Well, i have decided to put Emma, my 7 year old, back in therapy. It makes me sad to do it, but I am at a loss as to how to handle her anxiety and must defer to those who know what they are doing.
Last night Emma came home from her dad's house late, so I got her to bed pretty much right away. She started to itch her skin and couldn't stop. When she was little she had some mild eczema, but hasn't had it for a long time. And she isn't itchy all day, just at night. Anyway, she could not stop itching, even after i put lotion on her skin. She began to cry and really get hysterical and at one point she said "it's like the world is ending" which sounded kind of dramatic but if you were there you could see that she was really feeling that way. My heart just went out to her. I remember having panic attacks when I was a kid and feeling like it was the end of the world. i never wanted this for my daughter!
I called the pediatrician today to discuss the itchy skin and since there was no rash they didn't really want to see her. They said to use hydrocortizone cream on her skin 3 times a day for 3 days and see if that helped. But it seems like alot of ot is psychological. She just gets so worked up and the more upset she gets, the more she itches. The other thing she does sometimes at night is uncontrolable movements. She cant sleep at night because she cant stop stretching and contracting her fingers (tiger-claw style) and moving her legs. She says she cant stop and gets really frustrated about it and starts to cry, which just makes it worse. The only thing that has helped is if I sit with her and give her a backscratch to help her relax until she is sleepy enough to go to sleep. I did this last night when she was itchy, too.
I feel so helpless as her mother that she is experiencing these things. I want more than anything for her to be a happy, normal little girl. I don't want her to grow up with the identity of being mentally ill, which can sometimes happen when therapy starts at a young age. And please God, I do not want her to be put on psych meds!
But, I have to get her the help that she needs. And i'm hoping that if I include enough other things in her life, she will be well-rounded and not feel like the only thing that is special about her is her mental ilness (like I did when I was a kid). I have signed her up for art lessons at the local art center, and am always looking for ways to get us involved in fun community things as a family.
The therapist I found for her is in a practice that includes psychiatrist, therapists, and a nutritionist. They specialize in children and seem to look at the whole child to try to help find solutions. It really was the best place I could find. Her first appointment is tommorrow.
Because of the stress I kind of fell apart this morning and purged several times. But then I had a healthy lunch and am trying to salvage the day. I know that I have to be healthy if I want to raise healthy children. I want to havee another baby some day and I can't do that if I am purging (well I could but it wouldn't be the healthiest choice). But lately I've been kind of down thinking "how can you think about having another child when you already have one in therapy? You've already screwed up one blah blah blah". But I know really a large part of it is genetic and it's not my fault. At least that's what I'm trying to tell myself.
Judgement and Regrets
1 week ago