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!

Thursday, October 25, 2012

Lithium and Kidney Damage

The news we all dreaded came to us this week:  Caroline's lithium blood levels are way too high and we have to reduce her lithium dosage even if it destabilizes her.  Great.  We are going to try adding 50 to 100 mg more of the Seroquel XR to try to counteract mania but she is already at the max of 800mg.  She has been on Lithium for five years and it has been such a great mood stabilizer for her and there is no other drug like it.  With all she has gone through this fall already, we were really hoping that a big med change was not going to be added to the mess.  But her kidneys are truly at risk now so we can't ignore this.

We took the advice of her IEP team and dropped Spanish for the year, moving her instead into a special ed resource room study hall, which she can skip to sleep in with no consequence.  The team has been so amazing and I am so thankful for their kindness and understanding.  She will have to make up Spanish possibly in summer school.  But this way she can focus more on her core subjects.  At the end of this semester, we will be arranging her schedule again so she has no first period class and can start later.  Again, amazing accommodation!

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