Monday, September 5, 2011

Holy COW! Can I do this?

I am 53 years old and my 9 year old son has been diagnosed with ADHD. Not a big surprise to anyone who knows him. I've always said and maintain that this is the WRONG kid for a 44 year old mother with 3 other children. I noticed from the beginning that the kid was BUSY. Busy, Busy, busy. He NEVER slows down, barely eats and getting to sleep is difficult especially without the 'white noise' of a fan. His focus is either non-existent or he's "hyper-focused."

This year he's supposed to enter the 4th grade. He's also been prescribed "concerta" a ritalin type drug. I'm one of those people who believes that doctor prescribed drugs have their place, but usually not in my house. That's not to say I don't use them, just very rarely. Now I have this bottle of Concerta sitting here in front of me. "Methypheidate". Lovely. I looked up the side effects; loss of appetite, increased aggression, mood changes, depression, can cause all sorts of health problems etc. and this following comment just kills me; "There have been no placebo controlled trials investigating the long term effectiveness of methylphenidate beyond 4 weeks thus the long term effectiveness of methylphenidate has not been scientifically demonstrated" 

Are you KIDDING me? FOUR WEEKS? And you want me to dump this in one of the most precious things I have? BITE ME!!!

So now I have decided to homeschool the little beastie. Am I nuts? I'm beginning to believe I am. While I am qualified legally to teach him at home, I'm beginning to panic. I took a few education courses in college, when at one point I thought I might go into teaching and I taught a pre-kindergarten class one year. And that qualifies me to do WHAT exactly? Exactly what I am, a bored housewife who thinks housework is for anyone else but her. Certainly not to teach!

I took a look at the course curriculum today and now I'm panicking out right. Holy SHIT I can't do this! Math alone is going to kill me! Okay, I took 207 not too long ago but THIS? Geometrical concepts? Huh? "Time to the second"? What the hell is THAT? Problem solving methods? Are those WORD problems? I think in my whole life (and sorry, this is NO exaggeration) I got ONE word problem right. I still remember it. The feeling of getting it right anyway. 

That's just math... I'm also supposed to teach basic anatomy and physiology, I can do that. Finally my aromatherapy course study is coming in handy... History of this state. i'm like "DUH" about WA state history and how this state relates to the rest of the country and world. Are you KIDDING ME? Reasons for our laws? I don't think "A bunch of overpaid whack jobs make arbitrary decisions that we have to follow" is what the schools are wanting our kids to learn.

Then there's art, science, health subjects and freaking P.E! Yeah, I'm in the perfect shape to be teaching P.E.! Holy CRAP!

Then of course there is the fact that I have my OWN problems concentrating and focusing. And I'm supposed to teach a kid with ADHD to do it? That's majorly throwing stones at glass houses. I'm as disorganized as they come. sigh.

Part of me want's to just throw in the towel. Quit before I get started. Just shove the pill down the kid's throat and shove him out the door. Let the teacher's deal with him. But then I look at his already underweight frame and sigh. Nope, I gotta do this. I have to figure a way to settle down, get the books, figure out a curriculum and teach the little booger not only the school work, but also how to manage his ADHD without drugs. 

Wish me luck, because I'm not sure I have the "right stuff."


  1. Sure you do. You are just scared right now, and perhaps a tad overwhelmed. In a year you will say what was I so scared of. It is simply like starting a new job. Will you get everything right the first time? Not always. But it won't kill either of you.
    You are smart enough, and have heart enough. So jump right in. The water is fine. May be a bit chilly at first, but you will acclimate rapidly.

  2. Thanks Pen. I have a lot of people rooting for me. Will find out and figure out more on Wednesday!