Tuesday, February 25, 2014

ADHD update

So it has been roughly two months since RP started a pharmaceutical intervention for his ADHD.  We have changed from the original prescription to one that is about $50 less.  Seriously, can not believe how much this medicine is.  Of course it doesn't help that I have a high deductible insurance plan......but seriously.....$145 for a 30 day supply?!  Hence the switch.

This second medicine is about the same as the first.  I haven't noticed any difference really, prescription wise.  He hasn't had any of the side effects that I was worried about.  He is eating the normal RP amount...aka a lot.  He hasn't had any headaches or stomach aches.  He has been taking melatonin on the days that he takes his medicine.  He requested, about a week ago, that he not take the melatonin one night.....that was not a fun bed time.  There were no fits or tantrum or crazy fears, but it took him about an hour and a half to fall asleep.  Which is a long time.  He was quiet the whole time-just not sleeping.  It used to be (pre-medicine) that he would keep him self up by singing or talking or whatever but as soon as he would be quiet he would fall asleep.  This time was not like pre-medicine so I believe that it was the "crash" I was warned about and what made bedtime so difficult when he first started the meds.

I had a conference with his teacher not too long ago.  I was nervous about meeting with her and the reading specialist about how he had progressed or not progressed since starting the medication.  The last conference we had was in December before break.  It was that meeting that was my final push to medicate him.  The meeting was wonderful.  They are impressed with his behavioral change in class.  He is learning to separate himself from his buddies when it is time for group work.  In fact, while he was with the reading specialist one day, his good friend asked to work with RP, and RP said, no thank you-I would rather do it on my own.  Good job!  This is reflective of him completing homework more often on his own than with my help at home too.  They are both very confident that once the 504 is in place for the accommodations, there is no reason why RP won't pass the OAAs in May.  That was very good to hear.  I am the type that prepares mentally for the worse, and when I can let go of that a little, there is a huge mental sigh of relief.

One of the biggest changes that I have noticed over the past two months is his confidence.  Each day, the students get a check minus, a check, or a check plus for classroom behavior.  RP was in the slump of getting mostly check minuses and checks for most of the school year until January.  Since he started taking this medicine, he has come home with mostly check pluses during the week!  He is so very proud of himself.  A few weeks ago, he got a check plus everyday during the week for the first time since last year.  He was so nonchalant while telling me, I asked him, "are you happy and proud of yourself?"  His response was hilarious, he says, "Well yea!  Can't you see my face!"  Of course I couldn't because I was driving but in true RP fashion, he re-enacted the entire thing once we were home.

RP has been so noticeably happy recently.  We still have our moments, mostly in the morning before school or on some weekend afternoons, but his overall demeanor is positive and happy.  He has always been a happy boy, but there was so much that pulled him down since the end of last school year, it is a relief to see that glow in his face again.  As a parent's happiness and overall attitude of life reflects upon their child, I think that our children's happiness and attitude reflects upon us as well.  I love this change in him and for him.  It is like a peace and evenness has returned to his life.  He is trying hard in school, Scouts, soccer, and at home-his sticker chart has a big meaning for him again.  I am glad that I made the decision to start the medication.  Part of me wishes I would have started him sooner on it, but I think what I was trying was worth a shot.  Can't regret past decisions but move forward from there.

Monday, February 24, 2014

8/52


*A portrait of my son, once a week for every week in 2014.*

Cub Scouts being the crazy boys they are.  The goal, build a marshmallow and pretzel stick structure as tall as you can in 11 minutes aka a mound of pretzel sticks and marshmallows.

Tuesday, February 18, 2014

Cub Scout Crafts

This is definitely one of my favorite crafts done by the boys in RP's den.  We have our annual Blue and Gold Ceremony this coming weekend with a theme of "Flight."  Each of the Dens are responsible for making a center piece under the theme, so my den made some clothes pin airplanes and a diorama to put them in.  I found the planes online line here and then had the genius idea (with a little help figuring how to make this a requirement) of putting the planes in shoe boxes.  Boom.  Best craft ever.  The boys really loved making the planes and their scenes too.  Creative bunch I have here.  I am impressed with each of their artistic abilities and how well they stayed on task during this meeting.  

Hard at work coloring the sky and gluing tissue paper as grass.
Not only did he color the back part, but the sides too!
This guy hung his planes so it was soaring in the sky!
Got artsy and took his pic upside down.  Used all mediums from coloring to paper to tissue paper.
RP meticulously using torn up tissue paper as grass so there would be texture.
RP's finished product....not sure what he has against blue skies!  I like the one taking off :)

Monday, February 17, 2014

7/52



*A portrait of my son, once a week for every week in 2014.*


I know, its just supposed to be RP.  I tried to crop out B and I, but then it was all grainy.  This is my new favorite picture.  RP is so genuinely happy and he is smiling so hard in that picture.  I tear up looking at his beautiful, happy face.  This was Valentine's Day date, where B and I took RP to dinner and a movie.  Post Tom and Chee and pre Lego Movie.  It was a great night.

Friday, February 14, 2014

How Times Are Changing

There have been some changes in my son recently.  Not bad changes, but.......changes.  Of course, I don't know if these changes are typical for boys around the age of 8 as I have never been around 8 year old boys to know.  But the small things are changing.

I found out the other day, from a conversation with a friend and also a parent of a 9 year old boy, that I am not alone in noticing the changes happening in our boys.  She asked me, "Do you think our boys could be starting the first steps of puberty?"  Our baby boys?  Our little guys?  The little chubba chubba that needed me to lay with him at night to fall asleep?  My little one who's favorite thing was to cuddle with his mama?!  No!  Puberty is too far away still.  I have at least another 4-6 years before he becomes a lanky, awkward, acne induced, walking hormone.  Right?  I have that much time before I am the uncoolest, most embarassing mom ever.  Right?

