Archives for Strength
Today isn't my best day. Today is Tuesday, July 21st. You're reading this on Wednesday if you're reading it fresh. Tuesday is my wedding anniversary. Or it would be if I weren't a widower.
And Wednesday? (Today for you.) Wednesday is the anniversary of my wife's passing. I'm writing this on Tuesday while knowing that it will be published on Wednesday and it's hard to keep my focus on writing about ADHD with these things being part of the flavor of these days.
It's interesting to note that, because of poor time management and poor time awareness, I have at least once discovered that these two anniversaries have slipped by unnoticed by me until they were in the past.
People sometimes tell me they have trouble keeping up with me. Well, not so often anymore, since my body has gotten older on me. But still, some people think I get around a lot.
And to tell the truth, for various reasons I don't always tell people everything I do. Sometimes I forget things I did, sometimes they weren't really things to be proud of, and sometimes I just don't think some folks can handle hearing about the madness of my days and weeks.
Do you remember school? Did you do okay or did you have trouble? Or did you have trouble but still manage to do okay?
I had trouble. There were times when I did okay in spite of the problems that ADHD causes, but I'm certain that most of those times were because teachers either rolled me on to the next grade to be someone else's problem, or they took the time to assure themselves that I knew the lessons even if I hadn't bothered to do the work.
And what was I doing when I wasn't doing the lessons? Well that would depend on the grade.
Things happen in this ADHD life that make me glad I'm aware of what goes on in my head.
But even still, there are disappointments aplenty. In fact, there are times when I get fairly depressed.
And when that happens, it can be a self-perpetuating situation. The depression can cause stress, the stress can exacerbate the symptoms, the symptoms can cause more disappointments and the disappointments can increase the depression.
I know lots of people who might well qualify for an ADHD diagnosis. But, for various reasons, they don't have one.
Some aren't aware that they have ADHD, some are aware that they don't want to have ADHD, some deny its existence even in the face of them having been able to write the list of symptoms just by writing down the things they would change about themselves and their lives … if they could.
And who am I to tell them they need to admit, accept, get tested? Who am I? I'm no one.
ADHD doesn't affect us all the time. It only affects us right now. Here in the present is the only time that awareness of ADHD matters.
If that sounds like a lie, well, I guess it might be. But the truth lies very close to it.
The first truth, in order of happening, is this: That the past is the past. It has happened. It is over. There is no way you can undo it.
And the second truth is this: Now is the time you can change. The present is the only time you have some moderate sway over. This is the only time you can act on decisions. Yes, the things you do will have a visible effect on the future, but the random stuff that happens will have the bigger effect, the final say.
If you have ADHD you know that we have issues with time perception and time management. And If you read my blog with any sort of regularity you know that I often talk about that.
And the truth is, that I'm not running out of discussion about ADHD and time ... but I am getting low on clever blog post titles.
Today's post is about being busy. And that's what's happening in my world. I'm having a busy June, A busy Spring and a busy 2015.
You commit to a task. It's in the future. You think “I've got lots of time.” and you file that thought away.
And that thought, “I've got lots of time,” is the thought you think every time you think about the task you've committed to. You don't think about the date the task needs to be done by, and you don't think about today's date, and you certainly don't think about calculating the difference between these two undetermined dates.
Then one day, you realize that the thought “I've got lots of time.” isn't actually the date of the deadline. So you look up that date and ... if you're lucky, it isn't yesterday or last week, it's just the day after tomorrow. THE DAY AFTER TOMORROW?!??
ADHD is all about time. Or more correctly, it's about how we have no sense of time passing. We are poor at judging how much time something will take when we plan. We make bad decisions about how many things we can squeeze in to a specific amount of time.
And of course we forget things that we need to do. That means we often find that we haven't got enough time left for everything that needs our attention and everything that we wanted to do.
I've said that I believe ADHD can be described as a dichotomy model. And sometimes I just get frustrated by how obvious that is ... and how difficult it is to explain.
One example is reading. I'm not talking about how well or poorly I read. I don't have dyslexia, a learning disability that is somewhat more common among those of us with ADHD than among the general population. But I am talking about focusing on reading.
When I was four years old I was desperate to learn to read. So much so that when my grandmother decided to teach me (she was a retired school teacher), I thought I had died and gone to heaven.
Actually, I thought I was finally going to get my hands on some of the secrets that the grownups had, the magic of reading being one that had made me jealous of them for nearly my entire life ... up to that point.