my Hailey Bailey

When I first became a mom at the mature age of 19....I had NO idea what I was doing. I had some preconceived ideas and certainly the fact that my older sisters and cousins had kids when I was young and did a LOT of babysitting all helped. I felt fairly confident that I was sitting in the drivers seat. When I had my second daughter almost 5 years later I was so thrilled to pieces and again had no real thought to what would I be as a mom or had any picture in my head how I would be as a mom of 2 children. Since it took us 3 1/2 years to have our second we were totally surprised when we had Hailey only 15 months after Em! After wanting to have more kids for so long we proceeded to have 3 in just 3 years. I was overwhelmed. Most of it is a blur. I am not sure what I was expecting but I do have to say that dispite feeling tired most of the time, I was in heaven. I love being a mom!

My pregnancy with my 3rd daughter Hailey was pretty much like the others, high risk and stressful. They thought that Hailey's stomach had a blockage and warned us that she might have to have emergency surgery right after she was born. Due to the fact that they thought this about her stomach, the fact that we had had 5 miscarriages prior to Em, and the fact that Em was born with an underdeveloped trachea.....they sent us for genetic counselling. They did lots of tests and realized she didn't have a blockage but did have a very slow digestive system...we then spent the next 2 years of her life feeding her VERY carefully. If she had even 1 ounce too much food she threw it all up and I mean ALL of it up!

Besides a very intense feeding schedule and carrying changes of clothes for me as well as her, she never missed! she was an intense little girl. She is still an intense little girl. She challenged me more than her 2 older sisters had ever come close to. I had to throw whatever rule book I had previously been following in my head completely out...this child followed another set of rules all together. It is still the same! She didn't talk much at fact she never baby talked. No googoo gaga for this baby. She would just sit and observe. I was nervous that something was a little wrong until I saw one day that she was completely intelligent she just only spoke when she was ready. By 17 months she finally starting talking and talked full phrases. She had a temper from day 1. Once I remember Emily scratching her when she was about 3 months old...Emily only being 18 months old...and Hailey was screaming and the thing was you could totally tell she was not screaming so much because she was hurt but b/c she was angry she was hurt! my mom was over at the time and we both stood in unbelief at what we could detect in her cry. Hailey is a very strong girl.....who gets even! she has a quick reaction and it usually starts at the peek and then comes down. Why I write all this I have to say she also loves deeply and no one protects her sisters more than her! She is an artist and creative and so many amazing strong positive things! this post is just more about the challenges that are a part of what make her the incredible little person she is.

Hailey struggles with anxiety. I have started the process of taking her to a Pediatrician and get all the testing done...I don't believe she is ADD but most of her teachers think she is. I actually tend to think she has what her little sis Faith has and that is audio processing disorder. Most of all I think she is a little sponge who picks up what is going around her and doesn't know or is prepared to know how to handle that. If she has a moody teacher...which she does this year...she is becomes all over the place herself. She is so effective by the moods and emotions of those around her. School is not her favorite place. I have to say that about 75% of the time she whines and cries about having to go to school. She begs me to home school her. Many days I literally have to force clothes on her and peel her off me to get her out the door. Those days are hard. She also struggles with friendships. They don't come super easy to her like her big sis Emily. The 1 year between them leaves them with many comparing them with each other and like most sisters they are night and day. What comes easy for Em does not come easy for Hailey. It makes it harder that most things come easily for Emily.

I have had several meetings lately with Hailey's teacher, her school counsellor, her native school counsellor, and the Principal. They are putting her in the fast forward program made for kids with Audio Processing Disorder...she actually took Faith's spot as the school felt it was more crucial right now for Hailey to get the extra help. I am not sure how I feel about that as this year Faith is getting missed for everything pretty much and her coping skills are amazing and completely disguise where she is really at...but that's another post. I am not happy that I let the whole diagnosis thing fall to the wayside with Hailey, between moving and J's relapse last year and getting the new business going, I have been back in my own survival coping mode. The fact is now I cannot continue to let it lie, her anxiety seems to be peeking again and her school, social and academic life are all suffering.

I do see some growth in how she is handling things, for instance she knows that when she drinks coffee....something that I learned from a friend you can give kids that are like Hailey and it acts much like Ritalin brings them down (you have to have a child like this to really understand what that means).... so she will tell me some mornings... "I need coffee" thru her tears and moaning....she also sometimes recognizes when she is hungry and needs food..something else that will effect a breakdown. The more you push this precious little girl..the more she digs her heels in and falls apart. I have had to learn to not react, which is mostly what I want to do, and to get down to her level and help her to communicate what she is needing at that moment. That is a challenge.

In the next couple of weeks hopefully we will get some more answers and some help for her to cope with the anxiety and have a game plan for her going into grade 5. It just can't continue the way it has been going. The school seems on board to help her and that is great. I am not sure how many more mornings I can take watching her struggle with really really NOT wanting to go. Not sure there are any clear cut answers....

Do you have a child similar to mine? if so what are some of the things you have learned to do that help?


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