I wonder if Mikey is so drawn to October because there is so much change around this month–and he hates change, but that doesn’t mean it’s not interesting. The weather changes so much in Pittsburgh. On Tuesday, it was 84 degrees and sunny. On Wednesday, it was 64 and windy.
The food changes so much in October–we are suddenly presented with pumpkin everything. Last year this made him gag, but this year he’s feeling adventurous and likes pumpkin waffles (but only the ones from Aldi). And of course, there’s candy all over the damn place. Cody took our boys to the builders’ workshop at Home Depot and they came home with THREE BAGS of candy. Three bags!
The world around us changes visibly here, too. The trees flame red and orange almost overnight. I think they peaked as we drove home from my sister’s wedding in late September…but then in the same month, these same leaves fall down and scatter the ground and everything becomes slick and wet and unfamiliar. Or else crunchy and crisp and also different.
For a kid who thrives on routine, October must seem a confusing mess for the senses. This year, his body is responding in a way that is familiar and frightening to me.
His oral/facial sensory needs have increased dramatically. His fingers are bloody from biting the nails down well below the tops of his fingers. A school report from the psychologist reveals that he is just constantly, constantly touching his face and also pressing his hands and feet against things. His poor body just can’t get enough stimulation it seems.
We scheduled an interim appointment with his psychiatrist to discuss how this might be related to his medication. The medication is still functioning in terms of controlling his impulses. He’s gaining weight, eating well, having peaceful days. He’s not anxious or enraged. But when he wakes up in the morning his energy levels just flame and shoot out of his body. There isn’t enough in the world to quench his thirst for everything…food, sensation, pressure, sound, all of it. And then there’s his face and his nails.
Cody and I are trying to decide if we think these side effects warrant adding an additional medication to his tiny body. I’m so reluctant to do that. I wonder if the side effects are harmful for him, emotionally or physically, enough to warrant more drugs? I’m going to order a trampoline for our house and see if that helps.
For now, I sit in waitful worry. Maybe this will be his seasonal shift and we’re seeing it early. But maybe we’re in for the roughest November we’ve had yet?