Tuesday, January 10, 2012

The Explosive Child

I cannot express how glad I am that I found the book The Explosive Child (by Ross W. Greene, Ph.D.) and that I bought it. I finally started to read it today (I've had it for a few months), and I'm only through the first three chapters, but I already have a good feeling about this book being extremely helpful.

A has been having issues since he started school (and actually even before that, had I known what I should have been looking for) with social skills and emotional developmental delay. It has been a long, taxing process to even get him to the place that he is, and believe me when I say it's a major improvement. There have been "brain trust" meetings at the school with the teachers, counselors, principal, therapists...there have been medical appointments and both medical and psychological evaluations....and paperwork. Lots and lots (and true to military form...LOTS) of paperwork. On top of all that has been my own frustration. I've been frustrated with not being able to seem to make any progress with my son. I've been frustrated with the guilt that comes with feeling like a lousy parent because of how my child behaves. I've been frustrated that it affects our entire family when A has problems. I've been frustrated with C mimicking A's actions when he has no cause to. And I've mostly been frustrated that for all the evaluations and meetings and paperwork, it appears (to me, anyway) that he's made little to no progress. We haven't yet targeted what the problem is, which makes it difficult to try to help A and prepare him to move on in school.

My best friend, Misha, has blogged before about her experience and continued journey of having a special needs child with speech and developmental delays. While A does not necessarily have the same challenges as Luc, I can relate to some of what she's feeling, though likely on a smaller scale.

As I've been reading the first few chapters of this book today, so much of what I read applied 100% to what I'm dealing with when it comes to A. And there are even parts of the book where I see myself from my childhood. While that's not exactly surprising, as A and I are very alike in personality, it's also a bit....eerie, yet somehow comforting, to see something like that, explaining why I was the way I was, and am the way I am about so many things, in print. Eerie, because it's like they're inside my head. Comforting, because it means I'm not alone, and there is a way to work through those challenges. Granted, as I'm now an adult, I've worked through most of it on my own, but it took me the better part of 20+ years to get there.

And just the thought that A can have the help he needs now and not have to struggle through 20 years on his own before he works it out....it brings me to tears. Tears of relief. Tears of joy. I will see progress. He will overcome these challenges. And my never-ending frustration will disappear.....

My Prince A when he was 14 months old!

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