Friday night used to be relaxing, but now it means working out plans for the weekend- who has to be where at what time for hockey and football and who is going to take them and what about the other kids and what else needs to be done and how does that fit in best.
This weekend is going to be busy. Two hockey games, picking up Nicholai and dropping off chickens, one football game, one canteen duty at football game, school’s 140th birthday celebrations, and the Shortest Lunch.
I’m tired just thinking about it. What happened to weekends of sleeping in and the children whining that they are bored??
I worked yesterday and then Emma had the last session of her group, which I had to be involved in too. I was tired from working anyway, but I hated having to participate. Once again we run up against the brick wall of my non-acceptance of being bipolar. Not that I don’t believe that I am or anything like that, just that I have a hard time not getting furiously angry and tearful whenever I’m forced to confront anything about the effect it has on our lives.
Parent participation involved all the parents sitting around while the kids and the leaders explained what they’d learned over the last seven weeks. I got to go through her folder and take a look at the handouts and the work she’s done, and then Emma and I had to put together a Crisis Action Plan. This was basically to put together in one place all the information she needs in case things go bad- she had phone numbers for people (like Grandma and Pop) who she can call in an emergency, and numbers for things like the Kids Help Line and the mental health triage phone number. We also had to talk about signs she might notice if things weren’t going well.
I don’t see any situation in which she’d really need a crisis action plan, but if it makes her feel better to have it then that’s what matters. And it made me feel so bad for the kids that have to have such a thing because their parent is a single parent and there just isn’t anyone else that’s involved. At least Emma has a lot of people she could choose for her emergency contact list, and she will never need to take on that responsibility.
We also found out about ongoing support for the kids. They’re running the MAT program again next term (martial arts therapy) and I’m thinking about maybe having Jericho do that one. Now that Emma has done the CHAMPS program she’s invited to join the Kids Club, which meets once a month. It’s a more social type group, they do activities and it’s a good way for the kids to keep in touch with others that they’ve met through the program. It sounds fun, and I’m for anything that gives Emma a bit more social confidence. The first session is on Monday, and since they’re going to the movies and siblings can come (as long as I stay with them) I think we might try and go. It just depends on pulling the kids out of school early. It’s all funded too, so it’s all free for Emma.
I struggle a lot to access all these things that the children qualify for, just because I have such issues with feeling as though I’m being identified and defined by bipolar. I really have to push myself to get past my own insecurities so that they can have these opportunities. Like these programs- they’ve been really good for Emma and she’s had a good time, but I kind of hate myself every time I think about it. I’m really glad all those programs are there, I just wish we didn’t need them!
Speaking of Emma though, we got a letter from the SEAL program at the high school saying they want her to come in for an interview. So she must have done well on the testing phase. None of us have any definitive opinions on whether she will actually enrol in the accelerated learning program or not, but she’s still going to do the interview and then we’ll decide.
As for my other little accelerated learning blessing, he was picked up at 8.15 this morning to spend the day doing some activity, and then to stay over tonight with some friends from school. Yes, real friends! Not a have-to-invite-everyone-in-the-class kind of party, but the kind where they just invited a bunch and Nicholai is one of them! I cannot believe how well he has settled in to high school, and I’m so happy that he has.