Archives for May, 2012
I'm taking a job as a contractor's assistant for the summer. Yep, I know. I'm a little long in the tooth to be working in a labor intensive field like contracting, but I have the skills, even though the job title is “unskilled labor.” And my boss is an old friend who has recently had some shoulder trouble. He usually hires an assistant and this year he's agreed to take me on in the hopes that I’ll be able to take a bit of the strain off his shoulder. He's also decreed that he intends to fire my sorry posterior if, at any time, it looks like our friendship is at risk.
I'm packing. I'm out of here. I have a new job. - Oh, wait, I'll still be writing my blog, sorry to get your hopes up ... I have a new McJob, a new day job. I'll no longer be toiling away at the task of keeping my mind occupied with little or no pay. Instead, I'll be toiling away at a real job. I'll be swinging a hammer, running a saw, carrying and lifting and fastening things in order to create or repair. These are things I like to do.
You know, a lot of bad things happened in my youth. For instance, I started drinking and smoking around 12 years of age. But a lot of great things happened as well. I was encouraged by my mother to be creative in any way I should choose. Photography and art, music and, of course writing, were all considered worthy pursuits. And daydreaming, too. Kelly, as a child, lost in thought, was as common a sight as Kelly climbing a ... well, anything that could be climbed (and many things that looked like they couldn’t, or at least shouldn’t). Daydreaming was referred to as “gathering wool” by my grandmother, "gathering daisies" by my grandfather. My mother would call it either, but it was said quietly. They smiled rather than frowned at me. There was, in my family, an admiration for the process of thought, and daydreaming was thought.
"All the articles on this website seem somewhat the same, they restate the problem (over and over and over and over again) with a huge number of examples ... " A lot of people have talked to me about ADHD. They’ve told me about their ADHD and they’ve told me about my ADHD. I hear it on the street, I hear it at presentations, and I hear it in webinars. I read it in blogs, on websites and in books. And I hear it from those who comment on my posts here at Psych Central. And I appreciate all of it. Yesterday I received a comment on my blog from Mkf. I'll re-post it here for your convenience: “[sic]All the articles on this website seem somewhat the same, they restate the problem (over and over and over and over again) with a huge number of examples, but never suggest a solution or strategy to help deal with it. Do the publishers of Psych Central think that readers are more interested in the definition of ADHD then help with over commming it?[sic]”
How many things have I started, and not finished? Dozens? Hundreds? Thousands? All conservative estimates I’m sure. I’ve never started anything I didn’t intend to finish, though. Yes, there are aggravating piles of raw materials scattered around my sphere of influence. These piles are all the mile-markers of various projects that I intended to complete. List or litany There’s an unassembled rack in my basement that will eventually hold my winter tires in the summer, my summer tires in the winter. It’s still in the carton, sitting beside my winter tires. No point putting those on the truck now I guess ... My laundry is in a pile on my couch, I try to get it folded by Thursday. Why Thursday? That’s laundry day. Two weeks of clean laundry leaves no space for me to sit and eat supper. I know, I should eat at the table ... there’s no room there I’m afraid, too many unfinished projects on it.
I’ve talked about the ADHD gift vs. curse thing here and elsewhere until I’m almost as tired of thinking about it as I am of my ADHD. I do believe, however, that under the right circumstances, some aspects of ADHD can be leveraged to create an advantage. Under the right conditions I can engage my mind in a task and keep it there until the task is complete. But there in lies the catch. What are the “right conditions?” Let’s take a look at that shall we? I’ve recently realized that being at home means being derailed. I’m trying to write at home right now and I can hear the laundry calling me softly from the laundry room. Calling me softly is a pretty clever trick for my laundry since I don’t use fabric softener. I know there are dishes to do as well, and I also have bills to pay and plants to water. There’s a floor to scrape (the time for sweeping was surpassed a month ago) and a lawn to cut, all very distracting stuff.
I have a problem. I have ADHD, and I have some anxiety issues. I also seem to have some depression, albeit very mild. But this, or these, aren’t my problems. Well, they’re my problems, but not the problem I’m referring to. Follow along with my logic here, won’t you? Ten percent of the population, roughly, have ADHD. I’ve read some statistics that suggest that thirty percent of all ADHDers have a comorbid condition, and fifty percent of persons with ADHD and a comorbid condition have more than one comorbid condition. That’s fifty percent of thirty percent of ten percent, or one and a half people in every hundred (fifteen in every thousand for those of you who don’t deal with half people very well) have not only ADHD but also at least two comorbid conditions.
It’s the day after Mother's Day. I’m feeling a little lonely. Those of you who know me know that I lost my mother in 2007. Those of you who read my blog regularly will also know that I credit her with making my childhood an experience I would not trade, even if I could. It was after her passing that I became aware of my ADHD, and the very real likelihood that she too had this disorder. I believe my coping strategies were taught to me by her and I believe that they were strategies that she honed over years of seeking out what worked for her.
On Wednesday, Laurie Dupar, PMHNP, RN, PCC, a certified ADHD coach and a nurse practitioner, answered questions from two readers. But I had some questions too. So I took the opportunity to ask a real expert and satisfy my curiosity. What great answers did Laurie have for me? Read on ...
I’ve always been willing to answer questions regarding ADHD medication, but I’m not a health care professional. I’ve read a lot on this subject, but I’ve always had to qualify my answers. So it is with great pleasure that I get to tell you all that today’s blog, and Friday’s, will be answers to some of the questions that I’ve heard most often. And these answers will be given by someone whom I am honored to have share her expertise on my blog. Laurie Dupar, PMHNP, RN, PCC is a certified ADHD coach and a nurse practitioner. Her web page can be found at www.CoachingforADHD.com and her contact information is there as well (at the bottom of her page).