Counting Sheep (Or Poker Playing Sheep)

It’s 1am and I’m sitting here in bed staring at an intensely bright screen, listening to my husband sleep (and yes, it’s not a quiet sleep) and trying to will myself to get some rest before I’m rudely awakened by Jo, the cereal monster at six.

I’m too wired, I don’t know why. Or wait, I do know why; today is the first day of my ADHD medication, the city is flooding and every half hour they evacuate a new neighbourhood. All minor things really, but I guess they are contributing factors to me setting up a poker table for the sheep in my head.

Oh well, maybe I should join them. Looks like they won’t be going back to jumping fences anytime soon.

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My Cross To Bear

” I think you should consider getting him assessed.”

I looked at Adam’s teacher calmly while I tried to quell my rising tide of panic.

“Adam is an extremely smart boy, but I’m worried that his problems may start affecting his learning.” She said a little too hurriedly, almost back-tracking her painful words before “He has so much potential, I just don’t want to see it go to waste.”

I nodded, smiled and said all the necessary words that accompany a well-meaning but adamant suggestion from his teacher.

But deep down inside I knew that it was too be expected. Hadn’t he already gone through this process before? It was just only me in denial, with the hope he’d gotten better. Maybe it wasn’t this severe. I look at his teacher with renewed hope.

“Thank you. I will definitely do it. We just don’t have a family doctor yet so it may take time.”

“I don’t think you should wait that long.” Quick shake of the head “Tell me if you can’t find a doctor soon, maybe I’ll be able to help.”

Dread fills me as I thank her again or her help.

The meeting went on for a few more minutes, random comments and stories, pictures of his work and talking about his friends. We then shake hands and leave. I walk away, Adam in front of me, running all over the place, his boisterous voice carrying to the adjoining classrooms and the close knits of other parents and teachers discussing their kids achievements.

We walk outside and I wonder why hearing these words the second time was so much worse. I was hoping against hope that somebody somewhere had got it wrong. Or he was just going through a bad phase. But as Adam skipped to the car I realised that I shouldn’t have even considered otherwise. After all, it was my legacy to pass on. How could I ever think he would be spared? Yes, I know that I my life with ADD wasn’t the worst. But it wasn’t the best too. Why would I want that for my children?

I get in and buckle my seat belt and turn around to look at Adam as he beams at me.

“What did my teacher say? Did she say I was good?”

I ruffle his wild and curly locks. “She said you were great. And she’s really proud of your printing.”

“Yes. Yes. I know. I practiced and practiced so my printing would get better. My teacher said if I practice everything gets better.”

I smile at him half-heartedly and turn around with sadness as I whisper to myself; “Not everything”.