Sunday, August 24, 2014


Last week I was able to meet up with a friend going through a messy divorce.  My heart ached for her.  She had suffered in silence for so long and still has a hard road ahead of her.

My life is hard right now.  Some days and nights are like running a full marathon without ever crossing the finish line.  Wouldn't it be nice if there were a big "You Made It" sign with lots of happy people congratulating you on a job well done every night?  Is that what happens after a marathon?  I wouldn't know... I've never ran one.

My point sucks sometimes.  I tend to end my days with a pity party and a Diet Coke.  Not so much with a song sung by Queen and a feeling of accomplishment.

But then I talked to my friend.  Her positive attitude while going through divorce made me change my own attitude towards my struggles.  The darkness started to fade as I took a look around and noticed the many blessings I do have.  I have a husband who loves me and makes me laugh every day.  Even if it's just through a text message, because honestly we don't see each other much right now.   We miss each other.  We want to spend time together.  We hate the separation.  That right there accounts for a lot.

Now, I could make a list of everything I'm thankful for, but I'll keep it to a minimum for tonight.  What I really want to say is I AM blessed.  I love my husband, I love my children and I mostly love who I'm becoming because of my challenges in life.  I feel my Savior's love for me and know he is aware.

I know we have been protected while Gregg has been in school.  My body is weary and my brain is in survival mode, but we are following the path we are suppose to be.  One day this time of life will be a small memory.  Maybe it will even seem easy compared to what lies ahead.  Who knows?

But today I am blessed.  

Wednesday, August 13, 2014

Bring on the Momma Bear

In Utah it is pertinent that your child starts preschool at the youngest age possible or else they have no chance in life.  You may as well send them on a train to Failureville because that's where they are headed anyway.  They need at least 2 years of preschool, but 3 is ideal.  Oh, your child doesn't read and they're going to be in Kindergarten?  Good luck with that!

Who really knows what we would be doing with Emme this year had she not needed extra support.  It's finally her scheduled time to enter her first year in preschool as she has a September birthday.  I'm sure I would have enrolled her in preschool anyway this year just to have a few hours alone every week.  I mean...definitely for the learning and social time....

Alas, she did need extra support and she's been in a therapy preschool for over a year now.  Which is code for "kids with behavioral issues who need to learn how to be around other people."  

We typically wouldn't have sent her that early, but it was needed for her.   It's been a great resource for us, but she really should start phasing into the actual school district.  We feel she's not quite ready to be with her peers, so we have been trying to get her evaluated for special education preschool.  Mainly, she still needs a qualified teacher who understand behavioral issues.  I wouldn't want Emme labeled as "the bad kid" because her teacher doesn't speak her language.  Then hopefully by next year or by kindergarten she will be able to be with her peers.  Cross your fingers.

I contacted our school district back in June.  Finally heard from an evaluator the very beginning of July.  They were suppose to call back in a few weeks with a date and nothing....  Haven't heard a thing.  I've called and left messages Monday and Tuesday.  Nothing....  The flustered receptionist said they are very swamped and the lady who schedules comes in at 5 to return messages.  Ok...  Let's just put it out there, that I think Utah school districts suck.  They are overworked and underpaid.  (Except, I'm not quite sure why that lady only comes in at 5.)  Too many kids, not enough staff.  It's a terrible mess of politics at the top and teachers and students suffer because of it.  Hence why charter schools have become so popular.

Cue, Momma Bear.  If you want your child to have the help they need you have to fight.  We are now entering the war zone that is public school. Welcome to the jungle.  They have unleashed the carnivore in me and I will eat them alive.  They better believe I will be calling every. single. day. until I hear back.

Plus, I've already ripped up our ticket to Failureville, so that's not an even an option.

Monday, August 4, 2014

Down to Business

I haven't been completely honest the last few months.

My heart yearns to write and share my thoughts on the whole truth and nothing but the truth about raising a child with severe ADHD.

Then there is this part of me that only worries about what others will think of me as a mom and as a person in general.  Will I seem ungrateful for the miracle that Emme is to our family?  Will I be way too negative about her and allow others to talk negatively about her as well?  Do my readers understand what ADHD really means and how disabling it can be?  How many terrible comments will I receive because we have chosen medication as a way to help Emme?

