OCD is a beach

Auggie will Auggie

A day off from work you say? Let’s see the end of the world then! This will be fun and not at all frustrating. Let’s rock!

Nearly every rule I put in place for our trip (all four children) was broken by Auggie and Huggy (Huggy is my youngest daughter.) However, the trip went as well as I’d hoped. I consider myself to be a positive person and find that life feels better with some hope sprinkled in. The first issue was Auggie leaving the surrounding area while I was getting the stroller out and diaper bag ready. He decided then that Huggy should be arm in arm with him. Tiny was my point person staying nearly center to both them and myself and baby. That action caused me to take way more time getting things out because of the whiplash action of constantly looking towards the rascals that were not in the group and back at what I’m doing. After corralling everyone up we made our way towards the pier. The look in Auggie’s eyes was nearly wild. The water, the beach and the people were causing some overload for Auggie. He wanted… no… he NEEDED to touch everything, talk to everyone and hang over the pier every chance there was.

The second major rule was grabbing fishing poles at the end of the pier. This rule came to be the moment I noticed fishing poles. I know Auggie and now, his eyes were wild and he had given all self control over to his obsessive thoughts. So he grabbed a fishing pole. Thankfully, no one seemed bothered. Then, after being told to stop (and stopping) he rushed to the other side and grabbed a net. A woman (who owned the net) told him he could hold it but that it wouldn’t reach the water. He decided to test that theory and nearly did before I was there—

*I need to go ahead and let everyone know that’s reading this that pushing a large stroller after an eleven year old super human through a crowd on a pier that’s less than ten feet wide is an adventure in itself and not one I suggest if you’re the only shepherd.

— Once I gathered all the babies into a seating area, we had another conversation which detailed again the dangers of separation and falling into the water. Auggie was immediately tortured by not being able to fish because, according to him, I said we’d go fishing as soon as spring came. His mind was in full obsession mode at this point.

Pinched

A person with OCD has, at times, a moment by moment struggle. That which NEEDS to happen MUST happen OR… The emotions range from anger, frustration and even extreme sadness. In their mind, for the world to continue, this obsession must be fed and not feeding it becomes a form of torture. Auggie, when he’s made to stop an action, will wince in real pain as if he’s being pinched. You could say, “that’s not normal,” and you’d be correct. That’s why it’s labeled as a disorder. When he’s locked into something as simple as finding a matching sock it can make him physically sick if he doesn’t find it. The longer the search the more intense the need to find it—

*This is why I get frustrated when people confuse quirks for an OCD. I won’t go down that path today. Just know, it bothers me.

— On the other hand, if Auggie is made to stop then there is an intense struggle to change course. I will (I’m not sure any way is right but this is what I do) hold him close and tell him he’s obsessing. Then, I will bring new thoughts in. Drawing, writing, school, friends etc. There’s no perfect solution but this technique has had success before. Sometimes… the urge is just too strong though.

Auggie and Huggy

We all went down to the water before leaving. I was carrying Grey at this point so he could see the water too. Auggie, Huggy and Tiny beat us there by a mile. The one rule? Do not get into the water. Why? They were all coughing. I’m not a scientist or a medical professional. Can that make them sick or sicker? I don’t know that but I do know it can’t hurt. What did I find when I got to them? Yep. All three had there shoes off. Tiny (the defacto leader) was only there to make sure they were safe and not going any further according to her. Smart little lady (this future lawyer always has a logical explanation. Scares me at times.) Auggie took the blame for coercing Huggy and at that point it was time to leave. Auggie believed it was because he broke the rules and in part it was but that was the smallest part. The main reasons were this…

I was alone and didn’t think far enough ahead as to how difficult it would be to keep eyes on all of them in such a vast space.

It’s a two hour drive.

I was by myself.

Should be smarter

Did I mention that I was the only adult? I know, cheap laughs are just that. I’m not saying that I went as the only adult for any recognition. I genuinely fell in over my head with each new danger. I do not suggest doing that without help BUT… man… I want them to see the world. I pray a lot. I pray for their protection and peace. I’m thankful they had a great time and I’ll do it again. Now I know exactly what to expect from them. They all enjoyed themselves though so it was a success.

“They had a great time? Enjoyed themselves? But you said Auggie thought ya’ll were leaving because of him.”

