Sunday, December 4, 2011

Skating on thin ice

Treading on water; Walking on thin ice; That is what we are doing at our house. Should think of some song lyrics.

Akila came home on Friday afternoon. It truly is nice to have her home, but she definitely has her edge back. At the appt with the Psychiatrist on Thursday, the crisis home manager said they have been seeing her escalate in her behaviors in the past week and might need an increase in her newest med. We all decided that it would not make sense to do that right away in the midst of transitioning her back home. I can see that she is going to need the increase. I was hoping we could wait longer.

The normal dosage for this med is 20-30 mg and she is on 5 mg, so we have a good amount of wiggle room. Right now, the slightest thing is setting her off and making her quite angry. It was not like this just over a week ago, and it is not just being home. The staff were seeing the same thing all week.

After 3 months of respite, we have locked up the knives. I have locked up my medicine. The little storage room in the basement is locked. What we all need to get back into though, is walking on thin ice around her. Being careful in everything we do and say, and in particular, in how we respond to her, or if we should respond to her. This is one of the hardest things for the kids, especially Hezekiah.

Akila will argue about anything, and she is always right. It is futile to argue with her on some things. When we got home from a school event yesterday, there was a small SUV in front of our neighbors house. She thought it was her son. I said no, it was a different SUV. She disagreed. When she disagrees, she does not do so quietly, or quickly. She is rude, loud and goes on and on about it. I quickly agreed with her (who cares who's vehicle it was!). Even after I agreed, she still carried on and on about it.

She has had multiple situations like this with the kids, and they of course don't back down usually. Especially Hezekiah. He will sit and engage and engage with her, until we have an all out war on our hands. This happens most often when we are driving, makes for a pleasant drive. This is not something new by any means. This is something that the kids have never had a real good handle on, but they are usually better about it. They are out of practice. Not one of the things I remembered to prepare them for.

They had issues at the crisis home with hygiene, like we have always had. They had started to have her shower right after school before she could do choice activities. The last week or so, they had loosened on this and let her choose when in the schedule to do it, as long as she did it. They said this was because she had been doing well lately and had earned more say in her schedule.

Yesterday, I was going to straighten her hair, so I was going to have her shower in the afternoon or early evening. We ended up not doing it and decided to do her hair today. But I needed her to shower still, as I don't want to get out of that habit. She gets two tokens for doing it, same as at the crisis home. We are going to try the token system and see if it will work, it did for them. I finally got her to shower right at bedtime. But bedtime was not easy, either nights. She is in refusal mode on going to bed, even just going to her room. And she is really tired, her evening meds have definitely kicked in.

She has had some nice time playing with the kids, but again, it has to be on her terms. And the boys just don't want to play with dolls. She has been more intentional in helping out a little, and doing some small chores. She is more intentional on showing manners and there have been several times when she has gotten mad about something and 5 minutes later told me that it is OK (usually when she is mad, I get a tongue lashing- for losing her Barbie Doll earring, or something like that she is convinced is my fault).

The hardest thing, is that I know we need to wake her up in the morning on the weekends. They woke her between 7-8 each day. It is very hard to make myself wake her up when she is sleeping in. She slept til 9:30 yesterday when I finally woke her, and I woke her up at 9:00 today. I need to be more disciplined and just wake her up earlier.

I am very grateful to have her home. But we sure can use prayers so she is able to stay home with us.


GB's Mom said...

Praying!. It is very important for them to wake up at the same time every morning. Setting this habit now will be much easier than waiting until she is a teen. I never wanted to wake MK either.

Anonymous said...

I am praying for you, too! --Carrie

Anonymous said...

Am praying that all goes well.
I sometimes wonder if the people who offer prayers actually come through or if they're just trying to look good. I am not referring to any of your readers, just people I know personally.
I think announcing that you will pray for someone is a form of showing off. Prayer is wonderful; I believe it works wonders, but boasting about it is un-Christian, IMHO.
I know this is a controvertial topic among certain denominations and I don't mean to insult anyone. Having recently had spinal surgery and having many people respond to the news by saying they will pray for me got me wondering how many of the offers are sincere and how many are an automatic social convention, like saying "God bless you" when someone sneezes.