Tuesday, January 18, 2011

The D Word

Two days last week Samantha's teacher told us she was worried about Samantha. She was falling asleep in class and not completing her work. Mind you, the child is just like me--complete nerd, so this is really out of character for her. The teacher is well aware of the missing thyroid because I count on an extra set of eyes when things start to go awry.

So when Friday rolled around, I got a call from the school that Samantha was falling asleep on the bench at lunch and didn't want to play. The multi-tasker in me had the pediatrician's office on the line before I even got out of the driveway. After a stat order and an A-okay on the blood test (thyroid/brain function normal), Al and I started to analyze things to see if we could narrow down a culprit. Was it the fear stemming from the earthquake swarms? Was it her food intake?

Well the latter fit best. Samantha is a pasta and meat kid. She hates vegetables and fruit, and really I could go on and on. But after the stat order request the doctor wanted to physically observe her, check weight and height since last visit--all indicators of hypothyroid. Everything was in the clear and then the big bomb came.

Depression.

I assured him that we have been observing her--carefully. We notice when she gets sad and upset or worried. His main concern was how she is handling the aftermath of Al's heart surgery. And he was not far off the mark.

Last week I went into work. Al took Samantha to school, but I was at home when she left. The stress came when I wasn't at home when school was over. We adults might think it unnecessary or irrational, but for her it is totally plausible. Daddy kissed her goodbye and four hours later he was whisked off in a helicopter and away from home for a week.

She saw me collapse into sobs at the dinner table and there were a few nights when I didn't get home until after she was in bed. The possibility of Daddy never coming home, never giving her kisses again was real. I can't even imagine what it would feel like to be 5 and know that there was a good possibility my daddy might never come home.

Overall, Samantha seems to be coping the best she can. She is a wreck when one of us is hurt or not feeling well. We know why and while her fear will never totally go away, she'll learn to cope.

Hopefully.

1 comment:

Trina.H said...

I'm just leaving you guys hugs. After everything your family just went through I'm pretty sure I'd be a little uneasy too when someone leaves. Giant gentle HUGS.