Point being, I have filtered our life as to create a facade of what our day to day really looks and feels like.  The reality is times are hard.  I'm sure someone could handle my situation a millions times better than me, but this is what I need to go through in order to grow and learn and become the person I'm suppose to be.

With that said, I realize there are tougher things in life than a child with ADHD and a husband who I only see on Sundays.  I gave a talk in church months back and talked about how we had learned that parenting would be a lot different for us than most.  After sacrament I had a lady ask what was wrong with Amy?  Caught off guard a little I stuttered out that Emme had ADHD.  She let out a big sigh, admitted she hadn't been listening very closely and that things could be a lot worse for us.  She thought "Amy" had cancer or something life changing like that.  My temper getting the best of me I spit back, " I realize that, but it's still hard for us!"  Then I walked away.

Although she went about it in a tactless way, I get it.  There are bigger stresses.  My child is healthy and my husband is just at school.  I get to sleep next to him every night.  There are many blessings in our family and I try to count each one. Trust me, I get it.

Speaking of blessings, I am thankful that we even have children.  What I've come to realize is that there are many who don't understand that my children were always meant to come to Gregg and me.  It was all predetermined.  I believe it with all of my heart.  Adoption is amazing.  I will never be more grateful than I am for my children and the change adoption put in me.  They are mine just like any other mother who bore her babies.  We just had to search a little harder for each other.   Thank the heavens for their birth mother and birth families.  They are our angels here on earth.  Let it be known that we do not target them for any imperfections in our children.  Are my children's genes different from ours?  Of course! Does that matter?  No!  Gregg and I have good and bad genes just like the rest of the world and they could have been passed on to our biological offspring.  Plus, I love that Emme has platinum blond hair, and both of my kids have striking blue eyes. They didn't get it from me, and that's okay.

A fault a lot of adoptive couples make, I know we did, while waiting for their miracle and in the early years is to put themselves as parents and their future children on a pedestal.  You may have to read that one twice.  It's sets you up to fail people.  Parenting is hard no matter what.  Just like any child from any beginning they can drive you nuts.  You are a regular parent just like every one else.  At least I am.  I didn't get any super human ability because we waited five years.  It doesn't make you a failure and it doesn't make you ungrateful.  Admitting Emme has some serious issues and that I'm not the awesome parent I imagined I'd be, does not make me ungrateful to adoption or her birthmom.  It makes me a parent.

As of late there have been some adults and children that have voiced their opinions about Emme.  It made me wonder if I was allowing that by being too honest about her.  It hurt my feelings and I couldn't sleep after one of the incidences.  We all know how I need my sleep.  I worried I was sharing too much of the ugly truth and that made it so others thought they could put Emme down or voice what they thought she would end up like.  I worried if I blogged too much about our experiences that Emme would be judged without someone really even knowing her.  Emme has so many awesome qualities and abilities. Gregg and I are her only true advocates and I want to make things better not worse.  My answer was this ::  I must also blog about her awesomeness so it can be known that she is really great sometimes.  ADHD can be a blessing in some ways and I need to discuss that as well.

Also, know that....

ADHD is real.  It is more than being hyper.  I do not medicate my child because she is just busy or because it makes my life easier.  It's a sensitive subject, but until you have had a child with a severe neurological disorder, you do not know what you're talking about.  Selling oils, knowing someone with ADHD, and hearing about a study does not make you an expert on the subject.  Until you are a specialized doctor or have lived day in and day out with a child like Emme, you don't know.  You don't.  I myself continue to learn.  Trust me there will be a whole post on this.

I realize there is a lot going on in this post, but now that this is all out there, I can continue on with the honest truth.  No more fluff.  If you want that you can follow my Instagram.  ;)  This blog is my outlet and a way to connect with others going through the same thing.  I need to voice my fears, worries, and thanks because it's healthier than keeping it all in and losing it one day.  I'd rather you not see me on the news as the crazy lady that ran away from life.  But if that happens to you or me I promise not to judge.