Thursday, July 28, 2011

Watching the Crash

M2 has been 'up' lately.  In general, this is positive.  I deal much better with hypomanic/manic behavior than depressed behavior because having a child with ADHD is more or less the same thing, and I'm used to ADHD!  The only difference between the two is the rages that can accompany a manic episode... ADHD kids don't really 'rage.'  They get mad and throw fits, but the fits don't last three hours and don't involve breaking things, hitting, biting, kicking, etc.

Anyway, as I said, M1 has been 'up.'  We went on a guided tour of the Gilcrease Museum yesterday with some of our friends, and it ROCKED.  The tour guide/docent was an amazing woman with a deep love for kids, and it showed throughout the entire tour.  The kids loved her; I loved her.  Both kids (all the kids who attended) behaved amazingly well, showed off their knowledge, took turns, and were just impressive in their behavior.  If you're local and ever get a chance, GO.

We got home around 12:30 p.m., and M2 promptly launched into a 20-minute crying jag.  She stomped to her room and finished her cry before she came out and got a veggie corn dog for lunch... and then got upset all over again because my lunch wasn't ready when hers was and I was busy getting my lunch and filling the hummingbird feeder rather than sitting down with her. 

After we ate, she spent some quiet time in her room and emerged back on top of the world and bounced around the house like a springloaded 4-foot-tall pixie-faced she-demon.  I made a note in my head that something was bound to happen sooner or later.  What goes up must come down, after all, and her moods have been extremely labile lately.  We took the kids out for Cherry Berry last night, and then they got into a fight on the way home because M2 whacked M1 on the head, so he thought that meant he could grab her nose and twist.  I had to become 'that mom' who's turned around in the car yelling at the children while holding the phone in her other hand because there's a friend having a crisis on the other end of the line and she's not hanging up till the conversation is finished.  (No, really, I did have a friend with a crisis on the phone.  I was even going to go crash her apartment with a bottle of wine till she texted me and said she was going to take some Nyquil and go to bed, and I figured wine and Nyquil really didn't mix.) 

M2 didn't really want to go to bed at all, but we eventually got her nestled in between the sheets, and she stayed there till this morning... when she tiggered down the hall to announce her good-morning self to the world, fully dressed and as chipper as could be.

She stayed 'up' all day, with only one minor meltdown occurring when she realized that the pearl necklace she had made for her flapper costume was lost (no doubt stuffed somewhere... she's so scatterbrained these days that I'm usually amazed she can remember her own name when I yell it). 

Then... then... THEN...

Oz took M1 to swim practice and I tucked M2 into bed.

She waited about 3 minutes, then got up.

I tucked her in again.

She got up bawling her head off.  The sad cry, not the mad cry.  Not the I'm-crying-to-see-if-it-gets-me-attention cry.  Not even the I've-got-something-to-tell-you cry or the I-don't-wanna-sleep-in-my-room cry.  The sad cry.

This was at 7:30.  If I tried to put her back to bed, she flipped out and grabbed me like a hoarder losing a doll collection.  Then she'd cry some more.  If I did manage to leave, she followed me out, wailing, and the process would start all over again.  Staying with her didn't help matters, because she wouldn't close her eyes or loosen her grip enough to where she would fall asleep and I could extract myself.

She had no idea why she was crying.  She had no idea why she felt sad, and yes, she really truly had been happy all day but was really truly sad now.  She was scared, too, but didn't know why.  She felt like nobody cared about her and that she should just go live somewhere else - she didn't know where, but she knew she'd have to walk there.  Mostly she didn't want to talk, though.  She just wanted to hang onto me for dear life.

By the time Oz and M1 got back home around 9:15, I'd given up trying to keep her in her room and had let her lay on the floor at my feet (not that I told her to be there... I just told her she wasn't allowed on my lap because I was trying to catch up on e-mails that I hadn't read in, oh, about 36 hours, and she decided my feet were an acceptable alternative).  Oz told her that he was tucking her in, and she willingly got up and followed him to the bedroom, where - 45 minutes later - she's dead to the world and completely oblivious to the cricket that just scared the poo out of M1 because he thought it was "something mechanical" trying to drill into his room.

It's gonna be a long night, and my guess is that 'up' won't be here tomorrow.  I think we're due for a day of 'down.'

Bleh.  Mood swings.  Who needs 'em anyway?!?


Suburban Correspondent said...

Borderline Personality Disorder is another possibility - I don't think bipolar people swing so rapidly. You can look up the diagnostic criteria on the Mayo Clinic website; or check out the book "Walking on Eggshells."

Also, has she always been like this? If not, you may want to look into the possibility of undiagnosed traumatic brain injury. Sometimes kids can hit their heads hard enough to have a concussion, but it isn't full-blown enough to be diagnosed. That situation can result in extreme behavioral changes. Good luck!

Sarah said...

BPD isn't diagnosed in kids, though my MIL has it, so I'm aware of it and the symptoms. I really don't think that's the issue. :) BP kids tend to swing MUCH more rapidly than adults; some of them have been known to switch more than once a week. M2's mood swings have never been that rapid, but she's been in a mixed state lately, which has been driving me crazy. She's been 'moody' since birth, though since I have a child with ADHD and Asperger's, her tantrums seemed fairly normal by my standards!

Thanks so much for the concern. I really appreciate the thoughts :)

Mom on the Verge said...

Oh Lord!! You have got to publish this for later. You'll never believe it once they're grown and stable.

Then you can blackmail them with it, and wonder how you ever did it... Hang in there!