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My ADHD Story

According to my parents, I have always had concentration problems, even from a young age. Home videos show me bouncing around, incapable of sitting still; I started Grade School a year late because my mother feared that I wouldn’t be able to sit at a desk.

Over the years, I learned how to handle my brain; that is how I thought of it – my brain just worked differently. I struggled through school, but did well in general through hard work. I studied in creative ways that no-one else understood, but worked for me. I even made it through most of college.

Through all of that time, every time I wondered if I had ADHD, my mother explained to me every reason why I couldn’t possibly: I was too skilled at focusing when I “wanted” to.

I read each Harry Potter book in a day – I barely ate, and I never took a break. I become “hyper-focused,” in which I will forget to eat or sleep because I am too distracted by something else. At the same time, I cannot study for a test, or listen attentively to a lecture. What I was never able to explain was that it wasn’t that I didn’t “want” to – I couldn’t. My brain can not physically connect certain dots, or get around certain roadblocks. Instead, my brain jumps from point A to point C, and skips point B, regardless of point B’s relevance. I have stopped talking halfway through a sentence, because I thought I was thinking silently, rather than speaking out loud; I have gotten lost while using a GPS because I passed a cute dog on the sidewalk.

I learned how to work with my “crazy” brain, and it allowed me to be creative; it allowed me to think out of the box. But it was a lot of work.

I was 24 when my adopted sister was diagnosed with ADHD, and began Adderall. She immediately began seeing changes, and watching her overcome lifetime struggles encouraged me to visit a doctor myself. And that decision changed my life.

With a fluid mind

Thoughts flow

Quickly, shifting, changing

With the tides

Can’t catch a wave

Hold onto a fleeting

Splash as it

Awakens you from

Your darkened past

But as soon as

You try to catch it

It is stolen

By a lighting spark

A new thought

Flashing by

Which, in turn, is

Quenched just as fast

By the next turning tide.

 

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