Okay, so… another aspect of OCD that you must know and this will help you tremendously is if Auggie is told to stop doing something that is triggered by his OCD and is punished for continuing that’s not super bothersome for him as long as he completed what he needed/wanted to. In other words, discipline hurts less than not fulfilling his obsession. My brother was the same way. My dad was the same way. My mother was that way as well. I didn’t allow him to believe he was the reason either. I am not a monster! Maybe a little. Auggie has the tendency to be negative so he’ll blame himself quickly (Maybe that’s another aspect of acronyms but I’m not medical person.) Huggy blamed him too I suppose. That sweet little five year old lady said, “this was supposed to be the most beautiful day!” She’s a character. That really brought laughs around as we were leaving.

So, I should be smarter. I need to plan better. Either way, they get only one childhood and going on adventures is a must. When my body gives out… hopefully Auggie will be old enough to drive and he can continue the tradition of poorly planning and not being completely prepared. Oh, the memories.

Thank you for reading and if you’re rearing children with acronyms (and no prior family experience) then I hope this finds you and helps you.

God bless and I hope you have enough.

Just Jared

*The picture posted isn’t a sad Auggie. He wanted to know how far down the water was. I wonder why? I don’t. I know why. Thank you again!

Bonnie Raitt said what?

Last Sunday’s late night conversation with Tiny will be another one that sticks with me forever. She was fairly reserved for about an hour before we parted and just all around not saying too much. When I was almost at the vehicle to leave she bolted outside for one more hug (common theme now that I do not discourage.) This hug was different.

Tiny has always had issues with being too close to someone physically. She gives one arm hugs or will literally turn to the side when getting a hug. She can’t tolerate someone’s face being close to her face and will literally start believing that she can’t breath. Yelling out that you can’t breath is a quick way to get your personal space back (free advice, no charge.) She’s not one to be held down or grappled and will become a furious fighting force if that occurs. But… this hug was different and I immediately knew it. Another point of reference concerning Tiny is that she HATES crying. She’s tough and has always been tough. I’ve encouraged her to cry numerous times and attempt to hold her in a way where her face is hidden. Otherwise, she’s gonna bottle those emotions and get vintage dates stamped on.

She grabbed me with both arms and squeezed me tightly. A few seconds passed and she was still hugging me. No brainer… I asked, “what’s going on, baby?”

She released her death grip and looked at me, “do we have to talk about it?”

“Talk about what, darling?”

Her eyes began to water and she began studying the ground, “divorce. I cry when I talk about it.”

“Well… I might too. We don’t have to talk about it but you can ask me anything. You can always talk to me. ”

She began to cry and spoke through her sobs, “I don’t know who to live with,” she said quickly as if time was an issue before wrapping me in another hug.

“Tiny girl… you’ll spend half your time with me and half with your mother. You don’t have to choose anybody. Were you afraid of having to hurt mine or your mother’s feelings?”

She wept for a few moments before shaking her head yes.

“Baby, me nor your mother could stand being away from you for too long so we have this system for everybody to have equal time. Why did you think you’d have to choose?”

“My friend at school said she’s picking her daddy because he’s nice. I thought about (her personal thoughts on me) and (her personal thoughts on her mother) so I don’t know what to do and I’m scared.”

“You don’t have to choose, darling. You’ll stay with both of us at different times but never too long away from the other. Aren’t you glad you talked about it now?”

She nodded her head, set her tough meter to full and smiled at me. “I love you Da-da. I’m going back in. I love you goodnight.”

I was able to say the same before she ran though the door. I’ve learned a lot from my children. Tiny is a wise little lady that thinks deeply but she doesn’t know everything. I often forget that. We have discussed the divorce multiple times but aspects, such as that she brought up, totally eluded me. I assumed Tiny knew the system in place was the system. If I can be any assistance to parents out there in a similar situation (children with acronyms going through a divorce ((friendly)) it’s that talking about it must happen. Whatever IT is, it needs to be aired out.

This was a short entry, I know. There are things going on in my life that require more attention than my blogs. One of those things pertains to writing which I’ll discuss more in depth later. I am planning on getting back to a weekly pace AND if you have any questions for me about being Auggie’s Deddy feel free to ask. Thank you for reading. Take care and I hope you have enough.

