If you’re a regular reader of Tales from the Red House, you know just how far we’ve come this year. My son Rudie is a great kid. A super kid! With some hard work by all four members of our family this year, his behaviour at home has changed from hitting, swearing, spitting, and screaming back into the actions of the sweet, funny, smart and snuggly little guy that we knew was in there all along.
Did you see the catch there? His behaviour AT HOME has changed. There were still issues whenever Rudie was with our daycare provider, and we were worried about what would happen once he was back in school, but we thought we were managing the day-to-day. We were using all the things we had learned in the Incredible Years program, all the parenting tools we had put into place around the house, and all the meetings with doctors, social workers, and therapists all who had the same diagnosis of “there is no diagnosis”, and the advice that he would one day grow out of it. But then one day last week we got a call that we did not see coming and our lives were turned upside down once again. Our amazing and perfect-for-us daycare provider was having a really hard time with Rudie’s behaviour and would no longer be able to watch him.* And there we were, just like that, without daycare for the third time in a year.
We were so sad and so worried and to be honest, it took everything we had to not be angry with Rudie.
In just a few days, we’ve been able to sort out daycare. It’s taken a lot of help from family to fill in the immediate gaps and an understanding workplace that is allowing me to work part-time hours to care for my kids before and after school. That’s a huge load off our backs. Then Rudie had his second day of Senior Kindergarten today. While he was there, he spit on his friend’s snack, hit his teacher three times and all of a sudden, we’re here again.
We are now in the process of reopening our file with Children’s Mental Health and we have an appointment with our family doctor next week. We’re taking all the same steps we’ve taken over the last twelve months but this time, we’re not taking no-answer for an answer. Aggressive behaviour is one thing, but getting kicked out of three daycares is another thing entirely. We need answers this time and we need them for our little boy. We don’t talk specifics in front of him, but he knows exactly what’s happening. He’s too bright not to.
I’ll be sharing the tips, tricks and tools that have been working in our house over the next little while and will also post regular updates about our progress on this, our second lap. In the meantime, I’m sending Rudie to school tomorrow with these in his backpack. Laminated reminders of the family that love him every day.
*Our amazing and perfect-for-us daycare provider is still amazing and perfect-for-us but Rudie is a tough kid to provide care for, especially when you’re defending your own kids against his violent behaviour.