After thinking about this for a couple weeks, and piecing together the changes in his wants (ie privacy), conversations, looks, and behavior, I realize that he is in the weird phase.  He isn't a little kid anymore but but he isn't really a big kid either.  Most of the time he is a big kid, but he still enjoy a lot of little kid things-like cuddling with his mom.  But he is starting to get into some big kid habits-like needing to fix his hair.....every morning.

The hair thing is just one of the most recent things.

RP and Girls
Once upon a time, if you mentioned RP having a girlfriend or liking a girl, he would get upset.  Like mad-at-you-don't-talk-about-that-I-would-never-have-a-girlfriend kind of mad.  He would scowl and refuse to talk about it.  So the other day on the way home, he cooley tells me how he has a girlfriend.  It the same girl that liked him in first grade and the same little vixen who "tripped and fell into him" (I'm on to your game little girl) and hugged him for catching her.  And he is okay with telling me all this. So we, as mother and son, have crossed the forbidden bridge and we are now allowed to talk about him a girls.  Although, he did swear me to secrecy.  So as if this wasn't enough "girl" change, he drops the bomb a few days later, that he now has two girlfriends!  Whoa playa!  Slow it down!  And he made this announcement in front of B!  We looked each other and in unison, said, "Let's narrow it down to one girlfriend.  It's not the nicest thing to have two girlfriends at the same time."  (Side note: I told my mom this story last night and she says that it is totally okay to be "dating" more than one person at the same time and two girlfriends at the age of 8 is completely acceptable.  I think we see where his playa nature comes from...Grandma).  But he was okay with narrowing it down to just one.  A few days later, at dinner, he told B and I that he had broken up with one of girl stating, "I don't like you as much any more but you can still like me.  And we can still be friends."  Classy, huh?

RP and Hair Gel
I don't even know what to say about this one.  He is very concerned about his hair every morning.  He has about 15 cowlicks and is a pro at bedhead, so I get that he is concerned with how the back always sticks up, but really, he is 8, why does he care?  I don't remember caring about my hair at 8 and as a girl, I was socialized to care about it way more than he is.  But there it is.  Sticking up and in need of gel.  We wet it down and gel it up but it has to be just the right type of flat in the back and just the right amount of sticking up in the front.  Juuuuuuust right.  He looked at me one day, after accomplishing getting his hair just right all on his own, and says, "I don't have to take a shower every day because I can brush my hair down tomorrow with the same gel in it.  I get two hair styles from one day of gel."  Way to be conservative with the hair gel kid.  But really, if there isn't time for a shower or fixing the hair, a little kid fit can be expected.....and complaining of his hair hurting, (which is actually painful).

RP's Worldly Wisdom
So he has always had these gems of wisdom that surface every now and then.  While they aren't necessarily more frequent, the scope has changed.  For example, his wisdom usually is from an RP centered perspective.  The other day I forgot my parking pass in the kitchen so I had to park in the building.  I pay monthly for the pass that I have but its roughly 3 bucks a day and the building is $9 for the day.  At dinner I was saying how I paid $12 to go to work that day, in my usual sarcastic tone.  RP scoffs a little and says, "I hope you are being dramatic about this."  I asked if he meant sarcastic, he said yes and I assured him I was to which he states, "Good, because you have a good job.  You shouldn't complain about having a good job because there are a lot of people that don't have good jobs."  When your child calls you out of stuff like that it is like WHAM!  Touch√© my son, touch√©.

RP and Privacy
This is the big one.  Since it has just been RP and I most of his life, we have always had an "open door" policy unless there is poop.  Then out of ole factory courtesy, we close the door.  Helping with showers, towel off, RP peeing while I get ready in the morning (the woes of one bathroom), have all been the norm......that is until about a month ago or so.  He told me to stay out of his room while he was getting dressed after a shower.  I thought he was done and walked in and man oh man!  Got my head bit off!  "Mom, I don't want you to see my penis!"  Goodness gracious kid!  I have seen it more than you!  Then about a week later, I knocked on the bathroom door just wanting to reach into grab something, and again...."Mom!  I am naked!  I don't want you to see me naked!"  Sweetie, you know you were born naked....right?  "Yes Mom, but I am not a baby anymore and now it's just weird."  Moments in motherhood when the reality that they grow away from you smacks you in the face.  And now, this week, he won't pee if I am in there and assure him that I won't look at him.  Door closed only.  This last one may sound weird to some of you reading, but I am pretty confident that other parents or aunts and uncles, who maybe exceptionally close to their nieces and nephews, can understand that this is an extreme.  Since he was mobile, there was no privacy.  I didn't get privacy and he didn't have need for it.  And now that I am used to the lack of privacy there has been an overnight switch to "closed doors."

So there it is!  He may not be entering puberty quite yet (which I have been slowly preparing him for and his reactions are classic), but he is changing and transitioning to being a big kid more of the time.  I am happy that he isn't in too big of a rush though.  Hearing him play with his Legos or when he (rarely) plays with his cars, are sounds that I will miss.

Tuesday, February 11, 2014

6/52


*A portrait of my son, once a week for every week in 2014.*

Sporting a recent hair cut.  This kid pulls of bed head like no one else. (yes. I know. I am a couple days late)

Sunday, February 2, 2014

5/52



*A portrait of my son, once a week for every week in 2014.*

My favorite "selfie" he has ever taken.