I’m Back! ? With ADHD. ?
It has been a super long time. I never actually wanted it to go this long between newsletters, but the topic of this newsletter is basically also the explanation of why it took this long: ADHD. And with this topic comes a lot of emotions that need to be processed, and a lot of research I had to take on where I needed to understand exactly what it all meant. I can’t even claim that I am past this process, only that today I feel in a good enough place to be able to talk about it and face these really complicated feelings of vulnerability that come with it.
I’ve never been one to hide what I’m going through, or even just hide facets of myself. That’s not really who I am on any level. But I think partially that comes from this place of being happy with who I am; I’m proud of the things I’ve accomplished and overcome and how I’ve grown to be a better person as a result. These are not feelings that I remotely associate with learning that the struggles of my brain for so many years has to do with ADHD.
I’ve read a lot of people who are in a very positive mindset about it, are likely much further into their journey of processing their ADHD, and they talk about it as a gift as they focus on all the things they can do as a result. I am not there. Not remotely. I am angry with my brain for not working the way I want it to, and I’m angry with myself for not being able to make it work the way I want it to. I have lost so much time that I could have been putting toward writing or making art or building my business or just anything — living my life! — all because dopamine and norepinephrine aren’t getting into the exact parts of the brain they need to get into, resulting in these life disruptive symptoms.
for starters, my brain wasn’t working in the cleanroom…
So, I came to learn about my ADHD in a somewhat roundabout way. It was a couple of elements that honestly were built on a lifetime of how the fuck did I miss this. When I first realized I had a huge problem was actually this year after I completed building the cleanroom and I was no longer being bombarded with allergens. I was seeing huge improvements in so much of my health, but something was seriously wrong. I couldn’t focus or remember, I couldn’t keep my mind still on a subject long enough to pin it down. And when it came to writing, I couldn’t load the information in my brain of the books I was working on long enough to then take that information and creatively move forward into the story. My working memory was failing spectacularly, and I had no idea why.
I thought it was brain damage from the last mold attack, but I couldn’t understand it because my brain seemed to be working better during the time of mold hitting it compared to when now I was free of all allergens. I thought maybe there was a leak in the cleanroom or something, where allergens were still getting in — something I missed. But no. So I decided to deal with it, the way I always do, and problem solve and find a solution. The first thing I needed to do was figure out how to do basic tasks in my life. It took me hours to start my day, hours, and not just because I was fatigued all the time but also because I couldn’t remember to do simple shit. Couldn’t remember to take my meds or my supplements. Couldn’t remember to eat, never mind make food. Couldn’t remember to wash my face, or brush my teeth, or water the plants, or to get dressed, or to clean up around the house.
I ended up getting a smartwatch and set up all these notifications to remind me to do basic things. It worked for a bit, and then it didn’t work at all because I started to ignore the notifications. This thing that I literally set up to remind me to do things, my brain was now actively ignoring, and I couldn’t figure out why. So then I used these dry erase notecards and created tasks which I set up around my room as a visual reminder, because visuals were working for me as long as they were in my space. I couldn’t remember to look at my phone, or pay attention to my watch, but if this big card was right in front of my face I could remember to look and focus on it. But that wasn’t working much until I realized I needed to start writing down the times I did my tasks, to help me make time real to me. Because it was just slipping by. My brain wasn’t recording the minutes, and life/hours/days were just slipping by with me not getting basic shit done.
While struggling with this and attempting to create a structure that I could turn into a habit to just do basic things during the day, I was also looking for supplements to help. Brain boosters mostly, omega oils, neuron growers as I feared that this was some level of brain damage, and supplements to help with focus. I didn’t really have a name for anything that I was dealing with at the moment, ADHD wasn’t even on my radar, but I stumbled across a supplement that was used by individuals with ADHD who were trying to naturally deal with their ADHD symptoms after the stigmatization of their medication. The one I tried was specifically for focus and attention, and wasn’t really a supplement but a prescription drug in other countries but available in the US as a supplement. It seemed a little sketchy, but I was desperate, so I tried it — and it worked.
a little pill called aniracetam
It was like a light turned on my brain again, and I could write. Not only could I write, I did write; that was when I wrote the first two scenes of Demon Bonded Apprentices. And I thought this is it, this is the solution. I’ll just take this drug for the rest of my life, and my brain will work, and I’ll be able to write again. It had a very short half-life, which required three doses a day, and it was expensive, but it was still my answer and I was ecstatic.
