There’s some things about my life that seem to be different from the lives of those I grew up with.
And some of those differences are because I have ADHD.
But which of those differences are resultant from ADHD and which are just me being odd? That’s hard to say.
The problem is, in scientific terms, lack of a benchmark.
You see …
I’ve never been neuro-typical. So I have nothing to compare that with.
And when we get right down to the barest of facts, I’ve never been anyone else, with or without ADHD.
So which of my oddities are a result of ADHD and which are a result of that other disorder I have, that of being Kelly, I cannot say with complete conviction.
Years of observation and lack of diagnosis left me well aware that I was not typical. I knew I was different, deny it as I did, and I knew many of the ways in which that was so.
I struggled to recover, to become typical, to make myself normal, and the changes that came of that mostly served to make me more unusual in unique ways.
I found my way to where I am, but I’m still lost as far as the map to the land of normal is concerned.
Post diagnosis days
These last eleven years have been a struggle in their own way. I’ve had to relearn a lot of things, chief among them was to accept myself and start over again in trying to fix my life.
It helps to know what is broken and what is actually missing. Turns out that much of what is broken in me was broken by me in trying to be normal.
And these days are so much better
I accept myself as three things, a unique individual that no one else can mimic, a person with ADHD, and a work in progress (as we all should be).
And I have slowly come to realize that there is more than just a name for this disorder, more than just acceptance of the differences that denote its existence and identity.
There is value in this way of being.
A quick analogy
If you had a vision problem where you could only see through a telescope, you’d see some things with absolute clarity, but the picture would be limited to what was right in line with that telescope.
You could move it, but each movement would bring an entirely different picture into view.
You could remember what you saw but maybe not the complete picture of each view, and trying to find the same view again might be very difficult since as you looked for it you’d see any number of new scenes.
Every new scene would bring new thoughts, new ideas, new inspiration.
Now consider your ADHD, your mind jerking from one thought to the next, suddenly remembering that you were thinking of something only a minute or so ago and trying to recall it, thinking of a dozen other things in the interim.
And every now and then having a thought that strikes like a bolt out of the blue and sets you on a new course to do something different.
We’re not distracted. We’re not suffering a deficiency of attention.
We are inspired.