The pumpkin patch experience

Discussion in 'General Parenting' started by Just keep swimming, Oct 13, 2007.

  1. Just keep swimming

    Just keep swimming New Member

    Hi family,

    Today our family joined my older 2 kiddos and their fiance's and their fiance's families for a 2nd annual trip to a really cool pumpkin patch ran by an awesome family.

    Aly was anxious this a.m. before leaving and we toyed with giving her her PRN medication but just brought it along just in case. My easy child 2's fiance's mom is a foster mom for a family of 5 kids ages 17 down to 7. We have known them for several years, they are long term placements. Aly LOVES to play with the 8 yo girl and the 7 yo boy. They are adorable, well mannered kiddos.

    This family run farm/pumpkin patch is super safe, kid/family friendly so we tend to give them a little bit more freedom there as long as they keep checking in with us. Usually, with all the adults and older teens there, there is usually one of us at least with them most of the time.

    Anyways, as the day progresses and the kids are playing on this huge "mountain" slide thingy, I see Aly standing at the top, looking totally lost and out of it. We called her, she did not respond, my oldest easy child ran up the mountain to her and she had already snapped out of it. Aly acted like nothing had happened and was wondering why easy child was up there.

    A while passed and we kept her in our sights at all times. She started being the "demanding" Aly, demanding a sucker, demanding another hot dog, demanding cotton candy, etc...

    husband was getting ticked off, none of the other kids where lying on the ground kicking and screaming because they didn't have a stinking sucker!! She screamed at husband that she (Aly) was stupid and "M" (foster child) was smarter than her, why was there something wrong with her brain? Why did we adopt her? Why were we at the pumpkin patch if we were just going to keep telling her "No". She had already had a huge lunch and desert!!

    OK, saying she was in a manic state is not putting it anywhere near what it was like.

    I started crying, I know, stupid, but I just lost it. Here are 100's of other kids and NONE of them were behaving like Aly was. Yes, I understand, she has ALOT of issues and yes, she started the day out in a bad place. But, man oh man! I thought I was immune to her "outbursts" by now.

    easy child 2 and her fiance asked if they could take her and J for a few days to give everyone a break. I gave Aly her PRN medication and agreed. easy child 2 just called and said both girls are sound asleep, so far so good!

    So, husband and I are home alone the first time in months and here I sit crying my eyes out thinking of how wonderful this day could have been. I cannot believe I witnessed my 10 yo daughter on the ground like a 2 yo.

    I have journaled everything and when we see the new psychiatrist next month I will have ALOT to share with him.

    I got a call from her in school therapist who is concerned that Aly may have a personality disorder. I am not sure if that is what it is or if she just gets so out there she can't come back?!?!? And, I know she must have had a seizure when she was up on that slide mountain.

    Someone please tell me something that will give me hope. I am feeling so needy again and so lost. She scared the daylights out of me today, husband is not really talking about it. What's new? I can't get him to talk about much of anything.

  2. flutterbee

    flutterbee Guest

    (((((gentle hugs)))))

    I wish I had some profound words that could just make everything ok.

    There is always hope. Aly is a beautiful child with a big heart and full of passion.
  3. Hound dog

    Hound dog Nana's are Beautiful


    Aw Vickie, darn it all, you had a really fun day planned and are feeling the let down. been there done that

    I was also thinking she'd probably had a seizure up there on the play mountain thingy. I know sometimes it could send Travis into a very uncooperative, rotten mood, and often he'd wind up raging.
    (still can)

    I'm glad you and husband are getting a break. I'm sure you need it. Sweet of easy child 2 and his fiance to offer.

    Now be sure to pamper yourself while she's there.

  4. smallworld

    smallworld Moderator


    I'm so sorry. I know what it feels like to want to be a normal family having normal family outings.

    The only thing I can add is that if Aly is having seizures, that could account for all the behavior you're seeing. Have you checked in with her neuro recently? Is it possible her medications levels need to be checked and possibly tweaked? Could Abilify be lowering her seizure threshold?

