Wednesday, November 30, 2011

Better yet worse

We started Bryce on Adderall XR two weeks ago. Ryan and I have seen a difference in some ways. Bryce talks to me more about his day, which before NEVER happened. When I would pick him up at school and ask about his day, he would say things like "I don't know" or "NOTHING!" He never wanted to discuss anything. Maybe because nothing was important about his day or maybe because he brain was spinning so out of control that he couldn't find words to describe his day? Who knows, anyhoo that is the past and today is a new day right? Well so NOW when I pick him up he tells me what he did, how lunch went and anything else important that the teacher tells the students to tell their parents. I AM SO EXCITED TO LEARN ABOUT HIS DAY! Besides that there is a tiny bit more of things I notice. When I ask him to do something, sometimes he does it right away! Also he has been a little better about remembering to say "thank you" without us having to ask him 3 times what to say. I haven't yet had a chance to sit down with his teacher and talk about if she is noticing a difference yet. I plan on going in there Friday and talking with her.

So on the downside, because there always is.....his emotions are totally out of control. I knew this could happen with the medication, but I wasn't prepared for how bad it was going to be. Adderall is an amphetamine which slows down the brain in people who have ADD/ADHD, but it also speeds people up who don't have that problem. That is why it is sold of the streets for high value, because people get high from it. They actually used it back in war for the pilots to stay awake. So since it is working in Bryce's brain, it is also running through his veins all day, making him a little more agitated and anxious. Of course since Bryce is already dealing with some depression and anxiety, we knew they might get worse. They have! Bryce is so emotional over everything, and it's not just crying it is straight up having a mental meltdown over something as small as not wanting to eat what's for dinner, or the rain is getting on his shoes. It is overwhelming not just for me but for him as well. Last night when he had this melt down because he drank some juice and he gagged and thought he might vomit, I ended up having to just hold him in my arms as he tried to struggle to get loose for a good 20 minutes until he finally calmed down enough that I wasn't worried he was going to have a heart attack. 45 minutes after the meltdown began he was fine, back to normal like nothing ever happened. The intensity of the situation is hard to explain. Some people will probably read this and say "oh yeah my kid does that if he doesn't get his ice cream." I have no idea how to drill it into peoples head but this is NOTHING like that!

So after discussing this with his doctor, we put him on another medication that is called Guanfacine. He takes this at night before bed and it will help calm down the emotions enough to get them under control, while the Adderall is still working to control his ADD. Hopefully with this combination Bryce can be a happy kid. That is what I want for Christmas from Santa, and God. I want my son to be happy, to live his life as a child does. I don't want my son to go through this anymore.

Thanks for listening.

Praying for another tomorrow, better than today. Praying for strength to guide us, and wisdom to know we are in the right direction.

Friday, November 18, 2011


I am sitting here today with so many thoughts running through my head. Today we will meet with Dr. Zollinger and discuss the next step in helping Bryce. I guess if I had to choose one word for the way I am feeling it would be "lost." Not knowing if the step we take with be for the better or worse. If we choose medication and it back fires, then my son might get worse. If we choose not to do medication and just therapy, how long will it take for Bryce to get better? Although I know God has an amazing plan for Bryce, I know God knows the outcome of this confusing time, I am still so confused. I am his mother, the one that God chose to protect him, to teach him, to heal him. I feel like I am losing. I feel like a horrible mother. Ryan gets so upset that I blame myself for this, but I can't help it, that is just how us humans react. I go over and over in my head, what if I would of stayed home from the beginning? What if I would of spent more time with him as child? I could go on all day with more "what if's", but it won't help. Nothing does. I literally have to make my mind turn another direction.

