Saturday, 13 October 2012

ADD - it's like a kick in the nuts

ADD - it's like a kick in the nuts
13 October 2012

ADD – it’s like a kick in the nuts.  Or well, what I imagine that would be like, because technically I don’t have nuts, what with being a girl and all.  But I have a VIVID imagination.  Really vivid!  Or maybe I should rather equate ADD to natural labour?  Nah, that’s “supposed” to be “positive pain”.  Ja, right!  Positive pain!  I bet a man came up with that little gem!

Anyway, back to the story on hand.  As discussed before Cole has ADD.  And boy it sure is challenging.  I think that possibly it might be easier kick starting a Boeing than firing up Cole’s engine in the mornings.  Oh, he wakes up easy enough.  That’s not the problem at all.  And he’s uber charming, snuggly and a happy little boy, first thing.  The problem comes in though, when he has to get ready for the day.  Not a difficult task for some.  But for Cole it’s near impossible.

I’m not blowing my own horn here, but I have been blessed with an abundance of patience.  It is a gift inherited from my mother.  But even for me, of the infinite patience, my supply gets stretched to the limits at times.  He doesn’t have a lot to do in the mornings.  Wake up.  Big hello, squishy hugs and kisses, followed by morning ablutions.  Get dressed for school.  Take school bag to the study, bypassing the kitchen first to put school lunchbox into school bag.  Make breakfast – a serve yourself option of cereal, fruit or toast.  HAVE RITALIN TABLET.  Brush teeth.  Get Daddy to do your hair (apparently Mommy knows nothing about boy’s hair and their styling needs – so my boys go to Grant for help – wa-ha-ha-ha-ha – you know Grant, the one with no hair – snigger, snigger).  Easy peasy!  Hardly rocket science, hey?  Yet, for Cole, this is a near insurmountable task.  Not that it seems to bother him though.  His mornings are always marvellous.  Full of adventure and exciting diversions.

So, this is a near accurate account of Cole’s morning one day this past week:  Wake up.  Big hello, squishy hugs and kisses, followed by morning ablutions.  Followed by a bollemakiesie on Mommy and Daddy’s bed.  Followed by exchanging slobbery kisses with Amber’s dog, Riley.  Followed by looking for an empty toilet roll for Riley to play with – her favourite toy.  Skip to the bedroom.  Lie on the floor, looking up at the ceiling daydreaming.  Remember about French Knitting for school, so quickly dash inside to look AGAIN how long the knitting is and if it’s packed in the school bag (forget to put it in again).  Skip back to the bedroom.  Lie on the floor some more.  Daddy pokes his head in the bedroom and says “Hurry up Cole”.  Lie on the floor some more.  Remember about favourite Go-Go’s in school bag.  Skip to the kitchen.  Can’t find school bag.  Ask everyone where my school bag is.  “In the study, Cole”.  Dash off to the study, unpack Go-Go’s and admire them.  Mommy walks in “Cole, you’re not dressed yet!  Get some clothes on, you’re stark naked!”.  Skip back to bedroom.  Lie on the floor some more.  Put one sock and school shorts on.  Lie on the floor some more.  Luke pokes his head in and says, “you’ve left your boxers off”.  Put other sock on.  Take school shorts off.  Put school shirt on.  Put school shorts back on.  Mommy pokes her head in and says, “Cole, you’ve left your boxers off again”.  Mommy quickly leans down and helps me to get dressed, while I’m playing with my superhero’s and making loud noises – guns, shooting, cars, etc.  Skip to the kitchen.  Go to the study to admire Go-Go’s again.  “Cole, get your breakfast”.  Open cupboard door, stare unseeingly at cereal.  Wave cupboard doors open and closed and open and closed, and open and closed some more.  “Cole get some breakfast”.  Unpack cereal boxes, can’t decide which one to have.  Toast is a marvellous idea.  Take out toaster, plug it in, add bread.  Annoy Luke and Amber.  Skip to the study to look for French Knitting again and forget to add it to school bag once more.  Spot Go-Go’s in bag – favourite toy!!!  Unpack and admire.  “Cole, your breakfast!”.  Mommy quickly butters and cuts my toast.  Chew lingeringly, with many pauses.  Long discussions about Go-Go’s and hockey.  Annoy Luke and Amber some more.  Chew.  Talk.  Skip off stool to look for French Knitting and forget to add them to school bag yet again.    “Cole, eat your breakfast now!”.  Hop back on stool.  Pick up toast and stare at it.  Put toast down.  Annoy Luke and Amber.  “Cole eat your breakfast!”.  Pick up toast and remember to put it in mouth this time.  Chew lingeringly.  Talk a bit.  Decide to leave crusts – they take way too long.  Hop off chair again.  Skip to the bedroom and forget about Ritalin tablet.  Do more bollemakiesies on Mommy and Daddy’s bed.  Why am I here again?  Do some more bollemakiesies – they’re such fun!  Amber walks in and says “Cole, brush your teeth”.  Aha!  Toothbrush.  Get toothbrush.  Stand on toilet and admire myself in the mirror.  Such a good looking boy, I am.  Run fingers through hair, to make it look cool.  Amber finishes brushing and leaves bathroom.  Luke enters “Cole, brush your teeth”.  Aha!  Toothbrush.  Hop off toilet and look for toothbrush.  Can’t find it anywhere.  Do another bollemakiesie.  Mommy walks in “Cole, brush your teeth”.  “But I can’t find my toothbrush, Mommy”.  “It’s in your hand my boy”.  Mommy helps with toothpaste – she mumbles quite a lot when she’s doing this.  Something about me taking too long or…..Jeez, I really feel like doing another bollemakiesie.  Brush teeth.  My favourite is just in one spot all the time, not moving around. 