    Hugs to you tonight.
  5. BestICan

    BestICan This community rocks.

    I'm sorry, I don't know much about your daughter's history, but her behavior sounds exactly like pre- and post-ictal states to me. As in, I think it was clearly related to the seizure she had on the slide.

    When my difficult child's seizures were uncontrolled, he acted -- I don't know how else to put this -- ADHD a few hours prior to having one, and he acted very odd afterward.

    For example, one morning my son woke up so agitated that I put him on the couch to lie down right after breakfast. I remember that because it was so out of character and I had no idea what to do for him. Later that day, bam! A seizure.

    I can tell you lots of stories about his strange behaviors that occurred minutes or hours after seizures. Sobbing for no reason, forgetting words, and seemingly losing all impulse control. A few hours after he had his very first seizure in his kindergarten classroom, he bit a kid on the leg for no reason.

    Again, I have no idea about the kinds of testing you've been through, but I've had experts throw all kinds of possible diagnoses at my son, including Early Onset Bi-Polar (EOBP) and ADHD. I think, with uncontrolled seizures, these pre- and post-ictal behaviors can mimic a lot of different problems.

    So please don't beat yourself up about your daughter's behavior. If that was a seizure on the slide, I think it's very possible that that's what triggered it.

    So sorry if I'm oversimplifying. Just my two cents.
  6. ma2sevn

    ma2sevn New Member

    I am sure more expierienced people on here can help you way more than me, but I am wondering a couple her pattern after a seizure. Is this her typical behavior following one? I wonder so much about seizure stuff because my 8 yr old has differing behaviors when he seizes. I wonder if when it passes, she feels a range of emotions and sensations and since she dosent know how to deal with this onslaught of feelings and having lost some sontrol over herself, she covers all the feelings up with her raging and demandeing...?? I really think kids, especially kids in care, or adopted, have so many control issues and "needs" and if they would or could, for that matter, verbalize them, their frustration level would decrease. Do you think she was embarrassed? That might have been another trigger. And speaking of triggers, I wondered if you thought any of it could have been her thinking of bio family due to this being the start of the holidays....the whole pumpkin patch setting causing her to think back and thus it triggering some loss thus causing emotional chaos. Maybe I am reading too much into this. But I see my son take off in different behavioral directions often and I see him having alot of eye activity during that time. Who knows, maybe as you say, she got off to a rough start and lost any and all self control. We can pick it death I guess.
    My second thought was, no offense, but if you and hubby are home together withoug difficult child...maybe you could find something recreational to do together, or something to take your mind off her behavior and your disappointment of the kodack moment gone way wrong today. I am sure you know the first rule of foster and adoption...take care of yourself and your marriage. Which is probably the one we all break too often. Give your brain and heart a mini respite while she is gone and dont feel one bit guilty!!! Hang in there, and as for hubby, I think they are all exhausted but they dont reach out like us moms do and they bottle up their disappointments. Maybe he thinks once he starts opening up, the way he really feels will be too much for either of you to handle. I know my hubby and I are both expieriencing a feeling of loss with how some of our kids are doing. Like we hoped they would be better by now.
    Who knows, maybe this is just run on babble and I need to go to bed. At any rate...I hope you took at least a couple good pictures today. And tommorrow is a new day. Angela
  7. flutterbee

    flutterbee Guest

    The information isn't new, but I thought it pertained to what you seem to be questioning in your post. I had heard this before, but haven't seen mention of it on the board, so I thought I would put it out there:

    Temporal Lobe Epilepsy or Bipolar?

    Be gentle with yourself tonight.
  8. ma2sevn

    ma2sevn New Member

    those are good sites, thank you for sharing. I was impressed with both. they spoke to some of the things I had wondered about my difficult child.
  9. timer lady

    timer lady Queen of Hearts


    I witness those same behaviors out of both kt & wm. kt slips into those dissociative states - her toddler "alter", for lack of a better term. And there isn't a darned thing I can do but wait it out.

