Friday, July 15, 2011

Treading water

I don't tend to talk about the specifics of my daughter's issues on this blog -- and I'm not likely to -- but I will say that her depression is spiking again.  Because she's a kid, depression presents differently from the well-documented adult symptoms.  Irritability and an attitude of "nothing is good" are key symptoms for my daughter, as our ├╝ber on-top-of-it doctor at Children's reminded me today.  I also learned that sleep disruptions are part of it, and that certainly explains the past several weeks' nighttime awakenings.

While I don't want my daughter to have depression -- it does hurt -- I'm glad to have a name for what we're dealing with.  I've been struggling a lot lately with the underlying causes of the behaviors we see on a daily basis now.  I've run the gamut from poor parenting (hence learned negative behaviors) to the effects of poor emotional regulation (true but not under her control without the explicit teaching of coping strategies).  I had forgotten about the depression (and the chemistry involved).  I don't care so much about the label except that it helps identify the best interventions.  That, and it helps me have patience.

I haven't really been holding onto my patience well lately.  (I don't think I'm ready to share Tuesday's Stellar Parenting Moment #5,632 just yet.  It wasn't pretty.)  I haven't slept well in a year, and I'm really frustrated that the. best. doctor. for. us. is located 90.6 miles away, taking a minimum of five hours out of our day to see her.  The lack of specialists is one part of "preserving the rural characteristic of the Mother County" that I'd really like to see unpreserved.  My daughter needs help, and I have to yank her up the Beltway every week to get it for her.  It's draining, but when I make monthly appointments to save on the drain, her treatment lags, and she makes little progress.

It feels like we're at sea, treading water, with no land in sight.  And we're getting awfully tired.

I don't have an ending to this post. 

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