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Update: Swing It

December 13, 2012

The pendulum has swung the other way. We’ve had about 5 days on a new class of ADHD medication, and the same amount of time doing the Wilbarger Protocol– an occupational therapy intervention we did back in preschool with good results but hadn’t repeated since then.  We (and his school team) use something that looks like a surgical or nail brush and brush Simon’s limbs and back followed by doing  compressions on each major joint (which sounds super grody but really it isn’t). The idea is that doing this every 2-3 hours or so for a period of 2 weeks floods the central nervous system regularly with arousal and then regulation, which helps expands its capacity for tolerating input and stimulation. Every time I brush Simon he has no objections (very telling) and then afterwards melts into me like a puddle. This sort of thing makes me think about immediately running back to school to get qualified OT, but then I mentally slap myself and come to.

Anyway, it’s working.

He is so sunny, so happy, and visibly more resilient to terrible awful things like his horrific mother making him wear snow pants. He started to blow at that one but then just looked me in the face and said, “I’m SO ANGRY AT YOU!” and then stomped out to the car and buckled himself in his seat. He did an entire packet of homework in one night. He needed somersaults on the couch in between worksheets, but really, don’t we all?

We feel so much pleasure and relief about this that I can only imagine how he feels. It is a lot of work to be in that little unregulated body, and as tired and frustrated as I get my heart also breaks for him when he is struggling. Just as we kept ourselves afloat when things were super hard Saturday, Kevin and I are taking this new progress and holding it lightly. If we ride this rollercoaster all the way to the top, it will be that much further to come crashing down. But we can allow ourselves to be lifted, to be buoyed up in enjoyment of the moment. So we do.


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