God bless,

Just Jared

Are you down with ODD?

Tiny at open house, 3rd grade.

What is ODD? Well… I’ll start with this…

A civilised society has laws, rules and an unwritten set of moral guidelines. These laws and rules are decreed because we are humans and are allowed by God to have free will. This is MY belief.

In other words… we (law abiding citizens of Earth) sometimes buck the system or bend the rules to suit our needs or wants. I believe that most adults understand the reasons for a state of law. The alternative is anarchy (a society without laws or rules) which, quite possibly, is the first form of government most children want. Yep. If you have children then you may be nodding in agreement at this moment.

For instance, if you have two children the exact same age, size and intelligence sitting across from each other and then set down one sparkly, noisy, little toy in between them it will become a race to own the toy and then NOT share the toy and assert dominance over the other child in a show of force that this world has never seen before! Okay, not quite that fierce and not all children are this way. I’m not going to say one way is better because all things have a place. We’ve come this far as human beings by having the, well… the human nature that we have.

Child Rearing

A nation has laws. A home has a parent or guardian (law bringer sounds good too) to instruct the rules and enforce the rules. Some children will share without being taught. Most children will share after being taught. I’m not going to delve too deep into child rearing here but it is important to note that having a child with ODD can make this process even more difficult or a better word may be, different. I wrote that MOST children will share when taught that they need to because… (insert list of everything that’s good about good things for yourself and others summed up in parenthesis here. Trying to keep it short and not a blog on why sharing is a good thing.) A child with ODD may have a more difficult issue with this on a natural level.

Rules suck

Tiny doesn’t like rules but only when they apply to her. She’s not mean (most times) and she enjoys helping people especially with her baby brother. She’s usually organized, tries to take care of her things and enforces any rules in place to her siblings or peers. But then… those those pesky rules creep in where she has to follow them. She doesn’t like rules if they get in the way of her wants. She’s amazingly clever too, so a simple “no” is never enough (No is always enough because she’s a child and should follow the rules. Keep reading and I’ll explain.) If you tell her no about having a cookie then she will become a world renowned defense attorney and plead her case. She keeps evidence and witnesses too. What I’ve learned is that ODD is about “fairness” (or “freedom”) or what the child views as fair. Adults understand well that life shouldn’t be seen as something that is fair or unfair. It’s not healthy to do so. That’s a fairly difficult conversation for an eight year old when her older brother Auggie (a few years older) gets to do something and she can’t. The other issue is that she didn’t want to follow the rule to begin with but has, thank God, really worked on recognizing when she’s being defiant. That doesn’t mean she immediately begins following the rules.

Free Spirit or Law Breaker?

A few rules she really dislikes and fights to not follow are: Bedtime, brushing teeth, finishing her food, where to sit, what to wear, what to watch, sharing, chores and going to school. Oddly enough, she usually does her homework. She fights these rules and presents every reason why she shouldn’t follow them and then presents every excuse when she’s caught breaking them. Yes, she does this on purpose. She has ODD. It is her nature to be defiant. As I wrote earlier, I’m thankful she’s beginning to recognize that bucking every rule isn’t healthy.

Reaction and Moving Forward

The only thing I have figured out is what happened yesterday. I may be wrong but I attempt to be fluid in my decisions. There are moments where no is just that. Then there are moments where I change my mind or she changes my mind. We attempt to have a conversation about it and why the answer changed or did not. Most times she accepts the answer and when she doesn’t it’s noticed by those around her.

*I’m never going to be to personal on here and at some point, when they’re teenagers or young adults I don’t want to have embarrassed them unjustly.

One thing that Tiny enjoys above everything else (seemingly) is making and playing with slime. She’s very knowledgeable about the different types and how to make them stretchy or wet or good for bubbles and so on. This is her therapy. It’s her moment of meditation so I essentially put no limits on it. Is that right? Maybe. What I’m certain of is that even though a child is five, three, nine or whichever age you choose, they are still human. It so often gets overlooked that children have anxiety, depression, wants, fears or desires. They have few options of “mental escape” because, unlike adults, they can’t get into a car and drive away or eat a whole quart of icecream or say NO wherever they choose or quit school at any time or…

ODD makes their brain question anything that isn’t what they deem free. It could be viewed as anarchy or chaotic when truly, it’s freedom they desire. As a parent, it is sometimes difficult to explain why some rules or laws exist especially if your child is naturally defiant to them.