I know that every parent out there, or most anyway could tell you that they love their child more than any other parent in the world. It is so true. I love Bryce more than I could of ever imagined loving my children. When I was kid I could not wait to become a mother. I even bought baby clothes as a teenager because I knew someday I would have a little one. When Ryan and I decided to get married we did it because we wanted children, and we knew that was the right way to do it. Of course we wanted to be husband and wife, but we had already lived together for 5 years, we were already "married" in most ways. I wanted to have everything perfect for a new little person in our life, so I went to the doctor about a month before our wedding to get checked out. There I was given the news that I never expected to hear....I might not be able to get pregnant! Really? Of all the people out there having children and the Lord was going to deny me this? Well I wasn't giving up, I decided I would take fertility drugs to help better my chance. I tend to think God knew the mistake he had made by telling me I couldn't have my dream, because 45 days after our wedding, I was pregnant! So you see many people are so happy when they get pregnant, it is a wonderful thing. But for me, it was the greatest blessing. Bryce is my blessing. Bryce is my miracle. My sweet 6 year old son is the greatest gift God has given me. I also believe that having Bryce allowed my body to get pregnant 3 times after him. Two babies of course are my angels in heaven, then 1 little boy is currently dancing in my living room right now.

Bryce is more to me than just my child. Bryce is my entire world. I want so much for that little boy. I want life to be easy for him. I want him to not be afraid. I just want the best for him.

Thanks for listening.

Monday, November 14, 2011

Learning more about Bryce

Well, today was the day. The day when my life was turned upside down. The day I learned more about my son then ever before.

Ryan and I were both so nervous going into this meeting with Bryce's psychologist. Of course we were excited too, we were finally going to get some much needed answers. So we took Greyson to my mom's house, and headed over.

Once we arrived when we went back to Dr. Fusek's office. She had about a 10 page letter, that was all information complied, from us, Bryce's teacher and from what she gathered after meeting with us and Bryce the first time. She went through it all with us. Some good news before the bad, is that Bryce shows no signs of Autism or Aspergers. The major concern that she has with Bryce is his inability to process information. Bryce is an excellent reader, but he is unable to process what he is reading. He could read an entire book with hardly any problems, except at the end of the book, you ask he what the book was about and he is unable to tell you. He was given a test at her office, that was on the computer, when the question popped up on the screen he had a button to push when he knew the answer but he was constantly late pressing the button. Although he knew the answer, his brain was not processing the information about the question/answer in the proper time like the average person. The weird thing is this whole time, Bryce seemed so smart, we were so excited to learn about his IQ level because we thought he was going to be outstanding in that department, unfortunately his IQ level is lower than average, only at an 87. This is due to not being able to process what he is learning. Now don't think that he is not smart, because he is, he just needs help teaching his brain to learn it. Bryce has the ability to learn this stuff, it will just take alot of patience from us and his teachers. So with this learning issue (I don't want to say disability, because I am not ready to say that), his clinical diagnosis is ADD. Not to be confused with ADHD, because he does not show signs of the hyperactivity. Which surprised Ryan and I both, but she is the one with the PhD!

Our next diagnosis is by far the worst of them. As I have said before, Bryce seems to be extremely emotional about a fair amount of things. He gets sad and then gets angry. We knew that he was having some sort of emotional issue. But I was not prepared for her to diagnosis him with a mild case of clinical depression/anxiety. At 6 years old, you don't expect that. As a mother, that is your worst fear. That something you have no control over, something that is a chemical imbalance in your childs brain, makes them sad. As she explained this though, it started to make sense. For the past 2 or 3 years I have been getting so frustrated with Bryce, when he does not do things he is told or I have to tell him a hundred times to do something and he still looks at me confused, like he isn't PROCESSING what I am saying!!! I broke down and cried, how could I not know this was happening to my son, how could I get so upset that he wasn't listening, but it wasn't that he wasn't listening, it was that his brain takes longer to process.

This is probably confusing to some of you, it is still confusing to us. We will take this one day at a time. Today is a new day, today is the day my life was turned upside down, today is the day I start a new path to helping my son lead a better life. Thank you for your continued support. I will keep you updated with anything new. We will meet with Dr. Zollinger (Bryce's PCP) this Friday to talk about where we go from here. The Psycologists recommendation right now is a small dose of ADD medication, this should help kickstart his brain into helping with the process of information.

I just want the best for my baby. I found this picture of him when he was about 3, thought I would share.