I have serious birthday fatigue. We threw Stella’s party on Saturday. Saturday also happened to be my birthday. Stella was adamant that my birthday was NOT happening that day. If anyone tried to correct her, she got pretty angry. It was funny. She finally allowed me to have my birthday on Saturday on Sunday. Ah well.
This is all very hard to write about. I was terrified no one would show up, particularly after the difficulties she’s had at school. What’s becoming clear to me is that she can be pretty different than a lot of kids, especially when she’s wound up by a special event. And while it breaks my heart, other kids see it. But she had a good crowd. I was so glad. We used the same indoor space we had last year. From a party standpoint, there was very little to do. It’s still stressful. I just get so wigged out about these things.
So now it’s back to the non-birthday norm. We have yet another conference Thursday afternoon. This time will be different, I hope. We went to the pediatrician last week so that I could get a diagnosis – any diagnosis – to get a Section 504 Plan and any possible accommodations (you must have “something” to call a kid before you get the 504). Based on my own endless research, the best “fit” for a diagnosis is Hyperlexia Type 3. Her former occupational therapist was the first one to bring this term up. It’s not as common as the usual suspects – ADHD, spectrum, ODD, sensory processing disorder, but reading that description is an eerie fit for my kid. It’s also not a bad label to have, one which implies a wonderful ability. But there are other tics and traits – not positive – which go with it.
It’s hard to wrap my head around this thing sometimes. On one hand, my daughter is amazing. Her memory is phenomenal. She’s funny. She is interested in so many cool things. While we were waiting on the pediatrician last week, she started reading his asthma poster and then proceeded to lecture him on inflamed airways and how they don’t get enough oxygen (which was NOT on the poster, BTW). On the other hand, she flew off the handle at her party because she thought she couldn’t eat a piece of pizza. It took a while to calm her down. We almost couldn’t have the singing and the candles. How do you resolve these 2 sides in your head? How can you read chapter books and study dead fruit flies in a microscope with your kid one day and the next day find that she won’t go get her shoes out of the laundry room which she’s gone into a billion times because it’s “scary.”
The material on this “disorder” indicates that as these kids age and mature, they outgrow many of these traits. She’s already come a long, long way. She has a long way to go. I obsess about everything – what she eats, how much she sleeps, does she have fancy undershorts under her jumper so that she feels pretty. We’re trying everything that might help at all. Since she’s so responsive to written language, I’ve started doodling little calm-related temporary tattoos on her wrists so she can peek at it whenever she needs to. We’re trying a locket which doubles as an aromatherapy diffuser with “calm down potion” in it.
I feel hopeful that we’ll turn a corner with the school after this conference – that they’ll be more understanding and recognize her gifts (and stop sending this bullshit bo-bo nonsense home for her to read – bullshit that she could read when she was 3 years old). Maybe the Harpy will actually smile at my daughter. Maybe I can relax. Maybe I can stop being terrified each day when she goes to school. In the meantime, I need some damn coffee. I’m infinitely weary.