Fifty! I was fifty years old when I was diagnosed with ADHD.
I was forty nine years old when I first found out what Attention Deficit Hyperactive Disorder was, what the symptoms were, how it affected one’s life.
Before that I thought that having ADHD meant that you couldn’t actually learn or do anything because you couldn’t pay attention for long enough to be anything but funny.
For that first fifty years of my life I lived in denial of there being anything much wrong with me. I spent my days planning great things to do that I mostly wouldn’t get to, and spontaneously starting things that I wouldn’t likely finish.
And when my plans fell through I would declare my luck to have once again turned against me and swear that one day my ship would come in and I’d be on top of the world.
Fast forward to now!
These last few weeks have been a kind of hell for me. You see, I recently was made aware that I’ve had a couple of heart attacks and that there was some arterial blockage in my heart. I’ve had stents put in to keep those arteries open, and I’ve been put on a metric ton or so of medications that make me feel like crap.
Okay, there are like maybe four of them, not a metric ton (What even is a metric ton? Do they say that outside of Canada?)
But here’s the deal …
My heart had already slowed me down. I was feeling sluggish and tired most of the time. And for a hyper boy like me that was a huge change.
And the medications do make me feel unwell also, it’s a known side effect of the damned things.
And now, we are all socially isolating and checking our temperatures.
And I am feeling it
I wake up in the morning feeling okay, until I try to lift my arms up to throw off the covers. My arms feel like 100 pound weights. I get up and head downstairs to make coffee and just going down the stairs tires me out.
Every day I have plans to accomplish things and every day I fall short of my goals.
The same ability that allowed me to be able to paint my first fifty years of life as normal with bad luck as the culprit and myself as its victim have now got me spending half of every day thinking I may have the virus that has an emotional strangle hold on our entire planet.
And I am convinced that part of ADHD is an inability to assess one’s self subjectively.
Though I recognize the worry and fear as normal for all humanity right now, I feel like we do it with that extra ADHD flair, that distracted and impulsive panache.
After all, many of us have had years of practice at worrying, wondering and imagining.