Tuesday, November 22, 2011

Finding a new way.

This is a post of a post I published on a website for ADHD parents and adults that I resonantly joined. I have been doing a lot research on parenting and coping with ADHD as adult. I am now not too afraid to look at or say that, I am a mother with ADHD and have a daughter with it. I am so glad there are places for me to read information about this disorder so I don't have to feel alone. Here is the post I did.....

I am an adult with ADHD Addition Deficit Hyper Disorder. I was unaware of there being a name to my monster until I was a Freshman in high school. Even though my mother thought I may have it as early as the second grade, she chose not to medicate me because of the all to familiar scare of Ritalin. Even after thinking I may have this as a freshman I still was not medicated until I was a Junior.
School, was I have to say, the hardest part for me as a whole with having this disorder. Actuality anywhere their was a teacher involved and a class room (church, studios ect.) were I was expected to follow.
Being an unaware child in my elementary years, I was a joyful and over loving child. I was boundariless when it came to friendship and relationships. Loving without thought, with so much energy to give of myself. I traded it for affection, adoration and approval there was little thought of myself in this equation. I learned how to adapted to my environment at school very quickly to gain approval were I was told it was important. At the cost a lot of the time of my self worth. Teacher didn't understand me and I was defiantly not excepted by my peers. Although I didn't have a hard time making friends it was usually not a healthy friendship. My "eager to please" habit started a down hill suffocation to my worth as a living being on this earth. Leading me unto waters where I was taken advantage of by adult males. Which in turn just kept my self worth at a all time low when I would return to school. There are many memories in my childhood at school that are not very pleasant. That I am sure would make most of the people involved today blush with embarrassment with how they acted. My school life was full of these types of situations. Being spit on and kicked in the legs because I couldn't fit in. Undressed on the playground surround by a group of popular kids in the 5th grade who I thought were my friends. Belittled in front of a class full of peers by teachers who couldn't tolerate my inability to follow the class environment. One one such occasion my mother stepped in after one teacher had hurt me so bad I was beginning to pee the bed, call home for school every other day, cry at the drop of a hat when I just couldn't get it RIGHT. She pretty much placed me in teachers who had worked with my siblings after that so she knew the personality of the teacher to minimize the damage. Home life was good but I wasn't excepted by my siblings very well either. They tolerated me at times but had a difficult time with full connection with me. Name calling wasn't just at school my sibling did this as a way to lighten the difficulty of dealing with me at home. All in all I did have a healthy family life. With a stay at home mother who had very loving walls in teaching us how to function. A hard working father who showed his emotions and loved us all unconditionally. So don't judge my parents too harsh they where defiantly present. They just had there hands full with 4 kids. My oldest brother has ADD or hypo mania (he isn't really willing to to find out....which another story) and My older sister has terminal illness called Cystic Fibrosis and My father, who was the first to know what to call his monster. He self diagnosis himself after reading an ADD book. Then went to a doctor to explain his concerns. I was almost 16 by this time. My poor mother trying to do damage control on all of us as we grew up. (I do have one more brother in the family that has no diagnosis. He has a personality a lot like my mothers.)
There wasn't information out in the educational field on ADD in the late 80's early 90's. What there was, scared parents from medications and good luck with information on occupational therapy. I always felt like there was three people inside me one who watched everything like a movie (my true self), Monster 1 who reacted and Monster 2 who talked loudly ALL the time. Little could make it past the the two gray fogs. Try as the viewer may, the other personalities just took control and steered the vessel. Wanting to bring peace to my out of control world, I would throw myself under the bus to the monsters and everyone who told me I wasn't enough. Little did I know I was NEVER going to fit in. I was bound for a much more potential then I had ever thought possible at such a young age.
I learned to manage through life letting experiences tell me how to be. In a way helping me function with my nameless disorder so I could be worth something. That didn't work maybe this will. I learned to try to learn form my own and other people mistakes so I would have to be hurt anymore. People began to gravitate towards me. "Normal does not play well with fun" I would tell myself in high school all the time. Being so full of life and energy I was always ready to play. I found outlets like theater and singing that I could be free from unified form and conditions. Interestingly I really gravitated towards boundaries and limitations. Classical Ballet was one of the things I clung to through school. Which I find so funny with how difficult and disciplined an old art form like this is to achieve. Although I was very talented in the many art forms. I really LOVED Ballet. I remembering crying at the barre because I want to focus so bad. I would watch the combination just to have the music turn on and my mind would draw a blank. Embarrassed that everyone else got it and I didn't I would beat myself up. My Monsters where right there to join in on the feed. This was my inter dialoged for 3 to 5 years when I approached something I wanted. Not being able to see through the two other monsters in my mind. I would yell ...Try harder!!! One thing that is interesting about having ADD is that you have the ability to hyper focus on things that interest you. School did not interest me but I knew I had to pass school to get on with my life to the things that did. I came to realize in my junior year of school I could no longer ignore my situation. With a 1.8 grade average my monsters had clearly taken the wheel and I was watching my dreams slip out from underneath me. In 1997 when my father finally was diagnosed with ADD, a door flew wide open for our family. He was able to finally be himself. So, I went in to have a full evaluation done my Junior year of High School. With in one month of talking the meds and a few dosing changes I went from a 1.8 grade average to a 4.0 in one semester of school. I also became better at all my talents and reached new highs in my friendship because I could control my monsters. Which is so funny because that all you hear about the drugs for ADD. They make you less of who you are. I'm not saying that every mg of prescription is perfect for every person.
I just wanted to touch on how I personality lived the life with out meds. Leaving me as an adult with emotional scars from having no worth as a child with ADHD. I often think how much more I could have been if I would have had meds sooner. Seeing that I was not given a choice, I now know I was given my trials so I could be who I am today. I just think I would have less emotional scars if I would have been able to be the REAL me through my most influential years of education.
Ironically, I am now looking at making these same choices for my oldest daughter who shows signs of ADHD. I fought with myself not wanting even look at the possibility of her having it. Fearing she would have to go through her life with this disorder. I realized that she won't have to go through my experiences because I am going to make a new way for her. I will use ALL the tools that are out there for her and she will be able to use this disorder to help her really focus on her interests and be a light to those around her because of her energy and joy. This what I hope people who read this journal get from it..... ADHD can be used to make someone better. You just have to give them all the tools to build there ship. There ship may look different then there neighbors but it will stay afloat and even may look cooler!

....After posting this I realized there was some "aha" moments for me while writing this. I realized for the forst time in my life I could give words to my afflictions in my past. It was something I always wanted to share but didn't have the words and theories in my mind yet to get it meaning. I am sure I will be adding to this because of now being Mj mom I will have a whole new set of rules to learn. I am thankful for all those people in my life that loved me dispite the disorder I have. That see me for the real me and try to lift me up. That is the energy I want in my future. I am barly learning to own my energy that I bring into an experience so I'm hoping to post more on this as I grow.

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