Except this drug didn’t just do what it was supposed to do, it also impacted my serotonin levels. For whatever reason, this is not an aspect of my neurochemistry that can be raised without severe agitation and depression. SSRIs are extremely dangerous to me, and this particular focus drug didn’t just raise dopamine and norepinephrine in the brain, but also serotonin, making it unusable for me.
So the light in my brain turned off again. And my desperation and depression grew. I’d had the answer, but the side effects were too dangerous to pursue. And I couldn’t find anything else like it. I could learn enough about the drug to realize it was raising dopamine in the brain, but that was it. Then I came across a random YouTube video about executive function disorders connected to ADHD, and it all clicked into place.
executive dysfunction disorder courtesy of ADHD
In the video were explanations of what I was already doing to function in my life by creating the visual cues of the notecards around me to create a structure that I could rely on to remember to do things. As well as the focus on making time concrete through timers and writing it down to check in. The more I learned about what executive functions were, and what disorders in these functions look like, it was clear to me that this was exactly what I was struggling with. So I had found the names for the problems finally, and I had found the cure in regards to the need to get dopamine and norepinephrine into a certain part of my brain along with positive habits, and I also had a name for this condition, which was ADHD.
ADHD is highly heritable
The funny thing is, if it hadn’t been for me finding this video linking the very things I was doing to executive function disorders connected to ADHD, I wouldn’t have believed it. Because my twin brother has ADHD, and our behavior has never been the same. He was a hyperactive child, and I was not — well, I wasn’t hyperactive around other people. It’s apparently rather common for young women to repress hyperactivity as they follow social cues from the gender role they are placed in, while young men are not given those same social cues. And I also learned that ADHD doesn’t always present with hyperactivity. That ADHD can be overlooked in intelligent people because they’re very good at getting around the symptoms of their illness to a point. And it’s only once they reach the level where they can’t fake it anymore, that it all falls apart.
So how was I faking it? Well for one, I was writing term papers overnight and getting As on them. As long as I could get the work done, school wouldn’t notice HOW that was happening. And when I couldn’t get things done and school did notice, it always seemed to come back to the difficult childhood I’d had when in foster care. I wasn’t being held to the standards of my potential, which is why it was missed that my capabilities were limited in ways that matched the pattern of ADHD.
And honestly, being diagnosed at the same time as my brother when we were kids probably wouldn’t have done much. Our adoptive parents didn’t see his ADHD as something that should be medicated — our mom was afraid of the medication. And as my twin grew into adulthood, wondering why he couldn’t seem to feel or want things, he couldn’t motivate himself, he couldn’t focus on things outside of his hyperfocus of reading or video games, couldn’t seem to pull himself out of the depression that had followed him for so long, he never once connected it to his ADHD. And it’s only now, as I watched my emotions turn off, my motivation turn off, my spark for life and novelty and joy just disappear as dopamine failed to reach the correct part of my brain, that I can fully understand why everything was so much harder for him. Your brain is working against you, and everything is so much more effort than it should be, and eventually you just want to give in and stop trying.
the allergy link
There’s a bit of a dark irony in all this, as I came to understand why my symptoms were getting worse instead of better now that I was living in the cleanroom. The allergies were helping me focus. The overstimulation of my immune system as it was pushed into fight or flight mode every time I took a breath, was pushing my adrenals to flood chemicals which helped to transport dopamine into the brain. I grew up in a moldy basement from the years of 5 to 27, and when I left that house my immune system was set to critical as it had over targeted practically everything because of that long-term mold exposure. So even as my body was overreacting to everything and gaining huge amounts of inflammation and having these histamine responses that were draining dopamine from other parts of my body to give me Parkinson’s symptoms, the adrenals were using the stress response to get dopamine into the brain enough to get my executive functions to work.
This is why I didn’t become a writer until I was bed bound and sick from all these allergies. The only way I could overcome my ADHD enough to write books was by being in a body that was so overwhelmed and in a state of stress that it couldn’t move anymore. Before that point I could never stay/think still long enough to be a writer until in a body that was basically dying. It was the most horrifying realization, one that truly made me wonder if there would even be a future for me if ADHD treatment didn’t work.
I am currently in the middle of a 1 to 2 month long assessment by a psychologist who will decide if I have ADHD or not. At the same time I’m helping my brother get his health insurance finalized so that he too can start this process, get the assessment he needs, and finally get medication to treat what has completely interrupted his life. I am full of doubts and uncertainty, a lot of fear that at the end of this assessment this doctor will fail to see what is so clear to me after just the minimal amount of research — and I never stop at minimal when it comes to research. I’m scared that the medication won’t work, or that it’ll have a frustrating side effect like the other drug I tried that raised my serotonin levels. I’m scared of a lot of things because I see not just my life and future hanging on this diagnosis and getting access to appropriate treatment, but also a fair amount of my identity as a writer.
