Monthly Archives: May 2012

Hurt

Colin’s taken to being hurtful towards me. Whether it’s making faces at me once I’ve turned my back (Rick’s caught him at this a few times) or saying rude things to me when I correct him or discipline him…it’s all hurtful and frustrating.

I’ve had an emotionally exhausting day. My hormones are in full swing and I know I’m blowing things out of proportion left and right…but tonight was a low blow.

I went to kiss the kids goodnight and after I kissed Colin’s cheek, I said, “What, no kiss for me?”

With a straight face, he said, “No, I don’t want to kiss you.”

I left his room and just fell to tears. I told Rick what happened – saying it out loud made me feel ridiculous for the meltdown I was having. It just drives me mad to think of all the ways I’ve turned my life upside down for him and the thanks I get is hostility and hurt. I never expected him to say, “Thanks for all you do, Mom!” But to have him resent me and act hostile towards me…I just don’t even know what to do.

Rick said, “He’ll understand one day.”

But I don’t think he will.
I’m usually okay with that. But today…I was already hurting. This was just a little too much for me today.

Chicken Enchiladas

I’m not the world’s best cook, but I have a few dishes I can whip up that earn me some praise.  This one is a favorite of my husband’s.  I change it up a bit from time to time, but the basics remain the same.  It’s a yummy, somewhat lighter version of what you might find in a restaurant.  Kind of a cross between sour cream and verde enchiladas.  I add some kick if the kids won’t be eating it with us (if they are, we add the kick after its plated!).

Ingredients:

2-3lbs chicken breast (bone in or out is fine – if you used bone in you can just de-bone after cooking them)

~1 tbsp Cumin

1 can green chiles (I used a small can, but if you’re a big fan, crank it up!)

1 can Mexicorn or White Chipotle Corn, etc (there are various kinds out there)

~1.5 c sharp cheddar

1c light or fat free sour cream

1 can cream of chicken (I use Campbell’s Healthy Request)

1 10 oz can green enchilada sauce

1 pack of “fajita” sized flour tortillas (10-count)

Directions:

First, place chicken breasts on a cookie sheet and sprinkle with cumin. Broil for approx 10 minutes (check to make sure they are cooked through).

Once cooled, shred the chicken (you can use a food processor if you prefer a finer consistency – I like the “pulled” chicken look and feel, so I just use my bare hands!).

Okay, so mine’s still a teensy bit pink. That’ll be taken care of when the enchiladas are baked

Next, add in the corn, chiles, half the cheese and half the sour cream and mix.

To make the sauce, mix the remaining sour cream with the enchilada sauce and the can of soup (undiluted).  Whisk until smooth.

Spread a little bit of sauce (maybe 1/4 cup) into the bottom of your pan (this will prevent the tortillas from getting dry and stuck). Take your tortillas and fill each one with approximately 1/2 cup chicken mixture.

Roll them up as tight as you can and place them seam side down in the pan.  Once you’ve crammed them all into your pan, spread the sauce over the top.  Sprinkle with the remaining cheddar.

Cover with foil and place the pan into oven and cook at 350 for approximately 45 minutes. (Take the foil off in the last 15 minutes if you want your cheddar topping a bit browned.)

Serves roughly 5 people (2 enchiladas/person). Approximately 400 calories per serving – not too bad.

You can change up the veggies (I’ve done mushrooms and spinach before – delicious!) or add some guac… throw in more chiles…add fresh jalapenos…use different cheeses.  So many options, but this is the bare bones recipe.

Enjoy!

Words words words

Words are failing me lately. I have thought of so many things to blog about that I don’t know where to start. None of these things go that well together, yet on their own, they would each make for a pretty lackluster blog.

And yet… I feel odd not writing for days on end. 

We’re still struggling with medication issues.  Colin seems to be sleeping better, which is good.  He’s still wandering out at lord-only-knows-o’clock to sleep on the couch, but at least he’s sleeping.  He seems – to me – quite out of control on the 20mg Adderall XR and yet he’s having “green” days in school, so I’m not what we should do.  Mornings and evenings are more of a terror than usual.  Even sending him to his room doesn’t work, because he physically can’t stay in there for more than a few seconds at a time – door open or shut, it doesn’t matter. He will pop his head out or ask a question or tell you something every flippin’ 30 seconds.  I would honestly say mornings are better than evenings, but even that’s a struggle.  Within 5 minutes of waking up (if you’re lucky) he’s at 10 on the hyper scale. 

