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!

Sunday, July 3, 2011

Mired in the Mud

I am feeling like the psalmist who prayed that God would lift him out of the miry clay and to set his feet on the rock high above.  Truly this shall pass but the last few days have been so difficult.  I am struggling with depression in a big way.  I am yelling at my kids at the drop of a hat for no reason, possess no energy to do anything, just feeling irritable and sad about everything.  I think I need an increase in my antidepressant or something.  I made an appointment with a new psychiatrist as I am getting bad vibes about changes at our present psychiatrist's office.  This is actually not a "new" psych doc but an old one, the first one Caroline had when she was newly diagnosed.  We loved her but found her office staff to be incompetent (couldn't get emergency appointments, refills on time, etc.)  We are hoping this has changed for the better.  I need change, in so many ways.  I am longing for a new neighborhood, a new job for my husband, and a better church situation for Caroline.

We actually visited a new church today, finally, after talking about it for years.  Sometimes we can get stuck in the status quo, knowing something has to give, but lacking the will to make the changes necessary to make our lives or that of our kids better.  Stuck would definitely describe us these last few years in regards to our church.  We love our friends there and our pastoral staff, and especially our pastor's amazing preaching, but have felt that this church has never been a good fit for Caroline and thus not for us as well.  Nothing worse than fighting a Sunday morning battle every week with a kid who hates your church.  Change can be hard, very hard, but sitting in this other church today, with Caroline happy and smiling and declaring she had found her church at last, made the drive worth it.  I will do anything so that she would be drawn closer to God and develop a deeper faith in Him and His goodness toward her, and friendships at a great youth group.  Who knows, one day we may go back to our present church when Caroline is on her own and can drive herself where she feels like she fits in.  I think many of our friends will have a hard time with our decision to leave.  But we have to do what is best for our family.

On another subject, my husband's MRI came back that his tumor has not grown at all in six months, so that is good news.  But the neurologist wants Bill to stay on active duty for another year so he can follow this some more before letting him go.  My husband doesn't know if the doc's desires can be fulfilled by the Navy as far as more orders go, so this is the task at hand now, to find out if this will work at all by the end of July.  I would actually like him to continue active duty for another year because we are not in a good place financially at all with the eight months of unemployment this year. I am having panic attacks on a regular basis about finances.  We need time to catch our breath before being forced to try to find a civilian job again.  I am so weary of this season of life.  I just want to move ahead financially and for Caroline, academically, to get her going with high school at this private school and that she would succeed and maybe be able to stay there.  Enough with the ups and downs, God, I am tired!!!  I need a break!!! I feel like Job and I know Bill does too.  Too many trials, too many uncertainties, too much stress all the time.  I don't feel stronger at all, I feel beaten down and exhausted.  Kyrie Eleison.


Lila said...

I understand. Doing what's best for Caroline and what's best for your family is challenging, and it's been an uphill battle. But you said it at the start of your post, this too shall pass. A quiet reprieve will come, and you'll feel the tensions and fears ease. Keep praying.

Mama Bear said...

I’ve been in this place, I can say that the depression will lift when things around you change. The last 3 years was really tough on us, no certainty with anything. Thankfully God lightened our load and even though we still have struggles, we are feeling much better.

So hang on tight, your time will come and God will reveal all he has planned for you. I know that the place you are in is unbearable, but hold onto God’s promises and know that things will get better for you and your family. It will be so much sweeter because of all you have endured.