Maybe it's not all me

Yesterday I took Doodlebug in to see her doctor. He is sending us to JMU (the university) for a full evaluation. I am scared. I am relieved. I am blessed that one of my online friends noticed my concern and frustration. She shared her story and inspired me to just go ask.
Doodlebug is an amazing and wonderful girl. Her little quirks made us laugh. Her clumsiness. Her adorable inability to look you in the eye when she was talking. The cute way she would cry out “but that’s JUST NOT FAIR” over everything.
Somewhere I was failing her. She seemed unaware that she interrupted I constantly. She could generate a bad attitude in a heartbeat. She has an amazing desire to help (even wants to be a doctor when she grows up) but at the same time she totally ignores you when you say “Hey, that is hurting me” if not hurting you would mean she had to stop what she was doing. We can’t get past the basics of math. Her handwriting is… terrible. Even eating at the table is a mess with her.
The thought had crossed my mind before. The “what if it’s not all me” thought. The “hmmm, I wonder if there might be some reason, other than crappy parenting, that would explain some of her general difficulty with life”.
She didn’t fit any of the profiles for anything I had ever heard of before. Every checklist I was ever asked to fill out at the pediatrician’s office showed a perfectly perfect kid. Everyone saw her quirks. No one questioned them. Some family even said they didn’t see them – ever.
I am not a perfect mom. I AM a good mom. Even though we’ve had a couple of easy “baby years” in our home school I AM a good teacher. I have lots of room to grow and things to learn and places to improve. I’m a good mom because I realize all these things and I keep searching and praying and reading and changing to try and be better. Despite all of this effort, my oldest daughter still seems frustrated and lost most of the time.
Yesterday the doctor said words that elated me and saddened me. He said that I might be on to something. He agreed that the situation warranted evaluation. He said that I might be right.
As we carefully discussed it all, speaking in code for the benefit of the very aware nine year old in the room, we explained to Doodlebug that we were going to take her to talk to some other people. How we were going to take her to chat, play, and take a few tests to see if maybe they could tell mommy a better way to teach her in school.  It could take months to get the evaluation completed. In the meantime, I’m reading and googling and seeking advice from other moms to see what I can change in our day to day family routine that might help Doodlebug. Even if her evaluation shows to issues there is still something in her life that is making things difficult and I need to fix that.
At least now I know there is a chance it’s not just me.
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I am keeping an open mind regarding a diagnosis. I am not seeking a “disorder specific” doctor as I want someone to evaluate her overall and come to their own conclusions. I do have an idea on what might be the problem. It’s called a Non-Verbal Learning Disability.
Here are a few links that explain:
http://www.learningdisabilitiesinfo.com/nonverbal.html
http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Nonverbal_learning_disorder
http://www.ldonline.org/article/6114

2 thoughts on “Maybe it's not all me

  1. Heather says:

    When I read this I thought, oh my goodness this is my E5! Then my second thought was, I am not the only one dealing with this sort of thing. My daughter fits so many of the criteria it is crazy. Everyday of school is a struggle for her and I am so exasperated! I am also at my wits end with her most days. I have recently decided to home school starting this Fall to see if getting the 1 on 1 time will help. I look forward to hearing how the testing goes for your daughter and following your progress. I may be bringing this up to the family doctor in the near future. I so appreciate you sharing this with us, I found it VERY informative. I don’t feel alone anymore either. Thanks again, and good luck to you:)

  2. TaderDoodles says:

    Hi Heather!
    First I want to thank you for reading through all those typos! Wow, the stuff that happens with a 11 mth old on your lap 🙂
    I really debated posting this or not, as it is a very sensitive subject for me. I have several people that act like I am just looking for something to be wrong. It’s a gut feeling though, that something is special about her and if I stop being afraid of asking (and possibly being told it was a waste of time) then I just might find out I can do something to help her.
    I saw your tweet 🙂 and am dm’ing you my email addy!
    Thanks for taking the time to leave a comment !!
    Lisa

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