About our Daughter

I am mother to four wonderful daughters, ages 17, 19, 21, and 23, and wife to the greatest husband on earth. God has given us a special child to raise one who was diagnosed with early-onset bipolar disorder at the age of seven, though she showed signs of it from the age of fifteen months. She also has ADHD, Sensory Integration Disorder (sensory seeking), Dyslexia, and Non-Verbal Learning Disorder-NOS, all typical comorbidities for a bipolar child. In spite of the trials, she enjoys lacrosse, running (finished her first marathon in October of 2014!), and reading and writing her own books. I will share with you the many joys and sorrows we have faced and will face in the future with the hope that you may find better understanding about this mental illness caused by both chemical and structural abnormalities in the brain. I desire that you will be encouraged by this blog if you are also dealing with a bipolar child. Thank you for reading and sharing in our journey.

How Did You Know She Was Bipolar So Young?

I wrote a long explanation of how we came to this bipolar diagnosis in a child so young under my post of March 19th of 2009. If your child or a child you know bears similarities, please seek out a good psychiatrist and don't wait for "things to get better." Often they will simply get worse, and the longer a child is unmedicated, the more damage their brain can accrue. Early diagnoses and treatment are key to providing these children with a chance at a successful life later as a teen and an adult.
Never change, start or stop a medication without the approval of your child's physician!

Saturday, September 19, 2009

If It's Not One Thing....

This week with Caroline was challenging. She is doing very well academically and behaviorally in school, but she is being plagued by a new recurrence of severe back pain. She experienced her first problem with this last fall, in the middle of a run, when she abruptly quit and said her back hurt her terribly. I had to help her hobble back home, and one thing led to another, until she was in such severe pain that she landed in the hospital for three days. The docs did one test after another and couldn't find the reason for her pain. They released her and she was sent to a pain management doctor, who correctly diagnosed her with muscle spasms caused by a pelvic joint problem. He injected her trigger points with lidocaine, which helped a lot, and then she had physical therapy for a few months, which alleviated her pain by about 75%, not completely.

Because she left for the RTC in early May, and didn't really run all summer, her back issue went unnoticed, until she returned and started running again. She immediately had to stop and now can't do PE either because any physical activity sends her into spasms. You can only imagine how frustrating this is for her and for us. She can't run fall cross-country, and she has missed school because of the intense pain, only two weeks into the year.

We took her back to the pediatrician, but we ended up at the pain management doctor again, who again injected her with lidocaine, addressing the symptoms, but not the underlying problem. The physical therapist she is now seeing pointed out an abnormality in her spine about mid-way down, as did the massage therapist, and the physician assistant at the pain clinic. Now we are going to take her to a friend who is a pediatric orthopedic surgeon to get his opinion. I want to take her to a chiropractor, but that isn't covered by our insurance at all.

Poor kid! She comes back ready to jump into life and school and sports, and is immediately set back by this mystery problem! She is sick of this and so am I. Can't she just for once have smooth sailing for more than a week? Aaaargh! (It's National Talk Like a Pirate Day) Nothing seems fair for her.

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