Wow I realize now that it has been a whole week since I have journal'd here. I am keeping a written record of our days for our team to review weekly. Our team now consist of Psychiatrist, Therapist who comes to our home for family therapy and to help whoever needs helping at the time whether that be M or whoever, Certified Behavior Analyst, Social Worker, and as of tomorrow our Targeted Case Manager from CHS. This is the agency we have been on the waiting list for. They will be in charge of assigning funding for various things but the important thing will be residential treatment if and when that is needed in the future.
There is a since of relief to know that our ducks are in a row. That the school and the "community" are aware of M's special needs and the danger aspects of her mental illness. I no longer worry about what if she blows and I am not there to help her or to help her teacher or whoever. I liked something that our therapist said in a past visit. She was expressing her knowledge of the frustration that families feel because not M's special needs don't include a wheel chair or crutches. People do not always understand her problems. And in fact we have 2 special needs kids. Although people normally see him as a quirky little guy they do not know all that he deals with and so judgements can come quickly. It has all become a day in the life for us.
In fact that is currently the only concern that our therapist has for the family. She feels like we are handling things well but her concern is that our "normal" is quiet abnormal and we are losing sight of that. She said it can be a great coping skill to be able to deal with a moment and then move forward. The only down side is with the danger that M's issues present to the family as a whole and the other children she has concern that we may normalise a little too much. So she is going to help us keep an eye on that with her visits.
Something interesting that the therapist pointed out was that she likes all the play equipment that we have outside. In fact the kids were outside when she arrived. It isn't anything fancy but the kids have a great Dad who has made them a cool swing set and slide/fort thing. We also have a trampoline. She said that physical activity is so vital to relieving anxiety in children that the foster care system makes parents sign a contract stating that they will provide outlets of physical activity for that purpose for the child. She said that is how strong the research is to it's importance. I told her we did not know any of that. For us it is simply survival. We recognized that M and C both have to be able to jump and run and climb and get that energy out. When it is raining we have a mini trampoline that we use in the house. They take 5 minute turns jumping. Sometimes we take them to the fast food indoor play areas if the weather is bad.
Anyway it is helpful to have a support system in place now. We are learning all the time. For instance we noticed that M's meds were not helping her as much as they had. Still way better than with out them but we saw a decrease in benefit. The therapist asked how her eating had been and we told her that she was eating more than normal and asking for food a lot. She asked what she was eating and all of the things from home were healthy good choices but the after care program that M loves so much we figured out was giving her a load of sugar. The therapist said that can affect the meds ability to work. So we are now packing M's after school snack. The same stuff that she eats here. They also give them the sugar water fruit drinks. We don't drink them here for obvious reasons. If your kid is already hyper let's not through lighter fluid on the flame, we seriously limit sugar. And after figuring out that C's behavior is badly affected by food dye we steer clear of that too.
Anyway, I would have never put the 2 together that the food increase and bad choices could be affecting the meds abilities but sure enough M is doing better already.
My Grandma came and visited for a few days last week which was really nice. I have a virus and it is wreaking havoc with my Fibro Myalgia so I have felt really slow. The weather has been awesome though so I should not complain.