Last year, my husband did well all the way through winter. It was his first winter in eons that he wasn’t struggling with bone-chilling depression. I thought we had caught a lucky break.
Then, on April fool’s day, I went into the hospital with a blocked kidney from a stone. It was enough to shake my husband’s stability, looking back at it in hindsight.
There was a time when my husband being in a good mood would thrill me. That was back when I thought there was still a chance that he would wake up suddenly cured of his cyclic bad moods. I now know that’s not the case.
I try to enjoy the good moods when they come. He doesn’t often have prolonged periods of bad mood, but prolonged periods of unstable mood where he’s happy one day and depressed/angry the next, followed by a few weeks’, maybe a month or two’s, worth of stable mood. So, he’s coasting along in a stable mood for, say, three weeks when something happens and his mood starts bouncing in and out of stability for the next, say, three weeks. It’s really quite annoying.
I can see he’s just as frustrated as I am at times. I can see that he’s truly trying to get to the root of the problem and trying to find stability. Hopefully he sees that I’m truly trying to support him without losing my own mind.
Lately, we’ve been looking at his work schedule. For the last couple of years, he’s been working two jobs. The reason is because the job that’s supposed to be full-time is a seasonal job; while it thankfully provides benefits year-round, the winter months are usually down on actual work hours. The second job, which is worked in the evenings and on Sundays, is meant to supplement the main job during these lean months, but in order to keep the job, he has to work these part-time hours year-round, even when he’s working overtime at the main job in the summer.
My husband and I do not think alike. This is true. We both comprehend this fact. But I don’t think either of us actually understands what this means as it relates to how we relate to one another, nor do we truly realize how very differently someone with attention deficit disorder thinks when compared to someone without ADD.
The other day, I woke up in the usual way – to a messy house, left in the wake of my ADD husband. An open drawer here, a dirty bowl there, crumbs and something gooey on the counter, a hot pad and a spatula on the floor, last night’s supper dishes on the table, a butter knife sticky with peanut butter on top of the stack of bills, a calculator in the fruit bowl…you know, the usual…when I happened upon a tub of very gross, dirty dishwater in the sink and a wash rag marinating in the mix. Eewww!
We had had a discussion just the night before about not leaving the wash rag in the old dishwater and to just dump the tub of water when he was done washing something. It’s a discussion that, like all of our discussions, we’ve had over and over. And as usual, he swore up and down that, yes, he agreed that leaving the wash rag in the dirty dishwater was as gross as I found it and that, yes, he would remember to dump the water this time.