Tried to pull all the leaves off Dr. S's plants, ivy's, trees (his office is big). Pull books off the shelves. And roll an extra chair all over the room. Moonpie and I took turns. One holding Caden, who was an angel. And one chasing Carson around, saying "No. No, Carson. Put that back. Put. It. Back. Now. Please, Carson. Come sit down by Daddy. Over here. OVER HERE." It was exhausting. And embarrassing.

We left with a prescription after talking about how disruptive his behavior was at home, school, out in public...You name it. It disrupts us, his school mates, his teachers, the general public. But, even tho we had predicted this...It was so sad. Our boy is "defective". The boy who is one of my LARGEST sources of joy is messed up. And I want to continue to enjoy him--and I want everyone else too. And I am so afraid that if something doesn't change, then he will no longer give me joy. I am having a hard time grieving (that's what it feels like)--and I'm am unsure if I am grieving that the boy we have known as Carson for the past 2 and a half years (when we feel this all started, really) is not the real Carson--OR, is the boy who acts this way (a rambunctious/super hyper monkey) the *real* Carson and I am about to 'medicate' the real Carson away? Who IS Carson?! Have we ever known? Will we ever know? It hurts. Alot. Especially when he acts up around people and they look at me or each other like:"He needs his ass whipped--what's wrong with his parents? Can't they control him?" I want to scream at them: "He is SICK! And it's NOT my fault! He is disabled--cut him some slack!"! Maybe I should make him a T-shirt "I have ADHD--so you better get the F*CK out of my way!"

We left the doctors feeling good about one thing though. Dr. S said that most kids who are diagnosed with ADHD have problems with aggression too. Carson isn't as aggressive as most....Or he *wasn't*. Thursday (his first day on the smallest dose of meds imaginable--I could have told them it wouldn't be enough...) I picked him up from school and his teacher said it was a "very hard day". Yippee. I then tried to get him out of the building. He didn't want to leave. Finally I grabbed his wrist in an attempt to "guide" him from the gym...He promptly kicked the sh*t outta my leg and then sat down. So I basically had to drag him from the building (holding Caden in one arm). While he screamed and cried "You are killing me!!! Aaaaggghhhh!!! You are making me dieeee! I hate you!! I do!! Aaaaggggggghhh!!!!! You are squeezing the blood outta my arm!! I am on fire!! I'm burning! You are making me burn like fire!!! You let go of me!! Let go!" Kicking and thrashing down the sidewalk to the truck. I'm sure if everyone hadn't already saw me trying to manipulate him, tho certainly not at this level of mayhem, to our vehicle every day for the past 2 weeks that they would have called the police and had me arrested for kidnapping. I was mortified. And scared. Once we got to the truck, I opened the door and told him to get IN!!! He screamed "NEVER!!" I was about to drop the baby, so I drug Carson around to the other side and opened that door to put the baby in his carseat. Carson scrambled up into the truck (it's sorta "Texas" high/big), turned around, hit me and spit in my face. He is still screaming and crying. Now I am bawling. He gets to the middle of the cab, picks up his booster seat and throws it out of the truck and into the parking lot. OMG.

I finally got him to calm down. I made him sit in the front seat of the truck with me. After about 5 minutes he started asking for another pill. I had told him in the morning (after I gave him his pill) that the nice doctor had given Carson some medicine to help him. To help Carson. So that Carson could stay in control of himself. So he could be still and learn at school. SO he could listen and to help him mind. And now, here he is, obviously out of control and asking for another pill. I cried again. He was asking for help. 'I am out of control. You said those pills would help. I need help.'

I went up on his meds today. Still couldn't see an improvement. I am supposed to gradually (every 2-3 days) increase his dosage until we find a dose that gives us results at the lowest dose possible. But we were also warned that we may have to try 3-4 different meds and/or dosages before we find the right fit for him. I think every parent who gets an ADHD diagnosis should be put on meds too. I only *thought* I was crazy before. We were told to "Supervise him like he was two. Repeat. Repeat. Repeat instructions. Praise. Praise. Praise good behavior. Alot. Alot. Alot. Often. Often. Often." I am worn out. I am literally tired of not screaming. I really want to beat his butt--and then I remember--something is wrong with his brain. He has no impulse control.

This should all make for some very interesting posts people...Put down that clicker and stay tuned.

So, Maybe I'm Not So Old...

I did get to go out for my birthday. One of my best friends (shout out to COURTNEY!!) took me to our favorite dive...Who serve the best margarita's (well around here in a dry county anyways...). "Ain't no place like..."!

We drank a few Presidentes'. Ate a few chips. Drank a few more. We were loud. We were silly. But, we always are--even while stone sober. We aim to have a good time. We sat in the bar. Our waiter was H-O-T. There was a table of 3 guys (who were NOT H-O-T) and a girl (who was lukewarm, at best) catty-corner to us. We got ready to leave and asked for our ticket--then another waitress brought us ANOTHER margarita...On them! Of course we drank that one too.

