So much about being a parent is just guessing. I want to do what's right for my kids but half the time I barely know they need. I try, I really do. Most of the time all I can do is just pray to God that I am doing right by them. So it was with a fairly heavy heart and some reservations that we made a (possibly) life-altering decision for Jacob. We started him on an ADHD medicine this morning. I am not against medicine and I think it can be very helpful. I couldn't survive a day without the medicines I take. But this is my child and no matter how helpful medicines are to a person there is the potential for side effects. The idea of Jacob taking medicine for his condition came up a few years ago. We pushed it aside then to see if we could make it without going that route. Unfortunately, its become clearer in the past few months that he needs help. Not help to make him easier for us or his teachers to handle. He needed help for himself. You can't help but hurt to see your child so obviously out of control of his own body, his own brain. Its like his behavioral pediatrician said: "He is like an engine with its idle set to high." Even my Mom noticed it this past weekend. He is more impulsive, more antsy and just more out of control.
So we consulted with his behavioral pediatrician about what the options were for him. I trust his doctor implicitly. He is not a medicine pusher and he looks out solely for the best interests of Jacob. This is just a trial run for the medicine. If it doesn't help him, we will stop it. If he hates it, we will stop it. If it works and helps Jacob, then great. He is already a very bright child. (And that's not just Mama talking. He has tested higher than 85 percent of the second graders in reading and math on a national test. His reading level tested above the fifth grade level. He's in first grade.) What I hope is that this medicine can help him control himself and therefore help with his social immaturity. For all his brain smarts, he lags behind his peers in social skills. This is not unusual for a kid with an autism spectrum disorder.
I know some of you might be thinking this is all a bit melodramatic and it could be. Its hard not to feel emotional when this is something you and your spouse have wrestled with for years. In the end, all you can do is hope my kids realize I did the best I could for them - and I always did it in love.
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