I went to a psychiatrist recently in order to confirm or deny a growing realization - one that I've been coming to over the past couple of months - that I may have ADD. It turns out that, yes, I do indeed have this mixed blessing of a condition.
And I am thrilled! Really!
Let me tell you why... All my life I have struggled with certain problems, from poor time management, lack of drive, disorganization, forgetfulness, getting easily distracted or derailed from my intentions...the list is long. And all my life I've been told to "just try harder", "you have so much potential, all you need to do is focus more!", "you're very hard to have a conversation with", "you don't listen", "you always interrupt and talk at people more than to them", "you need to get out more, do more things".
But I do try harder. I do try to focus. I want to listen to people, and I want to do more with my life, have adventures, be on time, not lose things, be organized, and able to start and complete tasks.
I always wondered what was wrong with me, why it has always been so hard for me to do the simplest things that others seem to be able to do without even trying...I would soar along, and everything would seem grand, and then suddenly every thing would fall apart right in front of my eyes.
So I am thrilled to know that I have ADD, that I am not a loser, and that I really couldn't do all the things - not because it was my fault, but because of a condition in my brain. And I am particularly thrilled to know that there is something that I can DO about it! I have so many options now for treatment, guidance, and a path to follow! The diagnosis was actually liberating and very cathartic, because now I don't feel helpless, no longer do I feel down on myself, and no more am I confused about what to do (well, not as confused).
ADD comes with some pretty great perks, too. Creativity, the ability to think outside the box, intuitiveness, spontaneity, quick-thinking. It's part of why I have always been able to excel at things like art, crafts and sewing, and cooking. People with ADD tend to be highly intelligent, too.
That's why I choose to think of it as a mixed Blessing instead of a Disorder. I value my gifts and talents, and really like who I am. There are actions I can take to mitigate the problems and roadblocks. I am full of hope and anticipation, looking forward to seeing the ways I will bloom now that I have the right identification of the source of my challenges, and the tools to help me overcome my inbuilt obstacles!
I suspect that I will be writing more about this in the future. There is still so much for me to work through and learn.