Courtney drove. So I acted a fool. We played to music loud--rode with the windows down. Waved at all the people on the road driving by. Laughed loud. I semi flashed a trucker. Then went to another best friends house (she was stuck at home with 3 girls. Ages 5, 2 and 4 months...), she had had a hard day--so we made her laugh, bathed her baby and gave her a tiny break.

Then Courtney dropped me off at home....All before 10:00PM.

But I had a good time. I was allllll by myself. And we made it home alive and without getting arrested. Thanks Courtney!

Sunday, September 03, 2006

My Karma Report Score...

Back in, like 1992-ish, Moonpie and I went to buy a new car. A credit report check showed that I had defaulted on a loan from a college that I had never attended. After 10 miles of red tape and 2 acts of Congress later it was corrected. And we got that new car. So, I was able to fix that. But how do you get your Karma report fixed? Because my karma and someone elses is obviously "F"d up and crossed some how. I am not a bad person. Really. Yet, if you believe in "what goes around, comes around" (which *I* do) then I must have robbed a few banks. Must have been a HORRIBLE child. Something.

After 1 week of school, it had been determined that I had to have ANOTHER conference with Carson's Pre-K teacher. He can't keep still. He can't follow directions. He is loud. He disrupts the class constantly. At nap time. At lunch time. He even got in trouble for being too rowdy (and not listening to the teacher) in GYM!!!(?) He even had to go see the school counselor because he kicked his teacher (WTH?!). So. I had to take Caden to see the pedi. last Thursday for an ear check (he did NOT have another ear infection)--and I brought up Carson. And when my pedi (whom I love and have had since 1991) said he would like to wait a year before testing Carson--well, I just kept right on describing all the things he does. At Mother's Day Out last year, at home, at school this year, in public, at parties, at relatives houses... until my pedi opened his lap top and began asking ME questions. After 30 minutes of us conversing he said to me: "I have no doubt that he has ADHD...but, with your permission, I would like to get you a referral to a child psychiatrist. He will be able to test, diagnose, write prescriptions and monitor those medications *and* doses VERY closely. Can I do that?" Of course I said yes. I felt a mountain had been lifted off my shoulders already. Just knowing that help was close. But I had also shared my guilt with Dr R--that it was my fault--that my poor mothering skills had pushed my boy to this point. Remember that my feelings of inadequacy and poor self esteem had pushed me into a black hole last year...I am not saying that Carson's inability to control his behavior made me suicidal last year--but the fact that *I* felt so out of control in regards to his behavior made me feel even MORE of a crappy mother (really ALL of their behavior--surely it was all my fault). Dr R said to me "The way he is, is NOT your fault--but when he gets better, then *that* will be your fault. I was ready to wait until next year--but you stood up and refused to take that as an answer--you kept on until I was convinced that waiting was the wrong thing to do. You will have to be his advocate--and you already are! Way to go Mom!" When I shared this info with Carson's teacher that afternoon she was both sad and excited. Just as I am. I have already found a support board to read and bought a book on ADHD. He really does seem to fit the profile of an ADHD kid. I am ready to learn how to help him get this under control!!

On Friday Caden started coughing. Runny nose. By 11PM he was wheezing and grunting. He was miserable. By 2AM Saturday I woke Moonpie--ready to take Caden to the ER. His chest was caving and he was grunting with every breath. We gave him several (3) breathing treatments between 2:15 and 6AM. I had him at the pedis office at 10AM. He has ANOTHER ear infection and was put on an oral steroid for the wheezing/asthma attack. and yet another round of antibiotic for the ear infection. geez. The on-call pedi got a pea sized bit of HARD, BLACK, nasty ear wax out of the same ear that my pedi had gotten 2 ice cream scoops of was out of 2 days before... I brought it home and put it in a baby food jar to show Moonpie--I swear it looks like a bit of dried up dog poo! gross.

Friday was Calie's first pep rally!! and that night was the first game that she performed at--in her Friday Night Dress Uniform--hat, boots and all! They looked great and they did a wonderful job!! Moonpie's brother and his wife came down from Austin to visit and they came to the game too...I am soooo glad they came. The kids were excited to see them! My kids are so blessed to have them as Aunt and Uncle. They always buy the coolest things for them too. Plus they got me a gift card to Barnes & Noble for my birthday! Ye HAW!!!! Plus, I got a hilarious chicken--when you squeeze her body, an egg pops out from her butt! I LOVE IT! hahahaha

Claudia is doing great in school. and at home. She really is growing up--5 going on 19--she is sometimes even more mature that Calie. It really amazes me how much they change--sometimes daily.

Anyhoo. I am exhausted. I am...heck, so tired that I haven't a clue as to how to end this... but I promise to post some pictures soon. After I edit slobber and snot out!