My ADHD daughter is easy to love, but hard to raise.
by Kay Marner
Natalie spent Friday night through Sunday at Aunt Ann’s for a respite weekend. Friday night, after she left, Don, Aaron, and I went to Wallaby’s for supper. (Thank you to the server who brought me fries when I asked for salad. That’s what I really wanted!) Then, Aaron and I went to Borders. (For someone who works at a library, I sure spend a lot of time in book stores!) Aaron picked up the new book in the Wimpy Kid series; Diary of a Wimpy Kid: The Last Straw. I took a second look at Dr. Edward Hallowell’s latest book: Superparenting for ADD.
Don pointed it out to me during our last trip to Borders. I didn’t buy it. On that particular night Superparenting felt downright impossible. In fact, the title felt like a personal affront. I was working my butt off toward an “S” word, alright, but it wasn’t super-frickin-anything. It was SURVIVAL. Don’t put your super-expectations on me, Guru Hallowell, I thought. I don’t need ‘em.
Friday night, with a respite weekend ahead of me, the book’s title didn’t sound so bad after all! (What, me? Moody?) It sounded like a pep-talk. And a pep-talk felt welcomed. I bought the book.
I started reading it Friday night. So far I’ve read about the importance of really loving your ADHD child, and of making sure he or she knows it.
Well, at least I’m doing one thing right!
If nothing else, I tell Nat that I love her dozens of times each day. I hug her; I kiss her. I tell her that she’s beautiful. Loveable. Smart. I “catch her being good”; tell her when she does something well. Even when I’m giving her hell, I remind her that I love her, I just don’t like a particular behavior. And even when I’m really upset, I don’t hurt her.
It’s like I’ve always said: Natalie’s easy to love, but hard to raise.
Score one for the supermom.