I really could carry on.  Because it does just carry on and on and on.  And it doesn’t just end there either.  But just writing about it, is making me tired and my head hurt.  So in the end, he had his tablet.  His teeth eventually got brushed.  His bag eventually got packed.  He remembered his lunch box, only because someone else came running out of the door with it for him.  The French Knitting got left at home, and there was no time to brush his hair.  And this is it.  Day after day.  A never ending and draining battle when it comes to all things of this nature.  I was absolutely shattered by the time Grant left to take the kids to school on Tuesday morning.   And much as I love Cole, I was just so happy to see the back of him, because strangulation was becoming more and more appealing.  And as mentioned before, I have oodles of patience.

And he really is just the sweetest little boy.  So very, very affectionate, kind and loving.  Bright as the proverbial button.  Really, he is, despite some appearances to the contrary.  He is sailing through school with exceptional marks.  He has a penchant for languages and once he’s read a word, he’ll pretty much be able to spell it forever more.  An amazing ability.  He is witty and sharp with his mouth and he cottons on to some things with amazing speed, showing wonderful reasoning skills as well as logic. 

And though he might not be as strong in Mathematics as he is in languages, I know he’ll do fine with that as well.  Of my three kids, he’s definitely the businessman and has a head for figures and numbers.  As long as those figures and numbers are attached to a monetary value, like a Rand or Dollar sign.  Then, he’s a mathematical genius.  He loves money.  And at the tender age of eight he already has the ability to make a quick buck.  He “charged” the head of the Foundation phase at school ten bucks to say his Eisteddfod poem.  And then pulled the same stunt on Grant and I the following day.  I’m ashamed to say, it worked.  He had us over a barrel and we caved like the weaklings we are.  He’s happy to go the extra mile and score even more goals in hockey if a small monetary reward is offered and he’s not shy to claim his bucks either.  Never borrow a cent from him, because unless you’ve paid him back, he’ll remind you about it incessantly.  Yet he’s not stingy – far from it.

The other day it was Cake Sale at school as well as Mufti Day (civvies).  The kids pay a R5 fine for wearing civvies to school.  An awesome way of fundraising for charity, as the money gets donated.  I gave Cole R20.  Thinking this would be ample to cover the Mufti Day money, as well as lots for Cake Sale too.  I helped at the Cake Sale and Cole came up to me to buy some treats from me.  He proudly handed his money over and when I looked into his open lunch box, I saw that he had amassed quite a lot of goodies.  So, imagine my surprise when he came home from school that afternoon with R21.  Huh???  How is this possible?  He spent the R5 on Mufti Day, and he must have spent at least R10 or more on treats.  So when I questioned him about the math and the money, he had a perfectly logical answer for me.  He paid the R5 for civvies.  He gave a friend without any money R5 for Cake Sale.  I also got the breakdown on what he bought and how much it cost.  Yet again, I said to him that the numbers weren’t right.

Oh, he said.  Oh, that!  “I sold some of my French Knitting wool to some of the kids in my class”.  I was floored.  Other kids exchange wool, making a swop.  Not my boy.  Ever the entrepreneur, he made a quick buck on the side.  Now, how does one argue with logic like that?  And imagine my surprise when I looked into his little French Knitting box later that evening.  He had cut straight into the ball of wool, rendering it useless forever more.  It was a tangled mess of little bits and pieces.  No single piece of wool, long enough to do anything with it.  And apparently he was charging R3 a pop – for a 15cm length of wool at most.  Not really a winning deal for his “customers” by any stretch of the imagination.  Yip, he’ll get far in life.  And he’ll probably be rich in the bargain as well. 

So, best I be kind to him now.  Chances, are he’ll be the only one of my kids able to afford looking after me in my old age. 


  1. I am stitches laughing about his 'entrepreneuring skills' with the wool, even though I know the story! Love the blog Helene, you keep me topped up with laughs daily, Thank you!
    And as for Cole, he will go far in life, love him to bits!

  2. Hilarious! I can so relate to the ADD part.....exactly the same in my house! The joys of parenting! Claire

  3. HAHA dis amazing!!!! Cole you make us ADD/ADHD look really good!
    Great post! loved it :) Divan