We’re just about a month into a spurt of behavior with Mikey that tells me either we got a bad, bad batch of pills or else we need to adjust his medication. He is a total wild man, maybe more wild than before the meds, but it’s hard to say because he was doing SO WELL for two months that I forgot what it was like to navigate a day with his raw self.
He wakes up every day at five, which is normal for him, but is having trouble falling asleep, even with melatonin. Sometimes he wakes up in the middle of the night, too. Insomnia is a big side effect of his medication–I’m not willing to get him on a prescribed sleep medication on top of it, so…
He’s also displaying signs of anxiety. He has always run a bit anxious, like his mother, but lately he’s been having terrible nightmares. They are anxious dreams, where his toys come to life and run away from him or else his suitcases blow out the window and all his professional clothes get driven over on the highway. It breaks my heart when he tells me he’s scared to go to sleep because he doesn’t want to have the bad dreams. He asks me how he can change the dreams or get the things to stop while he’s asleep. Anxiety is another side effect of the medication.
And, of course, even on the drugs he’s been aggressive at school this past month. I can no longer attribute the behaviors to staircase days stemming from overtired parents with no remaining patience just screaming at him all morning. No. There’s something else going on. It’s like the medication barely takes the edge off his impulsive behaviors anymore.
I looked at the pill bottle and we do get the generic. Another parent told me generic medications can vary by up to 30% (per cent of what? I have no idea), so this makes me wonder if we maybe did get a bad batch. Who’s to say the next batch will be a different one?
I’m in the state of exhausted tunnel vision where I can’t even make a phone call to schedule a consult with our doctor about it. I can’t figure out the logistics of how the hell I’d get some time without kids to go sit in the doctor’s office and have a conversation with him about Mikey. Which, of course, tells me I need to go to bed, even though it’s not yet 9pm.
When Mikey gets up in 8 hours, he’s not going to be a peaceful, drowsy boy. He’ll be more like a rabid raccoon…
It’s hard to rein in my feelings of disappointment and, to an extent, despair. I hardly dared allow myself to hope that medication could improve our lives, and then it DID! And we had two magical months where my kid was just challenging to parent instead of seemingly-impossible. And I let myself ease up and pretend things would always be this way. We made a plan to taper off and graduate from wrap-around services, for fuck’s sake.
So now I’m frustrated by all these layers of emotions and feeling really doubtful whether we’ll find resolution. Perhaps another thing that’s holding me back from actually going to talk with our doctor. Can’t we all just lie on the couch and eat soft pretzels?