Adventures in ADHD; who knew it would cause this much stress

It’s not that I haven’t wanted to write, it’s not that I haven’t had time to write, it’s that to some degree I don’t know what to say these days.   Stop checking the windows, Hell hasn’t frozen over.   There is still  the garden, running/focus on health and weight loss, and various other adventures happening it our lives. I just don’t seem to have the mental  capacity or the desire when presented with a little bit of time to spend it blogging.   We have a war on ADHD going on over here.

There are 4 people in my home and 2-3 of them have ADHD, the results of The Destroyer’s tests are not in  until next week.  Most of the time it’s manageable, it’s the act of managing it in these early stages of discovery that are stressful and exhausting.   We are dealing with tests,  diagnosis, psychiatrists, psychologists, meds,  MOODS,  insurance companies, bills, budgets… I could go on but I think I’ve made my point here.   I have to pay super close attention, and in some cases log in a journal,  to every tiny detail of the physical and emotional  goings on of my kids  and myself.  It’s a time of hyper-focus, dealing with this is  stressful emotionally, financially, intellectually and physically.  One would think all of that alone would provide me with enough writing material to  schedule a new regular series of posts, and the thought has crossed my mind, but each time I’ve hesitated.   I don’t think I am in any place to actually communicate cohesively about this topic, but at this point the  need to get it all out has overcome the need to write well, or write something helpful  for  anyone else .  I’m sure there is a wealth of  material inside this journey, but I’m simply just not at a place yet where I can tell you what that might be.

It’s isn’t enjoyable in the least, there is Mommy guilt, some sort of grief process going because I’m  not exactly adjusted to the idea that a large  part of the communication issues between children and parents,  chaos and struggle in my home is ADHD related, and may have always been ADHD related to some degree.  There is the Mommy Lion aspect because I want my kids to feel normal,  loved,smart, happy.  Discovering I have ADHD  as an adult is mind blowing.  I’m doing that constant internal re- evaluating of everything I thought I knew about me.   I don’t know why it bothers me so much that I have ADHD, or that the kids have ADHD, but it does on multiple levels, some more dark than others.  In short we are a hot mess over here, but it isn’t all bad.  We are all learning a lot, these are growing pains that will settle over time. It’s  just a LOT of change all at once. I think that would challenge almost  anyone.

Notes for any of you who might be  in  a similar place.

  • Focalin made MiniMe  nasty, mean, aggressive and overly emotional.   She had trouble going to sleep at night.  She didn’t communicate any of this to us, in spite of telling her repeatedly that she needs to tell us these types of things.  It took me almost 6 weeks to figure it out and we stopped meds cold over the weekend. She has an appt next week to  figure out the next drug we try.
  • The Destroyer completed his 4 hours of testing last week and we get the results next week.
  • I met with the psychiatrist, after 90 minutes of talking he told me he didn’t need to test me. He put me back on Wellbutrin, because that’s one med they often use with adult ADHD in conjunction with the more typical stimulants like  Adderall etc.  Had me make an appointment for a 2 week follow up and sent me on my way.  I’ve been using the two weeks to pay super close attention to how I feel physically and emotionally each day and make some lifestyle changes to pave the way for possibly going on actual ADHD meds.

I know we can handle this, we are strong, intelligent, resilient people.  We have been through much worse.  ADHD isn’t THAT big of a deal, lot’s of people have it.  Eventually it will be absorbed into our lives as just another detail in the grand scheme of things, something  else to embrace and own.  It could take a while  to get there, meanwhile I will continue to tackle it as eloquently as possible and try not to beat myself up over the inevitable missteps.

Random Ramblings on being overwhelmed

I had a good cry today. A sobbing into my husbands chest, tears streaming down my face, kids coming over for a family hug cry. Why? The catalyst is the fact that I have an appointment with the Foot Dr on my calendar and I neither remember the Foot Dr’s actual name or where he is located.  I’m not sure I have any way of finding out either, other than maybe searching online for the past EOB or hoping they call to confirm my appt.   I used to be able to store information inside my brain like a steel trap, have more than multiple things in the air and keep track of them all with ease, all while adding more and more to the pile, my brain is ADHD  and stress “fractured” and I’m pissed about it.

Work is really stressful right now, the urgency of the work is piling up, and I feel like I am constantly trying to move a freight train with one hand on the caboose, pushing with all my  might.  Our work environment is in a word, craptacular, at the moment.    I am the program manager for one of the biggest projects we have going, but it is currently eclipsed by the  other biggest project we have going and no one will take mine as seriously as they should, and I can’t really blame them, we have priority and resource issues galore..  Mine is regulatory, it is my job to make sure it keeps moving, I feel like I must be doing this , it’s either that or beat my head repeatedly against my desk.

This is my first foray into Program management land,  I have a team of 3 head PM’s and a  what will end up being a cast of thousands. The moving parts and complexity alone of this project are enough to make solid mind me squirm.  With the current work environment and all the personal things I am juggling I am barely keeping it together and today the damn broke.

