Tuesday, May 26, 2009

The Twins

Daisy seems to be making strides in overcoming some of her phobias. She now uses the restroom at school every day that she is there. She used it for the first time a few weeks ago, and ever since then has been fine with it. Of course, I don't know if that means she's over her fear of all public restrooms, or just that particular one. She's getting better about bugs, too. In fact, we were at the park this morning with a friend and the girls found a roly poly and were playing with it, and Daisy wasn't freaking out. She's also making strides with dogs. She will come within several feet of one now and wave to it. This is HUGE.

Her emotions are still over the top, and I'm starting to wonder if some of it might be in response, on some subconscious level, to Michael's illness/treatment. She's 4, so she doesn't really get what's going on with Daddy, she has no idea what cancer is, and we don't discuss a lot of it in front of her or the other kids anyway. Still, she seems to be extra extra clingy lately, especially to Michael. And every time he leaves the house - to go to work, to the store, whatever - she completely breaks down, sobbing and squeezing big fat tears out of her eyes, and wailing "I miss Daddy! He's gone forever!" It usually takes a good 20 minutes to calm her down.

Annabelle has me completely stressed out. We still don't really have a handle on her finger-sucking/hair-twirling-pulling thing. I try to keep first aid tape on her fingers pretty much at all times, because that's the only thing that stops her. However, she now sneaks the tape off her fingers (and I find it hidden under her bed and stuffed between the sofa cushions), and when they're not taped, she's sucking on two fingers on one hand and twirling/pulling her hair with a finger on the other hand. It's maddening. And especially because I really don't know how to resolve this. It's like a total compulsion with her. I had to trim up one side of her hair this past weekend for the first time in about 6 months because it was all uneven again because of her pulling on one side. I was so sad, because it had finally grown out quite a bit.

Michael and I have sort of joked in the past that she has ADHD. Suddenly, it doesn't seem so funny. I really don't know a ton about ADHD but I've read references to symptoms like lack of impulse control, antsyness, and things like that. And suddenly I am just about convinced that she's really and truly got ADHD. She's constantly bouncing around, she can't be quiet, every piece of furniture in the house is her personal playground, she's destructive, and inpulse control? Zero. Which is probably why, at 4 1/2 years old, if you give her a crayon, she'll draw beautiful pictures on a piece of paper, as well as color all over the wood floor, the walls, and all the spines of the books on the nearby bookshelf. If there is something she isn't supposed to get into or mess with, you can rest assured that she will get into it and mess with it. She has to be told to do - or not to do - something 17 times, because when you tell her, it's like 8 seconds later, she's completely forgotten that you just told her to stop doing that!

And really, I'm starting to wonder if the finger-sucking and hair thing is part of it. It seems like the only time she's calm and sitting still is if she's got those fingers in her mouth and that other finger in her hair. It's like it soothes her.

We've always characterized Annabelle as "spirited" and "naughty." It's all starting to look a little different now. And really, it scares the crap out of me (like we need one more issue to deal with). What do we do? Wait to see if she outgrows her obnoxious behavior and hope it doesn't create problems at school? (She's never had a problem at preschool, so I don't know what to think of that.) I'm scared to death that someone at some point is going to tell us she needs to be on medication or something.

And believe me, I'm not the sort of parent seeking out a diagnosis. I've been known to scoff at these things. This must be Karma, come to bite me in the ass.


Anonymous said...

I hate to be a debbie downer....but karma affects a person after they have died, not during the lifetime. So you kind of have to believe in reincarnation or life after death. And I read your blog faithfully and know you don't believe in that....so it can't be karma. It must just be the gene pool you're sitting in ;-) Paula

Lisa said...

Yeah, I was kind of kidding about Karma. I don't believe in Karma, or reincarnation, or life after death, or any of that ;)

Carla said...


Anonymous said...

It's the "non-believer's " karma. LOL
I would just wait and see if it's a problem in school next year.
Maybe she will improve as she matures?
I don't like the thought of medicating for ADHD either... At this age they don't have the greatest attention span anyway, so I prefer to just wait and see.
My 3 year old Chloe also twirls her hair and chews her nails horribly... It's really sad to see them so anxious. But that's how she copes with her anxieties. That's what the pedi said, anyway...
HUgs again, Asha.