Wednesday, August 24, 2011


Today I am linking up with my dear friend Shell


Raising a child with special needs is challenging.

Raising a child with special needs alone? Exhausting.

Ahna has always been a difficult child. Even prenatal.

As she grows, her condition and state of mind ebb and flow, seemingly like the tide. On the outside people see a beautiful, funny, engaging, and confident little girl. It is clear that she is independent and headstrong. Her special needs are disguised deep within.

As you take the time to get to know her, you will learn she is indeed engaging. She is bold and witty, funny and brave. But she is also anxious, insecure, afraid, and overwhelmed. 

She is a verbose child who struggles to find the right words. Her temper flares quickly like a match, and instead of identifying what she needs, her words scathe and injure those in her path.

I watch her struggle day in and day out - trying to be the person she thinks the world wants her to be. Trying to fit the mold of the happy American girl. My heart breaks into pieces for this amazing child, a child who has never known a day of peace. A child who has lived every day of her 11 years with mental illness that remains unnamed.



Mood Disorder - Non-Specific

Is it RAD? Is is Asberger's? Could she be bipolar? Has she been exposed to lead?

In the last 9 years she has seen 7 different therapists, been admitted to 2 out patient programs, and has been to in patient care 3 times. 

She has been on 32 different medications at different times, trying to find one that helps the symptoms with which she struggles. 

In the 2+ years she has worked with her current in-home therapist, she has never achieved a treatment goal.

Yesterday I learned that a residential facility she has been on a waiting list for has a place opening up September 1. All I have to do is call the county and get her a case worker. 

I don't think I can do it. 

I don't think I can send her.

How do I pack up my baby girl and send her to live in a facility 3 hours away?

How do I tell her that Mommy just doesn't know what to do anymore? Mommy doesn't know how to help her anymore...

I pray that there is another option. I pray that her latest psych eval will come back with more concrete results. I pray that we can write a treatment plan that isn't just another shot in the dark.

I pray that she know just how badly I want to see her happy.

My gut says to turn the placement down. But I'm really not sure if it is my gut or my conscience....


Erin said...

That's tough! But I know you'll do what's right for her. Stay true to yourself, you'll accomplish what you need to!

Kate said...

Sometimes your gut and concious are the same thing. Keep praying, as I will for you both. God will answer. He always does. I love you.

Renegades said...

Oh that would be such a tough situation to try and decide on.

Sandra said...

Wow, my heart hurts for you and your daughter. You are so, so brave to truly seek out the absolute best for your daughter - especially when you're on your own. I'm sure it is SO exhausting.

Lifting you up in prayer this moment for guidance for the right decision and for sound answers. Have hope and persevere.

Thanks for pouring your heart out today.

Anonymous said...

My heart goes out to you. I know you will make the best decision for her. Its not always the easy but your instincts won't lead you wrong. Sending love & hugs!

Jessica {Team Rasler} said...

Oh dear, what a difficult decision. It is so hard to know what to do, even when our goals (healthy, happy children) are clear. I'm thinking of you and hoping that with one option or another you find a path that brings you both support and peace.

Di said...

Oh - what a difficult decision. I couldn't imagine. I hope whatever you decide it turns out for the best!

Rebecca said...

you will do what's right for her and for you and it will work out you are a great mom and she knows you love her. hugs you are in my thoughts and prayers

Shell said...

Sending you prayers as you make this tough decision! xo

Unknown said...

I have a friend whose daughter sounds exactly like Ahna.. she was finally diagnosed with Aspbergers along with bipolar type 2, OCD, generalized anxiety disorder and ODD. Her mother and her family did exactly everything you are doing and have done. Last year she sent her to a facility like you described. It was LIFE changing for them all. They realized that they had been holding her back from all she could be, she thrived and has flourished in a place where there are others similar to her. She discovered she is not alone and has done so well. As a mother to a child with many issues I know how hard this decision is. But when all else has failed you are left with no choice. As a mother with a child similar to Ahna as well when the hormones kick in life shifts viciously for him. Sending you prayers on the right thing to do, but do you really think God didn't open this door. Perhaps it is just exactly what she needs to realize what she is dealing with is not in her life alone.

Leila (Don't Speak Whinese) said...

Oh man. While I can relate on so many levels my daughters special needs are not the same but I understand being torn on the right decision for our kids.

No matter what you choose you will be deciding what you feel is best and that is all you can do. Wish I could hug you and give you an answer but at the very least I can say I hear you and I am sorry for how tough this decision is.

NJ @ A Pocket Full Of Dinosaurs said...

Those are very brave thoughts. Good luck to you as you sort them through.

Holy Hannah said...

Honey, this post makes me want to cry. Knowing both you an Anha personally, I know how much you love her and I have seen a small glimpse of what you deal with. Go with your gut. Your momma gut will never steer you wrong. ~ Stephanie

Kimberly said...

