ADHD and Family Ties at ChristmasSo it’s Christmas but all I can think about is that it feels like it’s already over. And that’s not a bad thing: this year I’ve already received the two best gifts I could possibly think of.

No, it wasn’t two Chippendale dancers. (What’s the fun in that? They’d just unwrap themselves.)

I’m talking about the kind of gift that you don’t expect, didn’t ask for, but is something you secretly hoped for all along but had (almost) given up on.

Nope. Wrong again: nobody’s bought me a pre-paid year with an awesome ADHD coach.

Why I’ve longed for these gifts

When I was a kid, my childhood felt like an undiagnosed ADHD circus. A circus where all the cage doors had been left open, wild animals running helter-skelter trying to eat each other while the trapeze artists swung overhead, laughing.

I was the clown, elephant, and ringleader all in one. Or maybe ADHD was the ringleader. Whichever, it felt scary, unmanageable, and unpredictable.

There wasn’t any time to learn the niceties of social skills while I scampered to and fro along a fraying tightrope. I did my best to survive and tame the lion.

The circus disbands

Under these conditions, I suppose it’s no wonder that our family pretty much dissolved after my adoptive parents passed away (and before my ADHD diagnosis).

It’s not that I blame our drifting apart on my ADHD; but I’m pretty sure it didn’t help solidfy the bonds of siblinghood. Punching my sister out when we were kids probably didn’t help either.

Still, the dream to be part of a tight-knit family remained, even though we “kids” scattered to the four winds. I suppose that means I was meta-scattered.

The stars have aligned…or something

I don’t know if it’s due to cosmic alignment, the Mayan calendar, age-related mellowing, or for some other reason, but this year each of my siblings gave me a most precious gift.

Within a matter of days, one invited me to their home for Christmas, and the other, with whom I’d been estranged for several years, replied “I love you too” when I said “I love you” during a a brief social media exchange (hey, ya gotta start somewhere!).


A happy Christmas

So, for me, I’ve already received the two best gifts I could have (but didn’t) imagine.

I’m still going to visit the  sibling who invited me for Christmas, and look forward to that. We’d planned a Christmas together a few years ago, but due to weather or whatever, it didn’t happen. So – bonus – all I have to do now is wrap the presents I already bought for the Christmas that never was.

Better late than never.


Follow ChickADD44 on Twitter



View Comments / Leave a Comment

This post currently has 2 comments.
You can read the comments or leave your own thoughts.

    Last reviewed: 21 Dec 2012

APA Reference
Kessler, Z. (2012). A Most Unexpected Gift for Christmas. Psych Central. Retrieved on September 1, 2014, from


From A to Zoë

Subscribe to this Blog:


More on

ADHD According to Zoe
ADHD According to Zoe
Check out Zoë Kesslers's brand new book,
ADHD According to Zoë, as well as her previous bestseller, Adoption Reunions.

Subscribe to this Blog: Feed

Recent Comments
  • eventer79: Thank you, Mark, for your kind reply — stop making me sniffle in my inbox! ;-) Compassion is a rare...
  • Mark Jones: He definitely sounds like a great find indeed, you are certainly the wise one my friend for knowing your...
  • Roseann: Zoe, I am a regular reader of your blog and I look forward to seeing it in my inbox. I understand what you...
  • Zoë Kessler, BA, B.Ed.: Hi Leojay! Thanks for taking the time to write! Please don’t lose faith in your fellow...
  • Zoë Kessler, BA, B.Ed.: Thanks for the clarification, marymary. As I mentioned to another writer, my main concern...
Find a Therapist
Enter ZIP or postal code

Users Online: 12240
Join Us Now!