Evenings? He’s on 12.

The mixed blessing is he’s become a bottomless pit.  He’s out-eating all of us at most meals and constantly asking for snacks!  Hopefully he’ll gain a few pounds!

We won’t see the Psych until 5/31 due to scheduling issues.  Phone calls haven’t seemed to cut it – again, I never feel like we’re explaining things quite right.

 

Last Friday was Robbie’s Kindergarten Graduation.  So much cuteness.  I wish I could share some pics without violating the privacy of others, but I’ll just keep them to myself for now.  They put on a little production to show off what they’ve learned this year.  This school has been so good for Robbie. He’s learned a good bit of Spanish as well as improved his handwriting and spelling. He’s learned dance, theater and art basics.  He’s just blossomed in ways he never would have at the daycare we had him in last year. 

I was surprised to learn that most of the other parents are holding their kids back and repeating kindergarten in the fall – even kids that are technically old enough to be in 1st grade without any testing.  Here I am testing to push him ahead.  I don’t feel that my choice is any better or worse than those parents holding their kids back.  Sure, he may mature a little slower than the other kids in his class, but what about the ones being held back? They’ll be hitting puberty before any of their peers.  I have to imagine that it all evens out somewhere along the way.  As long as he’s capable, I want to give him opportunities to excel.

 

The other thing that’s been weighing on my mind…is me. In fact, I’ve been pretty self-absorbed lately.  Not entirely a bad thing from time to time.

I was going through the process to get the Lap Band procedure done.  Rick had it done almost 2 years ago and has just done great.  I even started a little side blog about it – http://eyeononederland.wordpress.com

Today, I got the call that I don’t meet insurance requirements.  No lap band for me.

However, through the past two months of working on the insurance requirements (the ones I was able to meet), I learned a lot about myself.  I’ve had a mental switching of gears and – lap band or not – I’m ready for change. I’m taking better care of myself and I have a goal in mind.  I want to lose 70-80lbs over the next 12-18 months.  Not unrealistic. 

I have studied nutrition so much over the past 15+ years – I know the ins & outs, I understand why I crave the things I do, etc.  I have always approached this part of my life scientifically – I’m not one for “fad” diets or insane exercise routines.  I love attending boot camps when I can afford to, but we also have a regular gym membership and my office building has access to a great walking path with shade that winds around a pond.

In anticipation of getting lap band, I had Rick take “before” pictures for me.  Front, side, back… the view from all angles were such a painful reality check.  The next day, I renewed my vow of fitness and nutrition.  I’ve been journaling my food and exercise – today is just day 4, but I already feel a difference.

I’m rambling. If you want to know more about all that, please take a look at the other blog… I ramble there even more. 🙂

 

I’m feeling a bit deflated at the moment.  Stress with Colin, summer approaching, lap band denial… I’m ready for that week in July when Rick and I can just relax and escape from everything for a bit.  I need to recharge.

My kingdom for a nap right about now. 🙂

Another Medication Update (and a visit from Aunt Missy)

Our psychiatrist’s mother passed away over the weekend.  We had an appointment this past Friday morning and got a call late on Thursday saying Dr. L had to leave quickly to help his mother and would not be there on Friday. They rescheduled us for Tuesday morning. 

Late Monday night, we received another call saying Dr. L had to reschedule again.  Poor doc – I can only imagine how stressful that all must be.  During it all, he still managed to return our calls and offer advice, etc.  He wrote us a prescription for 20mg of Adderall XR (extended release) and for clonidine – 0.2 mg this time.  He said if the XR didn’t last long enough, we might have to give him a booster in the afternoons. We’ll see how that goes.  He also said that if the 0.2mg of clonidine doesn’t do the trick, we’ll need to try a sleeping pill instead because he does not want to give Colin more clonidine than that. 

So far, the Adderall XR seems to be working out fairly well.  He’s still adjusting to it – and we’ve had family visiting, which can add to the chaos – but so far, so good.  And the 0.2mg of clonidine seems to help him fall asleep easily.  Unfortunately, he’s still not staying asleep, but I’m not sure if anything can be done there.  He has – twice this week already – gone back to sleep after waking up too early.  That was completely unheard of before.  The fact that he can do this now makes me think this is a good fit for him.  Of course I think it would be better for him to sleep through the night, but going back to sleep is a pretty wonderful alternative!

