Thursday, June 06, 2002

Doctors Appointment Redux

The trip to the doctor went as well as I think it could have. I think he's worn out from the test. The doctor was a very nice woman who reminded me an awful lot of a friend of mine's wife... only slightly older, a bit more dowdy and a lot less hip. So that was sort of creepy for me. Initially Geoff thought he was going to get blood work, but she explained that she doesn't do that... he was obsessed with it though and wanted blood work done. Kept talking about it too, which I had to explain away to her.

He didn't answer any of her initial questions -- did this kind of hedging thing where he'd avoid answering questions by giving bullshit answers, or "non-sequitors" as she called them. It became rather annoying. I left the room so she could start her testing, and after a half hour he came out on his own. She told me he was non-compliant, in every way shape and form. I volunteered to come back in and sit with him, reminded him that he wanted to go to Burger King after the test and the only way he was going to BK was if he got through it.

That made an impact.

I knew that he was going to give her heck, and it was just what I wanted because it showed her that I'm not insane in thinking there's something wrong with my kid which required behavioral testing.

Like the initial response to my inquiry by this hospital's staff MADE me feel. Thank you.

He made it through only one test. There was a second one that he could have taken for another hour after lunch, but the doctor and I decided it was pointless and he would be in complete rebellion if I brought him back after lunch... He had entered silly phase, and every answer to every question was a quote from Veggie Tales or from the Iron Giant. "Welcome to downtown coolsville, population us!" It was frustrating but the one test gave her something to go on and she'll be able to work up an analysis for me. She seemed positive and supportive, and very nice. Which made me feel less like a manilla folder in a filing cabinet. She deserves a thank you note.

So we left. She said she'd call me in about a week. She advised I set up time to meet with his kindergarten teacher to start looking at an Ed plan for him for the fall. We'll see what else she has to say. She said that auditory processing may be an issue, that ODD was something on the list based not on what she got to view but on his history.

I feel like a nap is in order. Unfortunately, Geoff is running around listening to Jimmy Eat World and yelling the words that he can figure out to "The Middle," his new favorite song, which, in his opinion "ROCKS STEADY!"

He's such a magnificent kid, and I'm hoping Jimmy Eat World has assessed the situation well in said song, ignoring the fact that he says "Little Girl," which you can read as me or change to Boy for Geoff:

"Hey, don't write yourself off yet
It's only in your head you feel left out or looked down on.
Just try your best, try everything you can.
And don't you worry what they tell themselves when you're away.
It just takes some time, little girl you're in the middle, it'll up the ride.
Everything (everything) will be just fine,
Everything (everything) will be all right (all right)."

Everything will be all right, allright!

I met a really nice mom who has a six year old who was taking a reading screening... he has serious reading issues just like her daughter did only no one believed her when she talked to the teachers in first, second, third grades... so when she saw the same trend with her son, she flagged it (and he's at a different school so this group of teachers agreed). Her daughter has an anxiety disorder now because she is petrified she's going to do badly at something, after doing so badly for so long. She's finally gotten over the reading problems, but now is anxious about schoolwork because she is afraid the reading problems will come back again.

Poor thing.

So the mom and I had a good talk about language acquisition, reading, speech (her son has been seeing a speech therapist since he was three) and how happy she is so far with this hospital, the therapists and the testing. Sounds like she's been through the wringer. But she agreed that getting her kids seen in the first place was a bitch.

My good friend GPJ once told me after going through ADHD screenings for his own child, that the hospitals, the schools -- none of them have YOUR kid's best interests in mind. They want fewer patients, not more. They often will dismiss what you think is wrong. I'm glad that Doug is in on this family because he KNOWS the other side of the fence, and knows how to deal with the testing, the results, the findings, the doctors. He has written IEPs before. He isn't biased to Geoff's side at all, and in fact asked me repeatedly why I wanted to go through with this sort of testing, knowing that getting the knowledge is a pain in the ass.

We just baked brownies. I feel a cup of coffee, brownie and some chocolate almond ice cream pulling at my elbow, calling me with their sweet little voices. And I'm going to scan the radio dial until I find that Jimmy Eat World song for Geoff again. You can't go more than 5 minutes in the Boston airwaves without getting it. It'll make him a happy camper.

Oh, in non-Geoff news, Jessica's birthday is Tuesday, so she told everyone at school she was having a party.


Doug and I had alternate plans, where we were going to take her, Natalie, A. and T. to the movies to see "Spirit," and then have dinner out somewhere, like Macaroni Grille or TGI Fridays or something. We wanted it to be a surprise. We told her we had something planned and that she should just shut up and not worry about it. She jumped to the conclusion that it was going to be a party after school. So already two moms have called me about it.

What the .... ooooooh! Kid!!!

So we told her what the surprise was. Told her to go back to school today and apologize to EVERYONE and let them know there is indeed no party. I'm still waiting to hear back from T's mom as to whether or not she can go. Truthfully, I'd prefer it to be just Natalie and A., but we'll see what pans out.

I don't really WANT to see "Spirit." It is probably one of those "White men expanding to the west are evil, and indians and horses are better" things... and I'm so tired of the widely pitched White People Suck theme. But the girls only see the "horses are cool" aspect of the film. In many ways they are being undermined and brainwashed completely into seeing that westward expansionism which gave us California and Arizona and the like (which would have belonged to the Japanese if the Battles of Midway and Coral Sea hadn't worked out the way it did, but I totally digress...), and they'll get a negative message in the end.


I want to see a movie where there are GOOD people trying to build this country. For a change. They tried that a little in Pocahantas, but most of the whities were just opportunistic and greedy jackasses.

I hate kid movies. Except Brave Little Toaster and Iron Giant (which has an anti-gun message, but it is an important one, because it defines the giant in the long run. If you've not seen it. Please do).

So that's our birthday plan. I know she wants her own CD player, but I have to find out what CDs she'd want to go with. Stupid kid, turning 10 on me.

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