Writing was the first thing I’d ever been able to succeed at. I’ve been good at things before, but never consistent at them. Of course, now I see why — how ADHD has impacted so many facets of my life is almost impossible to count now that I can see it clearly. But that doesn’t mean these frustrations with myself, these feelings of failure to not do what I know I can do if only that damn switch will flip in my brain will suddenly evaporate just because I know about ADHD now. My nervous system still needs to believe it, and that is a much longer journey of processing.
estrogen is required to produce and transport dopamine to the brain
I’ve had one really amazing twist in all this, which was trying estrogen supplementation. Apparently as women age, their ADHD becomes more prominent as their estrogen levels lower. Hyperactivity can increase if there is an imbalance and testosterone is higher than estrogen, as well. I knew I was in perimenopause for some time now, at least for the last five years, but I didn’t think it was something that would be addressed until menopause itself. But after listening to a podcast directed at women with ADHD, I bought an OTC natural estrogen replacement cream from Amazon, and the changes have been amazing.
Not for my focus — I am possibly more distracted than before. But my working memory, my energy levels, my mood, and spark for life have all returned. I get up every morning feeling happy, and do all the things that I need to do, and I’m more aware of time and how it passes. And if things get a little complicated, I know how to just add in a visual cue to remind me of what to do that day, or set a timer or reminder for future events to keep me on track. And when my day is done I actually feel tired, and I can fall asleep for a change, and then actually sleep through the night. My back pain is mostly completely gone now. My quality of life has improved, even if certain aspects are still a struggle such as writing. That has been amazing, and I’m really grateful for this discovery.
I wish I didn’t live in this place of frustration with myself, and I know it’s going to be a while — maybe a lifetime to stop looking at this like some ridiculous failure. When I look back at the times I could write, I see the mad dash it was. The last book I wrote was in 10 days; for all the times I was telling myself that I could do this, I was missing the stress and anxiety that was fueling me as I ran for some arbitrary deadline just to be able to function. I’m hoping as I move forward that I will have a better relationship with myself about this. It’s funny, because I know I did this with PTSD; I learned to love myself after facing terrible trauma and the very natural survival instincts we have. I don’t know why it’s so hard to not feel betrayed by my brain, but that’s where I am right now. Even as I know that I have no control in this, I still blame myself for not having enough willpower to somehow overcome what is literally a structural disorder in the brain itself.
I hope you’re all dealing okay during this long pandemic, and if you’re in the US, the shitshow of watching a bunch of fascists try to take over the Capitol because half of them can’t understand that easily debunked conspiracy theories aren’t founded in reality. >_> Self care is extra important during stressful times, and I hope you’re all remembering to take care of yourself.
If you find yourself interested in this and want to nerd out, here are some playlist — because reading is really difficult for me, even though I’m a writer, and videos/audio help:
I wish you the best! Your writing really inspires me, and despite the trials you find yourself facing, I hope you can overcome them and find personal success.
Thank you so much, Alaysia, I really appreciate your kindness! <3
You are an amazing intelligent, beautiful person inside and out. I’ve read your struggles over the years and I’m in awe of your strength. I have no doubt that you will continue to thrive as an author regardless of the health issues you face because of that strength.
Damn it, you’re going to make me bawl. *hug* I hope you’re right — I’m a mess over all this, but I’m sure if that damn switch in my head can be flipped properly, I should be able to write again.