My sister is in town this week!  To the kids, she’s Aunt Missy.  And boy do these boys love their Aunt Missy! 

She may not have any of her own kids, but my sister’s done more than her fair share of babysitting over the years.  She’s great with kids.  Our boys go nuts when she comes over. 

For the last few years, she was living in Hawai’i and we didn’t see much of her.  She’s always been the cool aunt that sent the kids presents and the times they did get to spend with her have definitely left a lasting impression.  My sister is FUN.  She has ten times the energy I have and can just about keep up with these crazy guys.  They had her playing in the sprinklers, hiding in closets, picking them up, snuggling, etc. All three have been vying for her attention at the same time – it’s both hilarious and maddening to witness.

Ryan and Missy playing in the sprinklers

She’s so patient with them. I love that.  There aren’t many people who can stay as calm as she does around our boys – they could stress out Mother Theresa after an hour or two!  Whenever someone new comes around, Colin goes into hyperdrive – he has to share everything  he’s ever thought was neat or different in 10 minutes or less and ask at least a million questions.  The other two pick up on this and generate their own brand of crazy/silliness.  It’s mostly just them wanting the attention, I think, but it can be incredibly frustrating when all three peacocks are flaunting their feathers at the same time.

Monday night was insanity.  She stayed with my mom on Tues night…and thankfully things were a little calmer when she came back last night.

I wish I knew how to help them calm down in new situations.  The way they all start spazzing out at once makes me dread visitors and/or visiting others sometimes.  This is one of those moments when I think it becomes an extra challenge to have the oldest child as the one with special needs.  He’s the big brother – he’s “supposed” to set the example.  But that’s not possible.  And it’s not easy to explain to little ones why acting like your big brother isn’t always the best idea.

Applying to Summer Camp

Last year we weren’t sure what we would do during the summer.  Rick works nights and two of the three boys were out of school.  (We’d tried paying for daycare the summer before, but Colin was kicked out within weeks and Ryan spent the better part of the summer acting out because he thought it was a privilege to be at home with Dad.)  I started researching camps left and right. That’s when I found out about Charis Hills.

Charis Hills is a camp for ADHD and Autistic kids aged 7-18. They have 8 weeks of camp over the course of the summer – some for ages 7-14, others for ages 13-18. It’s an impressive camp…with a bit of a hefty price tag.  It wasn’t a viable option for us last year, but I told myself I wanted to find a way to make it happen this year.

Well, here we are…ready to commit.  Today, I went online to fill out the camper application and give them our $200 deposit.  There were a trillion questions! (Okay, maybe just a few dozen!)  I felt like I was taking an essay exam, but I understand why all these details are needed.  When I got near the end, I saw something that caused me a bit of worry.  They would email me and let me know if Colin had been accepted (and not charge my card until then).

Accepted?? I thought just being on spectrum and ADHD would get him in.  Well, that and our chunk o’change, of course.

It had never occurred to me before that there would be an acceptance policy.  Had I made him sound violent?  Did I over-exaggerate his meltdowns?  Should I go back and downplay some of his personality quirks??

No, no… of course it’s better to be honest – I wouldn’t want him to be accepted only to be turned away two days in.  I had detailed every possible concern as best as I could.

I shouldn’t have worried.  It’s not as if he’s running around stabbing people or bashing his head against walls.  The camp has a 1:3 ratio for most activities (sometimes lower), so that’s about on par with  a weekend with family.  And these people have training under their belts!

Long story short, we received our acceptance letter. *sigh of relief*

Colin will be going to camp in July.  I’m so excited for him!

I’m also excited for us, too – Rick and I have had offers from our mothers to take the other two the same week!  What on earth will we do for a whole week without children or work?

Is it July yet???

The Magic Ticket

Today was Colin’s birthday party. We did what every mother dreams of doing for Mothers Day and went to Chuck E Cheese!

Oh, wait, that’s not what most moms want to do on Mothers Day? Must be why the place was basically empty!

(I should say my Mothers Day started in the “normal” fashion – sleeping in, breakfast in bed from my awesome husband and kiddos, and wonderful presents!)

