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Thursday, September 8, 2011

Back to School

For many parents this is the most wonderful time of the year. After a summer of fun tears often fill children's eye as that fateful day draws near. But for some parents the first day of school is filled with worry. That is how it has been for me for the past three years. It wasn't always like this. The two years before my son was diagnosed with Aspergers I too loved the first day of school.

Okay to be honest I still love it, after a full summer of two children and a marriage falling apart, sending the kids off to school is wonderful. It is the newness and unknown that worries me. This year it is a grade higher and a new school. Add to that two elementary schools have combined so his class has students in it that he doesn't know.

Tonight I realize that I forgot the worst part of back to school for us. P takes adderall so he can focus in school. It helps him to resist the urge to poke another student in the forehead, yes that is something he tends to do. Unfortunately one of the side effects is insomnia. After a couple weeks his body adjusts to it and he finally will go to sleep at a reasonable hour. But until then he will be rattling around trying to come up with new ways to get out of his room at night. At the same time I have to remember that it is the meds doing this to him, so I take deep breaths and remind myself that I love him. I can hear him playing in his room. It amazes me that he still hasn't realized that sound travels. He is always surprised when I find him in the middle of his mischief.

Then there are the back to school tears and mood swings that he gets. There are so many new unfamiliar things for him to deal with that he can't handle it all. There is a lot of new input that he has to deal with. The problem is that his brain doesn't have the pathways or doesn't provide him with the information he needs to handle it all. Every night he has been in tears and anything can set him off. It is amazing how quickly he can shift form happy to sad to mad.

At the same time I can't ignore my daughter. She also is off to school again and some of her best friends are not in her class. Like with P I do not know her teacher, this is the first year that I know nothing about both my children's teachers. Her teacher also is not utilizing a faculty webpage and I have not gotten any real information from her. Add to that there is a new principal at my daughter's school, that was a huge surprise to everyone. This year I am out of my parental comfort zone with both schools. At least I know who the principal is in my son's school. I think if he left I might have lost it.

I haven't had a job interview in a while and am going stir crazy. My worse half still flips out with little to no provocation. With him and P both on the edge mentally this week has been a horrible roller coaster ride. I try to around enough to make sure P is okay, but at same time I need to stay out of D's crosshairs so I don't snap. A simple misunderstanding between us can blow up into a huge battle.

Now if P will go to sleep then I can too. Back to school is a wonderful time of year, right?

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