I’m 50 (will be 51 in July) I was diagnosed with ADHD, autism, bipolar mixed rapid cycle, BPD quiet when I was 49. I’d been diagnosed with depression and had been treated as such from 23 on. I knew something was wrong, but I ended up having the psychiatrists get me hooked (dependent) on benzodiazepines and by the time I ended up in the hospital in detox bootcamp for a week (Oct 19) I was on 20 mg of lorazepam and 10mg of clonazepam (yep 30 total) I was a wreck! I get everything you’ve written! I’ve been perimenopausal since I was about 38, I actually have very high estrogen but also very high testosterone! I’m a writer as well, and focus is very important. I was put on depakote Oct 19 and the side effects make my ADHD worse! Trying to write has been a challenge. I stick to one shots and short stories. I am working on an epic novel that has 50 chapters, I’m on chapter 23 and at 125k I have it written out but I enjoy polishing it up as I reread it. I have asthma and am severely allergic to mold! also dust mites and I have raging hayfever from July until a hard killer frost. And as you can tell my brain is all over the place as I write this lol. You’ve got this, the fact that you have answers, and are making plans is a huge step. I was so relieved when I was diagnosed. My 19 yr old son has ADHD and autism (poor kid got it from me) So helping him navigate life was also helping me but I never realized it. Having ADHD and a hypomania of bipolar… imagine speedy gonzales cleaning a house, only he’s 350 pounds and has lymphedema and has to sit down every 10 minutes lol I NEED/MUST clean when in hypomania (could be worse!) I’ve channeled these into hyperfocus and have written for almost 24 hours nonstop! Yeah, the rewriting was hilarious (what on earth did I write and why?!?) I have so much I want to write. Wish we could sit for tea for an afternoon and just chat!
Oh my goodness, Christa, let me just start with hi! The first thing they gave me when I ended up in a psych ward for the side effects of a medication a doctor told me would be fine until I could see a proper psychiatrist (I was not fine, clearly) was clonazepam, and it took me a year to realize I was dependent on it, and coming off of it was the worst experience of my life to the point that I never wanted to talk to another psychopharmacologist again. The way they throw around benzos is atrocious in the psych field– it’s literally their go to emergency med for anyone who steps into a psych ward, and you have my deepest sympathy for having to have gone through that.
But it sounds like you did get through that, and I’m really happy for you. Because getting off that shit can leave you feeling super suicidal, no joke, but yeah I’m glad you’re doing better. I had a doctor try to convince me that I was bipolar at one point early on, but this was recently after I had dated a bipolar individual and I could see just how off they were with that diagnosis. Mania is a lot of work. O_o It takes a lot of your time, takes a lot of your sleep, messes up your metabolism — it is a full-time job, and then add on top of that living your life and being an adult ( fucking adulting) is just so much expectation on top of that as well. Congrats on being able to juggle all of that as well as raise a child — and actually get him help for his ADHD and autism. That’s huge, and I’m glad he has you in his life for that. <3
If you ever want to chat, you can always hit me up at [email protected]. I’d love to hear about what kind of stuff you write, and how you’ve been able to navigate the way your mind works to write, as well as keep your spirits up about it all. It’s like, I know I’ve been this way my entire life, but for some reason learning that ADHD has played such a big role has just left me feeling kinda defeated about it all. Maybe that’s just part of me having to process, I dunno. It’s honest to how I’m feeling, I guess, and that’s the best it’s getting right now even if I don’t enjoy that I’m not at this place of enthusiasm and determination like I’d like to be.
It was really nice to hear from you, and get to know you a little bit. Oh, and before I forget, have you looked into progesterone supplementation? It can help balance estrogen dominance. They have OTC creams online, and was something I was using when I learned I had a genetic marker that left me permanently low on progesterone.
We didn’t figure out my son has ADD until he was a freshman in high school. Since he doesn’t have the hyper part and we raised him to be super organized, it wasn’t on our radar. It was horrible. Went from A+ to Ds. And his behavior… I took him to a therapist because I was ruining our relationship yelling at him. Therapist had my husband and I, his teachers and our son fill out a questionnaire and all of a sudden it made sense. Due to bad health insurance, we ended up only being able to afford Adderall until senior year. He told me I was medicating him to be a better easier manageable child and that he refused to take the medication any longer. Broke my heart. He told us he would be fine senior year. That he would prove it to us. We told him he has a month to 2 months and then we would look at his grades. By 2 months he was all pretty much Ds and low Cs. Luckily my step sister had tried a new drug for her ADHD and she raved about it. Intuniv. It’s cheap, last 24 hours and itsn’t a stimulate. And about a month into taking it he came and apologized to me. Been a year and half now. And we all are soooo very grateful my step sister got a doctor that prescribed it. I’ve recommended it to numerous people and had them come back so grateful. I still can’t get him to remember to eat though.
Anyway, finding the right medication is a glorious thing.
I’m so glad you found something that not only worked, but he felt comfortable in taking. Just hearing him go off meds when the statistics on car crashes and impulsive behavior is so high with ADHD — that must have been so frightening. So glad it worked out.