Personally I am trying to manage,

MiniMe : ADHD- 2 docs, Plantar warts- 1 doc

The Destroyer: ADHD- need to get him started on testing,  He scored high for hyperactivity and the icing on the cake, oppositional defiant disorder.

Every conversation in my home is a negotiation or battle of some sort,  full of not listening, not following directions or outright just lying to me and doing whatever we want.   No wonder I’m worn down

Myself: ADHD- 1 doc and they can’t get me in until August 31st.  I really don’t have 3 months to go completely ummedicated.  I’ve seen the improvements in MiniMe from the meds, and I NEED something to focus at work and home, to remember to write down something more than ” Foot Doc” because I am NOT going to remember things anymore. I seem to have lost the ability and I want my brain back.

I have a whole list of concerts I’ve bought tickets to that I don’t even know when they are because I haven’t bothered to put them on the calendar.  This week alone there are 4 doctor appointments  that I really don’t have time to get to or be away from work during. Adding insult to injury my entire freaking town is all torn up in construction, you can’t get in or out of it without  lengthy waits or hassle, it’s like no one looked to see what other construction projects were going on all at once before going hell yeah let’s tear that road up and close it too! And there is some freaking pervert(s) on the loose in our town trying to steal children, the police seem to be doing very precious little about it and our department is not that freaking busy.  I  currently cannot let my children go around the hood with walkie talkies, or out of my sight for that matter, it has transformed me into insane crazy mother lioness. Child molesters are a pretty hot button for me and I may be infinitely frustrated with my kids on a daily basis lately but I certainly don’t want them raped and murdered.  I have a race in less than 7 weeks to train for and when I went to call the Y, my wed night yo-pi isn’t being offered this summer.   Today basically made me feel like this



It’s a lot to absorb right now, and it finally just bubbled up and sprang forth.  I felt better after getting it out, but  crying about it sure didn’t make any of it go away. I’ll have to tighten the BGP and figure out  how to proceed without further losing my mind.



Adventures in ADHD

Happy Hump  Day Lovies. I squeezed another day off from my week for some much needed alone time.  Today is the last day of 3rd grade and Kindergarten for MiniMe and The Destroyer. The last 8 weeks or so of the school we spent testing and diagnosing MiniMe with ADHD.  We are on our 2nd dose of the first med and she seems to be doing better. the Kumon is also probably helping but only time and a whole summer of work to catch up is going to tell.   Discovering I have a child with ADHD has been an interesting emotional ride for me.  Not only are we starting the process of screening The Destroyer, but I am also putting myself through it.

I’ve asked every teacher of MiniMe’s if they thought she had ADHD.  Staying focused always seems to be an issue in her classroom,  her math foundation never got to where it should be in First Grade, after that it just builds so once  she hit 3rd and multiplication came into play her grades came crashing down to C’s.  C’s are like F’s in our family, simply not acceptable. Plus every single night of home work was an  all out battle of wills and patience.  I didn’t struggle with home work as a kid,  just did it and I didn’t get or need a lot of help.  I wanted my kids to be the same way.  After 9.5 years as a mother it is finally sinking in that my kids are not going to be “me” just because they have half of my genetic material, except when they are exactly like “me”.

Enter in ADHD screening.  As I was filling out the first set of Vanderbilt Forms it hit me pretty quickly that more than a few of the behaviors listed I could apply to myself as well as my daughter.  I was also born without the filter between my brain and my mouth, I thought I was just emotional and/or an extrovert.    I  also am slow or have difficulty getting  started on tasks I see as boring or unpleasant, I thought this was just depression/apathy/procrastination/laziness.  I have an addictive personality and a low natural threshold to impulsiveness, I thought this was just the weak parts of me that needed a stronger set of BGP applied to them.   I can never remember where I put my drink, purse, shoes, phone. I can hyper focus when reading and tune out the entire world. My number one coping mechanism for feeling overwhelmed like I can’t do something is to start shutting down, checking out in any way possible.   She totally got this from me didn’t she?  I asked Babu.   When he avoided answering the question I knew my academically lackluster freshman year of college was probably  more than too much  weed, beer and sex.

This discovery sent my mind on a processing spin  and I’m just about out of it.  I am reconciling this new information with what I already know about me to see if it sheds any light or changes any perspectives I have.   I was struggling with whether or not to just leave myself the hell enough alone because I have already have  41 years of self monitoring and course correction training,  or get tested and go on some meds only to find out that apparently things that make up a large part of “me” are in fact curable with a pill.   What the fuzzle will that even be like?  Better, mind blowing, enlightening, scary, or nothing at all.  Probably it will be a little bit of all of those things. In the end curiosity and the drive to be fearless won out and I decided to start the screening process officially.   I’ll keep you posted, promise.