Hey blog readers. Long time no contact. As you all know, my life has been in upheaval for the last year. First my best friend died and then my mom passed away.
Of course, I'm still grieving a lot, but I wanted to dip my toes back into the blogging waters. So, without further ado, I give you this:
Growing up, it was kind of a family joke that my dad was forgetful. (Sorry, Dad!) He would walk out without things like his bank deposit, the list of items he was supposed to get at the store, his wallet. He found his lack of memory to be frustrating to say the least. My mom, ever the peacekeeper, would usually have whatever it was he forgot waiting for him if she found it before he came home. Remember, this was before cell phones, so it wasn't quite so easy to work around these little memory slippages.
As Dad has gotten older and my mom got sick, we became a little more concerned that it was possible that he might have symptoms of early Alzheimer's Disease. But, much to my surprise, when I talked to my mom about my concerns last year, she said they had been to the doctor and Dad actually has ADD, also known as Attention Deficit Disorder. Whew, not Alzheimer's Disease. Very relieved, to say the least.
When I found out about my dad's diagnosis, I realized that I have a lot of the same symptoms as he does. I go into a room for something and forget what I was looking for. I leave and realize I've left my phone at home. I have a grocery list, but come home without half the things on it.
One time, I left my car running in a parking lot for an hour while I was at the therapist's office. I didn't turn the car off! I just got out and went into the building. I only began to worry when I realized I couldn't find my keys. When I got out to the parking lot, there my car was, still running! Amazing that no one jumped in and took it.
It's kind of hard to tease out my ADD symptoms from my bipolar impulsivity, but safe to say, I will agree that I have it in spades. I will have a sudden thought and immediately drop whatever I am doing to go do whatever the other thought prompted. I will empty the clean clothes into the basket and then leave it in the middle of the floor because when I walked through the kitchen, I remember I was supposed to be unloading the dishwasher or there was something on the stove that needed attention. I drive Justin crazy when we go somewhere, because my attention is always on something that is not directly in front of me, causing me to either block his path or bump into other people or trip and injure myself.
Some of the symptoms of Attention Deficit Disorder (or Attention Deficit Hyperactivity Disorder), as listed on .addreferral.com are
Distractibility; Disorganization; Forgetfulness; Procrastination;
Chronic lateness; Chronic boredom; Anxiety; Depression; Low self-esteem;
Mood swing; Employment problems; Restlessness; Substance abuse or
addictions; Relationship problems.
Of course, a lot of those are also symptoms of bipolar disorder, but it is very possible to have comorbid mental disorders.
The best thing to do if you think you might have ADD or ADHD is to get a workup by a professional in your area. If you do have it, it can be managed with medication and/or therapy. Even adults can benefit from the combination of medication and therapy, both to get your brain slowed down enough to focus and to learn ways to cope with the disorder.
The website, www.addreferral.com, is a good place to start if you think you want to investigate further. I went onto the site and put in my city and state and found five providers in my city. Having worked in the psychology field in this area, I recognized all five names as being respected providers.
For myself, I basically deal with my ADD by trying to focus and be more aware of doing one this at a time and being present in the moment. And slowing down as much as I can. And years and years of therapy.
Now where did I put my car keys?
(This post sponsored by www.addreferral.com. However, all opinions expressed are my own.)