What has been helping

For a few weeks now, with Tiny and Auggie, I’ve been speaking to them about how it feels when they’re obsessed or angry or overly sad about something. I ask them what they’re feeling and does it feel good or happy. Then, I explain that they don’t have to linger in that state and can move on to something else. Now, when they get into they’re emotions and feelings it’s for shorter times. No one wants to feel that yucky weight on them especially if a couple of actions can change it. This has been helping. It’s not perfect or one hundred percent effective but it has helped.

Thank you for reading. I’m trying to get back to a weekly schedule if my mind permits. God bless and I hope you have enough.

Just Jared

Raising Girls vs. Boys (Title fight for the ADHD belt)

A hurricane and a tornado

In the photo above is a pair of kids who adore each other and despise each other. Both Auggie and Tiny are brilliant children and because of having ADHD they’ve both gone through the rigors of being tested for ADHD and as such cannot use any excuse concerning intellect. I don’t know? Nah. (That’s for another time.)

As usual, I’m only able to write from my perspective. I’m not sure I can offer “good” advice but I can explain what seems to be working for me and them and give a peak into the lives of a household with ADHD.

Meet the contenders

Auggie lives with ADHD and OCD. One can drive the other to newer and newer heights but he’s a smart kid and works really hard (most times) to recognize when he’s obsessing over something (previous entries discuss the OCD). Tiny also lives with ADHD but her main “struggle” is ODD (Oppositional defiance disorder). I haven’t written about that one as much but I do plan to because it’s a potent disorder. She is naturally defiant. Obviously, that can cause some major issues in her school life and home life.

How they coexist:

Auggie never seemed bothered by not being the “baby” after Tiny was born. In fact, he did everything he could to make her laugh. He misses her when she’s not with him and sometimes when they agree to be civil they have more giggles than the legal limit. The beautiful moments. Then, there’s the thunderstorm warning moments. Because both of them have similar issues they can feed each other into negative moments. Auggie becomes more physically aggressive while Tiny uses uses her clever mind and sharp tongue to elicit a response. It was a wonder of mine if it was the difference between the sexes until… Huggy. Huggy (youngest daughter) is very similar to Auggie in her mannerisms BUT after she was born she decided that taking anything other than giggles serious was not going to happen without a fight. And she will fight. She also prefers to use physical force to convey her aggravations. Don’t get me wrong, they’re not “destructive” or violent. Some of the things they do and the way they act reminds me of the stories my mother would tell me about my older brother and sister. At the end of the day, their children and will, at times, REALLY act like it.

How we coexist:

I’ll admit that I was softer on my oldest daughter in her toddler days. She made leaps and bounds in the maturity department and would not be outdone by her older brother. Each child has similar and different interest and I attempt to provide the things that bring them joy. It truly is a “learn as you go” with Auggie, Tiny and Huggy because they’re wired in a unique manner. Most days are good but there are trigger moments where understanding that their motor is driving them and not their heart takes longer than it should on both sides.

To be continued

For now, the belt is still up for grabs. I assume that when they get into their teenage years it will be easier to decide which group was harder to raise. So far, both the boys and girls are tied for giving their Deddy a LOT of gray hair on the ol’ goatee.

Next week

A good topic, I think, is what to expect of a child with the gift of acronyms when life isn’t going exactly as they planned. A warning ahead of time… hang on and hold fast.

God bless,

Just Jared

ADHDitude

There’s a few things to completely understand when you have a child with ADHD or OCD or ODD. I’m suggesting that you study what these issues will cause in your child, how it affects their environment, how it affects their relationships and how it affects you.

I’m going to write about my experiences with OCD in this entry because it tends to be the issue that most people have a problem with concerning Auggie. Short of the long, when he decides that he wants something or wants to do something it’s nearly an unmanageable situation to control especially if the child is still very young.

In the past few months I’ve been trying to convince Auggie to think before he acts. If he would just give a moment to the consequences or repercussions and then make a decision he would discover that the people around him or those affected would be much nicer and much more giving. Now, every time I see him or hear of him acting in a way that he shouldn’t we talk about what he should have done. I believe this has been a big help but it doesn’t completely correct the issue.

