Sunday, January 9, 2011

Short days and the Happy Light

Short winter days.  I want to blame it all on short winter days.  Max is like another person and has been so for the last two/three weeks.  At first I tried to ignore it.  I just didn't want to admit this could be happening again.  Ray doesn't think he is back sliding, but that this is linked more to his emotional development.  I am not sure.  He will only allow one parent at a time to be with him and he shuns the other.  Sadly, I am usually on the losing end of this deal, and I can't say I am handling it well.  He has been doing this at school as well, picking one teacher or therapist. He is so volatile and is crying often.

Max is usually such a charmer.  He has a unique personality that usually draws even strangers to him.  This change is hard.  I think it is especially hard since it is so reminiscent of last year.  Last January was one of the hardest times for Max and for me.  I struggled to even be around him then, his behaviour was so extreme.  It was like living in a mine field.  You never knew what would set him off, or you did know, but there was no way to avoid it in daily life. 

I was SO SO hopeful that the Modified Atkins diet would fix things.  I hoped and prayed we would not revisit what we went through last year.  As the spring came around and we got his diagnosis, and then later started treatment, I assumed that "Winter Max" was all due to an under fueled brain and his Glut 1 DS.  But I did prepare just in case, we got a special light that simulates sun light.  He calls it his Happy Light.  Perhaps the low light is the trigger?  The light seems to help...a little, maybe.  If I step back it is better than last year.  He has not reverted to the repetitive speech he did so much back then.  That was hard to watch since it seemed he wasn't even in his own head when he would do it.  So I suppose I should be hopeful. 

Ray pointed out today that with or with out Glut 1 DS, Max is a strong willed child and he is 4.  Often out of sympathy, or charmed by his cuteness, Max gets to live life on his terms and lately we have been pushing back.  I know this frustrates Max, so I am sure this is a factor too in what we are seeing. 

What is the next step?  For me, it is to not let this all get to me so much.  For Max...well I suppose consistent parenting, his Happy Light, and a check that his levels are all ok would be a good plan. 

I think I will go sit by the Happy Light for a while and see if feel better about all this. 

I will keep you posted.


  1. I think it is especially hard to 'revisit' behaviors or situations you thought you were past. I know I have been struggling with some similar stuff. I am looking forward to tomorrow night, hope to see you.

  2. My Max always has more difficulty in the ideas as to how to help, just agreeing with you.

    Hope the weather is not too bad for you to get down to dinner tomorrow night. Looking forward to visiting with you.

  3. Rebecca, ask your/Max's doctor about SAD and how it would affect his behavior. I have porphyria and even I have trouble sometimes with the seasonal darkness. Serotonin deficiency may be causing the mood swings.
    The Happy Light might be the answer but may not be enough.
    Hugs ^j^ Mrs.C.

  4. I'm happy at least it is sunny in Colorado, much of the time - I can see how it might change behaviors especially in sensitive kiddos. I will tell you that the sun in Colorado is a BIG reason that my husband moved from Oregon, and he's doing a million times better because of it. Hope to see you tonight!