Congratulations! By picking up this book, you are already on the road to a life less encumbered by anxiety for your child, yourself, and your family. As with any serious health issue, learning to manage the symptoms of anxiety is a topsy-turvy journey, much like being swept up in a tornado where life can seem as if it is spiraling out of control. Like Dorothy and Toto in The Wizard of Oz, sometimes you will not know where you are going, and it may feel like you have landed in a surreal dream, ill-equipped to handle your new and unfamiliar surroundings. After you realize that your child is struggling with an anxiety disorder and the initial storm has passed, you may feel like the weight of it all has dropped on you like a house out of the sky.
Like the travelers in this familiar story, you and your child may encounter many trials and perhaps some distractions and deceptions on the road to recovery. At times, the journey may take twists and turns, and seem to double back on itself, while the wicked witch of anxiety and all of her minions lurk around the corner. Just as in Oz, the good witch cannot simply wave her wand and take all of the fear away; you, your child, and perhaps your family will need to travel the road together, gathering insight and experience to find your way back home. Although at times you might feel discouraged and exhausted, keep faith in the process with your sights on the horizon; its promise and glow will pull you forward during even the bleakest of times. Rest assured that, as the lessons in this book are presented in a spiraling fashion, sometimes repeated in new ways for your benefit, you will be weaving your way to the final destination. The Everything® Parent's Guide to Children with Anxiety will provide you with the resources, tools, and information you need to make the choices right for your child and family. You will gain courage, knowledge, and esteem as you both replace your current worry with a future filled with confidence and security. Though you may have to say goodbye to some familiar but unhelpful coping methods to make way for the new, you will come to realize that what you feared most was perhaps only an illusion, which vanishes as you acquire new information and tools to combat anxiety.
The lessons offered in the book are balanced between what is traditional and what is nontraditional, and what is informational, supportive, and therapeutic. They will guide you from diagnosis to the causes and forms of anxiety through how to find professional help, work with your insurance company, and create strategies and resources for the everyday management of anxiety. Sometimes, as life unfolds, everyone needs a little guidance and support along the way, much like the beloved characters in The Wizard of Oz. It is so easy to be consumed by the weight of your feelings that you do not realize the vast resources you have within. You forget to go in and grab them, even if that just means asking for help or reading something to get a better perspective. As you and your child work through the various issues related to anxiety, the contents of this book will lead you to the revelation that you both had the courage within, the heart of self-compassion, and the knowledge to come home to what was there all along.