Looking at the way Intuniv works in the brain, I’m not sure if it would help my focus/attention. It seems to be more about emotional regulation and calming the system, less to do with executive functions that are faltering (and I already have super low blood pressure, so I’m not sure Intuniv would be a good fit.) But there’s a nonstim norepinephrine reuptake inhibitor for ADHD called Strattera (atomoxetine) that interests me, as well as just any normal stimulant that can focus on specifically getting dopamine into my brain so I can function. I won’t know until I actually get to the medication stage, but I’m looking forward to getting my life back (and to stop speeding all the time when driving… >_>)
I’m so happy your family got to really heal after such an upheaval. It’s so hard to watch your loved ones struggle and to get shrapnel for your attempts to help. So glad you guys got to the other side and can enjoy living. ^^
The shit show that is our country right now cannot be helping your stress. I’m glad the clean room is working but I’m sorry that another health issue popped up. I hope you can find a med regime without any detrimental side effects and that your brother can get treatment too. Sending healthy vibes to you and yours.
Thank you, hun *hug* Watching the inauguration today — It’s like finally being able to relax my muscles a bit. The last 4 years have been hell, and those fuckers aren’t just going to disappear, and there is still a 10 year recession we’re facing thanks to Covid, not to mention the environmental decline and automation cliff. It’s a tough time to be alive, and self care is super important. If not now, when, right?
I swear this isn’t supposed to sound depressing. I think the day is just fucking emotional. ^^;
Huge Monster Hugs, Sweetie! I’m keeping you in my thoughts.
Love and Light
Monster hugs!!! Thanks Blaine <3
Thinking of you, and sending you smiles from here in New Zealand.
Thank you! Smiles back at you <3
Wow what a struggle you have endured, please be proud of yourself that it has not stopped you in your tracks and choose the easy path of simply existing.
I was tested for all sorts of things at the age of 4, I still remember it decades later. All my parents were told after 2 intense days of constant testing was that I was special. Like that helps. My parents though decided that wasn’t enough and since my dad was very into holistic living he gave me a way to be able to live.
They put me into school a year early and I was to advanced for the class so they set me up with a tutor one day a week to feed my ravenous thirst for brain work. They put me into sports so I was exercising at least an hour every day. I was taken to the local buddhist temple to learn to meditate and when at home I wore no shoes and was encouraged to spend at least 15 minutes playing on the grass.
Sounds great but why? I don’t think in a straight line and I must know, so my need to think was trained, I am just as happy reading non fiction as I am reading fiction and know when I need one or the other. The exercise was to bring me down out of my head and into my body. The meditation gives my brain and therefore me a rest and standing on the grass in barefeet grounds all of me. And it truly saved my life.
Both my parents were terminally ill when I was 11 and having had them give me the tools to keep myself sane allowed me to cope. They may have left us way to soon but I still to this day use those tools. I am sharing this because somewhere in that there might be something that you could use, I have never been formally diagnosed with anything but as I often work at a hospital I have been told more times than I can count that I am “special” or different or my favourite wasted doing this work. I am an analyst and I love it.
I didn’t intend for this to be so long but as in the previous posts you are not alone there are others out there struggling as you are so please let that be a source of comfort. Also DON’T feel like you have to take the word of the first dr. They are at the end of the day just specialised mechanics and you wouldn’t take your car to get fixed at a place that told you it’s the wheels when you know it’s the engine. You would go somewhere else.
I truly hope you have a light at the end of this long and painful tunnel. You have come so far and achieved so much. Just take one more step. When it gets hard and dark look yourself in the eye (in a mirror) and tell yourself one more step because I am enough just the way I am, I am worth it. Funnily enough it helps.
Hi Hilly, wow, what a journey you’ve been on! *hug*
I know it can be hard to lose, but it’s nice that you have these coping skills and self care that you can trace back to your parents. Their presence isn’t gone from you, and that’s wonderful.
I just got my formal diagnosis two weeks ago. It’s both ADHD and autism. I haven’t really told the readers yet. I’m waiting on ADHD treatment and… I think I’m trying it out first. Learning the language, the terminology, the politics, the way autism has impacted me and how it connects me with others. Nothing has really changed, I’m still me, but now I know more about me and how to support my sensory issues — I bought these lovely headphones that just shut out the noise of the world, and it has been so amazing.
I wouldn’t have thought it was autism — I’ve heard too many stereotypes about autism, and very little about how the autistic mind works. And women are highly under diagnosed because of how the social structures in the “female” brain are better at mimicking social situations compared to the base group studied as the autistic norm, which were white males. (Also just so happens to be why it’s so difficult for women to be diagnosed for ADHD — they keep erasing women from the medical textbooks.)
