There are days, weeks even, where I don’t seem to do much beyond stare at my navel, waste my time in meaningless crap online and generally hate myself for having (I think, though I won’t know for certain for another 5 months) adult ADD/ADHD. On days like that, I get so angry with myself that I do well not to put my fist through another door in the flat.
For a long time, when this kind of stuff happened, I use to pin it on me being an idle, lazy git. Someone who didn’t have the get up and go to motivate myself and that – just as my teachers and family members have said on countless occasions – I didn’t have the ability to apply myself.
Then, out of the blue, I found what I hoped was an answer of sorts. The ADD/ADHD label. Suddenly all those months and years where I’d had ‘breakdowns’. Where I’d seemed to be flying high before mysteriously falling off a cliff. Where I’d have a bright idea and throw everything I had at it, and then just write it off for no apparent reason. Well. It all made a lot more sense.
Now one of the well known traits of us ADD types, is that when confronted by something ‘new’ or ‘interesting’ or ‘stimulating’, we go balls out to experience it to the max. To know everything there is to know about our current fascination. To be more skilled or capable (at least in our heads) than anyone has ever been before. Suffice to say, that when I discovered ADD and had my ‘Eureka’ moment, I went all out to consume as much knowledge as I could. FINALLY I had an answer. After years of not knowing what the hell was going on, the answer to the eternal ‘why I am the way I am’ question appeared to be answered. I scoured forums, blogs and websites on the subject. I researched every detail that I could to help me get the diagnosis (and thereby the validation) that I needed. Although initially as excited as I was, my long-suffering wife soon started to become a little worn out by my constant updates. She’s patient with me – God love her – so she puts up with with many little (and not so little) quirks and idiosyncrasies.
When I met my GP for the first time, it’s fair to say that I steamrolled the poor fella with the wealth of knowledge that I’d acquired overnight. It’s fair to say the list of examples I could give where I could demonstrate ADD symptoms was ample (7 or 8 pages worth?). The upshot of the meeting being, that I had my referral to a psych team.
That was about 8 weeks ago. Since then, all I’ve had is a letter telling me that I am now on a waiting list which is 6 months long, at the end of which, my state will be evaluated.
6 months. 6. Fucking. Months. Since I got the ‘letter of doom’ through. I feel like the world has fallen out from under my feet. I thought I’d finally start making some steps towards getting treatment. I know it’s selfish, and I know that there are plenty of others in the same boat as me – as the length of the waiting list goes to show – but I’ve had nearly 35 years of this. That’s 35 years of feeling different and as if I just don’t fit. 35 fucking years where I’ve failed at the vast majority of things that I’ve tried to do. 35 years where everyone else I know has been quietly getting on with their lives and I’ve gone slowly backwards. As it is, I get to sit on my arse (my choice you say, but with ADD it really isn’t quite as simple as that. Don’t believe me? Well go look it up) and slowly fall to bits. I really don’t seem to have it in me to pick myself up right now. You have no idea how much I wish I could just grab myself by the scruff of the neck and MOVE! But I just can’t right now.
I’m right on the edge at the minute. I’m not eating. I drink way too much coffee, smoke too many cigarettes. I’m not exercising (something that when I’m focused I really enjoy) and I’m not getting any sleep either. I’ve got to the point whereby I’m scared of actually trying to do anything because I know that this bastard of a condition will stop me from making any headway. There’s actually a twisted logic to it really. Going from being super engaged with something and all systems go to completely unenthused and apathetic overnight is hard. It’s upsetting. The ‘lows’ really suck. So kind of figured that doing nothing might be the better way to go. I might be generally pissed off as a result, but I don’t think I can handle much more in the way of self-induced crushing disappointment right now.
But the thing is. I can’t live like this. I keep thinking ‘it’s only 6 months, you can’t write off that period of time’. And I know that I can’t. It’s foolish, pointless and to be quite frank, I’ve got plenty of other things that would be a much better use of my time.
So I’m going to give this writing a try. I’m going to try and commit to something that is a variation on pretty much what I’ve been spending my days doing anyway – pissing about on the internet. But I’m going to try and give it some purpose. I’m hoping that writing down a lot of the crap that goes on in my head (and indeed in my life) might help others. I can’t promise anything, I’m about as reliable as an elevator cable made from chewing gum, but I’m going to do my best.
Expect ranting. Expect swearing. And maybe – who knows? – you might occasionally get a little bit of sanity.
But for now? I’m angry. I’m pissed off. But weirdly, after writing this, I feel a little bit better about that.
And maybe, that’s just a little bit of progress.