December 28, 2012 by vlittle528
It is hard to believe that it has been almost a month since my sweet boy started his ADD medication. I called today frantic to get them filled once I realized he only had two left. The process isn’t as simple as just calling the pharmacy, and I am actually glad because it means this office is following the steps to help keep this drug away from those that shouldn’t be taking it. I think I have a bit to go before I have to worry about my son peddling his meds on the kindergarten playground, though.
That first day was horrible. My children rarely, if ever, drink caffeine and they don’t eat much sugar. I somehow managed to get kids that would prefer a snack of cuties and asparagus than chocolate. So when I put the stimulant in my son, it was like watching someone on speed that just couldn’t come down. I didn’t know how he was really feeling, if he felt shaky inside or if he felt nervous and out of control. All I know is that he could NOT stop talking. Literally. I didn’t even have a chance to answer one question or respond to something he said before he was already on another topic. If his hands weren’t busy writing something down, they were doing a weird snapping thing. And he didn’t stop drawing, or cutting, or making crafts. He never sat still. I couldn’t even get him to play video games or watch television. It was heart wrenching to watch.
He began making craft after craft after craft. He started with the elephant he didn’t finish in school the day before. then he made three more elephants for the rest of the family. Then he made all of the elephants royalty. Then he even painted the toenails on his sister’s elephant. After this came very, very detailed to-do lists. From eating some dinner all the way down to brushing his teeth, changing his clothes, watching his shoes, saying his prayers and then going to bed. And then he made a to-do list for the next day. And then one for the weekend.
I called the Dr.’s office and discovered that they were not surprised at all by this reaction. Even more so since he doesn’t drink caffeine. I was told to expect it for the rest of the day, and each day it should taper off a bit more and more. The on-call Dr. told me to hold off on the medication and come back in on Monday if he was still awake after midnight or one. My son fell asleep about 12:15. I wish I had known. I wish I thought to read other ADD blogs or email other parents. I wish someone could truly get the emotions that were racing through me.
I felt guilty. I was the one who made the ultimate decision to start him on the medication after all. And now I was watching him and feeling like I had made the worst mistake. I couldn’t get him to calm down and I felt guilty, but at the same time I was going batty listening to him and watching him. The thing was, he was being very well-behaved. He wasn’t getting in trouble or being naughty. He was just active. And he was talking SO much that his mouth was absolutely dry. At dinner, as horrible as it made me feel, I had to go into my bedroom and close the door while the kids finished eating. Well, one of them was eating while my son was talking my daughter’s ear off. I felt even more guilty when I JUMPED at the chance to go to my friend’s house and let the kids play while we chatted over wine. It was a welcome distraction for all of us. I expected him to crash on the way home. But it wouldn’t be until well after when he finally did.
I tell people now that the first day was bad. But I don’t think you can truly get it unless you have been through it. I have shown my sister and friend video’s of how he was acting right after school, but even seeing it doesn’t put your mind through the feelings unless it is your child. So that is why I wrote this. So if another mom has to take a break from her speeding (yes, that is the only way I can even describe it) child on their first day of stimulants she won’t feel so alone. She will know that this is only the first day of better. The first day is absolutely horrible, but it gets better. And even if it doesn’t, even if you stop the meds, someone else DOES understand that unexplainable feeling in your heart. And you can email me or comment or write your own story. So that we can all start talking about the “taboo” subject of ADHD.