Saturday, December 22, 2007

It's Christmas Time!

Well, I've been on my medication for a week now, and I've never had such a week before in my whole life! I've remembered things so much easier, getting work done faster and more efficiently, and I think I've even gotten along better socially at work. It's just been better all around!



I still have the after lunch kind of going into the fog sort of thing which I've read most ADD'ers experience. One book specificaly says that it's best to make and do all important crucial things in the morning, and avoid doing any of those things in the few hours after lunch. So, that's one thing I'll talk to my dr. about, could be just the way ADD is, or maybe it's the medication.



Anyway, back to my main reason for doing this one entry. I'm finally going to let my family know about my ADD (which I think some knew about, others maybe not). I'm going to email them a Christmas e-card and put on there that they need to check out my blog.



I wasn't the easiest person to deal with as a child, or teenager, or even adult. I can look back now with the fog of ADD lifted and see how difficult it must have been for everyone around me. I truly appreciate how hard it must have been for my mother to get me up in the morning, hound me until I did all the usual morning stuff, and try to get me off to school with everything I was supposed to have. When my dr. asked me if I usually forgot stuff during my school years, I remembed all the times I had to call my mom to bring me that forgotten something I had to have. I am truly thankful that my mother didn't work outside the home and she usually could bring me what I needed.



As a teenager, I found an outlet in reading, so with my ADD, it would take someone actually touching me or yelling at me to get me to come out of the story going on in my head. Needless to say, when I was in my room with the door closed concentrating on a favorite book, I would never hear my mom or sisters calling me and saying they were going to the mall, movie, restaurant, wherever. It just never made it past the fog and into my brain. So, many times I would finally "surface" for some reason or the other, had to use the bathroom or stomach grumbling (for someone with the inward type, it takes that annoying type of thing to make them surface), and finally realize no one was home. To my mind at the time, I couldn't believe they would go somewhere and not take me with them, or even tell me bye.



But now I know better, I know that they told me about where they were going or what they were doing, but it was in the way that normal people tell their children that they are going somewhere and need to get ready, by hollering down the hall something like "If you want to go to ***insert where or what here*** then you better be ready in 15 minutes", that sort of thing. For someone with inwardly directed ADD, it just bounces off the fog and is lost forever.



Which is not very conducive to having a good social life. I remember one time that some guy called me and when he said his name, for the life of me,I couldn't place the name, poor guy. I found out later he was the really cute guy who sat a few seats behind me in my Trigonometry class. I just couldn't put all the connections together to remember. I know now that ADD is a big part of that too. Remembering names, even for everyday objects, even just calling something the wrong name and then going "oh no, no wait, why did I say it's that, it's this instead" is attributed to ADD. It happens to me often enough, my co-workers used to just kind of look at me and roll their eyes a bit. But, I think I've been better this last week.



And also about social life, if it hadn't been for my BFF, I would never have met my husband. I had always been so awkward socially, also part of ADD, I always said the guy would have to hound me, or hit me over the head for me to ever notice him. Well, one guy did, not hit me over the head, but the hounding part, and we actually dated for about 3 months. When I found out he was starting to date his ex-fiance, I went to my BF's place and was going to have a down-with-all-men session, when her husband showed up with a guy he worked with who wanted a home cooked meal.



Well, he was pretty cute, and pretty charming, but it might have been the 1 and a half wine coolers I had drunk, so, later, as friends do, I nagged my BF to find out all about him. Found out he was nagging her husband, too. And after, a very fun double date at a steakhouse, we started dating on our own. And the rest is almost 11 years and 2 children worth of history later.



He doesn't understand me all the time, but he's very patient and puts up with my ADD moments, which are much fewer, usually just occuring now before bed. And he is begining to understand why I have to have places for everything and everything in it's place, he's been reading my ADD books to learn how to help.



So, in closing, since dinner is almost done, I wanted my family to have a little more insight into me and my ADD. And to let them know how much I love them and appreciate them and all that they have done for me. I can see that now. The saying is hindsight is 20/20, but with ADD, it's more like 20/20 through dirty lenses, but when the fog is gone, it's like seeing 20/20 through a telescope. For a time at least, everything comes crystal clear and remembering the goodtimes and everything that my family has done for me, is easy.



Merry Christmas and God Bless us everyone!

Monday, December 17, 2007

I HAVE ADD!

Yeah, I've finally been diagnosed with ADD, not hyperactive, cause I'm not hyper, but the inwardly directed type. That just means that instead of my body being the thing running 90 mph, it's my mind. So, I knew I would get diagnosed with the ADD, but I was also diagnosed as having Anxiety. That was a surprise to me, but I have had that before during a particurlary stressful time of my life at a previous employer. Don't want to go there, was a terrible time and I ended up quitting a job for the first and only time in my life.

So, Friday, I was given a prescription for Focalin and something for anti-anxiety. Took the anti-anxiety Friday evening, and it worked, slept well for the first time in a long time. And Saturday was the first time I took the Focalin. Boy, I noticed that the fog lifted off my brain in about an hour. It was WONDERFUL! This is how it's suposed to be!

