This is just a update so to speak. I took Nicole to the psychiatrist on Monday because of her emotional issues last week with things she said that were of a concern as well as her sadness that she has had for months. My whole purpose for this appointment was to have the doctor increase her dose of anxiety medication. He did do so and also added a diagnosis of ADHD.
As of yesterday, she started the new dosage. It will probably take about two weeks for the medicine to kick in. He also made sure to tell her that the medication alone wouldn’t make her happier; she also had to be more positive and change her mindset.
Yesterday, she saw the counselor. Sometimes Nicole talks to Pat herself and sometimes it is both of us. She didn’t want me to leave yesterday. I explained what happened during the last week. It never ceases to amaze me what I have learned from Nicole and continue to learn from Nicole about myself. One of Nicole’s issues is trying to use other people to make her happy and feel valuable and worthy. She is very attached to Shayne, more so than she should be, and she is happy/sad based on what is going on in their relationship. She is like this with her other friends but she is closest to Shayne so it is more prominent with him or me.
I don’t know when she became so afraid of being alone and being by herself when all her friends are at work. I know it is difficult for her to come to terms with the fact that her friends are all starting to enter the workforce and this is something she can’t do. If I had to really pinpoint the start of her sadness/depression I would say it was right after she was told when the time comes for transplant she will need a lung/heart. I know she has read about the surgery and she knows the odds and risks of the surgery as well as the rarity of it. How could you not be terrified. I am terrified and have not come to terms with it by any means.
My friend, Denise, has told me for a long time that every night I should write down three positives things that I am grateful for in my day. I had kept a gratitude journal for years but I had gotten out of the habit of it and I could tell. I decided that every night when I ask Nicole her daily questions about her day, her side effects, medication issues etc., she could give me three positives in which I write down in a little notebook.
Last night every positive she gave me was followed by turning it into something negative.
For example one positive was that Shayne had the day off from work which is a positive. But she took it over to the negative when she went farther and said, Yea… but we aren’t doing anything. Isn’t just him being there with you on skype (via microphone) enough? I guess she feels they have to be doing something in order for her to believe that he wants to spend time with her etc. Tonight she needs to give me three positives and that is it with no further negativity. It also troubled me as I have battled this demon myself that nothing … no matter what it was … is good enough… always thinking that there’s something better.
I had asked her to write down all the positive attributes about herself. I told her it should be on my desk this morning. It was and I was very sad to see that there were only eight things on the list. These included a good artist; a good imagination; she’s pretty; beautiful eyes; she was strong; she likes the two little moles on her face; she loves her friends, pets and family a lot; she’s creative. I immediately within five minutes was able to write down these other things: loyalty; intelligence; a caring heart; a love for children; a love for animals; beautiful smile; beautiful hair; thin; good photographer; brave; a good writer; kind; not materialistic; good student. Tonight I am going to have her write down the negative things she sees in herself and if I had to bet it will probably be twice as long. I think the number one answer will be selfishness.
I learned yesterday that I have this same type of attachment in a lot of ways with Nicole as she does with Shayne. I was never one of those moms (and if you are I’m not criticizing or judging) who couldn’t wait for the first day of school. I hated the school year because I had the whole day without Nicole. This applied if she was going somewhere–what would I do without her? Now, she is 18 and she doesn’t need me like she did when she was younger and soon she will want to be married etc. I sometimes don’t know how to be happy without her with me. I have been thinking a lot about something my mom said to me, I believe it was the day she was diagnosed with terminal lung cancer and she was refusing treatment. She said, “You don’t need me anymore.” I lived in Florida, she lived in New York. I couldn’t understand how she could say that. I would always need her. Now I understand more what she means.
I hope that I will see that beautiful smile and hear that beautiful laugh come back soon. She doesn’t realize how much, even though I have tried to tell her, she has influenced me and a lot of other people. She has inspired me in so many ways. She has made me a better person. She is what I am most grateful for every single day. That God has blessed me with another day with her, even through all the sickness, depression and pain, doesn’t even come close to a life without her in it.
- Just Don’t Know What To Do…. (caregiving.com)
- “Not Being Sick Enough” (caregiving.com)
- Nicole’s Make-a-Wish trip (caregiving.com)
- Oh My… (caregiving.com)
- Balance… (caregiving.com)
- Venting…. (caregiving.com)
- Constricted (caregiving.com)
- When the Lights Go Out, What Do You Worry About? (caregiving.com)
- A Character Sketch… (caregiving.com)