My mind is officially blank this morning......and it's Thursday. Well, that's one good thing, the week has passed, and all the little drama's with it. I am feeling the effects now from not having Saphris, didn't realize how much it did, and didn't do. I don't miss the side effects, but the mania was cool in that I had was the down sides that weren't fun. Sad, that mania can be fun for the person, yet there is always a flip side. 

Aramis had his dosage of Seroquel upped last night, and woke with two hives. Hmmmm, need to watch that. Let's just hope a hungry skeeter got him, and it's not a side effect. He's sleepy this morning, so I can only imagine what he'll wake like when the full dosage begins. He's at 75mg now, still need to work our way to 150mg. 

He told me yesterday that he had a teacher in UT who would put a shock collar on him and said it was "safe", but if he didn't answer right he was shocked, and it wasn't safe, as it hurt and was embarrassing. Okaaaay.......what to say again? Oh yeah, we're supposed to say: "Wow, that's sorry that happened to you." Dante, being the lawyer in training went off on it, proclaiming it illegal and that the teacher should be arrested. I'm obviously going to have to explain a bit more to Dante about schizophrenia.

I hate the answers we're supposed to give, the child needs validation, but isn't this encouraging the belief system that what they thought was true is indeed true? I know it didn't happen, anyone would know it didn't happen, (unless he claimed we did it, and a social worker asked!!!!), but the psychiatrist says to validate, don't correct as it confuses the person even more. 

Soooo, Aramis has a camera that he can take photos of all these things with. He's finally realizing that there are many things we can't see. And yes....he's upset that only he can see them. So I understand the psych, after all, if he's upset that he can't catch "them" on camera, then how would he feel if every event was disclaimed? I get it.....but sometimes, it's tiring. 

And was I tired by early evening.......I actually went to bed with Aramis at 8. That's it, I'm going to sleep, it's been an active day since 6am, and I'm done for. I had to remember that I wrote two chapters, and edited 6 more on top of the "normal" activities for the day! 

I had phone calls galore to agencies, as they weren't communicating with each other. The first told me "good luck, no one has been able to get the (Agency B) to talk with any of us (Agencies A, C and D). I said, well, I've been known to get the most emotionally locked up to speak, and some even suspect that I could get a brick wall to respond, so I'll give it a try. 

Low and behold: you know, if you tell someone that you're not getting off the phone until you have resolution of a particular sort, they actually will work with you? Okay, I did say that "I'm stubborn, and that I've been able to get brick walls to respond, I'm just curious, which is he? A bureaucratic brick wall or a human being? I'll wait for him to let me know......" and got a laugh fortunately, for that not very polite statement. 

But action was accomplished, and many, many phone calls later I had the solution I wanted. Geeesh, I thought I retired from advocacy and social work. Nope, one never retires, as now I'm an advocate still, just for clients closer to home. 

Well, the latest state husband has been told is: get this.....drum roll please.............tattattattatttt.........UT! 
Didn't we just come from UT? 
Okay, well at least I'll know my way around. 

The chances are pretty good, so that means we'll be back with the psychiatrist who was awesome! yet prescribed waay more medication than the current psychiatrist would agree with. Okay.....they each have their opinions. But, he knows Aramis already, and knows me, so UT has some benefits for psychological care. Add to that, we have insurance now, albeit expensive insurance, but we won't have the worry over hospital visits for Aramis. 

I still can't take in that we've already been to the ER with him, and had an ambulance ride....all the while he's in full psychosis. 

Strange....I find myself angry with the disease......but recognize that it's a normal part of the stages of acceptance. And yes, I'm angry with my mother, as I recognize now so many of the same symptoms that my brother demonstrated at this very young age. If he only had been helped, medication and proper care really does make a difference. 

Aramis is lucid now, although we might not like what he is lucid about, he's able to articulate. Who wants to be locked in their head with so many negative thoughts? Or, in the case of schizophrenia: voices that are actually outside telling him what to believe, his value, and what other people are going to "do" to him? I am angry that my brother didn't get the help or at least relief from the symptoms. I'm angry that this condition causes damage to the brain that is irreversible if treatment is not sought early. I'm angry that no one stepped up and told my mother to get help. 

So, I guess I'm not totally blank this morning.

I still have several phone calls to return for Agencies C and D.....but I'll get those little monsters tackled today. 

Good news? I had Aramis play with home made play dough yesterday to "warm up his fingers" before school work. He exclaimed: "Hey, with this new medication, I can finally SEE my hands!!!" Hmmmm, didn't know they had disappeared. Well, (what am I to say again?) oh: "Glad they're back....hands are really important." He agreed....wholeheartedly. 

Off to start the little sparrows are lined up again and squawking up a storm.....geesh, what are you going to do when we move? You are eventually going to have to eat seed from the many bird feeders around here ya' know! 

Have a positive and uplifting day today everyone! Find a wee bit of sunshine in the day, it's sure to be present.

And..... Anna: you're delightful......don't forget! 

To the individual who wrote me yesterday and is struggling with suicide right now: we've been there, each of us, in our own way at one time or many others. You refer to secrecy, and not wanting anyone to know. That's an old message....but really, right now, it's too much to take on. Call the hotline, and tell all your insiders that secrecy is still being maintained. It's okay, this is a safe place to talk, as they keep secrets too. But get've reached out this far, it's just a little farther to call the hotline. But do it for yourself........okay, do it for the sake of the system or unit. You are the one with strength right now, recognize it, get help, then deal with things one step at a time. Your system will eventually thank you for it....but the action is in your hands right now, you are the one in control, so take the can do it. And secrecy shall be maintained when calling the hotline. If that seems a shocking step, then get an emergency call into your therapist. But you are the one your internal system is relying on right now. You'll get through this, just reach a little further and get help. We're here......DID and suicide is serious, so recognize that it's okay to be the strong one and get help. You're not alone, many of us have been in this very same position. Getting help was the best thing we could have done, and did appear daunting at the time. In retrospect: it was the best decision to make. Get help for yourself, you've come too far already to lose that now. 


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    Shelly Dowen-Johnson

    I am currently traveling with my husband across the United States, due to the nature of the work he does. 

    I am the mother of two boys, one who has recently been diagnosed with Early Onset Childhood Schizophrenia (Schizoaffective Disorder). 

    It appears the Dowen family gene sequencing contributes much more than the darling dimples both boys have inherited!  But, as always, with love, tender care and support....we will thrive! 


    June 2012
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    April 2012