I thought I should post a disclaimer to my last blog.

I mentioned that I think I have a gifted child.

I'm not posting this because I'm bragging.

I'm posting this because I'm relieved.

Seth has behavioral issues. He has a huge temper and when he's angry, anyone in the house can hear it. He's super sensitive to moral and political issues that I was oblivious to when I was 8. He has the largest heart in the whole world, which makes it quite easy for him to be hurt. He doesn't fall asleep for hours after the other kids have conked out. He frequently comes in to me in tears late at night, worried that his dad is going to die. He will come to tears and/or blows over issues of justice and fair-play.

It's just not quite normal.

I've taken him in for psychological evaluation. They said he was a normal boy.

I've talked to the Dr. . No help there.

On Sunday, during the delightful three hours I spent with Kim and Heidi, Heidi asked if I had had him tested for gifted-ness.

This is not a thought that would ever have crossed my mind because I wouldn't place behavioral problems in with gifted-ness.

Well, apparently it's a thought that should have crossed my mind, because as I looked at a few different lists of characteristics of people with gifted-ness, I could check of characteristic after characteristic. It's not just extra smart at math (which is what I immediately think of when I think of a child being "gifted"). It goes into every aspect of life--including the sleeplessness.

I about cried.

I finally (I think) begin to understand what makes my child tick. I finally have a name for him. I haven't told him. I'm not sure what to do about that yet. I've sent off an e-mail asking for help on what to do next.

And I pondered how my experience has been like so many others. Someone has a disease and finally the Dr. puts a name to it and is able to help with it. Someone can't seem to get happy and finally someone says "Maybe you are suffering from depression" and suddenly it all makes sense. Someone struggles in school and the administrator says, "Your child has dislexia". I am not implying that if my son is gifted, it ranks anywhere near the devastation and/or relief of other experiences like this--only that this journey of confusion and fear is a universal journey, as is the relief at the other end when there is finally an answer.

What's in a name?

9 Responses
  1. Abra Says:

    Knowing is really what it's all about. If you Know then you can Deal. Even if there's no cure. I hope you have found your answer :) Funny, how it takes just one little click to set it all into motion. all of the sudden you're like, "hey! I never thought of that!" The more you research it, the more sure you become.
    Good Luck!

  2. Kazzy Says:

    Yeah, it's that limbo state where you about go crazy. Best of luck as you work within this new way of thinking!

  3. Kimberly Says:

    I've been feeling such waves of relief as I think about this. I know what a struggle it's been, for you and Faramir, for Seth...relief indeed!

  4. Emily Says:

    The word Relief is the perfect way to describe it. Glad you found it, and hope it continues to find you in your journey ahead of giftedness.

  5. summershine Says:

    That sounds a lot like me when I was eight. Turns out I wasn't gifted though, just had obsessive compulsive disorder and severe anxiety.

    I hope you find the answers you're looking for with him. It's so difficult to see your child in struggle without knowing how to help them.

  6. It's true that OCD and anxiety has a lot in common with your son's symptoms---but I am totally familiar with OCD/anxiety as well as people who are gifted and after listening to you talk about it, I'm still voting for gifted. It doesn't mean it can't/won't lead to anxiety b/c that truly does happen (because of the sensitivity and understanding they are too young to deal with) but the sooner you address the issues he is facing, the less likely that is to happen. I can SO relate to those feelings of relief. I felt much better when my son got a diagnosis that was more terrible than the ones they were trying to give him before b/c I knew it was finally the right one. You can't help a kid until you know the name for what it is that is troubling him. I am thrilled and honored and humbled that something I said could do the tiniest thing to make your son's life easier as well as yours. All the hard days that we went through with the Big Guy (which led us to study about giftedness as well as other things) are worth it if it means that what I have learned can help those I love and care about. :)

  7. There really is relief in the knowing.

    Now you'll be able to give him some stimulation that meets his gifted-ness. I hope you see fast, peaceful results for both of you.

  8. I am glad you have found some much needed peace ... and thanks for giving me some more ideas about my own little ones.

  9. charrette Says:

    We already talked about this, so I wwn't elaborate, except to say that I completely relate to the RELIEF that comes with not-so-much the label, but the UNDERSTANDING it represents.