Oh friend...
I know how she feels.
I know that she wants to express what she feels but because she is confused and because she is so young it's hard to verbalize these feelings.
When she hurts people in her path it's not her.
It's her illness.
That stupid illness.
I know that you want to do everything you can to help her and there is so much to think about.
You've done everything right thus far. Don't ever forget that.
I'm sending you both love and prayers.
You'll find the answer.

Mimi N said...

My daughter was seen by a gal 2 different times and said she's borderline bi-polar. Trust me, live with her for any period of time and there'd be no question. My daughter lived with a friend for 2 yrs, but she was older. I had to ask her to leave. It was the hardest thing to do. I still regret it as a mom, but I have to say, I probably would've ended up hating my own child. As it is, I just unfriended her on FB because she is so...hurtful. Even offering to help her she says to me, "Can you keep your comments relevant?" Truly, I feel your pain. NO ONE in my prayer group ever understood what I went thru. Not until my friend had her for 2 yrs did anyone outside of myself and my kids see this side of her. Love you lots and we can talk any time!


Cyndy Bush said...

I can't even imagine having to make a choice like that. I hope you are able to be at peace with whatever you decide. I wish you both the best!

Crystal Escobar said...

Oh man, that is so tough. I'm sorry to hear that. Good luck with the decision making.

Cari said...

Wow. My heart is breaking for you. As a Mom, we want to heal the boo-boos. Having a child with special needs is challenging because sometimes it requires, NO, it always requires the hardest of decisions; even those that don't seem right or rational. You are in my prayers.

adrienzgirl said...

Oh how my heart hurts for you K! I know how much you love Ahna. I do. We speak about it daily. I also know just how much that love tolls on you physically, emotionally and psychologically.

Here's my best and only advice for you Momma. Sometimes, what's best for our children is not necessarily what's best for us. Sending her to a facility that far away may seem like it will be more of a burden than your heart can bear. However, she may actually find freedom from the chains of mental illness that bind her. You might have the peaceful home that you need to be the best parent you can be. The peacefulness that Noah needs to have for himself in order to manage his ADHD.

I know that it's a tough decision. I am certainly not an expert and I honestly can't tell you that I would make the decision you have to make. I am selfish when it comes to my children. I want them with me. Moving Kenna away for a year when she was a teen was the hardest thing I have ever done in my entire life. I had no choice. I did what I had to do. You have a choice.

All I can say is I am here for you. Day or night. My phone is always on and I am always just a few buttons away! LOVE YOU!

The Random Blogette said...

I wish I knew the right answer to tell you but I don't. I know that whatever decision you make will be the right one. I agree with Brandee and Angel. it may just be what she needs. As I tell myself with my son who has emotional issues that are still not diagnosed, even though some of the choices that you make may be difficult in the end your child will thank you for making those difficult decisions for them. Love to you sweetie.

Unknown said...

This is a seriously tough decision. I work at an RTC and honestly it really helps some girls. Especially the girls who have parents involved in the process and have the ultimate treatment goal of going home. But you know all kids are different and you know her best. There's no way to get around such a hard decision. No matter what decision you make, I hope things get better.

Bronwen said...

That would be a tough choice, my thoughts are with you!

Andrea said...

Oh my G-d, K, I'm so so sorry. I wish I knew the right words. I'm sorry there haven't been strong enough answers. Someone is supposed to give you one, so you can know exactly what the next steps to take should be. That is how it works. A diagnosis or something that helps you see what your child is experiencing with different eyes. And then the way to fix it, make it better. Cure it? I don't know. Ease it, for you both. For your family. I will continue to think of you and Ahna and offer up whatever support and comfort I can as your friend from so many miles away. Much love. xoxo

Liz Mays said...

I firmly believe in a mother's gut, so make sure you're recognizing your instincts for what they are, and follow those. I know whatever you decide will be the right thing.

Unknown said...

I have been thinking of you a lot since I read this the other day but couldn't comment. I can only imagine the pain you must be in trying to decide what to do with yabout your daughter. It is obvious that you love her so, so, so much. I know you will make the best decision for your daughter when you absolutely have to do decide. I pray that the psychiatrist has some solid answers for you both!

Kir said...

oh my sweet friend, I can see how you are struggling with this decision, with the things you MIGHT have to do. The truth is that your love for your daughter is so apparent, is so deep and true that it can in no way be wrong. I know that no matter what ou decide it will be a good, RIGHT choice for you and your beautiful daughter, (look at that smile!!!) xo

Anonymous said...

Ouch. That made MY heart hurt because I know what you mean. Trust yourself to make the best decision for you and her. Thats all you can do. Hugs.

~The Drama Mama

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