Walking on Eggshells, The AHDH bewitching hour

ADHD Households can be chaotic.  My house is no different, in fact evenings at my house often feel like an eggshell walking exercise.  During the day and after school the house runs pretty smoothly but at 8pm all bets are off.  When my Hyperactive/Impulsive son is medicated, and the older Inattentive ADHD son is caffeinated, they play nicely, get along with each other, and are, overall, delightful human beings.  At eight o'clock, as their medicines are wearing off, they transform into something out of a bad alien movie.  Eight, at my house, is the bewitching hour.

My older son, who tends to be pretty mellow during the day, becomes totally motorized at night.  He can start to sing shrilly or decide to make himself chocolate chip cookies, or decide that he wants to start a terrarium... all of these things would have been fine at 4pm but are unthinkable at 8pm.

The evening combination of an un-medicated 8 years old and a suddenly ambitious 11 year old can be deadly.    The little one spirals out of control at the mere thought of missing out on cookies or terrarium fun.   He is somehow incapable of calming down long enough to understand that I have no intention of allowing any of the afore mentioned fun.  Before you know it, they are screaming at each other and at me and all hell has broken lose.  The little one is mad, the older one is disappointed, and I am scratching my head over how this could be happening AGAIN.  

We have a great bedtime ritual.   On good days at 8 pm we start what we call the "The Five Bs" or the "Bed, Bath, and Beyond Ritual".   The boys know this ritual and generally like it.  The five "B"s are; Bath, Books, a Bite to eat, teeth Brushing, and Bed.   If we get moving on the "B" rituals in time, all is well.  If there is a delay, for whatever reason, anything could happen.

Two nights ago, I got a phone call at 7:50pm.  The phone call only lasted about 15 minutes minutes but before I knew it, my older son was sobbing and the little one was furious.  It took a full hour to calm the waters.  

The astute reader will be wondering what my lovely partner and soul mate is doing through all this.  The simple answer is, usually not much.   Since I am the over functioning parent at my house, I am the parent who initiates the bed time ritual, provides the healthy snack, makes certain that the kids brush for a full minute, and that calms whatever pandemonium may ensue in the process.

These days I have come to loath the daily eight pm eggshell walk but who knows?  Maybe, someday, I will look back at their young lives and I will forget all the chaos, hassles, and hard times and, in the immortal words of the country western singer, Merle Haggard, I will say that it was fun.

Someday We'll Look Back Lyrics by Merle Haggard

Someday when our dream world finds us
and these hard times are all gone,
we'll laugh and count our blessings
In a mansion all our own
If we all pull together, tomorrow's sure to come.
Someday we'll look back and say it was fun
And someday we'll look back and say it was fun


  1. Oh, I can sooooo related to this!! I'm somewhat comforted to know I'm not alone. Thanks for sharing.

  2. LOVE this! I could've written this to a T but only to kids of different ages (and perhaps less patience!) :) Thx for this...


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