Nope, this is not about the daughter, though tangentially related.
Given the recent developments around here, I've been oversensitive about things such as twice exceptional children, out of sync children, and the like. It's not that I didn't care before, it's just that understandably, the topic has become more reasonant to my own experiences.
So it was that when someone on Facebook posted this article, I was like, "What the h, I'll look at it". While reading it, I realized two things: (a)I've seen this article before; and (b) I wasn't paying enough attention the first time.
I recognized myself in this, a lot. By the end of the article I was like "Holy shit!". I am not much for self diagnosis, so the next time I saw my therapist I mentioned it to her. She pointed out that raising kids is somewhat chaotic, and the lack of sleep didn't help. "It may be so, but some of this stuff, I've done for as long as I can remember!"
To wit: I am always, always late to anything. The only way I've ever not been late to important things, has been to try to show up early, which gets me there barely on time. Then I get so self conscious about running late that I zone out of conversations intermittently. I've had people give me an earlier meeting time than they meant to show up so they wouldn't have to wait for me. I've never taken offense to that, as it makes sense to me. I'd do the same thing, knowing me.
I procrastinate, and while for years I embraced it, I do it now even though I don't want to. The whole point of restarting therapy was to figure out why I can'tseem to get started on my thesis. I really want to. I gathered lots of info. I just can't seem to work on it in small increments, which is the whole point of writing a voluminous paper.
I lose things a lot too. If I recounted how many times I've lost my keys, you could be reading here all day, and still not be done. At some point, I had lost my debit card so often that the bank charged me a fee to replace it due to the frequency with which I was requesting replacements (I've gotten better at it: I only lose it twice a year as of late). My dad often said of me, since I was a tot "You would lose your head if it wasn't attached to the rest of you."
My husband, who read the same article after my therapist said that comparing notes might help clarify things, was like "Yeah, it's actually eerily close to how you've been for as long as I've known you."
The next step was getting my psychiatrist to reccommend someone with expertise on ADHD in adults. "Oh, I can help. It's one of my areas of expertise.", she told me earlier this week. So it was that I went to see her, and looked at some diagnostic instruments. Long story short: I have ADHD without the hyperactive component. My psychiatrist guesses that not having hyperactivity, coupled with being smart enough to develop coping mechanisms for the inattention part (finishing things as quickly as possible, and obsessively checking and rechecking school work), made me fly just under the radar as a kid and young adult. If I had to guess, I had problems in law school and am now having issues to a lesser extent in grad school because those compensating strategies just don't stretch quite far enough.
Quitting law school taught me that failure wasn't the end of the world, that you could learn that some things just aren't meant to be, and there is no shame in saying "this is just not for me". Still, sometimes it still seemed like I would struggle worse at being an adult than most other people I know.
Part of what I worked in therapy the first time around was trying not to compare myself to others unfavorably, to be forgiving of of myself as much as I could, and to accept myself as I am. It still didn't help with my core feeling that some things just seemed hard for me: getting organized, following through, getting started.
This recent twist, though, explains it all. When I told my therapist about the psych visit and what I discussed with my psychiatrist, she said "At the very least, it gives you a new perspective on your life's journey, doesn't it?".
It does. It also means the difficult part (the "what are you gonna do about it?" portion) is about to begin.