While Megan might quite possibly be the smartest Kindergartener on the planet, the first few months of school were not smooth sailing for her.
Probably two days (maybe even three days) a week, Megan would have a meltdown at school. The reasons varied; one day it might be because there was a tiny change in the classroom routine, another day it might be because she had to move from one activity to the next before she was ready.
Every day when I would go pick Megan up from school, I would cross my fingers, brace myself, and take a deep breath, hoping that it was a good day: meltdown free. But, like I said, 2 or 3 times out of 5 I would find her red-eyed and sniffling, and would receive a report from the teacher about what random thing set Megan off that day. It was never fun, and always disheartening.
One day late in December (not too many days before Christmas break) Megan had an epic breakdown. In fact, she was so upset, that she decided she wanted her mom: immediately. So, she left school. Two office employees saw her, and were hot on her heels. They watched her leave school grounds and run across a street (without looking) and disappear around the corner. They kept chase, but called the police because they didn’t know where she was headed, nor that I lived right around that corner. They were able to catch up as she ran up to my front door, which I had flung open when I heard my child screaming in the yard. Imagine my surprise to find an inconsolable Megan, and two winded and anxious women I had never seen before.
That was the low point for me. I was so heartbroken and emotionally exhausted. What hurt the most was that my girl was so unhappy, and we couldn’t figure out how to help her. And she wasn’t just struggling at school. She had meltdowns at home (though not as frequent and not as severe) occasionally at church, and always when we were at the home of friends or family.
There are a lot of things going on with Megan that are cause for concern. And so, that same day Megan came running home from school, we scheduled her for an appointment with a behavioral therapist.
Her therapist thinks she might possibly have Aspergers, (we are still in the beginning stage of therapy and have a long way to go before anything is clear) but in the meantime, she is continuing therapy as well as occupational therapy, speech therapy, and physical therapy. I was not totally surprised by this possibility, nor am I too upset about it (I was at first). I am so anxious to find ways to make Megan happy. That’s ALL I care about. Before she even had her first therapy session, we also started Megan on some multi-vitamins. I have always been concerned with her eating habits, and I had already firmly believed that we were dealing with something like autism or Aspergers or ADD or some other thought process issue. So in doing research, I found that vitamin deficiency greatly affected children with difficulties similar to Megan’s. I would swear up and down that the multi-vitamins have made a HUGE difference in her cognitive functioning. Since she started the vitamins (the first day of January) she has had a grand total of 2 meltdowns the entire month of January AND the month of February COMBINED. TWO. From September to December she was having AT LEAST 2 meltdowns: PER WEEK. In addition to the vitamins, we’ve also been able to get her eat a little better. It’s amazing the difference it has made.
Megan is now recieving therapy regularly, and it might be a while before we know for sure if she definitely has Aspergers or if her struggles are symptoms of something else. There are some articles I have read, however, about Asperger children that might as well have been written solely about Megan and her personality and “quirks.” This one, for example, I could have written myself: describing Megan. But really, it doesn’t matter whether she has Aspergers or not. It doesn’t change who she is or how we feel about her. All that matters is that we continue to search for tools to help her grow and develop in the most positive ways we can. I feel so sincerely that Heavenly Father is so very watchful and aware of our little family and that His spirit is continually leading and guiding us in raising Megan in the ways that she individually needs to be raised. But sadly, some days I am just not in tune with those promptings and I lose my way as her mother. I have been entrusted with such a wonderful and heavy responsibility with my children. The last thing I want to do is fail them in any way. I so deeply and sincerely hope and pray that I can be worthy of the guidance that is required of me as Megan’s mother. She deserves life’s every happiness.