School’s Out, What Will I Worry About Now?

Luke looks how I’ve been feeling lately, very
rough around the edges. I did get him a haircut
a couple days after I saw this pic!

The anticipation of school being over for the summer was really building in the couple weeks up to the end. I knew Luke, my 8-year-old with ADHD, was going to a different school in the Fall, a school more geared to his learning style with a student:teacher ratio less than half his current school. I knew it was going to be better for him. And yet, I wasn’t worrying any less.

I worry a lot, about everything. It’s just my nature. Daddy has come to terms with it. The kids are still annoyed, feeling that I’m far too overprotective. My mind races down the bunny trail to what hazards lurk ahead. And as I discover potential problems, I must fix them before they’re ever even a real event. Yes, to answer your little voice, it is exhausting.

For the last six months I have worried intensely about Luke’s school experience. Well, I’ve worried about it since the teacher called me on day 2 of kindergarten and requested a meeting, but I’ve been downright obsessive about it the last six months. This year Luke was in 3rd grade, that pivotal year when they are supposed to work independently and become accountable, two things my special little boy was not even a little bit ready for. A couple months into the school year, the teacher knew it was more than ADHD, she knew he had a learning disability in writing as well, something I had been telling the school for a solide two years. It took us three more months, but we were able to secure placement in special education and an IEP.

I actually breathed a sign of relief that early day in January when I got the placement letter. I had fought for over two years for this placement and it finally happened. Now he’d have OT and services; now he’d have help with handwriting; now he’d get more intensive instruction in writing; now they’d understand why he never completes his written work. This was the golden ticket we’d been searching for.

It didn’t turn out to be a golden ticket. It turned out to be a dripping faucet in the middle of a steamy and vast desert. The school’s plan was to provide the smallest bit of help and build in baby steps and hope that the small fraction of the day that someone was truly helping him would “spill over” into all other areas of school for him. No chance of that. They wouldn’t listen to me.

I fought and fought and fought. I cried in IEP meetings. I sent stern emails to the Special Ed staff at the Board of Ed. I trolled the internet for advice from advocates. I put Luke’s name in the lotteries for the Charter Schools. We applied for scholarships at private schools. Through it all was nothing but defeat.

In the mean time, Luke had tried every ADHD and some alternative medications and could not find a medication that would remain effective for him. He took mediocre medication and stopped gaining weight. I was searching for answers and someone who could find a treatment that would work. We began seeing an integrative meds doctor and she began to run some tests that are not widely accepted as standard practice in mainstream healthcare. I am now fighting the insurance company to try to get them to pay for some of these tests. He’s been on a gluten-free diet for a couple months now and I can’t be certain if it’s helping or not. Now I’m worried about how I’ll know if it’s the right thing.

Then there’s life outside of ADHD. Extra burdens right now with work, getting ready to put our house on the market and keep it presentable daily, the summer projects Luke has to complete for his new school, and on and on and on.

While I am not as worried about school for Luke, at least not until the new school gives me a reason to worry (which hopefully will not happen), there is an endless supply of things for a worry-wart like me to be consumed by. I guess it’s the overwhelming desire to fix something that can’t ever truly be “fixed.”

COVER3D_400sq_bestsellAward-Winning Blogger. Freelance Writer. Author. Warrior Mom.
A self-described “veteran” parent of a son with ADHD, Penny Williams is the author of the Amazon best-seller about her parenthood in the trenches, Boy Without Instructions: Surviving the Learning Curve of Parenting a Child with ADHD. She is also the creator of the award-winning website, {a mom’s view of ADHD}, a frequent contributor on parenting a child with ADHD for ADDitude Magazine and other parenting and special needs publications, and co-founder of the annual Happy Mama Conference & Retreat, a weekend away for moms of kids with neurobehavioral disorders. Look for her second book, What to Expect When You’re Not Expecting ADHD, in late 2014. Follow Penny at http://BoyWithoutInstructions.com.

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adhd and school, anxiety, parenting/FAMILY, Penny Williams, Take Care of You ·

About the author

COVER3D_400sq_bestsellAward-Winning Blogger. Freelance Writer. Author. Warrior Mom. A self-described “veteran” parent of a son with ADHD, Penny Williams is the author of the Amazon best-seller about her parenthood in the trenches, Boy Without Instructions: Surviving the Learning Curve of Parenting a Child with ADHD. She is also the creator of the award-winning website, {a mom's view of ADHD}, a frequent contributor on parenting a child with ADHD for ADDitude Magazine and other parenting and special needs publications, and co-founder of the annual Happy Mama Conference & Retreat, a weekend away for moms of kids with neurobehavioral disorders. Look for her second book, What to Expect When You’re Not Expecting ADHD, in late 2014. Follow Penny at http://BoyWithoutInstructions.com.

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The "ADHD Mommas" are not medical or mental health professionals, nor an ADHD coach. Any opinions shared here are just that, opinions. I, and the other "ADHD Mommas," are sharing our experiences with our own ADHD children. Please do not re-post or publish any content or photos without a link back to {a mom's view of ADHD}. Have the courtesy to give credit where credit is due. Copyright protected. All rights reserved.

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