I went to help out in Austin's class yesterday. His teacher was sick, but the full-time aid in his class, Miss Karen, pulled me aside to tell me how well Austin is doing lately. He used to lose his temper at the smallest issue, and she told me that hasn't happened since before Christmas. He is doing better at sitting in his seat and concentrating. The art teacher told me that she has noticed a significant difference in this area as well. He hasn't been that interested in art, so he would try to get it done as quickly as possible. But, she's been noticing much more thoughtful effort lately. His teacher sends home a homework packet every week. We didn't work on it on Monday, so I sat him down at the coffee table on Tuesday and asked him to work on it while I taught piano. Before I knew it, he had completed almost the entire packet. We did have to go back and work on a couple of spots that were a little sloppy, but overall, he did an amazing job! I'm grateful for his strengths! He really has tried so hard over the past several months. I'm also grateful for his effort! Although I expect perfection in myself, all I can do is keep trying. As long as Austin keeps trying, what more can I ask for?!?
Yeah! I'll take it! I love positive news! I think anybody loves hearing good things about their kids. It is so easy for me to see the good in other people's kids, but I tend to dwell on the negative with my own. I'm so sorry! It's just so difficult to separate our kid's behavior from our parental efforts. As many of you know, I'm a "Love and Logic" follower. But, one of the main points of "Love and Logic" is to be happy when your kids make a mistake because it presents an opportunity for learning. I'm not quite there yet.
I want to preface the following thoughts: I do believe in modern medicine! I know that the medication out there can change people's lives for the better. I have seen it in my own family. I have a little Primary boy that finally got the correct medical diagnosis and medication to help him. As the Bishop stated, "It really is a miracle." I could not agree more. Here is my problem with Austin and medication. After we conducted the tests, the doctor looked at me and said, "I cannot clinically diagnose him [with ADHD], but I still think we should put him on medication." He also refused to look into any other possibilities besides ADHD. I just couldn't understand why we would medicate our son when we aren't 100 percent positive of the diagnosis. So, as many of you know, I took him to a doctor that practices "alternative" medicine.
I am continually praying and fasting to ensure that we are doing the right thing for Austin. As I was reading in the Book of Mormon last Saturday, I read about the time when Captain Moroni put forth the Title of Liberty and many Nephites became more fully converted to the gospel. Near the end of Chapter 46, there is a description about how the Nephites were blessed and flourished because of their faith. Verses 38-39 read, "And it came to pass that there were many who died, firmly believing that their souls were redeemed by the Lord Jesus Christ; thus they went out of the world rejoicing. And there were some who died with fevers, which at some seasons of the year were very frequent in the land—but not so much so with fevers, because of the excellent qualities of the many plants and roots which God had prepared to remove the cause of diseases, to which men were subject by the nature of the climate."
I know that some of the herbs and supplements may seem strange. And I know that it seems radical to take him off food dye, corn syrup, and super-processed foods (it’s quite difficult to find kid-friendly snacks and treats without any of that stuff). I don’t want him to be weird or different or deprive him of having a fun childhood. I also know that I worry too much about him. But, I found that scripture so reassuring. As strange as it seems, Austin is doing better. One good day is so appreciated and invigorating. It gives me the encouragement that I need to keep trying to find the right answers and be a better, more patient, more loving mother.