Wednesday, March 5, 2008

God Has a Plan for Stephanie

In a word, if I was asked to describe AD/HD. In all that I know and all that I have researched, it would be: Misunderstood.

Talkative, hyperactive, withdrawn, boring, and difficult. These are all words used to describe people with AD/HD, although most people rarely think some of these labels fit. Early on, children with ADHD feel "different". Yet, they appear to be untouched by defect. Most are notably intelligient, just presumably lazy and careless. The misconceptions can go on and on, yet to truly understand the disorder you have to live it, see it, and research it.I have been working with a student with ADHD. I am learning more and more about the disorder through detailed research and my own introspection into the disorder from my own personal experience.Working with Stephanie has been a labor of love.

As a child, I was able to "self-regulate" much better than some hyperactive sub-types of the disorder. However, I personally tried very hard to help my younger siblings to succeed in school. To me, it was easy, just sit down and do it! The Lord has greatly blessed my brother and my sister who are both highly intelligent, creative, and remarkable people. I know the struggles they went through and thank the Lord that they have achieved the academic success they always deserved.I am learning I too dealt with the disorder and struggle with it daily. I now understand all too well what it is like, except, I am at the other end of the spectrum. Good grades and academic success previously came easy to me. A new body of research is emerging into a "dormant" or misdisagnosed sub-type of the disorder---Adult ADHD. Typically, individuals were thought to "out grow" it, but it seems the symptoms are masked within co-morbid conditions such as depression, anxiety, anger, and low self-esteem. The research into the disorder is fascinating because for so long, the stigma of the disorder has caused much misconception. I must admit, not too long ago, I myself was skeptical.

Stephanie had to take a test today to decide whether she is going to pass 8th grade or not. I don't feel like I have been able to help Stephanie to do this. Her inattentiveness and lack of organization has caused various frustrations on my part and hers I am sure!! Simply going over material is challenging at best! :)All I can say is that it is a blessing to work with her and God has a plan for Stephanie!I am currently considering specializing in AD/HD or learning disabilities from either an educational or research psychology standpoint. There is numerous room for more research and implementation of creative ideas to help those with the disorder!