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Real and not always exciting adventures in life.

Location: Maryland
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Saturday, February 24, 2007

Sugar the enemy...

So we are supposed to get some more bad weather tomorrow. I hope the weather reports are wrong. I don't mind snow, but the ice is really horrible. We still have ice that is about 4-5 inches deep by our cars. This really sucks when I have to take the kids to the car. I am always afraid that I am going to fall, so I leave the house much less. This is bad for a number of reasons. First, I get cabin fever really bad. Second, so does Sophia and she will drive me nuts.

Speaking of Sophia, I called the pediatrician this week regarding her bouts with hyperactivity. She is too young to really have ADHD or anything (or at least be diagnosed with it), but I am so worried that she will eventually be labeled as so. I will refuse to give her medication for this, so I want to get some coping tasks early. I told the doctor that we feel that Sophia has always had high energy issues, but it seems more pronounced now that we have an additional child. She gets so keyed up that she will literally just walk around in circles looking for something to get into. When agitated, she is not able to focus on what we are telling her, so this makes it hard for us to stop the cycle. We have also noticed more and more that she is unable to concentrate on things such as; coloring, looking at books (on her own) and potty training. Some days I just want to cry.

I would think that all of this behavior was the result of having a new sibling, but as I said this has been going on for some time and in some ways we have seen some improvements in her behavior since Nicholas arrived. I try very hard to not make her feel like she is second when I am caring for Nicholas. Bob is very good about helping with both kids, so this helps. Sophia is very bright. She was speaking in complete sentences by a year and a half, so we also wonder if maybe she is not being mentally challenged enough. I get so frustrated sometimes and feel helpless thinking that I am a terrible mom, because I can't figure out what makes her tick. It is very hard to be patient, sometimes. I also get concerned that as Nicholas gets older, it will be harder for me to handle them both.

So basically the pediatrician's office said that hyperactivity would need to be dealt with by the metal health professionals that my insurance company uses. The office had the doctor call me back just to go over things with him. First he said that we need to try to cut back on the sugars in her diet and then he gave us some mental exercises to do to try to help her focus better. He asked that we try this for awhile and if we see no results to call him back.

We started cutting back on the sugars already. I really think that she is like a sugar junkie. She kept on sneaking into the kitchen taking things like Froot Loops and those fruit gummy snacks. Thankfully, we caught her each time she attempted. We are also going to try to use a more "Whole Food" approach to the food in the house. I don't think it is going to be fun, but if it will help Sophia then I am all for it. We are not really sure how sugar became so important, but for now we are viewing it like the enemy. We also started the mental exercises that he suggested and it seems to work to a certain degree. So now we just have to make sure that we stick with the things we are putting in place.

So that is what we are up to for right now. I hope that you are all well and ice free.


Blogger Claire said...

wow...what wintery weather while we have spring down here, a little early if you ask me! I can't remember how old Sophia is but just for a little encouragement (I guess), even an adult's attention span is only 30 minutes! Does she like fruit? That would be a great way to have the sweet taste but not the processed sugar from other sweets. Freezing it is fun, too; but I guess y'all have enough frozen stuff right now! Hope that you can enjoy your kiddos.

8:41 PM  
Anonymous Kat said...

I had the same problem with my son. The boy would hit the floor running at 5:00 and got steadily busier, wilder and more frenetic as the day went on. Sugar was the enemy. Pap and I switched all snacks to fruit and cut up vegetables or cheese, banned dessert and switched to healthier cereal so that we could lose some weight one year. Within weeks, the change in my son was so dramatic the neighbors were commenting on it. I look forward to hearing how things go with Sophia, my grandgirl Juliette exhibits this kind of behavior too.

10:02 PM  
Blogger ChristyTN said...

We've been having trouble with MG being wild, too, because we've been trapped inside so much in the last couple of weeks. When she gets keyed up, so starts being bad to her little brother. I'll be so glad when Spring gets here. No more ice storms, please!

Also, MG hasn't been to preschool lately. They've called it off due to the weather and president's day. She really wants to get outside, but there's ice everywhere, even on the snow in the yard.

I know Sophia probably has lots of pent up energy too. It's so hard not to be able to get them outside to play. I wouldn't mind taking them out in the snow, but the ice is just too dangerous.

11:03 AM  
Blogger Rev. Brandy said...

Sugar is so insidious! Cutting it back at a young age is such a good start, because it's everywhere. It's in everything.

I remember someone I used to work with said that 100 years ago, rich people used to display bowls of white sugar on their dining room tables as a way of showing how rich they were, because sugar was a luxury item. Now it's everywhere, in all of our foods.

I think you'll find changing her diet subtly will make a lot of difference. I know that when I cut sugars out of mine a few years ago, it made a huge difference in my overall health and well-being.

Good luck!

11:01 AM  
Blogger Linda said...

Claire - Even though Sophia does not eat much, she will eat just about anything that is vegetarian (she is sort of militant about the no meat thing). Fruit has definitely helped her cravings, too.

Kat - We have seen some improvement, but now she is screaming in frustration much more. I am sure that this too shall pass. We have to be patient.

Christy - The weather certainly has not helped. She was so bad after missing school that I was worried that all the progress we had made had been undone by the weather.

On Saturday, I took the kids for a nice long walk. Nicholas fell asleep and Sophia was happy to be outside. I can't wait to get her out to the playgrounds, so that she can run around, it was just too muddy on Saturday.

Brandy - I know you are right. I gradually want to switch our whole diet over to fresh, no-processed foods. Right now, it is too expensive and too much work, but it is a goal to work towards.

10:07 AM  

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