Sept. 10, 2020

A Day of Successes

Today went better than the rest of the week. First, I wasn't as tired as the other days. Not sure what the difference was. I didn't get any more sleep than usual. Got woke up by my alarm at 7am instead of waking on my own before it. I did make the pot of coffee with five scoops of coffee instead of three. Maybe my body is adjusting to the amount of caffeine I drink which is a scary thought. There was a time that a pot made with just two scoops would make me jittery, now I need five scoops just to get through the day? Not good.

But anyway, I was more alert and therefore more able to handle the twists and turns of a normal day. I got the dishes done and the trash out. And cleaned up the kitchen a bit.

The 10yo didn't fight me too much about school. His teacher had said that he could start skipping his zoom classes because between the anxiety and video lag, they were doing no benefit to him. They were just causing tears and frustration. After listening to several classes, I understood more why he was so upset. Yesterday, I discovered his ipad needs updates it doesn't have room for because of all the apps the school has installed on it. So today, he used my phone to watch his zoom lesson. Zero lag. It's definitely the ipad causing the issues.

The only problem with doing the meetings on my phone is the virtual keyboard covers the entire screen so he misses some stuff when he types replies in the chat box (since his anxiety keeps him from using the mic) and the screen is small so he can't see everything the teacher is showing. Hopefully, it's only temporary. I'd let him use my laptop but my camera sucks and several of my keys don't work so he wouldn't be able to type anything without extreme frustration (trust me... it's a daily experience for me).

After his classes were over, he had a meeting with the guidance counselor. He kept his camera off, but did speak with her. I did some chores around the house so I didn't have to listen to the whole thing. I thought he'd chat for a few minutes, get some advice and get on with his day but he talked to her for 40 minutes, telling her all about his Roblox games and occasionally talking about his anxiety and other problems (like his older siblings picking on him all of the time). I finally made him hang up so he could eat lunch. I think he made a new best friend, lol.

The counselor emailed me and his teacher after to say the meeting was a success and had offered my son an opportunity to do a small group meeting with his friends that she would organize. He gave her a list of friends he'd like to chat with. Unfortunately, his best friend (who he hasn't seen since March) now goes to the middle school.

He said he felt better about his anxiety and realized talking through zoom wasn't so bad. He's still iffy about turning the camera on, but says he'll try to answer verbally if he gets called on now instead of typing his answer in the chat box. We'll see how it goes. He admitted that he felt pretty good about classes last Friday (despite the lag) but after the long weekend, his anxiety had exploded when he went back to class on Tuesday. Hopefully, he doesn't backslide this weekend as well. Or even overnight. I have to write to tech support to figure out his ipad issues and set up another session with the guidance counselor.

That set the rest of my day up for a good outcome. I felt alert most of the day and like things were going good for once even with all the smoke in the air from fires raging all over the place. The Pacific Northwest is currently burning everywhere. It's crazy.

Hopefully, tomorrow goes as well so I have a nice weekend.

Written by justanotherjen

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Posted On Sep 12, 2020

It's always a great feeling to have extra spoons, woohoo!! I used to be the same with caffeine- I would drink more and more as my body got used to it and went from disliking coffee to drinking a bold dark coffee called Death Wish with a lot of sugar. When I was in the hospital I had really bad caffeine withdrawal, but stopped craving it as much. I am more tired than normal, so I went back to drinking small amounts again... I think it's a hard habit to kick.

Is it possible to get a USB keyboard (and mouse if needed) to just use the screen of the laptop? It seems a bit silly and redundant, but that's what I have to do with my 11 year old laptop for the same reasons. Also it's really great to hear about the supportive guidance counselor! She sounds like a nice person to listen like that. Reminds me of mine from when I was in school, I used to talk to her a lot as well :) Hopefully she can ease his anxiety a little- I can totally understand and relate to that. It's a totally new experience with digital classes for some and having anxiety about being called on was a common fear of mine as a kid as well. I later learned that it was easier for me to communicate with people digitally (and somewhat anonymously when possible, like here, for example).

I hope you're safe from the fires and smoke!

Posted On Sep 12, 2020

Yeah, I was going to get a new keyboard, but it first started really acting up right when the US went into lockdown. I just felt like it wasn't a necessity to be ordering when people were struggling to get toilet paper and food, you know. Then we didn't have the money, and now... I just deal with it. Once I get the keys warmed up, they usually work for a while. But if I stop typing, I have to go through this whole routine to get them working again. It's a pain, especially since this laptop is only a year and a half old.

I used to get horrible migraines from caffeine withdrawal back when I drank a lot of soda. If I didn't drink any caffeine for three days, my head would feel like it was going to explode. Now it doesn't happen, but I can tell the caffeine doesn't perk me up like it used to. I'm not even supposed to drink it because of my blood pressure, but if I don't, I'm barely functioning and with having to be up early to do school with my son... I have to function. I don't have time for chronic fatigue right now.

There aren't any fires by us--it's just smoke blowing in from Oregon and California right now. Today was and eerie orange color outside, but my camera wouldn't capture it or how hazy it was. You can see the smoke just hovering in the air. Our town had some of the worst air quality in the country last night. And we're nowhere near the fire. I think I'll be happy when winter starts and the rain put all the fires out. Usually I hate all the gloom of winter but it's preferable than the whole West Coast being on fire.

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