For months now, Colin’s been determined that he would get the new “magic ticket” from the ticket blaster – this one ticket is worth 1000 tickets! Pretty sure that’s the biggest number he’s able to fathom. He kept telling us he was going to get the magic ticket so he could get “all the prizes.” We’ve been trying to explain that wasn’t really how it worked, but he didn’t want to hear any of that.

When it came time for a trip to the ticket blaster, Rick coached Colin on how to hold his arms out to catch the tickets as they blow around. (Last year, he just flapped his arms around and didn’t catch any tickets – they let him have what stuck in his crown and anything that fell out on the floor.) Neither of us realized just how focused he was on that magic ticket. He stepped into the ticket blaster and put his arms out, just like his dad had shown him. He caught quite a few, but when the tickets stopped blowing, he dropped them all. We all went, “Nooo!”

But in a flash, he snatched that magic ticket off the ground and yelled, “I got it!!” He’d kept his eye on the magic ticket the whole time.

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Happy Birthday, Colin!

Happy Mothers Day!

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RULES by Cynthia Lord

What a wonderful book.  I wish this could be on the required reading list for 5th, 6th or 7th graders everywhere (it might already be at some schools – I have no idea!). 

…I keep re-writing this review…my words aren’t doing it justice…

This book tells the story of approximately a month in a 12-year old girl’s life.  She’s a pretty typical 12 year old girl, only she has an autistic 8 year old brother.  She feels her family’s world revolves around him and she alternates between trying to protect him and wanting to get as far away from him as she can.  She writes “rules” for him in the back of her sketch pad.

“That’s where I keep all the rules I’m teaching David so if my ‘someday-he’ll-wake-up-a-regular-brother’ wish doesn’t ever come true, at least he’ll know how the world works…”

The author helps Catherine put words to her emotions through a new friend – Jason, a paraplegic the girl meets at her brother’s occupational therapy sessions.  Jason can’t talk and relies on his communication book – he taps at the words in his book to form sentences.  They meet when Catherine is busted trying to sketch him and he gets upset.  As they get to know each other, Catherine starts making illustrated words for his book so that they can talk to each other.  She begins using this as an outlet to share her feelings regarding life with her brother. 

Again… words escape me.  This book had me in tears last night. 

After an encounter with her brother and the neighborhood bully – in front of her new “popular” friend, no less – Catherine runs to her room and writes down many new words for Jason. “Murky” was the one that required the most explanation.  She explained that there’s a pond she and her friends like to visit, and the bottom is covered in mud, old leaves and pine needles.  She and her friends often dare each other to dive down to the bottom and bring back a handful of this murky mud and leaves as proof that they made it.  When she dives down, she says her foot sinks into the murky stuff at the bottom – up to her ankle – and just when she feels she’s almost out of breath and afraid the murkiness might not let her go this time, she rushes to the top and feels the exhilaration of fresh air.  She explains to Jason that sometimes with her brother, she feels like she won’t make it back up – she’ll be sucked down instead.

Jason responds by confessing that he sometimes wishes he was dead, which upsets her. He explains that he feels incomplete.  He dreams of running and asks her what that’s like.  After trying to explain it, she decides to take him for a run instead.  His mother is wary, but allows it.  She takes him outside in his wheelchair and runs as fast as she can, until she hits that runner’s high feeling.  Even bound to his chair, he feels it, too.

The author does a wonderful job of juxtaposition with Jason vs. Catherine’s brother David.  One has physical abilities, the other has mental ability.  Catherine battles with what matters more – her own feelings or the opinions of others.  In the end, she decides that her friendship with Jason and her love for her brother take precedence over what others might think or say.

I saw many similarities between Colin and the character David.  At this point, Ryan and Robbie don’t seem to ever be embarrassed by Colin, which is good.  I worry that won’t always be the case.  I hope we can raise them to understand that friendship and love are more important than what small-minded people think and say. 

One of the “Rules” Catherine made for David struck a chord with me:

Sometimes people laugh when they like you. But sometimes they laugh to hurt you.

I read this out loud to Rick.  He agreed that’s something we both worry about Colin facing as he gets older.  We have zero tolerance for bullying in our house – from anyone – but what can you do to protect your kids outside the home? 

Colin and Ryan are in the same grade.  I hate to put something so heavy on a 7 year old’s shoulders, but I hope Ryan will always try to protect his brother.  I know it won’t always be easy.  I hope we can raise Robbie and Ryan to understand that it’s never okay to make fun of someone for being different – that standing up for the people you love is more important than following the crowd.

