I am kind of at a loss today, very confused and I don’t really know what to do. When I don’t know what to do (if I have any energy at all), I bake. I don’t always eat what I bake and I usually don’t eat when I’m stressed, but today I really needed the chocolate so I even ate one of my own treats. I made… Nutella stuffed oreo brownies. I know, just reading the words makes you gain a bazillion pounds. But…easy and YUM!
It was pretty much a normal day, overall happy and the weather was wonderful for a change. I picked the girls up from school, M is last. When I picked M up I said “Did you get super green today?” “Super green.” she replied. Super green means that she did not have to move her clip for behavior problems at school at all today. Most days are actually super green for M, as she controls herself pretty well at school and since they are young 5s expectations are not extremely high (although I have suspected her teachers of being extra easy on her, which I hope is not the case…maybe I am just strict). We went to the playground since it was a beautiful day and there is a quiet, seldom used playground right on our way home. When we got there I opened M’s folder. I was looking for information on the Science Fair on Friday, which M has decided she does not want to do, after already having signed up with a great idea, and carried it through much of the way already.
I was surprised to find that, while she did in fact have green colored in for AM and PM from her teacher, there was also a note saying they had to talk to her about talking rather than hitting when she is frustrated with her friends, and not lying. Apparently, from what she told me and what I read from the teacher, another student was doing something they were not supposed to do…a little thing that no one really cares about, like being silly with the materials at a center. M asked the child to stop and they did not. She yelled at them to stop and they did not. She hit them. They told the teacher she hit them and she denied it, then because she can not lie she admitted what she did and apologized.
She hit another student. This is a nightmare for me. This is what I was afraid of at the beginning of the year, but it did not happen, and then she got much better (admittedly mostly because of her mood medication), and now, at the end of the year, she hit someone. Last week she screamed at the para pro and today she hit someone. I am afraid of what will happen next. Why now? It is the end of the year, she only has to make it less than two months more. She graduated from OT and counseling, she is more verbal than she has ever been…but the last couple of weeks she has gotten worse and more aggressive at home and now at school. I am sure she did not hit them hard, but she laid her hands on someone in an aggressive way, someone other than family. I have no idea why she did not have to move her clip, why she still got “super green”.
I talked to her about the situation. About how if she gets frustrated next time she should raise her hand and tell the teacher or ask to move. Or, knowing how little patience M has, worst case I told her she should just get up and go to the teacher, to move away from the other person before she hit them. “But mom,” she said “you can’t move during centers, it’s a rule.” Ok, but I’m sure if you need to move so you don’t get so upset it will be ok. “No mom, it’s a rule, we can’t move.” Well, moving is better than hitting, I’m sure your teacher would agree. Some rules like not moving are better to break than rules like no hitting. “No mom, you don’t understand, a level 0 is no moving and centers are a level 0 so you can not move. It’s a rule.” Well, isn’t no hitting a rule? (nods her head). Ok then, and you broke that rule. “But they broke a rule first.” Well you still can’t hit, so if you’re going to break a rule anyway it is better to get up and go to the teacher than to hit someone. “But I can’t get up, mom! It’s a rule!”
Ack! It felt quite like an Abbott & Costello routine to me and I just had no argument left, so I left it alone. She is so black & white in her thinking I think her teacher will have to give her special permission to move during centers if she feels like she is going to hit someone. We had this problem with using her noise reducing headphones, as well. We couldn’t just tell her she could go get them whenever she needed them. She needed to be told specifically for each type of instance that she was allowed to use her headphones for those times. Even now, if she forgets to get her fidgets for rest time, once she is on her mat she will not go get them or ask her teachers for them because it is quiet time and she is not allowed to get up or talk. So I’m not sure why she can’t follow the rule about keeping your hands to yourself as strictly, I guess it is the impulse control part.
I know it is likely that this is a one time thing and it will not happen again, but I do not like the progression of her difficulty handling frustration at school lately. Although we just recently saw her Psychiatrist it may be time to increase her medication now that she is growing and it seems to be less effective. But sometimes it is environmental, such as the time from Thanksgiving until a week or two after New Years, when life was not as predictable and more sensory stimulating than usual. I will have to be extra vigilant and figure out what is causing her difficulty and how to fix it.
In the mean time, I think I will have another brownie.