Saturday, June 26, 2010

The Pool

We all went swimming at the Y. We returned with all the kids in tact. The toddlers passed out during the 10 ride home then scarfed down entire sandwiches, chips, and giant pickles. They were starved. No one was badly burned. I'm surprised they got any sun at all with the way I was chasing them down spraying them with sunscreen.

We are going back tomorrow and I think I will be able to manage alone from there on out. I know, 11 little ones and 1 mom. It sounds horribly challenging but every one has a partner that they have to keep up with. I can sit at the shallow end with the toddlers and see the entire area. Of course, counting to 11 the million and a half times during the visit to be sure they are all accounted for sucks.

I'm pretty strict about their behavior. If the life guard whistles at them, for any reason, they are out the rest of the day. They have to be aware of the other kids and be able to see me at all times. They really don't give me a hard time. I am concerned that the new Michael will present the biggest challenge. His ADHD can make him difficult to manage. I imagine the overload of stimuli will send him over the top.

I'd love to hear any suggestions on how you cope with so much energy.


Alexis said...

My daughter came to us on a good deal of meds at age 8. We have found that no matter what we do, she needs Strattera (a non stimulant for ADHD) and something to sleep. Her brain does NOT shut down. I give her melatonin.

I also try to watch what she eats. Too much junk or preservatives and she is wired all day.

Somehow though, she has changed my google account to her name.

beauty obscure said...

I find that a lot of people think 'burning off the energy' is the only way to deal with adhd... and that is true for some kids. But for others that just revs them up even more. What helps is teaching them to regulate their energy is more important. They tend to need lots of help winding down and learning what calm and quiet looks like. It sounds like you have a great system in place for managing the all! You are a great Mom!

Kelly said...

Meds...Focalin for us.

But I think it is funny I would even consider giving you advice. You can handle anything.

So happy about your new kiddos. Hope they settle right in quickly.

Innocent Observer said...

haha I'm all burned out from counting to six over and over again. I count by twos, sometimes by threes, and always over and over again when in the van. I took them alone to the ocean yesterday, and I think it was actually easier than being at home (it helps that the Atlantic here in Maine is 12 degrees this time of year!).

Suggestions? Make sure you don't miss a minute of sleep? :)

Tudu said...

I agree that "burning off the energy" seems to wind him up more. He will be back tomorrow and we will begin trying to teach him to regulate himself. Any advice is helpful and I do appreciate it. I'm completely lost with this one.

Abby said...

If you could have seen me perk right up when I saw ADHD and advice in the same paragraph! lol.

I really love when I have ADHD kiddos to work with. (Yes, all those hyper little ones who drive everybody else nuts.) I think it's because I have it myself and so I can just "get it," you know? Anywayyyy...

In addition to the teaching him to be aware of his own behaviors to keep it in check (which may be slow going, as I've found boys in particular have a really hard time being aware until teenage years), is he on meds for it? I'm not going to say anything else besides that I'm a strong supporter of it, otherwise I'll go on FOREVERRRR.

If he's really getting rowdy try giving him some diet mt. dew or any soda with a lot of caffeine in it or coffee. I suggest that one because it's got more caffeine in it than the original & NO sugar. (Caffeine works on the brain in a similar way to meds and will actually calm an ADHD kid down.)

Also, I've found that ADHD people need something to fidget with in their hands or else they will usually find a far more irritating thing to play with. =) Doing gimp was always reeeeally good for campers I used to work with! Stress balls can work too, but boys tend to turn them into projectiles or just destroy them entirely.

I seriously can go on for hours on this stuff, so I'll shut up now. You know how to get ahold of me on Facebook if you want any of my opinions/knowledge on the subject. I also worked many summers at camp as a lifeguard & waterfront director, so may have some thoughts to make the pool trips easier too. =)

Good luck!
Abby in MA

jwg said...

I guess it's time to change the info on your sidebar. You seem to be the mother of 12. So how do you transport them all? And when do we get a new family portrait? I can't begin to tell you how much I admire you guys.

Tudu said...

jwg, I'm hesitant to change it until we get approved. I am so worried that something will go wrong. I'm sure I'm over reacting but the fear is still there. I have a 15 passenger van and we all fit with room to spare. LOL

Abby, you have my full attention. Bring it all on. Yes, he is on a stimulant.

Abby said...

Brain dead right now, but I'll think and see what other tricks I can come up with that won't make your life tougher.

I did have one thing about the pool though... try to keep the kids from swimming near the lifeguard tower. It's actually where most drownings occur. Best spots are usually in the middle or opposite edge from wherever the lifeguard is sitting/standing. Coming from a guard, I'm sure they're very happy that you keep an eye on your kids!! I never minded the loud & crazy kids as long as they had parents who at least pretended to keep an eye on them. (Instead of the parents who freaked out on me for insisting they couldn't take a boat out to the middle of the lake and leave their toddler on the beach even if "he has arm floaties on and it's the lifeguard's job to watch him." Seriously.)

Angela :-) said...

Occupational therapists have a program to teach kids about their engine level. Might be helpful.

Angela :-)

Tracy said...

Dear Tudu,
I have been reading your blog from the beginning for the past 5 days. Wow! I'm really interested in a lot of the RAD techniques due to my oldest (DD1) who is bipolar, ADHD, and Asperger - many of these techniques carry over to us. Anyway... I am the sole nonADHDer in the house - DH, DD1, and DD2 are ALL ADHD with a big emphasis on the Hyper part. DH is not medicated - I just don't ask for any projects to be done that he could veer offtask. DD1 can't take any of the drugs - they set off her bipolar in a bad horrible way, but she's old enough now and has so many other issues (currently in 2nd month of residential) that we are able to work around it. DD2 became horrible depressed on adderall but does great on focalin. Also, evening scheduling is essential so that they all have a period of winding down before bed (8:30 for all short people at our house). Unlike another poster, we are a caffeine free house - none of them can tolerate it. I have my stash of caffeinated stuff, and as a reward to myself for living in a household of insanity I buy really good coffee and splurged on a Keurig coffee maker.