I recently began my journey to get a diagnosis of what the is wrong with me. Unfortunately due to covid-19, everything has been put on hold so it will be over a year until I get to see an ADHD specialist. When I spoke to the doctor and did the initial test it swayed on the side of “specialist help advised”. Since I’m pretty sure I have ADHD since it runs in the family (my uncle, male cousin and dad have it, all from the same side of the family) I thought I would share my current thoughts about ADHD and how I feel it affect me.
I never know how to start rambles but I will try and keep it short. I was never one of those naughty kids in school that would be an obvious red flag, I was quiet but would always interrupt and shout out when I really needed to say something. To this day I still find it hard to keep my mouth shut when I need to say something, if I don’t say what I need to say that instant, I will forget what I want to say. I have constant brain-fog. While I may be eloquent, I can never find the words I want to say when trying to form a coherent sentence. But I have noticed, when anybody else is struggling with a word I am right there with the exact word they want. It’s so frustrating.
I have always been forgetful. Like extremely forgetful. My short term memory is that of a rusted nail. This exacerbates the urgent need to blurt out my thought immediately. I can have a conversation with someone and lose the thread thread, especially when it’s a conversation I’m not particularly invested in.
Following along from memory, I have noticed I forget to drink water. Like, entirely. I’m a person who can go all day without drinking at all. When I do drink water, I can drink 3 glasses in a row. I don’t really feel thirsty at all, but I do. What I should be saying is I never really feel quenched, I can drink 3 pints of water in a row and only after my stomach is full, I will stop. This makes no sense to me.
Depression. This is one of the main factors in my search for answers. Recently more than ever, I have felt so depressed. I’m on anti-depressants at the moment one that was recommended by my doctor that helps with ADHD symptoms (Mirtazapine) which I believe is helping. It’s allowing me to feel emotions which is weird from anti-depressants (I have been on 5 in total). Anyway, there is nothing this depression stems from, if anything it stems from me not being able to do the things I want to do compulsively… I guess?
While I have trained myself to be less compulsive, I tend to have extreme compulsions, such as I go through random bouts of buying lots of things for a hobby that I will do for 2 hours then never pick up again. Such as, metal working, wood working, baking, piano, violin, programming and photography. I tend to do baking and wood working more as it is easier and doesn’t require £3,000 worth of equipment to be efficient at.
Urge of efficiency. I have some strange ticks and annoy the hell out of me such as I can’t do anything that does not have a beneficial purpose, I find it extremely difficult to do anything just for fun. It kills my motivation so hard.
I’m dyslexic. While reading this you may or may not have picked up on it, but I have dyslexia, from what I can tell this is a double barrel shotgun to the face of ADHD. Having to read a page three times before being able to understand it really kills my joy of reading. In my life (outside of school) I have only managed to read one book (The Hobbit) to which I found out, it is a child’s book!
Extreme focus that I cannot choose. There are only a few things in life I can dedicate myself to and while they sometimes maybe short lived I feel so accomplished while doing them and they make me so happy. Time seems to speed up tenfold, it is amazing. The problem is, when I was a kid I was addicted to this feeling and and I only really got it from playing RuneScape. So now as an adult, I can’t get that feeling constantly deflated. Anything that is boring I will just procrastinate and avoid doing.
Sometimes I imagine myself as a Sims character and what my stats would look like. Most of the time I envision my fun bar being in the red. Always, I feel like I’m lacking the fun in life even though I live a semi-fulfilling life.
One of my main issues was sleep. I never really had an issue with sleeping when I was a kid, I was always out within 10 minutes. Now it takes me anywhere from 40 minutes to 3 hours to get to sleep, it really takes a toll… My brain decides to begin creating a music soundtrack to a game I will never create or a business idea that is outrageously bad – this is what started the whole escalade of trying to find answers.
Last bit now. 7 years I have been searching for a definitive answer to my issues. I have done pretty much everything… from Cancer to Dysthymia from Septoplasty to Hyperthyroidism. All return negative or treat symptoms rather than the cause.
TL;DR – I’ve gone through 7 years of torment to try find out why I cannot function as a normal human being and I have to wait a year more to come to a conclusion.
Just to clarify this is just a “what I think may be my personal ADHD” I’m not saying these are actual symptoms.
Anyway… If you have made it this far, congratulations! I probably wouldn’t. If you have any tips on how I can self help while I’m waiting on a diagnosis drop a comment.