But in seeing how feeling like an alien and seeing the world differently is so normal for autistics, it’s been like coming home after all these years of trying to figure it out on my own. I have all the stimming things, I just, I dunno, they only came out when I was agitated, so I just thought it was an agitation thing. There really isn’t proper information out there in the mainstream about autism; you have to go to autistics and let them tell you how they think, how they feel the world, how they express themselves. When I did that, it was so obvious to me. But only because it wasn’t being filtered through the minds of those who don’t have autism.
A nice term is neurodivergent, which I think even without any formal diagnosis, you would likely feel comfortable in that category. ADHD fits there — it’s literally a different way the brain is structured, shown with neurons which have poor connectivity at that. But autism fits there too. Being “special” is usually a rather simple way for neurotypicals to acknowledge neurodivergency. They can see that we’re “different” but they struggle to communicate at the same level as neurodivergents.
I was just listening to a lovely Ted Talk about it, actually. The term was “Double empathy problem.” It was basically a paradigm shift of realizing that the way communication styles differ between neurotypical groups and neurodivergent groups was the key to why it’s so hard to communicate between those groups. Neurodivergents understand each other. Neurotypicals understand each other. But we struggle to understand between the groups because of how our thinking patterns are so fundamentally different. Because much of the main world, including the medical field, is designed for the neurotypical brain by the neurotypical brain, neurodivergents are only filtered through the neurotypical perspective, defined by the misunderstandings and expectations and standards of neurotypicals. Our world struggles to see us because they don’t have the comprehension to understand us on our terms. I found it all rather fascinating.
The video I got it from: https://youtu.be/A1AUdaH-EPM
I’m really glad you reached out. It’s nice to meet someone who is so okay with themselves — I’m in the process of unraveling my self ableism, which has been this big thing. I didn’t see my own autism because I wasn’t allowing myself to be who I was, but instead hiding myself, trying to fit the ideals created by neurotypicals. It’s been this kind of mourning period to face the cruelty I inflicted inward as I tried to erase myself over something so, well, impossible. Lol, and don’t worry about being wordy (I write books — expression is allowed to get long. XD) I hope you’re doing well!
Oh so true!! I am “special” because of my communication skills. I work with two groups of people. Those who specialise in one area and those who specialise in a completely different area and are trying to work together. I call myself a translator. Because I take what is wanted by one group and explain it to the second in a way they understand and back again. From the first time meeting both groups going in cold.
If you haven’t already check out Hannah Gadsby. Her latest show is on autism. An Australian comedian I have followed for years (it’s not just an Aussie thing she is really good). The show is called Douglas.
Something that you might find useful to help with forgiving yourself is to write “I am enough” on every mirror in the house and on post it notes in other places. I truly believe they are the most powerful words in any language.
From all you have said it sounds to me like you are almost at the end of this journey and getting yourself an excellent tool box for the next. I look forward to seeing where that takes you.
How awesome that you have a place in the world where you can translate for others and feel valued in the process. I think I started writing because I found I really wanted to be able to communicate, but text was just so much easier than talking for me.
I love Hannah! Lol, it’s funny you mentioned her. I’ve been doing a deep dive in learning all I can learn about autism, and I stumbled across both of her big Netflix standups — I cried in the first one, laughed so hard in her second one! XD And I think in general, just having these rather familiar thought patterns echoed back at me when she was talking about the art of comedy, the tension of the audience, all that, was really calming and nice. I like to dissect the craft of all the things I do, you know? It’s fascinating, and it’s nice to see other people out in the world in love with how fascinating things can be.
I’m actually a bit of an emotional wreck even as I go through this process right now. I just found out that it’ll be 5 weeks before I can even see someone who will eventually figure out a medication protocol for my ADHD. I feel like my life has been on hold in the worst possible way, and every time it seems that I’m at the top of the mountain of all this work, some unnecessary bureaucratic bullshit rears its head and get in the way. I just want to be able to write again — that’s it. This process is taking months, needlessly so, and I feel so demoralized and exhausted by it all. It’s like they don’t see the human beings suffering, waiting for help; they just see metrics and hmos and fears of drug addicts. This whole process has been so dehumanizing. I think if I hadn’t learned about the autism, and sought out support groups on Reddit as a result, this whole process would have been so unbearable. It’s important to be seen as a person, and the medical field here really fails at that basic task. :/
That said, I’ve been revising my executive function support board — basically a bunch of note cards on the wall reminding me of all the things I need to do every day that I will absolutely fail to do all of. It’s something to pour all my fears and energy into atm.