I write a lot about what it is like to have ADHD. And I get a lot of feedback about how appreciative others are to find out that they aren’t alone in many things.
I like that. It always makes me happy when I’ve made someone feel less alone. And those are their words, not mine, they feel less alone because they thought they were the only one who felt like that.
But for all our commonalities, we have many differences.
Why is that?
Why not? For starters, ADHD is a result of different cerebral development. It does not follow a pattern set in stone. It is, for want of a better term, a deviation, and therefore is not controlled.
So how could our ADHD be identical? It couldn’t.
And on top of that …
Since no two randomly chosen humans are identical, and since ADHD is an integral part of our makeup, it must affect us each differently, causing any two of us to be about as alike as a pod of peas and a grenade launcher.
And our self expectations and the environment in which we develop add to who we are and how we are different.
I drink coffee
I do. Coffee is my stimulant medication of choice. It works well, and I have it as a habit, so it’s easy to remember to get another cup when the last one starts to wear off.
Additionally, if I don’t drink enough, I get quite a headache. It’s rather convenient …. okay, yes, I’m addicted to the stuff. But it’s a pretty mild substance to be abusing I think.
But others don’t!
I have a friend in St. Johns Newfoundland named Brett Thornhill. He’s an ADHD coach and he tells me he never drinks coffee unless he needs to keep awake. His stimulant is prescribed, like mine used to be before the nasty side effects incident.
And if I had a choice, I’d prefer to do it his way, and if anyone asks me about prescribed stimulant medication my answer is still, “Why wouldn’t you take every opportunity to be the best you you could be, within the confines of legal and medically approved treatments? At the very least, why wouldn’t you try those treatments that are available to see if they will help.”
How do I feel about that?
In a conversation with a friend, I was asked if I was jealous of people who could use methylphenidate without issue, or if I pitied those who needed meds to be their best.
And my answer came quickly and with decisive clarity.
We each get what we get, we are who we are, and we deal accordingly.
Maybe many of us could deal with our issues better, but we’re all learning and we’re all getting better at being ourselves.
So, different is how we must remain
The reason I don’t often recommend books on ADHD because, quite frankly, you can’t write a manual on a bunch of “one-of-a-kind” machines. (More on that in an upcoming post.)
So my advice to you is to keep finding those who are like you, keep finding that support. But at the same time, revel in your uniqueness, celebrate your individuality, and be the person you were meant to be.
Personally, I was meant to be bold and loud and joyous. And I’m celebrating that as much as possible.