This is why

How many times in your adult life or even today have you said or done something that you immediately regretted? Foot in mouth style. How many rash decisions are made by adults that have no inkling of ADHD? I have certainly had those moments. Not today. The day is still young, though. Maybe you can imagine then that for a child without ADHD it is multiplied. The need/want of things or expression or action is heightened in a child because learning patience requires… well… to learn and learning requires time. If the child has ADHD then it is multiplied much further. You then have a child that has a need/want that couples with obsession and creates a struggle that is quite formidable for a child that hasn’t quite learned patience.

I find myself asking my son that lives every moment with ADHD, OCD and ODD to think before he acts and then find myself, as an adult who has patiently sat in waiting rooms for hours on end or waited to speak to an operator for longer than I’ll admit ask of my son something that I too have struggled with. Foot in mouth. Then I see him gaining ground and working so hard to go against something in his mind that feels completely normal. I’m asking a person that’s nearly deaf to hear normally. I’m asking a person that’s nearly blind to see completely. I wouldn’t ask that, obviously, but I’m asking my son to do something that requires so much strength and patience for a person in his situation.

Why I ask

Most of the world sees a person with ADHD as a person without self- control who is self serving. They often times blame the person for any issues that come from it. I’ve seen his teachers notes and had numerous meetings. I’ve been given verbal reports of how he acts at times from family and friends. I understand your feelings, I do. That’s why I’m writing “Auggie with ADHD.”

I ask Auggie to push further than any “normal” child because he doesn’t see how frustrated people become with him and when he does realize that he has upset someone he feels as if the world is falling down around him. He blames himself and puts himself down. Obviously, he understands when he’s done something wrong and asking him repeatedly to think is frustrating but it’s not being repeated everyday like it was. It breaks my heart when someone is mad with him or frustrated by him. He has some issues. He’s working to get through them and he’s doing great. I pray he stays on this path.

OCD

I’m not sure I can give justice to this explanation because I’m not typically driven by an obsession. Why does Auggie with ADHD act out at times? He becomes obsessed with something. Most people understand OCD has having to level a photo or straighten papers. It is BUT is not. If you feel the need to level a picture but couldn’t, what would you do? Would you scream about it? Would you try to physically push your way past any obstacles to get to it? Would you make excuses for why it means so much to you to level that picture? Would you be able to sleep tonight knowing that picture isn’t level? Would you wake up thinking about it? If the answer is no then you have what is called a quirk. That’s not an obsession. Auggie could answer yes to every question but not for pictures, no.

OCD isn’t just wanting a picture to be level or clothes lined up in the closet which is how it’s usually portrayed in film. OCD is a chained thought that enslaves you. Let’s pretend Auggie wants to ride his bicycle and he’s told no. If this thought has chained him then he’s going to do and say everything in his power to ride that bicycle. He may sneak out. He may lie. He may sulk. He’ll keep asking. His mind is SCREAMING AT HIM to ride that bicycle while he’s pleading with you over it. Then it becomes desperation so he sneaks out, straps on his helmet and feels the freedom of the wind against his face and for a moment he’s not obsessed. When realizes he’s in deep trouble there’s almost a calmness to him. He gave in to the obsession and now it’s over.

*That may or may not have happened a few times in his life already.

I keep asking him to think. As I said, I’m asking him to do something that I sometimes fail at, all without having my mind scream at me and consume my thoughts over it. He’s better than me. He’s learning. He’s finding patience.

Not Softly Into The Night

With Auggie, I never blame his actions on the issues. He knows he has ADHD. I know it. Those who know him know it. There’s no reason for me to keep it in the conversation when something has occurred. I remind him that he has the power to control it and that he should work on that daily which he has been and it’s going to be a process. I explain to new teachers and new people (if needed) that he has a few super powers but never explain that as an excuse. He’s Auggie and he’s going to Auggie regardless so when he’s stepping out of line it falls on him, not the super powers. The heartbreaking part is knowing that for him to fit into societal norms (to keep from bringing Hurricane Auggie onto shore) he has to work much harder than most. He’ll never go quietly and I’ll never ask that much of him.

