Thursday, September 13, 2012

Rough Days

The last few days have been rough. 

Samantha, ever full of sweetness and light, has shown her dark side at school.  The mornings have been great, but, adding to the exhaustion of a full day of transitioning from one activity/location to the next is the fact that Sammi's been on antibiotics since Saturday and is soldiering through some constipation as a result.  Yeah, yeah, I know, probiotics.  I totally didn't think of them this time, likely because Sammi barely ate on Saturday or Sunday after her stomach bug.  I don't even think she should have been on antibiotics, but when you test positive for strep, it's better safe than sorry.  In a few months, after she's gotten over the nasty shock of a cotton-swab-covered instrument of extreme torture being shoved down her throat and scraped across her tonsils while having her mouth pried open by two strangers, we'll subject her to it again to see if she's a carrier, meaning the virus lives in her tonsils.  I'm not sure what the outcome of that result would be, but I suspect tonsillectomy.  Hoping, hoping, hoping that's not the case...but which would be the more desirable outcome?  Hmmm...gotta mull that over...

So, back to Sammi's dark side.  We're not talking a Damien or Darth Vader kind of dark side, just the slightly more innocuous one that comes with a tired child who doesn't like to transition, who doesn't care much for art or music or math or anything else that occurs after readingandwritingandlunch, whose extra chromosome has given her an extra boost of stubborn

Oh, yeah, I hear ya, you naysayers who think that "stubborn" is an unfortunate stereotype associated with Down syndrome.  I hear ya, and I'm not listening.  Pipe down!  I FIRMLY believe that stubbornness, or willfulness, if you prefer, is a genetically-ingrained trait associated with the extra 21st.  If you think it's a negative stereotype and you have younger children with Ds, just you wait.  I can wait with you.  Just waiting for you to realize that genetic enhancement comes along with that pesky stubborn gene.  You'll see...

I've already said Sammi's mornings have been great, but for the last 3 days, her afternoons have become a bit of a whirling dervish of just-wait-until-the-aide's-back-is-turned-so-I-can-do-whatever-I-want-to-do.  To the point where she had to be removed from the situation on at least one occasion and taken to the office to regroup.  Yep, she's starting her career as a student in just the right direction...the principal's office.  sigh 

I'm hoping it's still the Week-3-Adjustment coupled with meds.  Her last dose was yesterday, so if we can just make it through today, perhaps she'll begin to climb back towards model-studentship.  Uh, yeah, right.  Seriously, I'll take what I can get.  Mommy and Daddy have been having some pretty stern talks with Princess lately, explaining that her behavior is not acceptable, and will now begin to have consequences, such as no TV when she gets home from school.  Shock!  Horror!  Well, we're a major TV-watching family, and in my opinion, Sammi has learned SO much from TV, and continues to learn from it.  Next we'll start having to take away her books for periods of time.  Now that would be the worst punishment imaginable for her.  Funny, I know there are plenty of households that wish that would be an effective punishment.  How many kids, aside from geeks like myself, would be mortified at the thought of not being able to read their books?  I think the opposite might be the more common practice - behave, or you'll have to go to your room and read books.  LOL

And so, I have sent her on her way today, hoping for good behavior and fear of consequences.  The crazy thing is, she knows what the consequences are while she's doing the bad behaviors.  She hates the idea of the consequences, and never, ever wants to disappoint us.  But she can't help herself.  Compulsion rules her at that point.  I am pretty sure she'll get over it, sooner than later.  But this time in between is definitely rough. 

Fingers crossed...

13 comments:

Chromosomally Enhanced said...

I an sooooo scared of stubborn! I see glimpses now but I think it will only get worse me and her dad are poster children for stubborn and add in extra goodness...we are screwed! The afternoons are hard and this transition time is rough...is there triggers for Sammi that will either draw her towards a certain behavior? Can the school allow her to read herself a short story that can help her relax a bit and regroup? Love the new braid! Smiles

Anna Theurer said...

