Thursday, November 12, 2009

wow! it's been a while...

ok, ok, i know, it's been over a month since i last posted here. bad blog mommy, bad BAD blog mommy. lol but i'm going to try now to get you caught up on blithe's progress.

it's now been over a month that she's been on her meds, and it's going wonderfully! and as much as i dislike meds, especially for kids - especially for my healthy kids - i have to say, i'm so glad we went this route.

blithe can read now. before she was on meds, she really struggled with her reading. and speaking as one who reads and writes all the time, it was beyond upsetting to see how difficult it was for her to accomplish even the simplest reading assignments. but in the last month or so, her reading has progressed marvellously! in fact, as i type this, she is upstairs with her brothers and grandmother, reading a bedtime story to them! she even described this book - which she has never read before - as "a piece of cake"! i couldn't be more proud of her than i am right now. :)

another improvement has been her printing. suddenly, when she hands me her writing assignments from school, i can actually read them! the letters are clear and spaced properly, formed correctly, and rarely are they floating somewhere between the line and the top of the page. it is such a thrill to see how much improvement there is in her work now that she can focus. whoda thunk, eh?

she's actually enjoying school now. every morning, she is the first one dressed and ready to go, and when she gets off the bus at the end of the day, she always has something exciting to tell me. i really just can't believe the improvement in her; it's absolutely heartwarming.

we have also been continuing the work on non-medicinal ways to help her. as a rule, she only takes her meds during the week, so on weekends, we have the opportunity to practice other tools to help calm her mind. and they seem to be working. so far, we have tried:
  • a soothing perfume (sandalwood)
  • conscious breathing
  • drinking water
  • leaving the room for a few minutes when it's too chaotic for her
  • going for a walk

it's now mid-november, so i know the walk option won't be available much longer around here, so we're really concentrating on the other tools. the perfume seems to help quite a bit. i gave her the choice of two scents (sandalwood and satsuma), asking her which one helped to calm her mind. not surprisingly, she chose sandalwood (it's my soothing scent, too). breathing is helping, although she needs to be reminded to do it. but in time, she'll learn to start that on her own. she just needs to remember it herself. i've explained to her the importance of water, that it will help to wash the stress hormones and chemicals out of her system, which will help her to calm herself in the long run. she's getting the hang of leaving the room, although she still likes to be right in the action, so it's not always the easiest for her. but when she tries it, she feels better.

i'm just so proud of her and her progress so far. my goal is to be med-free by march break, which gives her a few months to get into the practice of using the other tools. some of them will be more challenging at school, since she can't exactly walk out of her classroom, and her school is scent-free. but she can still drink water and breathe at school, so i'm hopeful that we can accomplish this goal.

and yes, i'll try to be more diligent in posting. it seems i'm rather easily distracted, myself, sometimes.