The long and short of it.
2007-07-28 - 10:46 p.m.
Well. We got N on the plane, at 6:10 this morning. I'm now waiting to make sure that she lands in Madrid. It looks like she should have been there two minutes ago, but the website is not updated yet.
If I'm lucky, she will call when she gets off the plane. She's got two hours in Madrid, which should be enough time to figure out how to call us.
The figuring out is not completely simple --
Needless to say, I'm a little on edge about the whole thing. I will be happy when she's got to the family she's staying with, and tells me that she's okay.
Just getting her onto the plane, though, was sort of a relief. I've been worrying about this on and off for months, now, and in the end we got all the clothes laundered, medicines procured and packed, euros purchased, film, etc. And packed. And taken to the airport. Small presents for the family. College things she needs to worry about --
Anyway, once I hear she's settled, that will be this thing that's been taking 75% of my brain all taken care of. Then it can sort of retreat to a worry that all goes well and that she comes home again -- I'm estimating that at about 25% of brain function.
In other news, we've made this enormous change at work -- moving from one cataloging computer system to another -- and I think it's actually going to be a good thing. We had two days of training. I really think it's going to be an opportunity to change lots of workflow things that have probably not made much sense now for a while. Actually, I'm really excited about it.
Then I've got a couple residual things to take care of from the trip to New Orleans -- projects I said I'd do, which now I have to ... do.
And N finished calculus, and M finished her art class.
And now I can start gardening again. It's sort of too late for this summer, but it's definitely the right time to start moving things around for next summer.
And now the big news -- it turns out that N has ADHD of the inattentive to visual stimuli type.
I have a huge mix of feelings about this. The therapist said I was a very attentive parent to have caught this in such a high achieving child. In fact, I thought I was perhaps being a lunatic to even wonder. But it makes so much sense. It explains how she can be so smart, and then such a screw-up in terms of grades and tests -- how she can understand everything in her math book completely and then get a B, because she failed a test, or handed her homework in late. How her chemistry tutor can predict that she'd get a 5 on her ap chem test, but she never ever gets more than a 3 on any of them. It explains a lot.
So I feel proud of having noticed, and bad that we probably made her feel like a lazy child when really, she was working much harder than most do with very little result, in terms of test scores. And then worried -- how will we ever get her in to a college, and how will she do once she's there.
And then there's the whole medication issue. I'm inclined to try it, but K is a little iffy about the idea, and the ed therapist said at this age, it's really up to N herself. So she's thinking about it. The therapist thought that this year might be a good time to be testing meds out, since it can take a while to find out if they will help, and which one will help.
But it makes things a lot clearer -- her grades are not really an indication of her smartness. I'm thinking about college here -- I guess we should try the SATs one more time, and her course load next semester will be lower than last year. But I think the application will be the place to really shine. She is capable of writing a great essay. I want her to put together a collection of her photography. I think making an impressive package is something that she can do, and perhaps will show her strengths.
In certain ways she is so capable -- I'm thinking of her middle school spanish teacher, who reassured me that N was "so strong" in Spanish, which I actually know to be true. And yet, on the test she took at the end of last summer, she scored a solid C.
Anyway, it was also a bit unsettling to be sending her off to Spain two days after receiving this diagnosis. In terms of daily life stuff (although not getting up in the morning), she is really capable, and she's flown a lot, and I shouldn't have been more worried than I would have otherwise been, but I found myself worrying that she'd miss the gate, or get lost in a coffee shop. And really, I don;t think she will.
Then, of course, my other feeling is that it's so unfair. Why should she have to struggle so hard. I mean, she really is quite smart. You have to take an IQ test as part of this, and you know, according to this test, she really is quite smart. But for her to get good grades takes considerably more effort than it would for a person of the same smartness without ADHD.
But then N said, well I could be retarded. That would really be unfair. And she's right, of course. Why is it fair for her to be smart in the first place? You get the brain you get,and fairness really does not enter into it.
Anyway, the plane now landed 35 minutes ago, and she hasn't called. I suppose it may take some time to get a phone card, etc. But I do wish she would call ...
Oh, and about college -- The ed therapist said that that was what she was really worried about -- going off to college with huge blocks of unstructured time. She liked our strategy of a small liberal arts college. So that's good.
Okay. I do wish she'd call.
design by simplify.