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July 21, 2010

Comments

Danielle

Be gentle with yourself mama. Love you.

Devon

Oh, mama... I am so sorry for both you and Ruby!! Anxiety, or at least what I can imagine of it, SUCKS.

Can I offer a suggestion on the school thing? Maybe you staying with her all the time and showing her how fun it can be isn't the best strategy? A) because she'll pick up on your real feelings even if you're hiding them and 2) I always found that my students (all just like Rubes, remember) gave ME their best. Whenever we had a Parent Day or a parent came in for whatever reason, the kids were so not their usual "school" selves. Often, they would lose it and melt down and do all kinds of other wacky things they never did when it was just us. I think it's because with parents there it adds the whole dynamic of home, to school, and I don't know how to say this without sounding like a complete asshole, but it's almost TOO safe. Why bother fitting in and having a good time when I can just keep running back to Mama and telling her I want to leave?

I know she's been going by herself, which is great! and when she's back to feeling well probably will be again, I just had to say it.

Love you both!! (((((HUGS)))))

Sierra

I actually had a situation last fall that was similar in many ways, when Avery was adjusting to going to preschool. We got talked into dropping him off and leaving him there too quickly. I believe that it works for most kids, but mine had a serious panic attack. I ended up attending with him for the nest 3 months (mostly sitting in a back room, reading, but he had to know I was there).

I also worried that we lost his trust, but it has come back from the daily experience of being listened to and seeing that we try our best to honor his requests. In our case, having me stay with him at school definitely helped. I've lived my whole life (until about 18 months ago) with intense anxiety and OCD. For me, it never helped to be pushed beyond my comfort zone, it only made me develop dysfunctional coping strategies, and it seems that my kids are that way too. You have a strong gut instinct about what Ruby needs and I'm sure you'll figure out how to get through this the best way.

Michelle

I want to tell you all about what I know about anxiety, but I'm pretty damned sure it's nothing you havent heard. I know I'm kind of far, but please let me know if there's anything I can do. I'd be there in a flash. I love you all very much.

K

More hugs darling girl
Be kind to yourself Korin
I know how it feels ( I have the ability to guilt myself to tears to ) but do remind yourself that all your actions really were motivated for her good
Yesterday R was so anxiious while getting on the platform swing - but I know its not painful and I know he needs it - so I let the OT persuade him even though I felt like an evil monster

Bree

Korin,
In response to the anxiety, I'm so sorry you are going through this. As someone who has suffered from anxiety since I was four I understand how much it does truly suck. As for Ruby, it is amazing how much you are able to empathize with her and her anxiety. My mother suffers from the same anxiety and it is such a gift to have someone who truly understands what you going through, doesn't think you're crazy, and doesn't blame you or tell you to suck it up. So even though anxiety sucks, it is probably making you an even better mother.

Ruby'sNana

I'm so sorry for all you & Ruby are having to go through! All I can think of to say at this moment is I LOVE YOU AND I'll always be there for you!
Your Mama

Kim

My thoughts are small distinctions and aren't about reducing anxiety at all. When someone is anxious, they are anxious. I mostly want to share a story.

I work with a 10-yr-old boy who has some serious mood issues. He has been institutionalized a few times because of his behavior. I've been working with him for a long time now, my theory being that he actually has an expressive language delay and CAN'T say what he feels and needs and wants. This is a really cool kid and his parents rock and I want him to be successful. Anyway, every time he gets mad, my internal anxiety skyrockets. I look at him and think, shit, I'm supposed to do something with this kid. His mom expects me to help him produce and make some amazing progress. Granted, he's been less and less angry thanks to his mom home-schooling him and taking him off all meds. He's leveled out, honestly, she's a SAINT, I'm pretty sure she's saved him from a terrible future. And, so this week he stomps into my office glaring and mad and sits with arms folded and won't talk to me. Whew, my heart sunk. I took a very deep breath and decided that this week I would not let him know in any way that I was discouraged by his behavior. I told him I could see he was upset and that he needed a little time, that I would stay right here at the table with him and play this game we both liked and I would wait and he could let me know when he was ready. A couple of times I checked in with him, but he was mad. I played the game and focused on my breathing and relaxed my shoulders and watched his and kept coming back to mine and stayed in a light and soft posture with my jaw and my eyes. After 15-20 minutes, he softened and I could see he wasn't mad any more. Then I could give him the invitation to join me and he did, slowly but fast compared with other times he'd been mad and I'd handled it by trying to talk him out of it.

Even though Ruby can't say all the ways she feels, she is expressing herself and I wonder if you reflect back to her in a very slow and quiet way whatever it is she's trying to communicate. "Yeah, wow, this is hard, you are scared." And, when it's a time like the doctor's office and you don't have a choice but to be there, I wonder if you saying a mantra, "mommy is here with you, mommy is here with you" will be a subtle but powerful shift for both of you. You won't be promising that she gets to go home soon and you will be telling her that you are present and staying with her.

Words are amazingly powerful, as is our smallest nuance of posture in our face and eyes and jaw and breath. Ruby reads all that. Every kid does. Adults do too, we just talk ourselves out of listening and honoring them. ;-( ack...

Sorry my comment is so long. I just wanted to share the story of my little guy. We're all on this learning curve together.

Rach

This post had me in tears.

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