God bless,

Auggie’s Deddy

I have to be your friend

Not a little kid anymore

Auggie said, “I have to be your friend, Deddy.” The night he said that to me will, just as his words, stay with me until I’ve gone on. The evening leading up to those words was a tough one. Typically, the hurricane days are when his medicine hasn’t been filled.

*Keep in mind that prescriptions are for thirty days and the months that have thirty-one days will have at least one hurricane warning.

On those rare occasions where Auggie is, well… Hurricane Auggie, he becomes something else. He laughs loudly, he cries quickly and he moves at lightning fast speeds. Please know, before I continue, that I am not nor will I ever complain about his “powers.” He is my best friend and without him I’d be expired, moldy bread ready to be discarded. Auggie will start a running tab on disciplines when he’s at cat five. It’s a constant flow of calling his name, issuing and following through on threats (from both sides) and leaving a trail of things undone, not put up and strewn about or even destroyed. Typical ADHD behavior. The difficult part of rearing a child like Auggie is being consistent. It’s easy to give in… it’s easier to give in after weathering the storm all day. Stay strong. If it’s no the first time it has to stay that way even when the crocodile tears become pure tears.

Towards the end of the night Auggie said something fairly hateful to his mother. This is the line of completely unacceptable (even now with life changes). Normally, really bad behavior calls for tougher discipline but this time I couldn’t. He knew when the words left his mouth that the whole situation had changed. He stared at me intently with his big hazel eyes full of frustration and fear. I walked over to him and leaned down to his ear to whisper, “son, that’s my wife and your mother you’re talking down to. No one is allowed to do that. I don’t even do that. I’m not sure we can be friends if that continues. Do you understand?” He nodded slowly as tears filled his eyes. I was too angry for any type of discipline and hoped this would reach him. He apologized to his mother and remained fairly quiet until bed.

A child’s belief

It was getting late when Auggie crawled onto the bed with me. I was nodding off but came to attention when the bed jolted softly. He was being quiet and gentle in his movements and I knew he’d be asleep soon. Auggie was always fast to sleep IF (big IF) he closed his eyes and gave it just a few moments. He laid on his stomach and put his arm over my chest. He asked softly if I was awake to which I said, “I am, son.”

Then, he said something that took the wind from me. My ten year old son, still a child, spoke words that shook me.

“I have to be your friend, dada. I have to be. (At this point his voice became a whisper as he began falling asleep.) If you’re not my friend I may hurt myself or somebody. Please be my friend.”

Jesus… my eyes filled with tears. I pulled him close to me and told him, “we will always be best friends. We have to treat each other that way too. Okay.”

He was already asleep. I couldn’t sleep for a while as that laid on my heart but it made sense with thought. At least, it made sense to me. A child with ADHD can feel like they are walking this path alone by constantly hearing about their wrongdoings and misdeeds. He felt like the world was against him BUT he had his Deddy. He felt like everyone was against him but I was for him. He felt like he was unwanted but I wanted him. Then, I explained to him that even our friendship could expire and he felt completely alone or, at least, considered being alone in the world.

The next day

Auggie ended up staying in the big bed overnight. I was getting things together to go to work and trying to be quiet for everyone who was sleeping. Just before I left I heard his feet hit the floor. I knew that sound like the back of my hand (throwback idiom?) It was a long standing joke that Auggie never learned to walk, only to run and he came running into the living room and smiled when he saw me. He hugged me as tight as he could and told me I was his best friend. I squeezed him until he made funny fart noises with his mouth.

“We’ll always be best friends son.”

He gave a sly grin, “I know Deddy. I heard you last night.”

What it means to me

A child (adults as well but an adult should have more control) with ADHD has large emotions. They have large thoughts. They have a large imagination. Everything in their sphere is larger and the world is always so new and shiny. When that melds with Auggie’s intelligence and his logic there can sometimes be disasters. He needs consistent discipline. If it’s no the first time it must be a no the final time but… He’s learning control but that process is slow. Thankfully, God gave me patience.

