I am a proud mother of two amazing children. What a cliché! Its something I think most parents are taught to say over time. After all, who wants to be known as the parent who absolutely loathes their child rearing responsibilities. Sometimes parents falsely give the impression that their children are perfect ,and they are the perfect parents, and every day is sunny blah, bull-crap, blah.
For me the reality is that, I’m not the perfect parent, and my kids are far from perfect but, they are wonderful and amazing. I’ve had some hard days as a young mother (I had my first child at 20.) I’ve lived several years as a single parent. And I’ve cried a lot of tears along the way.
I have two boys, Kaleb and Tres. I love them both dearly. They both bring a different spice to my life. They eldest however, has challenged my way of thinking, and caused me to rethink everything I thought I knew about raising kids.
Kaleb is my ten year old. His nickname is “Mr. Personality.” Having spent most of his life being co-parented by my mother and father, Kaleb has an old soul. Just a conversation with him will leave you thinking, “this kid has been here before.” Both his vocabulary and sense of reasoning are exceptional for his age. He even scored above average in the verbal portion of his professional IQ test.
Now that I’ve bragged about my wonderful child. Let me be real with you. On the flip side of all that I’ve mentioned, this child has brought me more frustration and tears in his ten years of living than I ever thought id experience as the parent of male children.
He has made quite a name for himself at our local elementary school where he has spent the last five and a half years. He is known as the smart kid who is too smart for his own good. His smart mouth, inability to sit still, and his boredom and disinterest in anything that didn’t involve airplanes or any of his other interest, led me to believe that my child was ADD/ADHD.
This idea was fueled by several teachers telling me that they had a hard time controlling this “out of the box” thinking kid. Id be lying if I said that I didn’t sympathize with his teachers. Even at home Kaleb had problems following simple directions. It wasn’t that he didn’t understand. It was that he was constantly defiant, for no other reason than to simply be defiant. He is what some would call a” pain-in-the-ass.” His attitude had gotten so bad that it made it hard for friends and family to want to allow Kaleb to visit, because he had a terrible reputation of not following directions, and being compliant.
This is what I dealt with for ten years. I dreaded going in stores because I knew mychild would publicly challenge me, often causing me embarrassment. Going to church was a challenge. Going anywhere that required any level of order, and restraint was just hard.
When Kaleb was eight, against the advice of my family, I had this “pain-in-the-ass” kid examined by a psychiatrist. And that entire experience was awful! In another blog post I will talk about the difference between a good doctor and a bad doctor. None-the-less this bad dr blindly diagnosed my child with ADD, and before I left the office, both me and my son had prescriptions. (Yep this nut-job of a dr gave me Xanax because I seemed to need something to take the edge off of parenting my “misdiagnosed” ADD son.)
Well after having some major issues with the medication my son was prescribed, I discontinued the medicine, and was left even more confused and hopeless. I spent the next two years with a negative idea of doctors, and feeling as if my parenting journey was doomed for failure and disappointments. I spent two years ignoring that my son may have some serious issues. I spent two years neglecting to take my son to a psychiatrist or even behavioral therapy. Each school year my family came together and prayed, that “this year” would be different. Hoping that by some miracle my child would graduate beyond his terrible two style tantrums and from his incredibly, exhausting opposition of authority.
In the next blogs in this series. I will tell you about my experiences with, a child who was wrongly diagnosed with ADD, and how I began to get to the bottom of my childs condition.