The kids and I went to town and had a wonderful day, I only forgot to go to Sears to pick up their pictures, but with all the traffic at the mall, I probably wanted to forget, so I probably subconciously blocked it out on purpose. But we did all the other running around picking up gifts for my son's class, one for someone in my daughter's class, got all the stuff for all my baking and candy making for work and kids schools. Got the gifts for the co-workers and even remembered to find the something my husband wanted. Didn't get to stressed at all the people or at the kids pulling me everywhich way, which says something with all the holiday stuff going on everywhere.

All in all I have been doing wonderful so far. Today will be my first day on Focalin at work, so I'll have to do another message tonight or tomorrow after work and see how it all goes. See what type of difference the meds make on my job performance and if I get everything done I need to.

Till Later!

Tuesday, December 11, 2007

Oh boy, was I having an ADD morning. I couldn't focus, when I thought of something I needed to do, if I didn't write it down or act on it, the thought would float right back out and I wouldn't think of it again until hours later. So, I had to call out the reserves to help me stay on task, Bon Jovi. Music seems to help me be able to focus much better, as long as it's just background noise. Not saying that Bon Jovi is noise, cause I really like them, it's just that since I'm so familiar with their music, I don't feel the need to try to really pay attention to them. I can just enjoy the music and let it drown out all other distractions.

I learned that trick long before I learned I had ADD. When I did my homework as a kid, if I didn't have music going, I couldn't focus on my homework. My family really didn't understand that back then. My sister had to have it nice and quiet for her homework and that's also what worked when my mother had to pay bills or some other task along those lines. But not me.

I was always a little different, well actually a lot different. Didn't make straight A's , wasn't the social butterfly, was happy to just stay at home and read most evenings, that was all very weird to the rest of my family. Well, since I've learned more about ADD, I had signs of it all along, but back then, they only looked for "Learning Disabilities" in kids who couldn't keep up with the class or something along those lines. And I didn't fit into that category.

The standardized tests always showed I was above average, so everyone just wondered why I wasn't living up to my potential. If you would just apply yourself you'd do well, they said. What they didn't know, and what we actually all didn't know, was that girls, and women, can have ADD right along with their brothers. It just manifests itself differently.

Like me, women tend to internalize their symptoms, meaning their minds can be the hyperactive part and not their bodies. That's my major problem that I am hoping to have addressed at my first psychiatric appointment on Friday.

I was recommended this doctor by my current general practitioner. So, when I called for an appointment I specifically asked if they treated adults with ADD and they said they did. So, I said when's the next available appointment.

I'm really excited and hopeful that I can receive some type of help for my ADD. I hope that it will be a combination of several things including medication and some type of coping strategy, because I'm here to say, it doesn't get any easier as you get older. If anything it's gotten much harder for me. My ADD doesn't just affect me anymore, it affects my whole family.

If I don't pay attention to something, I miss my kids play at school, or don't get the snacks to school on the right day. Maybe I forget to send them with their lunch money and they eat peanut butter and jelly sandwiches that day, even though they love pb&j, I still feel awful that it happened. Everyday there are so many things I have to try to pay attention to, like the laundry I forgot about and need to go put in the drier... that sort of thing.

Well, better go get back to work, now that I've come out of ADD land for a moment, more later this week!

Sunday, December 9, 2007

My First Blog!

Wow, this is going to be cool and probably very therapeutic too! My best friend, over on ablesantics.blogspot.com, got me hooked on blogs and now it's my turn to start one.
I think what I am really going to try to accomplish with this blog is to try and show my journey with ADD. I've known I've had ADD probably since my nephew was diagnosed with it about 10ish years ago. When he was diagnosed, my family and I all started researching ADD and learning more about it so we could learn how to help him, but in the end I ended up reading about myself in those pages that describe about the inwardly directed person with ADD.

You can't imagine my surprise when I finally read that I wasn't lazy, crazy, or dumb, to take a bit from a title of one of the ADD books. I think I actually cried with relief at finally knowing I wasn't weird. I also cried with some grief over all the years that I spent being told over and over, "you're so smart, why don't you apply yourself more?" or something like,"why can't you just be more organized?" etc.

I was in my mid-twenties when my nephew was diagnosed with ADHD. At that time, I read lots of books and finally found a book about ADD in Adults by Lynn Weiss and it gave lots of information about ADD and some tips about how to cope. It's helped until recently. Lots of things have happened in the last few years that seem to have really made me realize I need more help than what I can learn in books.

So, I've made an appointment with a psychiatrist who I hope will make a formal diagnosis of ADD in me and will hopefully lead me to some form of treatment that will work for me. Whether it be medication, therapy, etc. I'm ready to do whatever it takes to bring this racing mind of mine under control so I can live a much fuller life and accomplish what I want to accomplish. It isn't just me that's affected by this disorder but my whole family, co-workers and my poor new house that I just can't keep clean and organized.

I'm looking at this as a new chapter in my life that I can't wait to see how it plays out. Hopefully by writing this blog I'll be able to look back and see that I've made progress with my ADD and that things get better. But, right now, I have to get done with this first blog so my husband can finally put up my shelves that I've been asking him to put up for the last month.

Til next time!

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