*I may differ from other parents here

I’ve learned with Auggie that restricting him can send his hurricane status from a cat one to a five. His mind needs a release, an outlet. He is programmed to follow his first thought to completion and when he can’t it becomes an even more obsessive thought. He needs to follow through for any satisfaction. With that said, I give him untold rewards. He gets to play his Nintendo at certain times and ride his bike at certain times but each activity has a time limit even if he’s in “trouble” (being in trouble or under punishment works so much differently with ADHD because of how unattached or unmoved a child can be when something is removed like a game or toy. You have to be creative when applying punishment). Unless I cannot watch him or know he’s safe then he has more freedom than in his previous years and you know what occurred? He’s calmer now. He listens… he listens.

Is that a perfect system? No. However, it works for Auggie. It works for me and for his siblings and we stay friends. Of course, I’ll always be his friend. For years he was raised as if he was a child without ADHD. The past few months I’ve applied to raise him knowing he has ADHD and OCD. He’s an incredible person and vastly unique. He’s better than I ever dreamed when hoping to one day be a father.

Next week: ADHDTUDE Err… ATTITUDE

Thank you for reading.

God bless.

Jared

*Please know, if you read any of these blogs and feel that I am glorifying disorders then I’m writing and presenting them the wrong way. I glorify my God and my children. My goal is to present my life rearing children with ADHD, OCD and ODD and hope it helps someone or maybe get advice that helps. I’ll introduce “Tiny” in the coming blogs and talk about ODD with it.

A new road for Auggie

My brother’s advice

We left the doctors office (read previous entries for details) with a lot on my mind. All of my life there were people close to me with ADHD and each dealt with it differently. Auggie reminded me so much of my brother (I call him Bubba too) and that was a wonderful thing to me. My mother was thirty-nine when I was born so my siblings were, at the very least, ten years older than me and I adored and admired all of them so much. I prayed for more time with them when I was younger and God blessed me with Auggie, my “little bubba.” Seeing the similarities between them it was a no-brainer to ask my brother what I should do. There are obviously things to consider before administering such heavy medications. My mother tried medication with my brother but at the time he was prescribed, ADHD wasn’t nearly as understood as it is today. He was prescribed a heavier dose of ritalin than a child needed and it took away his entire personality which was a no-go for my mother. Frankly, it was unsafe forty years ago without the knowledge we have today about how much a child should take and thankfully, different types of medicines are also available. After I explained to Bubba what the doctor and psychologist told us he wasted no time in giving an answer. This isn’t verbatim but is very close to his actual words.

“Oh yes, absolutely. When I was kid I didn’t have many friends, if any. They had energy but I had a super power in going non-stop. As an adult I have no issues with that because I’m energetic and always ready. Try the medicine. It’s different now.”

He wasn’t lying about making friends. You’d have to force yourself to not like him and he will run circles around his peers even nearing fifty years of age.

Here we go

So… that’s what we decided on. They started Auggie on a mixture of medicines after more discussions with the doctor. My fears were laid to rest shortly after as well. When I came home from work he was still my Auggie. Working seven days a week I never knew exactly how the medicine calmed him down but his teachers were pleased, his mother and extended family. I’ve been adamant to him that he doesn’t have a problem and that his ADHD is almost a super power. It’s hard for others to keep up with a hurricane.

The first time I noticed him reading, without interruption, tears came to my eyes. Since he could draw, color and read there’s always been an internal struggle in him. He wanted to finish his little projects ADHD his little books but before he even knew it there was something else more important. ADHD isn’t, “look, a butterfly!” ADHD is the thought of never feeling accomplished or complete, never finished, never ready and always ready.

He’s been doing well in school, thank God. The medicine, in his case, has been very good fit his education and when I’m with him in the evenings he’s still my Auggie. Hurricane August.

Next week (I started this entry a month and half ago… life happens. I’m back for now.)

Auggie’s life and my life have had a drastic change over the past couple of months. His mother has decided that she wants a divorce. I’m not going to detail anything in this blog that doesn’t pertain to him and my relationship with him so I’ll not make it about that. I wanted this blog to be a start to present day but I’m going to add in moments past and present that may be helpful to parents with children dealing with ADHD and similar situations to myself. I won’t number them anymore but I do promise to be clever in the title. I’ll try to be clever I’m usually not.

God bless

Jared

P.s. I didn’t proof read much at all. For my sanity I need to get this on here to go over the hump. I need to write more now, more than ever.

Auggie breaks my heart (working title) in the next entry.