Thursday, April 4, 2013

Anxiety attack update

Mr Boy's anxiety attacks have continued each day, sometimes happening several times in a day, but the intensity of each attack decreased this week, so paise the Lord!

He has continued to refuse to go to his playgroup at the community center we used to attend, getting very anxious and upset when I mention it. I wasn't too worried about it because its finally warming up, so we have been going to parks this week, but even parks pose problems because there are kids there too!  He freezes up and screams when another kid gets near and won't leave my side. I was hoping the playgroup we went to since January, would have helped with the fear of other kids, but nothing has changed in that respect.

Our pediatrician has been very helpful through all this. He referred us to a counselor whom we will see in a few weeks.  I told him that I've dealt with Mr Boy's crying, fear and pain with countless doctor appointments in the past, but this is different. Since the panic attacks started, I've taken him to one dr appointment and seeing the way he reacted to it when the dr didn't even touch him, I couldn't bare the thought of taking him in, when they have to cause him pain or legitimate fear.  So he prescribed a calming drug for Mr Boy to take just before any future doctor appointments or procedures, and I hope that will be effective. I made a picture book of photos from the children's hospital and specialty clinic and all his doctors, so we can look through it and get excited for future visits.

We are also signing him up for music therapy and Horse therapy (Hippotherapy) for this summer.  I am super excited about both! Summer is too far away.

Please keep up the prayers, we have been blessed by all your encouraging messages throughout the week!

These pictures were taken about a month ago:

Sledding down the hill in our front yard 

Thank you Shari, for encouraging us with this verse: 
For I am the Lord your God
who takes hold of your right hand
and says to you, Do not fear;
I will help you.

Playing on the tennis courts at Lincoln High School, a few blocks from our house.


  1. Hi! I found your blog through a mutual friend, my daughter has IA. Just reading about your little guy and he sounds a LOT like my son. My son did not have the medical conditions but had similar fears and anxiety around children and large groups of people at a very young age. At the same age your son is now, my son was a hot mess at the playground. He has sensory processing disorder and I highly encourage you to seek an Occupational Therapist to evaluate your son. My son wasn't having panic attacks and I would think that your son is not either. They are so little and all of the visual and auditory stimuli at the playground is too much to handle. They don't have a way to communicate that and so they throw a tantrum. (Sometimes incredibly intense - but that's essentially what it is)

    We sometimes avoided situations like parks and playgroups but more often we would push through. My son had to learn that kids were okay and were not going to touch him and that he could have fun too. I spent a lot of time at the playground talking him through things, pointing out that the kids were just playing and reassuring him that he was fine. I would not reinforce his tantrum with a trip home - essentially because I didn't want him living inside my home, never experiencing other people, forever. :)

    I'm happy to tell you that he is about to turn 5 years old and attends preschool and is happy as can be. We did a lot of Occupational Therapy and exposure and while he still is upset by loud noises and sometimes has a difficult time if we go out to eat at a particularly noisy restaurant, it doesn't rule our lives anymore. He has coping techniques and now has the language to say "I don't like the loud noises in here" and we can then make the decision to leave or help him cope.

    I would still keep the appointment with the childhood counselor but I highly highly suggest getting a referral to an OT. Good luck! It's a tough path when your child loves the playground but won't play on it when other children are there. It's hard being that parent that takes their kid places while they cry. But it is so worth it in the end.

  2. Tara, thank you for the input and advice! We actually have an Occupational Therapist through the Birth to Three program, for disabled kids, who comes to see Asher every week since he was born. She is amazing! She has been trying to help us through this whole thing, trying to find coping mechanisms for Asher. The hard part is that the "anxiety attacks" or "tantrums" or whatever they are, come out of the blue, when he is happy and safe in our home. When he is with other kids, he will just let out one loud scream if they get too close, as if to say, "stand back, I'm uncomfortable!!!" and has a hard time being a kid when other kids are around. So it's nice to hear that gets better over time. But most of his "attacks" happen at home randomly. So giving him what he wants is actually putting him in his crib to scream it out till he is done, sometimes 40 minutes. He refuses to be touched or coaxed out of the crib (what you would think he would actually want) even to watch his favorite movie, or get a new toy. Or, even discipline... we tried everything to see if we could prove it was just behavioral, but nothing ever worked. He will freak out more if we try to touch him and only wants to be let alone, curled up in his crib until all of the sudden it is over and he is back to his happy self.

    So I am hoping you are right, but we just have no idea what to do. Lots of praying and asking for advice, so thank you for yours! I am sad to hear about your hard road, but it is always very comforting to hear about other people who have been through similar circumstances and to see that they are doing just fine! :) Thanks for taking the time to write!

  3. Hi Kassy,
    It's encouraging to hear that Asher has some progress (with the panic attacks not being as severe) and I'm glad you have a few plans for summer and other ideas to help in the meantime. I have been praying (and have shared your story with a few others for the purpose of more prayer.)
    I'll look forward to seeing how God brings peace to your baby boy.
    -Sarah J

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  5. Thank you SO much Sarah!!!! We covet your prayers. We have already seen his hand through this crazy situation, so thank you, thank you, thank you!