Adulting and Diagnoses

Standard

It’s been a while! And… oddly… the saga of the Aveo is only just over today. Three months of repairs. Gah. But, after a motor replacement (thrice due to cracks in replacement motors *koffkoff*), timing belt, pump, and… as the piece de resistance, a thermostat, and then a fustercluck getting the tabs renewed #3 son is back on the road. That is not a warning. Maybe it should be. Nah…. he’s actually a really good driver.

The news here is that I handled all of that pretty darn well. Better than I ‘normally’ would have. My mother had to be hospitalized (had a helicopter ride–she doesn’t remember it at all) but thankfully is almost recovered. I turned 50. I moved. And I learned something about myself in therapy–I was diagnosed with ADHD. For realz. At age 50. My therapist said “Have you ever been tested for ADHD?” and I snorted “No.” I mean come on…. I’m not hyper! Some days I barely move–channeling my inner sloth. Or slug. Or… you insert your own favorite lazyass animal. But it’s true. For several weeks we did a battery of tests. And I… passed? I hit 90% on the executive function section. And that’s not good. Basically it means that when I have to do something like make a decision, or focus, or prioritize…. it’s super difficult. Super. Not as an excuse, but as a reason…. this explains why when I got to college I hit a wall. I never had to study in high school. When I had to really buckle down, I had no idea how to do it and I simply couldn’t. I fell apart. And then began a vicious cycle of putting myself down for not completing college, but literally being unable to do it.

This makes three diagnoses of silent, invisible issues; major depression, traumatic brain injury, and now ADHD. And they all rather exacerbate each other. My therapist believes that the ADHD may have caused the depression and that if we can control it, the depression will disappear. That would be awesome! So for now, when I can’t remember what I was about to say, I’ll go first with blaming the TBI; when I just want to curl up and sleep, the depression; and when I make a connection in a sentence between an Ice Age creature and Law & Order, that’s definitely the ADHD.

I still didn’t really understand the whole ADHD thing–my therapist explained that in girls it looks vastly different. It’s hyperactivity in the brain–school age girls with ADHD are the quiet ones daydreaming. Or the quiet ones who either do really well but never pay attention, or the quiet ones who don’t do well. But because none of these are behavioral issues, less attention is given. An ADHD girl might have the comment made by the teacher “If she would just apply herself…” ┬áHyperactive brain i understand… mine is in constant motion, ideas, thoughts, random song lyrics flying past with no recognizable rhyme or reason.

I was not opposed to trying medication, so I am. I have noticed that I can focus better. It was pretty subtle, I had to think about it, but then I realized that instead of ignoring issues that needed to be dealt with–such as the car problems, or the license tab issues–I took care of business. I adulted. And now, instead of having something else hanging over my head, there is one less thing to worry about. And that is pretty cool.

 

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