And baby makes… six?

Just a little bit ago, a fellow blogger posted about siblings and foster care and it inspired me to share a story of something that happened to us not too long ago.

If you’ve followed this blog at all (or checked out my family page), you know that we have three boys.  Rick had two and I had one when we first met.  We’ve talked before about whether or not we’d want to have a baby together.  Rick is such a wonderful husband – he’s the kind of man who you justknow would be wonderful during pregnancy.  It would be nothing like before.  I wouldn’t be going to doctors alone. There’s no way he’d leave me alone the night our baby was born.  He wouldn’t leave me to find my own rides to the NICU.  He’d definitely rub my swollen feet.  In short, he’d do all the things I wish my ex had…and none of the things I wish he hadn’t done.  And we’d make a super cute baby – dark wavy hair, green eyes…

But the reality is that we have three kids!  And one of those kids has special needs.  It would be nearly impossible to handle a baby.  We decided that we would take measures to insure we didn’t have any more kiddos…but at the same time, if it was ever to happen, we would make it work.

Last year – I can’t recall exactly when, but I want to say early fall – Rick got a call from CPS on a Friday morning. He called me and texted me at work – said he needed me to call him as soon as I could.

Ryan’s mother had another baby.  He was 2 months old and in the hospital recovering from methadone addiction.  CPS wanted to know if we’d be willing to foster and eventually adopt him.

I just started crying.  I wasn’t even sure why.  Rick started crying, too.  What were we going to do?  What could we say?  This was Ryan’s blood – how could we turn him away?  What if he wound up in a bad situation because we didn’t say yes?  How could we live with that?

But we have THREE KIDS already!  Our house is pretty damn full. Our lives are already chaotic.  We both work full-time. How could we do this?  Rick said, “I keep thinking the same things… but then I think, if you were pregnant, we’d find a way to make this work.”  We were both so torn.  We told the CPS agent that we needed her to give us the weekend to talk this over.

After a lot of talking and crying, we decided we couldn’t take him.  Rick called CPS on Monday to let them know.

We found out that the 2nd call they made on Friday was to the couple that adopted Ryan’s older sisters many years ago.  They had taken the baby for the weekend while we thought things over! They also agreed to foster him until a decision was made on whether or not he could be adopted by another family.

What a relief.  If he couldn’t be with his brother, at least he was with his sisters!

We also found out that the baby’s mother was fighting this time.  To my knowledge, she never really fought before.  And this time, she won.  Little baby J is back with his mother.  That’s something I could not have handled.  How could we have explained that to Ryan?  “Your mother gave up you and your sisters, but she fought to get your brother back.”  How much damage would that do?  I’m sure it hurt his sisters as well, but at least they’re a little older and they might be able to understand the situation better.  Ryan couldn’t have gone through that without getting scarred.

I couldn’t have, either!

 

I’m happy with our little family.  Our youngest will be 6 in September, so I just keep telling myself that means I’ll only be in my 40s when all the kids are out of the house!  (Of course, I realize Colin may always have to live with us. Let me have my fantasy for a minute!)   Rick and I will be able to enjoy some crazy middle-aged years together alone since we didn’t spend our crazy 20s together.  If we were to start over now, I’d be in my 50s before that time came.  Rick would be in his 60s! 

I’ll keep the level of crazy and happy we already have and focus on the future – for us and our boys. 

Otto Learns About His Medicine

Last night, I read Otto Learns About His Medicine to Robbie and Ryan. 

Colin was sitting on the floor nearby, putting a puzzle together.  He rarely sits with us when we read together, unless I’m reading Where the Sidewalk Ends (that one is my favorite, too).

Ryan and Robbie are always very excited when a new book turns up.  And this one’s bright red, so it was hard to miss that Mom was holding something new when they finished with their showers.

Before I started, I said, “While we’re reading this book, I want you to think about whether or not this story reminds you of someone you know, okay?  When I’m done, we can ask questions about everything and talk for a bit.”

The story tells of a little car named Otto (whose last name is “Mobile”).  Otto’s engine runs too fast.  He gets distracted by every little noise in the classroom. He speaks out of turn too much in class. He can’t hold still and sometimes runs into other cars without meaning to.  At one point, he ran off from a gas station while still getting filled up because he saw a friend with new racing stripes – gas wound up going everywhere. 

