Thursday, April 16, 2009

It's been a little rough lately with Elijah. Well, actually, this has been going on for two+ years. But it has made for a sometimes unpleasant kindergarten year. He doesn't finish his daily work. Most days. And ever since January we've been getting notes scrawled all over his worksheets from his teacher. My impression, which was based on an email, was that Elijah's teacher just thought he was being defiant. I know that not to be true. He started this not completing work thing back in preschool. And ever since I have wondered about it. So finally, we've been encouraged to have him tested for ADD. As it turns out, she was waiting for us to mention it first due to legal issues. He's certainly not hyper, in fact his teacher says she does not want him more subdued than he is. I'm thankful to find that she's not seeking for him to be medicated, but for him to possibly qualify for modifications if he is diagnosed. I'm not sure why something I've been suspecting has made me sort of sad... but it has. But I know God made Elijah. Just as he is. With attention problems. And a sweet, sweet heart. For a reason.

I recently heard this quote from Max Lucado's book Cure for the Common Life:

Our children are not a blank slate awaiting our pen, but are a written book awaiting our study.


I just had to sit there and let that sink in for a bit. It was so humbling to me. I assume so much responsibility for the lives of my children, and sure, I have a God-given responsibility to care for them. But it's not my place to impose my will on their lives. It's my place to pray for God's will for them. Then I wait for his response. As we are facing this attention issue I can't help but wonder what God will have us do with it. Where will this take us? What challenges will Elijah face if he has ADD? What wisdom will God give me to guide him? What will he teach me through this time? And, if Elijah's not a "blank slate awaiting my pen," then just what role do I take? Encourager? Advocate? Momma bear?

So I am praying. And waiting. And carefully listening. I've gotten several very interesting tugs at my heart. God is changing me. And as I wait, I've discovered a neat little book to read... it's about a little boy named Elijah...

7 comments:

Meme said...

He WILL be fine! These children are usually the visonaries/dreamers of major companies, professions, etc while the rest of us are helping them achieve these wonderful dreams and plans. Steven Speilberg dropped out of school, tried to return and stayed for one month. He was told he would never amount to anything----(bet he's laughing all the way to the bank!) Think about Walt Disney----always in money woes yet a head filled with creative ideas. Now the world knows his name. Thomas Edison had 2000 failures before he finally made that light bulb! Some of my most memorable teaching experiences have been those ADD/ADHD students who have persevered to find their "place." These are the children to whom I've poured out (in many cases) every ounce of what I had inside of me to reach them whether academically, work study habits, or self control. They have made me countless times stop and think, "Who am I really and what do I have to give?" They have definitely increased my prayer life (often times fervently!)Overall, they have helped to make me a better person and teacher. Somehow, I believe the apostle Peter was a little ADD/ADHD ---always impetuous, but willing to rise to the occasion in a sometimes non-conventional way. ADD is not a terrible dooming diagnosis. In fact, I would view it as what will I learn about myself, my child, what will my child show me, and what can I then offer to others. You KNOW I think Elijah's perfect in every way----just like 10 other little people I know in our family! Oh, to have a tender heart like his----this truly is what the kingdom of heaven is all about. Love, Meme

Anonymous said...

Beautiful, Kristin - You always challenge me in such a positive way. Thank you for sharing your heart with us.

love,
Allison P.

Katie said...

We just found out Micah has ADD too. In a way, it was actually a relief...it has brought answers to so many questions–and hope for the positive changes that can come with treatment. At least in Elijah's case it was discovered early. Micah struggles with the thought of how much more he could have accomplished had he been diagnosed sooner. Anyway, I love you! Can't wait to share more with you when we visit SOON!

tamara said...

Just be patient... David struggled with completing his work A LOT last year, but his teacher would just send it home for him to finish. We expect so much out of our childrem these days - kindergarten should be a time for him to adjust into school. It's his first year, after all. Next year he might be a totally different child. I'll be thinking about you and your little man because I completely understand your concerns!!

carrie said...

I am assuming Meme is Jonathon's mom. Is that right? I can tell she is a teacher. I agree that children with ADD/ADHD are some of the most cretive people I have ever taught. I know that if he is diagnosed with this that you and Jonathan will give him all of the support he needs to find his strategies for learning. He will do great! By the way, I love the quote you posted. If I were still teaching, it would be on my wall. I will be praying for answers and peace for you all!

Amanda G. said...

Sweet Elijah! I am still getting choked up from when he came up to hug you on Sunday during 360. That was precious and I was on the verge of tears at that point already then bam...well I didn't go crazy with the tears, but if you had been Wes hearing my voice crack while singing...

All will be well no matter what the outcome or diagnosis. I love that quote from Max Lucado. I love that God already has these things worked out and is in complete control.

Love you!

Paige Betterton said...

We will certainly be praying for Elijah. I've had many students in my classroom who were diagnosed with ADD and they certainly have done extraordinary and been some of my best students. We will certainly pray God's will for him. I am reading that book by Max Lucado right now. I haven't gotten to that part yet! I will keep reading. Have a great day!

Paige
wwwbettertonfamily.blogspot.com