    Like you, I get angry. I get sad that my daughter cannot/isn't like the other children out & having fun. Enjoying a wonderful day at a wonderful place.

    Like you, I breaks my heart.

    In fact, the more I see the mature 13 y/o kt, the angrier & sadder I get when she slips into the toddler alter (a very distinct little person in her own right). I hate what kt has had to survive to display this alter.

    Having said that, Aly hasn't lived the same life as kt. However, Aly has issues that likely push her into some of the same presenting behaviors/symptoms, whatever.

    I don't blame you....your daughter is losing out on the fun of childhood. She's losing out on a beautiful day. I doubt that she was intentionally having a meltdown. I would guess the level of stimulation, combined with her frustration of being told no set her off. I would guess that Aly has the same low tolerance of frustration, the same low tolerance of high stimulation situations.

    Forgive yourself. Forgive Aly. Enjoy the respite & move on. You've learned a lesson on what Aly can experience at this time. A year from now, she may just blossom at the pumpkin farm.

    Be gentle with yourself, okay?
  10. susiestar

    susiestar Roll With It


    I hope you and husband can have sime private time, and can enjoy it.

  11. TerryJ2

    TerryJ2 Well-Known Member

    Ohhhhhhhh, Vickie, I am so sorry. I know the feeling of resentment and sorrow when I see bunches of kids having fun, and then my difficult child being the odd one out. {{hugs}}
    And that poor Aly recognizes that something is wrong with-her brain ... that breaks my heart.
    Looks like you've gotten some good comments and ideas here.
    Maybe if you don't press husband too much, he'll talk when he's ready? Sounds like he had to process the information, in addition to just being glad it was all over. :frown:
    Wish I could offer advice, except just to take it one day at a time.
  12. Just keep swimming

    Just keep swimming New Member

    Thank you all so much! husband and I ended up just lounging around here are home watching silly stuff on TV and going to bed and listening to some relaxation CDs. Was very nice. Right now I am sitting here, drinking my HMJ and enjoying a sunny sky and watching my dumb goat eat all my grass up! Yes, she escaped her pen, AGAIN! She is hugely pregnant with twins and we just can't figure out how she is getting out, LOL!

    No news from easy child, so I guess no news is good news, lol! husband and I are getting ready to go out to breakfast and then he is going to take me to check out a new horse for me. I am sooo excited!

    Thank you all for all the kind thoughts. Linda, I knew you would know exactly how I was feeling! Terry, I think you are right about husband!

    Hugs to you all,
  13. nvts

    nvts Active Member

    Hi! In no way shape or form could I speak to the pre or post seizure situation. My kids don't suffer from those.

    I can say that I truly feel for you. I do know (and I think most of us on this board) how it feels to picture a "Martha Stewart-esque" family outing that ends up with it looking more like "Jaws on Crack".

    I think that it has to do with our desire to just have that family outing that we grew up thinking that we'd have. "Come on kids, lets go pumpkin picking" and nobody fights over which seat in the car they're sitting in.

    Once you've accepted that Martha Stewart makes it look easy (she's got a billion helpers, no difficult child's, technicians, no difficult child's,hair stylists, no difficult child's, make-up artists, no difficult child's and assorted assistants, oh and did I mention "no difficult child's?") and we've got husband's that clam up and get embarassed.

    You know what? You did a great thing putting the whole thing together. And my advise to you is to plan it again for next year as a family outing but PLAN for easy child and fiance to take her for the night. At least you can count on an annual break!

    I feel for you.

    Relax! We've all been there...
  14. TerryJ2

    TerryJ2 Well-Known Member

    I do know (and I think most of us on this board) how it feels to picture a "Martha Stewart-esque" family outing that ends up with it looking more like "Jaws on Crack".

    ROFL, Beth!!!