I'm on a journey to find health and happiness through a more holistic and green lifestyle.

I find the world to be abrasive. =) That is to say, I feel the need to armor myself, physically and emotionally, in order to face life. Don't we all? Maybe. For whatever reason, it has become a priority in my life to rid my immediate environment of irritating things. And I'm sensitive! So there is much work to be done. But. I have thought for a long time that the things I come in contact with every day, and the stuff used to clean and maintain these things, need to be gentle and non-toxic. I have had eczema my entire life. For a long time I just dealt with it, and accepted that sometimes it's bad, and sometimes it's not, and that it will fluctuate a lot. Gradually over time I have come to find that certain things, fabrics, cleansers, materials, are more irritating to my skin than others. Stress can exacerbate it. In more recent times, I have realized that every aspect of my life improves when I improve conditions for my skin. Hah! What a concept! Thus my (long time) interest in going green, and my more recent desire to live a more holistic lifestyle. (I think I've felt a desire for a long time to live in a harmonious way with myself, my surroundings, and nature, but didn't have a name for it.) Anyhow, this blog is a journal of my trials and errors, and basic crooked path to find a balanced and peaceful existence for myself and my family. Thanks for your interest! I would love to hear your thoughts and ideas!

Wednesday, October 27, 2010

OCD (child anxiety)

When I last wrote, I expressed my frustration with trying to figure out why it seemed that I was hitting walls while trying to move forward. I likened it to moving through a maze, and bumping into walls several times before realizing I need to turn. And so on.

So here's an update.

I came to the conclusion pretty soon after writing that last entry that I simply need to be focusing inward right now, not outward. My family needs me, and the rest of the world can wait. Here's a brief run-down of what brought me to this conclusion.

My DD, who manages a lot of anxiety at the tender age of six, is experiencing a "peak" right now. Why? Who knows? Does it matter? Maybe. But here it is. She is refusing to go to sleep at night unless I'm in the room. My response, for the last 5 or 6 days, has been to inform her that I would not be staying in the room with her all night, but would do what I've always done. Read her and her brother a bunch of books, sit with them for anywhere from 15 minutes to 45 minutes, then go downstairs. She has always gone to sleep during this period of time, and I leave. Suddenly this is not acceptable to her. So I informed her that I would stay with her for about 10-15 minutes after finishing books, then I would go downstairs whether she was awake or not. And I have been. The first couple of nights, I checked on her every 10 minutes. This wasn't working for me, as I'd barely sit down on the couch before I was heading upstairs again. And if I was late..... "Mama!" through the monitor. Yeesh! Not good. I informed her that I would be going for longer periods of time. I have managed 15 minutes. But this girl is going to sleep after 10pm every night. And she insists on getting up when I do, at 6:30 a.m. Needless to say, she's not getting enough sleep, and I am not getting any down time. Ugh!! So then today, I email DD's school to request a book they bought about child anxiety, and to let them know about some other behaviors I'm starting to see. I get an email back from her head teacher saying that while she had been making very good progress up until last week, this week she is refusing to do her work, and is in fact curling up in a ball on the floor. Wow. So I write to inform her that while there is nothing on this end that would precipitate this behavior at school, she has been losing sleep. Her diet is also pretty poor at this time.

So then there are the new behaviors at home. Which are likely due to the loss of sleep, but who knows. She is starting to show obsessive/compulsive traits. At the moment it's all verbal. She has to ask me if she can go to the bathroom. She has to ask me to promise not to go out of the house in the evening when I take my evening "break." She has to ask me the same question when she's going to sleep at night. And now she feels the need to ask if she can eat. Every. Single. Bite.

And I have to say, given some family history, this stuff makes me nervous. A recent visit to the ped. for my son resulted in a conversation about DD, and the name of a psychologist nearby who specializes in this stuff. She, not surprisingly, is not taking new patients, so we are on a waiting list. But I don't want to wait. So after a conversation with a family member who knows someone in the field, I ended up with another recommended person. A psychiatrist. And this one had been recommended by a friend in the field some months back. I actually had a conversation with this person back then, but decided not to follow up with him for a couple of reasons. One is that he is expensive. Really expensive. And he doesn't take insurance. The other reason is that he basically told me on the phone that he would likely just refer us to a social worker anyway, so why don't I send him a list of social workers who take our insurance, and he'll pick one. I didn't. But now we are back to him again. Apparently he is the "best" in the area, according to the family member's friend. So I left him a message today, and we'll see what transpires.

In the meantime, DD needs more sleep. And I guess if that means I commit my evenings to being up there with her for a while, well, it really is a small price to pay. I will need to find more me time during the day, because I need some. And to give up the little bit I have is really not ok. Everyone who works 8 hours is supposed to get one hour for lunch and two shorter breaks. I have my one hour in the evening, and my sometimes evening. And I work ALLLLLLL day, and part of the night.

Ok, life is telling me it's time to get back to it. More soon...

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