I don’t even know where to begin, because in all honesty I’m more terrified of the feedback I’ll get than actually saying anything, but here it goes…
Hi, my name is Alexis. I’m 27 years old, I’m a full-time, online college student, a fourth-time married woman, a mother to a brilliant 7 year-old daughter, and I’m in the process of being officially diagnosed with ADHD.
I have been watching a few of Jessica’s videos here and there for about 2 years now. It started with her Ted Talk on a late night drive to the airport with my sister and my family. We had broached the subject of trying to discover what it was about my brain that was just shutting off during conversation, or why my eyes would wander when someone spoke to me directly even though I could hear and understand everything they were saying, or why it would take me a minute to process what someone had said, told them “I heard you, I’m just thinking about what you had said and trying to find the right words,” and THEN responded after a solid minute or so. I remember bawling my eyes out in the passenger seat thinking “Holy shit, why does this all sound familiar?! Why am I resonating with everything she’s saying?! I can’t possibly have ADHD, I’m just air-headed… a dumb blonde, just like everyone told me in middle school and high school…” I remember thinking about how I felt about classes in high school, that I did really well on tests and labs and quizzes, but most days I wouldn’t even show up to class because I “hated me peers” or “the class was boring and I could ace it off tests alone anyways.” Cut to the last 6 months, where I’ve been dealing with forgetting important appointments (today’s especially, since it was the day I was supposed to be officially analyzed and hopefully diagnosed), or I can’t focus on my classes if they don’t matter (seriously, who cares about Research Methods in Health Sciences?! (No offense if you do, btw)), or I hyper-focus on projects that do matter to me (like trying to find a new place for my roller derby team to skate out of since our only local one shut down last month)… All in all, I really couldn’t deny what was right in my face anymore, especially given my family history of mental health (my maternal grandmother with bipolar disorder, my 2nd youngest sister with bipolar disorder, and my youngest sister with ADHD).
The point I’m trying to get to is that, while nothing’s official yet and I feel like I’m in mental health purgatory because my brain won’t remember appointments to get me out of it, I desperately want to connect with people who understand. People who have answers. People who have advice. People who “get it,” because my partner is patient and understanding, but I’m sure he’s getting tired of me cutting him off in the middle of his sentences or bouncing around with random talking topics.
I’m terrified because, as much as I believe I’ve found the right answers, I’m scared no one will believe me, especially professionals.
I’m terrified because, if it’s not the answer, then what is?