My heart has been breaking. My soul and every fiber of my being has been mourning. My thoughts have been reeling.
My son started a Selective Serotonin Reuptake Inhibitor (SSRI) last Thursday. He started a second-generation antipsychotic (SGA) on Thursday of this week. And this isn’t my first rodeo with this kiddo.
When he was nine months old and would bang his head on the floor, I handled it.
When he was ten months old and failed his hearing test, I handled it.
When he was 11 months old and in ECI for speech delays, I handled it.
When he was three years old and in OT for sensory concerns and fine motor delays, I handled it.
When he was four years old and in trouble in pre-k *almost* every. Single. Day. I handled it.
When he had just turned five and was diagnosed with “Adjustment Reaction with Anxiety,” I handled it.
But now he’s still only 5. He’s just 5. He’s still my baby. And I have to drug him up every day. Okay, I’ll say medicate. That’s better, right?
But is it?
Is it okay that my five-year-old is so out of control at school that his teachers *hinted* at the availability of the option to voluntarily remote educate him?
Is it okay that I get multiple texts every week about his behavior?
Is it okay that they have to call me to calm him down over FaceTime?
Is it okay that I have to medicate my son so that he doesn’t get suspended…from Kindergarten?
I’ve grieved these last few months.
I’ve been in denial that his teachers really couldn’t figure out what was setting him off.
I’ve been angry that they can’t do their job.
I’ve thought about what I may have done wrong in pregnancy that all three of my kids have “issues.” I’ve asked God why it happened to us.
I’ve been sad. Really sad. I’ve cried to the behavioral therapist. I’ve cried after school with the door to my classroom locked. I’ve cried in front of my other kids. I’ve cried to my mom and my hubby.
And I know it’s going to be okay.
The medications are here to help. They can keep my son calm so that he can better learn coping skills. The medications keep him in school and support our family to avoid a suspension crisis.
And we aren’t just relying on meds. We’re counting on large doses of prayer, behavioral therapy once a week, working with the school to get our little guy a 504 and behavioral support, and a great team of medical professionals on our side.
And I really mean it. Our developmental Pedi has been my hero these last two weeks. I’ve sent her panicked emails, and I get very prompt replies and quick prescriptions for what our little guy needs.
So, here I am on the other side once again. I can add this statement to my list of accomplishments:
When he was five years old and almost got suspended from Kindergarten, I handled it.
But in so many ways, that statement is wrong. I didn’t handle anything. I had support. I had a prayer. I had a God on OUR side who has promised that He will not give us more than we can handle.
So, while it has always broken my heart to see my kids struggling, I know —deep down— that the hurt is never permanent. I know that the sun always rises. The new day comes. The floodwaters recede. The damage from the storm is slowly cleaned up. And we heal and get back to our lives. On the other side, we always come out stronger, wiser, and ready for the next storm.