I've said many times that Janey's moods often seem to have no rhyme or reason. Of course, that doesn't stop me from trying to figure them out. I have to. If there's any pattern, I have to try to find it. I think I do this more with bad moods than good ones, but I'm trying to make more of an effort to figure out Janey's good moods, as after all, they are the moods I want her to have more of. This weekend was mostly a good mood weekend. That's not to say there weren't crying moments, or hitting moments, but overall, Janey's mood was quite good. So...why?
I have a few theories.
One factor might have been that we made an effort to get Janey out of the house for a good period of time each day. These weren't exciting trips. They were shopping trips with Daddy, going to a lot of different stores, and a trip to take William back to college. But when we told Janey she was going to go for a ride in the car, each time, she was thrilled. She is an easily bored kid at times, and she craves being places other than here.
Another possible factor----I tried, each night and each morning, to outline what the day to come would be like. I think one problem on the awful day from hell last Thursday was I didn't do enough to explain to Janey why she was home. I couldn't at night---we got the call about school once she was already asleep, but I think the minute she woke up, I should have explained very clearly that she was going to be home, Daddy was going to be at work, and her brothers were home. Many people have suggested visual schedules for Janey, and we have tried them, as they have at school, but Janey simply isn't very visual. I have never once seen her look at a visual schedule unless I directed her to. But anyone that knows Janey knows that she remembers everything she hears. She might not give an indication of that, but she listens very well. So I've started saying each night something like "Tomorrow is a school day. You will go to school, and Daddy will go to work. Freddy will go to school, and William is away at his college school. You will come home, and Daddy won't be home yet. Freddy will come home, and then Daddy will come home." I tell it slowly and in parts, and repeat it a lot, and I think this helps Janey know what to expect. So she knew, this weekend, that Daddy was home and she was home.
We also had sunny weather, which we haven't had much of this winter. Janey loves the sun. She somehow remembered a song I can't recall playing for her, Katrina and the Waves singing "Walking on Sunshine" and she sang that a lot this weekend, with a look of joy on her face.
Food, of course, also helps. Daddy gave Janey huge amounts of food she likes, mostly in the morning, which is her preferred schedule. The bacon, chicken, greens and pesto were flowing freely.
And, maybe, the mood stablizer is doing something. I don't know. It's so hard to isolate out what medication might be doing or not doing, just like it's hard to figure out if anything I've written here had anything to do with Janey's mood, or if she just somehow internally felt happier.
You will forgive me if say that I don't think the mood will last. I can hope it will, but that is not usually the case. I think the best we can do is try to figure out how to extend the good moods when they occur and to shorten the bad moods when they happen. So I'd be thrilled if this mood lasts a few days into the school week, even!