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[personal profile] sublimatedangel

So, for those that don't know, Alex has recently begun seeing a psychiatrist to evaluate him regarding ADD/ADHD type behaviors. He had his second apptment on Tuesday, and after talking to Alex and then talking to me (while Alex read a book), I took a few minutes to talk to Alex about what he might have overheard and what he though about it, felt like was a good idea, etc. The psychiatrist took a moment to compliment me on my behavior as a parent, which I immediately responded with some self-deprecating patter and dismissal, as is my usual reaction to compliments.

He immediately recognized what I was doing, and made a point of coming back stronger than ever, that he gave feedback to parents when he witnessed them doing (inadvertantly) unproductive behaviors, and that he felt it was just as important to recognize parents when they were doing something positive. He really made me stop and evaluate, and accept the compliment as a simple, professional, unbiased truth.

It made me realize how seldom I do that.

The last few years have been a tottering balance act of low or no self-esteem. It made me realize that while I tell myself I'm a good mom, it's more often in a convincing-myself-I'm-kinda-worthwhile way, rather than a confident, goddammit, I'm a rockstar-amazing mama raising some incredible citizens of the world. And... I think I need to start feeling the latter.

I was at my cousin's last weekend; her daughter was having a 5th birthday party, and after the majority of guests had gone home, a few of us were left, having champagne and general low-key after-party socializing. Talk came up of some of the things I'd done in May for Ryan's party.

Following Tuesday's apptment, I realized how often I use negative words to describe myself. I do a ton of stuff for birthdays, but when I invite people, I use words like: crazy, over-the-top, etc. I talk about having fun with it, but I don't use a single word about being creative, or amazing, or unique, or how much the kids love it. And... I think a lot of times, a lot of situations, I fall into that trap.

I've known for a long time that I need to improve my self-image, and that I don't see myself entirely clearly. My mom was one of the best people at offering me an (mostly) unbiased reflection of myself, and she's gone now. I need to start seeing myself for who I really am. I'm not sure how to do that, exactly... .but it's time to start trying. And if it took a professional psychiatrist to start me down that road of realization... I'm okay with that.


For those that want to know about Alex: He probably has some mild ADHD. There's some family history, and the diagnosis fits with what I've observed. 90% of the time, he's a normal 7 year old boy, but occassionally he gets wrapped up in behaviors that he genuinely can't stop/moderate on his own. We're probably giving him the next couple months (to see if he outgrows it or really does need medication)... possibly with startin non-medicative therapies sooner... and if needed, starting him on a medication a few weeks before 3rd grade starts (so we have time to discontinue if it's not helping).
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