Thursday, March 29, 2012

the tornado will pass...






...they used to happen daily and last for hours at a time. Thankfully, we have been able to eliminate most of these daily "tornadoes" since introducing strict dietary changes. The tornado meltdowns still occur, but at much more infrequent pace and less severe than pre-diet episodes.

...A tornado ripped through our house the other day, after months of minor flare-ups. It was intense. And exhausting. I had forgotten how loud and physical these moments can be, and the thought that this used to be a daily occurence makes me so thankful to be where we are now.

...for those out there new to this episodes, I wanted to take a moment to pass on what I have learned in hopes of shedding any support for those who are going through it right now.

1. It will pass. As abruptly as it comes, it will end the same way. Whether it's for 30 minutes or four hours, it will end. just be patient..if we are at home, I know that speaking to him or trying to physically reach out to him during these "storms" will only make things worse. In the safety of his room, he can ride it out. When the storm is over, he will most likely come to me and apologize well after calming down. It is only after some more time passes can we sit down and go over what had happened (but in a very short and direct manner..."lengthy" discussions only start it up again)

2. Don't take it personal, because it's not. My son spends hours a day keeping it together at school, and when he comes home he is exhausted from keeping it "in check" for so long. Whereas his friends may judge him for acting "weird" or getting upset, he knows I will not judge him. I will not leave him, and because of that, their is a safety in being able to let it out at home....he just has a hard time in figuring out how to express those emotions vocally.

3. Look for any cues that may help to "catch" it before the next occurence. While you may not be able to predict all of the meltdowns, just being able to intercept a couple here and there will make a big difference...for both of you. Your child can gradually learn his own triggers and learn other ways to calm himself/herself down. If I see it coming, distraction to something else can usually steer us clear of another storm.

4. your child loves you...and it's because he/she loves you so much that your child feels comfortable shedding all of his emotions with you.


...print out this picture...place it your drawer. Go to it when you need a little reminder that others have gone through this and that you are not alone. It will pass...and know that your child loves you more than anything in the world.

8 comments:

Chickachick said...

Well said. So wish you were writing 20 years ago when my sister was experiencing tornadoes with her son. Thanks for the post.

mummysam said...

thank you for your lovely response...

thea said...

That you can sit down and express yourself so beautifully is such a gift. Love you and your work xo

handstories said...

these are exactly the things we have been working on the last year. are still working on. thank you for a clear validating description of it all.

mummysam said...

hendstories....so glad this is helpful for you. Makes me feel good to reach out and share :)

flannery o'kafka said...

thanks...I might need to do just that!

patti digh said...

thank you. we call them "thunderstorms" in our house - "tornado" is much more decriptive of them.

Kimberly Shepherd said...

At my house these are "episodes" and they are, as you describe them, very tough. I have battled friends, neighbors, family, teachers and doctors in my pursuit of help and answers. Thank you for voicing the often-unheard cry of families who love their children and children who are navigating their worlds in different ways.