It's adhd awareness month and I've been thinking a lot about my adhd journey this morning.
I'm in my mid-forties and up until a couple of years ago couldn't understand why I always felt like I was drowning in the basics of life. I used to get to work in the morning after either nursery or school drop off and practically sit with my head in my hands. I felt like I'd been dragged through a hedge backwards and that it should be the end of the day instead of the beginning. How on earth were my other work colleagues who are also parents managing to be so 'with it' when they get in?
Some mornings Zac would be dropped off at nursery in his PJs with his clothes handed over to the assistant as he had refused to get dressed (at this point he was undiagnosed adhd too and also had unidentified sensory issues with clothes). I'm also time blind and struggle to gauge how long something will take, thereafter panicking about being late (my dad was like this too). So this stress was likely to have been weighing down subconsciously on Zac too back then.
I don't enjoy cleaning, in fact I'd go as far to say that I hate it. I do it because knowing my home is clean brings me some mental order to my life. But the process doesn't light up my brain at all therefore I get zero dopamine rush when doing it. Life was so busy with Zac activities and extra work that I forced myself to do the cleaning in the small time gaps I had. I cried some days as it was so very dull and I really wasn't in the mood. It felt physically painful.
Working 4 days but doing a 5 day fast paced job meant I had to be organised. We all know how adhd folks struggle with organisation to some degree and have to work extra hard to stay on top of it. I regularly broke down, properly breaking down annually but on a smaller scale more regularly.
Three years ago I was diagnosed with depression. I now know it wasn't depression, it was undiagnosed adhd. I was put on anti-depressants after resisting for weeks and signed off work for 6 weeks. I did start to feel better after week 6 and thought it was maybe the pills, however, it was likely to have been the mental rest. The pills dampened my emotions which I didn't like as I often wanted to cry and couldn't. I'm recently off these now and true to adhd form I'm feeling every emotion more intensely. This is tricky! Dealing with impatience again at a more intense level is challenging. But I'm making the most of what I've learned through my coaching course to manage this. My tool box is fuller, it's still not easy but it's better than I was before as I understand what's going on now.