Otto’s teacher suggests to Otto’s parents that they take him to see a “mechanic” for a check up.  The mechanic decides he should go to another mechanic for more help.  They explain that the different mechanics, family members and teachers are part of the “pit crew” that is there to help Otto.  The new mechanic (specialist) suggests that another helpful member of the pit crew might be medicine.  He explains that medicine can’t make you learn or focus or behave.  It is there to help Otto – just as the rest of his pit crew is also there to help him.  They even discuss that sometimes medicine can have side effects and that this special medicine may make it hard to sleep and make Otto not as hungry. [I was a little surprised at the mention of side effects! But I feel they did a good job explaining what they meant.]

When the book was over, I asked the boys if the story reminded them of anyone.  I had a feeling I knew how this might go.

Robbie said, “That sounds kinda like me!  Like when I get distracted at school!”

I was worried he would relate to the book.

I said, “You’re able to sit down and focus when you want to, though, right?” He admitted he could.  “Does this book make you think of anyone else?”

Ryan quietly said, “It’s like Colin, right Mom?”

I told him he was exactly right – the little car Otto was a lot like Colin.

When I said that, Colin perked up – suddenly he wanted to know what was going on.

“This book is about a car that’s just like you, Colin!” Robbie was so excited. “It’s motor runs too fast, just like yours does sometimes! And he takes medicine like you do to help!”

Rick chimed in, “What part of your body is like a motor?  Can you think of a body part that’s similar to a motor in a car?”

The boys thought for a moment, but couldn’t come up with anything.

“How about the brain?” Rick asked.  They all agreed – a brain is like a motor!

Rick explained that sometimes Colin’s brain runs too fast and it makes things very difficult for him.  His brain tells his body to do and say things even when he knows he shouldn’t.  We explained that we’re trying a new medicine that can help.

“Can medicine make Colin behave?” I asked.

“Noooo!” answered the boys.  “It just helps him so he can try to make good choices!”  (I was really glad the book explained this aspect of medicine. Before, Robbie kept thinking that the different doctors and medicine were going to somehow be a cure-all for Colin – I think he’s been disappointed that we kept saying we were trying different things and yet Colin was still…well.. Colin.)

“Remember that part in the book where Otto couldn’t sit still?” I asked.  “Remember how he ran into the other cars and they got mad?  What did they do?”

“They pushed him back!” said Robbie.

“Is that what they should have done?” I asked.

“Nooo!  He didn’t mean to run into them – it was an accident. He couldn’t help it because his engine was running too fast!” Robbie answered.

“That’s right.  And sometimes Colin does things he can’t help, too. We need to remember that.”  I hugged my boys.  I think this book has helped some things about ADHD click for them.

Meanwhile, Colin had the book in his hands and was looking through the pictures.  “I want to read it now. Can you read it, Dad?”  It was already after 8pm – bedtime, for sure.  Rick promised Colin he’d sit down with him tomorrow and read it with him.

I’m thankful for this book.  It’s a bit wordy, but not too bad.  The only thing I’d change are the illustrations.  The cars stand up on their back wheels and start to look a little creepy during the “mechanic” sections.  I think the car metaphor worked well because our boys are big fans of the Cars movies and understand what a pit crew is. 

—-

Colin is definitely having issues sleeping.  Last night, he was still up at 9:30pm and I couldn’t keep my own eyes open any longer.  I was reading in bed and kept nodding off.  I finally called it quits around 10pm and shut off the light.

At around 1:30am, Chloe started pacing.  When she does that, it usually means she really has to use the bathroom. If you don’t get up, you’ll find a present in the house later.  I decided I’d take the dogs out.

When I walked into the living room, I saw Colin was asleep on the couch.  I’d bet he came out there as soon as he thought I was asleep.  I woke him up and sent him back to his room.  My guess is he’s sleeping on the couch more than I care to admit – that’s probably how he’s waking up within seconds of me in the morning. 

Thankfully, once he was in bed, he crashed pretty hard.  He was the last one up this morning at around 6:10am. 

The 20mg twice/day of Adderall has done wonders for him at school – two green days so far this week!  But it’s making sleep very difficult.  I feel bad for him.  Not sure what we can do to help.  I’m going to call the doc today and see what he thinks.  We have an appointment on Friday, too, but maybe he can suggest something in the meanwhile.