As a mother, you start worrying about your children the instant they are born. At least it’s been like that for me.
Why isn’t he crying more? Is he crying too much? Is he eating enough? Is he eating too much? Is he making all his “milestones”?
As they get to be toddlers you worry about them running away from you in the grocery store or the parking lot or running into the road and getting smooshed flat like a pancake. Falling down the stairs or tripping and splitting their head open.
As your children get older and move into the next phase of their young lives, you worry if they are going to do well in school. If the other kids are going to like them. If the teacher is going to like them or if she/he will think you’ve done a lousy job as parents.
Never in all my years, would I ever have thought that’d I’d be worrying about my 7 year old attempting suicide.
But I am.
This is not something I regularly discuss. Probably my own ideas that if I don’t talk about it…I don’t vocalize it…it’s not really true. I can push it to the dark recesses of my mind until something makes it come slamming back to the front of my brain again. That happened this weekend. Sometimes, I wish that others could see the outbursts that we are subjected to in the hopes that maybe they’ll understand our use of medications, therapy, counseling and weird routines and rules. Maybe they wouldn’t think that we are psychotic parents who need to let a kid be a kid.
Because if they saw a 7 year old rummage through the kitchen drawers, looking for something and finally settling on a steak knife before raising it in his hand to try to bring it slamming down into his chest, people might begin to understand the terror and despair that we live through as parents to a child inflicted with mood disorders.
Now, of course, he didn’t slam that knife into his chest. We had him restrained and the knife away instantly but what if next time we’re not there? What if as he grows older he begins to get smarter and understand that we are ALWAYS going to stop him because we love him so much and he starts to attempt these things in private?
This whole thing started because he was asked to do a simple chore…bring his laundry bin into the kitchen so I could wash the clothes. What it turned into was a tantrum for over an hour in which I had to restrain him 2 times to keep him from punching and kicking me, a broken necklace, a broken broom that he took his anger out on, and an attempt to stab himself all the while screaming how much we must hate him and it’d be so much easier to be dead and how he wishes he could just kill himself.
Finally, Chuck was able to get through to him and calm him down. What started in tears, ended in tears but of a much different kind. When they came back inside from the back deck, Zachary’s eyes were red rimmed and puffy. A tell-tale sign that he’d been crying hard. He hugged me hard and apologized for breaking my sapphire necklace and not listening and how incredibly sorry he was to have hurt us. I, of course, cry too.
And the cycle continues. Tantrum, threats, violence followed by great amounts of remorse. I do feel hope though for the future, because he does feel that remorse. Once he’s calmed down, he understands that his actions were not appropriate. I just wish that we could get to the point of understanding this before the actions occur.
October is supposed to be the beginning of the rough times for people with mood disorders as the days start getting much shorter and lack of light affects the serotonin and blah, blah, blah. Once again, we’re seeing this phenomenon happen. Every summer, I lull myself into believing that maybe we’re turning the corner with his behavior to just be kicked in the gut in October. You’d think one day I’d learn.
I’ll never learn to not worry though.
4 days ago