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Between The Goose And The Gander

canada goose
Offering to beat me …

There’s so much dichotomy involved in having ADHD that it is often hard to explain to people how disruptive it is to one’s life.

I mean, we walk, we talk, we go to the supermarket and the gym and the local pub and the park, we work and play and socialize and are, in every way, the picture of typical humanity … at a glance.

But when you look closer, we’re the ones who are walking the wrong way, saying the things that didn’t need to be said, returning to the supermarket for the one thing we were supposed to get but forgot about because we had six bags of lump charcoal that we found on sale in the discount aisle … even though we don’t yet have a charcoal barbecue.

We’re at all the normal places …

We’re at the gym because on some subconscious level we have discovered that adrenalin is a stimulant that helps us focus, and we’re at the local pub because alcohol helps us forget.

And the park? Why did we go to the park? What was it I was  going to do in the park again? Oh well, I’ll figure that out sooner or later.

So the dilemma?

The dilemma is that we look like we’re living normal lives, with the exception that we seem to be less effective at life than others are.

We’re caught between the proverbial rock and the much storied hard place. The rock is that we have ADHD. The hard place is that we can’t explain it to others if they choose not to understand.

I remember once …

I was bicycling on a trail through a swamp one time and a Canada Goose came up out of the swamp right in front of me. I spooked her and she took off running ahead of me, likely trying to distract me from the ten or so goslings that were trailing up behind her. I started to slow down so as not to run her over, and then the worst happened.

Up out of the swamp came the gander and started chasing me for chasing her. I picked up my pace as much as I could without hitting the goose, who by this time was trying to get airborne.

I’ve had the pleasure!

Back on the farm I’d experienced being hit by a goose’s wings. It is not pleasant. They use their elbows as fists and they can pack a good solid roundhouse punch.

I had no desire to experience that again, this time on the back of my head from a much larger wild Canadian gander. His wingspan was close to my height. And he was not going to let me explain that I was just trying to get away.

ADHD is exactly like that!

Ahead of you is distraction, desire, success and failure. Behind you is confusion and potential abuse.

All you need to do is organize all these influences so that you can snatch success from the jaws of defeat while paying attention to the end game and all the subtle details in your path … while the rest of the world tells you what they think you should be doing and offers to beat you if you think that might help.

But hey, you still get to ride bikes.

Between The Goose And The Gander

Kelly Babcock

I was born in the city of Toronto in 1959, but moved when I was in my fourth year of life. I was raised and educated in a rural setting, growing up in a manner I like to refer to as free range. I live in an area where my family history stretches back 6 or more generations. I was diagnosed with ADHD at the age of 50 and have been both struggling with the new reality and using my discoveries to make my life better. I write two blogs here at Psych Central, one about having ADHD and one that is a daily positive affirmation that acts as an example of finding the good in as much of my life as I possibly can.

Find out more about me on my website: writeofway.

email me at ADHD Man

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APA Reference
Babcock, K. (2017). Between The Goose And The Gander. Psych Central. Retrieved on December 13, 2018, from


Last updated: 12 Apr 2017
Last reviewed: By John M. Grohol, Psy.D. on 12 Apr 2017
Published on All rights reserved.