Friday, August 15, 2008

Shift Happens

I just saw a You Tube blip called Shift Happens. It was so intriguing, that I could not step away for the brief moment to lay my sleeping newborn in his bassinet. What occurred to me is that life is moving at light speed, to what end is unknown. While watching this I remember seeing a timeline my dad had shown me about technological progression that was equally as shocking ten years ago and I remember feeling concern that things would only continue to speed up. The gap between inventions is becoming less and less, the speed of ingenuity continues to progress at light speeds, the amount of information available and force fed to every person during every possible moment is overwhelming and seems to be endless, relentless and all consuming.

My motivation for sharing these thoughts you may be wondering, is the reflection on this information while I hold my newborn son in my arms enjoying how much life has slowed down in so many ways since his arrival. I am not pressured to read 180,000 times the information a person in Shakespearean times would have read in their lifetime in one sitting of reading the New York Times. I’m not interested in creating a My Space account or Text messaging rather than speaking to those I know and love. I am interested in connecting and helping other people get reconnected in their lives and particularly with their spouses and children.

I’m interested in paying closer attention to things that impact and matter directly to my life and those around me. I’m trying to figure out why we are moving at the speed of light so to speak, what is the rush about? Is there a race to the finish? What will we be missing by going so fast, what errors will we make by not taking the extra moment to create a place we want to be and want to return to in order to get away from this rat race? What is so important that we must be on the go 18 hours a day continuing this pattern, particularly when our families and our health are negatively impacted? When do we say enough and choose to take a step back to reflect? I had already been thinking about this prior to receiving this video clip. I noticed how amazing it was to sit and rock my new baby in silence on a crisp fall morning watching the leaves change and shift from Summer in preparation for Winter. I listened to the sounds of the dead leaves tickling across the pavement and took in the feeling of the cool air rustling the golden and amber maple leaves. I could not have been sitting in greater silence or peace. I could not have been more aware, grounded or serene. This for me was a shift happening! I have new choices and a new focus and a new purpose.

Parenting As Therapy

Kids do not come with operations manuals and sometimes even the best of us need some direction on using parenting skills that fit your child.

This NY Times article talks specifically about behavioral interventions from a parenting skills perspective as the first avenue of defense and sometimes as the only one needed.

I meet so many people that say "Oh, I wish I would have known you X years ago, when I was raising my kids". Therapy is not just for when you have challenges. It is a way to pro-actively face the every day challenges and stress of being overworked, being in a relationship, being a parent, being a child or any other state of being you can imagine.

The idea is to acquire the skills that help you feel good about the life you're leading, the relationships you have and the choices you're making.

In this case, therapy as a parenting skills support. Because sometimes we just aren't equipped to address the stuff of life.

AD(H)D: Back to School Worries

Oh, the new school year. I remember being so excited to get my first day of school outfit set out, have my box of supplies and anticipating seeing friends I hadn't seen all summer.

For some, the idea of the new school year brings mixed blessings. They may be relieved because their child really thrives in the structured environment. They may be dreading the prospect of behavioral issues and concern over their child's progress, grades and ability to pay attention long enough to learn anything.

This is a link to a nice and simple overview of concerns parents may have regarding AD(H)D with the new school year just around the corner.

It's critical to remember that although a teacher's observations are helpful and may add pieces to a puzzle you've been trying to figure out, they cannot diagnosis or recommend treatment for AD(H)D. With so many students and so little resources it's easy to spot a child that may need some additional attention or redirection. This does not however equate diagnostic criteria.

If you have concerns, check out some of the links I've provided. Seek consultation with a Mental Health Professional as well as your general practitioner.

If it truly is AD(H)D, there are multiple strategies to look into in addition to any medication options.