Oh Sammi, she is clearly tired by the afternoon. Poor girl! Btw, if she is a strep carrier, you can do a 3 week course of Clindamycin. It is really hard on the gut.

Jenny said...

Oh, I totally buy the stubborn thing I can see it now with Russell! Hopefully Sammi has a good day today and doesn't lose her books!! lol

Lisa said...

AHEM on the stubborn comment - I'll wait with the "told you look". But when you think about it kid with DS need to be stubborn to get through life. If they weren't stubborn how would they stick with a huge learning curve to do the things like walk & talk that others do without years of therapy?
Cate went through this stage last year with the horrible classroom behavior in the afternoon. The solution for her ended up being a behavior chart by period. So if she got the "red/bad" rating in one class she still had a chance to redeem in the next class. I think with her once she got in trouble it was kind of like "why bother" for the rest of the day. This chart gave her more control. The other tip that our teacher is doing this year - Cate has to color in the circle with her behavior rating herself. I think that makes it much more real to her since she knows red = no TV or ipad (pure torture for both of us).
About the tonsils thing - Cate was probably a carrier too - she had 15positive strep tests by the time she was 2.5 yrs. We got her tonsils out before she turned 3 and it was a great decision. She hasn't had any bouts since and has generally been sick less. I will tell you though it was the most difficult recovery we've experienced but worth it in the long run. She even started sleeping better after she was recovered.

The Holt's said...

Oh, I hear you! Isabelle is only 15 months but I already see the stubborn side of her. Hopefully being off the medicine along with your stern talks will help.

Ellen Stumbo said...

Nichole, stubborn? Nahhhh. Goodness, no child has made me pick my battles like the one with the extra chromosome. Amazing how many things are really not that big of a deal, but those that are...yeah, I hear you. Stubbornness comes along with the package. I do hear it becomes a positive thing at some point. let's hope it's true!

Jess said...

Your last paragraph about Sammi doing bad behaviors even when she knows the consequences is a struggle for me with my step-daughter!

This summer, I came down in the morning to check on her because she was taking WAY too long to throw her pull-up away. She heard me coming, of course, and left the kitchen the opposite way from where I entered but that didn't help her case...

She had been feasting on her dad's birthday cake that I baked from scratch the day before. Oh man!

Will she one day decide not to eat the cookies simply because she sees them on the counter? I hope so. I really hope so. Until then, however, we keep food in closed cupboards, placed on high shelves and don't allow her too much freedom of being alone around the kitchen area.

Rochelle said...

Stubborn? Whatever do you mean (laughing hysterically!!!!) We have stubborn times 2 most days!

Hoping she is feeling better and gets back into her routine. I know when our girls don't feel good their behavior definitely goes downhill here and at school.

lovemy3 said...

Stubborn...I wouldn't know what you mean. The problem with that is that my husband is stubborn...I'm stubborn...add that with what is added with DS...this child will fight me on everything! I hope things get better!

Wren said...

I hope sweet (but still stubborn) Sammi returns soon and her days in the principal's office are a thing of the past! It's also nice to know that I'm not the only parent who actually believes their kids are learning things when watching TV...Sutter loves Sesame Street and I know he's learned a ton from watching it! We made the decision to have tonsils and adenoids removed this past Jan. after constant / reoccurring nasal infections and it was the best decision we've made.

Hang in there mama, better days are sure to show their face soon!!!

Team Lando said...

Becca, I went to a think at NDSC on behavior stuff, and they talked about misbehaviors vs impulsive behaviors. I don't remember a ton of it for kids sammi's age, but you may want to pull out the compendium book thing. Or shoot me an email if it's not in there and I'll dig out my notes!

Lacey said...

I think stubborn is every DS childs middle name! Although I do agree that the stubbornness helps them get through a life that is a bit tougher than most. Hopefully thinks will get better for that sweet girl soon!

Renee said...

Becca, you have the best attitude.

As my mother-in-law says, sometimes the kids just want to do what they want to do even if they know the consequences, the desire out weighs the consequences.