I am glad to say that the IEP accommodations for Hannah seem to be working. She may not be doing great but the accommodations for which we asked are being implemented. Yesterday I contacted the Special Ed head (who has been truly wonderful) to tell her about how Hannah bombed the last geometry test because she was "off" and froze up at the beginning of the test and that we were asking the teacher for a retake. She contacted him to make sure he would allow this. He contacted us per our request and agreed she could retake it. Whew! He also said that she could have as much time as she wanted for tests, including the final next week, and she could take it in study hall if she wanted to. So we are quite happy with this. Now, whether she will do better on the retake or do ok on the final is not guaranteed. There are so many factors that determine how she does: are her meds right, did she get enough sleep, how will her short-term memory issues affect her recall??
So far she doesn't have any Ds of Fs for the semester. We are praying that this will be true after the finals too. Poor kid, she is so stressed out. Life isn't fair to her, but life isn't fair really for most of us. I tell her it could be so much worse. I don't know if she believes me but it is true.
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.