For the past three or four months we've had a fantastic counsellor from our local children's mental health agency coming to the house every week to work with Bear on his anxiety. He took to her immediately, as did I. He looked forward to her visits, as did I. But now they're over, and Bear's going to be sad. And so am I.
Our counsellor and I had a big talk when she was here yesterday about next steps for Bear, and we came to the conclusion that Bear needs to get a little older and a little more mature before we can move to the next level of therapy. Bear might be almost 7 years old, but kids with ADHD are actually two to three years behind their peers in emotional maturity, which means that in some respects we're actually dealing with a 4 or 5 year old. The concepts involved in overcoming anxiety are quite complex and require a fair amount of self-awareness, and he's just not there yet. Together she and I decided that at this point it's probably best if TheODDDad and I continue to work with Bear using the tools we've learned until he's a little older.
I don't know how I feel about being told there's nothing more she can do for us. One one hand, it's encouraging because she's telling us that we're doing a really good job and don't need her anymore. We're not being told to take parenting classes, we're not being told Bear needs psychological help...we're being told that we're good parents and we have it under control. On the other hand, it's scary. I don't want to do this on our own. I liked having someone come into my house on a regular basis. It made me feel safer, like someone was holding the back of my bike as I learned to ride it. Now I feel like someone has taken my training wheels off and gone back in the house, leaving me with no choice but to figure it out on my own. Part of me is glowing with pride that someone has enough confidence in my abilities to leave me on my own, but the other part of me is scared of falling off my bike.
Except there's no bike. If I fall, I don't just get a scraped knee. If I fall, I bring my beautiful Bear down with me. If I fall, who's going to catch me? If I fall, who's going to catch him?