Monday, May 30, 2011
Little Things Can Make a BIG Difference
This is the tiny little blue pill that has made a big difference. When my son's doctor prescribed it, she explained that Abilify was not developed as a treatment for autism, but that it seemed to help in some cases. What we were initiating was possibly a series of trial and error, taking a stab in the dark. As she explained, what works and what doesn't is difficult to predict because autistic children simply have a brain chemistry that works differently.
I didn't fully appreciate her explanation or her subsequent elation that we hit the mark so squarely with our first attempt — that is until now.
Last week, after being on the new medication for over 3 weeks, and as planned, I took away the little blue pill. On the very first day, when I picked him up for school, he crashed. I saw it on his face the moment he entered the room. When I asked what was wrong, he wailed — that mournful deep sound he has when he is disappointed beyond control. He explained, he was not able to buy a book he wanted at the book fair. I soothed, he calmed but then a wail welled up again, and again, uncontrollably. He too seemed to realize that it was more than a book. As he said, "I don't know why I feel like I do. I don't know why I can't stop crying. Something's just wrong. I don't feel right."
The next day at school was just as bad. I got a call from the social worker. Without any insight as to the timing of our transition, she had noticed the remarkable change in C.S.'s ability to control his frustration. And of course she reported that he was having a very difficult day. Unable to myself and even though pick-up was in less than two hours, I dispatched my husband to deliver the little blue pill to our son at school right away.
Silver Lining: I most certainly appreciate our success to its fullest now! The little blue pill makes a big difference. It protects my son's happiness. Any mother will tell you how invaluable something like that is. And so, yesterday, the kids and I rode six laps around our neighborhood loop on our bicycles. Vigorous regular exercise is our solution to the weight gain now. As for medication, we'll stick with that little blue pill, thank you!