Wow.... has life changed since I dropped off the face of blogging! My kids aren't toddlers anymore - in fact, I'll have a kindergartner this fall and another the following fall! YIKES! So many of my posts speak of my grandfather in present tense, when it has been past-tense for almost a year. Those are hard to re-read. I miss everything about him. I had just been accepted to grad school two years ago but will be finishing up course work this August. I have officially resigned as band director from my district. Get this - to be a SAHM and teach piano/voice/flute/organ lessons. Yep. Something I never thought I was cut out to be is the only thing I want to be right now. I desperately need to slow down, live on less, and count my blessings more. I simply cannot justify the time demand relative to the paycheck any longer. Between shuttling the kids from daycare to a babysitter or another caregiver, there were weeks I would see them once or twice in the evenings. Ridiculous. We don't just buy and finish out calves anymore as we started our own foundation herd from the calves born the spring/summer my grandpa died. I still struggle with patience in parenting but not as much now that we know Minihe has ADHD. A whole-foods diet has taken a very strict turn as we elect to treat M's symptoms by completely eliminating any and all food additives.
Speaking of that major, public share that I have been putting off doing for nine months....... I had planned to start a second blog dedicated to just that, but this one feels like home. This one was created to talk about my passions, and my newest passion is treating ADHD naturally. We tried medication and it didn't work for us. This does. We do not pass any judgement on family or friends that find success with medications. We are joyful for you! In many ways, that would be so much easier than what we are doing. But medications can have side effects, and for us, those side effects weren't worth the benefits.
I am anxious to transfer over my blog entries so you can start learning about what ADHD looks like for our family. I want to also try to break any preconceived notions you many have regarding the disorder. It is real. It affects our family very deeply. Our son will live with this the rest of his life. It isn't a fad. He is not academically-challenged. We cannot always use traditional parenting techniques successfully because of how children with ADHD are wired to respond to discipline. Not every single child who has ADHD is the product of their environment. We are not perfect parents, but we are involved... we have rules and expectations... we have fun... we read... we play games... we make silly faces... we let our kids play with Wii, LeapPad, iPad, iPhone, and watch movies. but we also draw, color, paint, ride bikes, go camping, take trips. And we have a child that is hyperactive, impulsive, inattentive, lacks attention to detail, has difficulty following directions, and is demanding of our attention. It can be exhausting being his parent but it is also immensely rewarding to stop and see the world through his eyes. I can't even begin to imagine the wonder and beauty he must see! He moves so fast and is so captivated - like he will never have enough time to see everything this planet has to offer. But yet he notices a lady bug crawling on a blade of grass, names it, feeds it, and cares for it for weeks on end. He is truly magical. Parenting him is an act of wizardry, though! :)
I do not have answers. Admittedly, I do not know what I am doing some days. But if our story can help one person find a place to commiserate, get ideas, find inspiration, or in the very least, not feel alone; then my goal is fulfilled. I truly do believe there are people looking for alternatives for treating their child's ADHD, autism, allergies, and ailments. I am a member of five Facebook groups alone dedicated to a more natural way of life. I hope you can join us on this journey, if for no other reason than curiosity. But if you know someone who could benefit from one family's journey into parenting a child with ADHD, send them our way and we can learn from each other.