Tuesday, May 4, 2010

Your Actions Speak Louder Than Your Words

Sweet Girl missed the bus this morning and it was completely my fault. I took ownership of that and I took her to school. The reason she was late is because I felt it was more important to have a conversation with her than to get her up and eating a bowl of marshmallow mateys.

You see, when the alarm first went off, I ignored it, hoping Champs would get up with the girl. No luck there; he was dead to the world. However, as I lay there fending off the alarm with the snooze button, my mind drifted to yesterday. I realized that, in spite of 4 separate requests, Sweet Girl had managed to avoid practicing her piano pieces yesterday and she has her lesson today. I got up, walked to her room, woke her up and informed her of this fact.

Now, here's the thing: Our daughter has some ADD issues. Issues that we have not had formally tested (because it isn't in network for our insurance and because the initial testing costs more than 2000.00 and that doesn't even go into the charges for the therapy), and which we have not named to her face (why stick the kid with labels and also give her a ready excuse?). But the reality is that both my mother and I have been tested for and diagnosed with ADD as well. When we were young those labels didn't exist. We both learned to make it work with what we had. Because of this, I'm determined that Sweet Girl, too, will need learn to make things work for herself. It is hard, though, because she's at a crucial point in her development. She's nearly 10 and needs to start becoming more independent, and not have Mom and Dad do everything for her. She needs to take responsibility to get her "stuff" done everyday without one of us standing over her. And yet she cannot seem to do even the basics of this. Tonight her father told her that from the time after school up until she went to bed, she was to take a shower and practice her piano without being told to do so - or there would be consequences. She did neither and now she's grounded for two weeks. In the end, I know she loves music and her piano, she just finds the regimen of practice boring so doesn't get it done.

I will need to plan a trip to the library to see if there are any home-based solutions we can try. I've asked over and over of her teachers if there are any school or district psychologists who can help us, but I've gotten nowhere with that. I can't afford the medical route, either. Yet she needs some help. Perhaps there is a good book out there than can teach me how to help teach my girl to help herself.

In the meantime, she's getting up at 6:00 a.m. tomorrow to practice her piano. Sigh.

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