Life After Diagnosis

While living with ADHD, you get acquainted with loss pretty well. If loss was a language, I’d speak it better than I do English. I’m on such familiar
terms with loss, I felt like my blog wouldn’t be complete without shouting it out in the title. For all of the familiarity, you would think it would have gotten easier. It hasn’t.

Loss isn’t always pretty, but it is necessary. It happens to all of us. It’s an ordinary pain, just like the Stevie Wonder song. Sometimes in life it takes a big loss to learn a valuable lesson. I am in the seventh year since my ADHD diagnosis, and I’m nothing like the woman I was then. I credit loss and the process of transformation with the change.

Here are 10 things I have lost besides my keys in these seven years.

10 Losses

  1. My tolerance for stupidity – if you’re going to be bold enough to be willfully ignorant in front of me, be prepared to suffer the consequences.
  2. My shyness – I was kind of a shy kid, but I’ve always had a secret thought life behind the quiet. Now, it’s not so secret.
  3. The ability to stay silent in the face of suffering – if somebody is hurting and I have the means to help them, I will.
  4. My political apathy– I really believe my generation and the generations to follow will be better informed about what can happen if you don’t vote than any other.
  5. The habit of holding a strong opinion without knowing the entire argument – this is actually a pet peeve of mine. Every argument has nuances. Don’t stare so long at one side of the coin that you forget the other one.
  6.  The arrogance of youth – if a hard head makes for a soft ass, I must have sat on pillows for a good portion of my twenties – ’nuff said.
  7.  Critiquing people whose struggle I can’t identify with – it is very easy to assume from the outside we know what is happening. Don’t.
  8. A spouse – nothing like a failed marriage to make you do some serious reflection on who you are and what you want out of life.
  9. My inflexibility when life doesn’t go according to plan – People who refuse to bend break. Nothing will torment your mind like not living up to your own expectations.
  10. The need for perfectionism – once when she was very young, my stepdaughter taught me an important life lesson. I was fuming over something that wasn’t going well and she, so practical even then, asked me “why does it always have to be perfect?” Stunned, I realized I had never contemplated that before. SO began my journey as a recovering perfectionist

What seems like a loss

There are so many lessons I have learned, one day I plan to write a whole book about them. It’s amazing how I can look back over my life now and see how symptoms like impulsivity and impatience shaped so many decisions that I have now had to rectify. The beautiful part is moving forward with a clear head, and a clean heart. Learn to embrace loss. It may be the key to finding yourself.

Until next time,

René

After 7 years of being a black woman with ADHD, I have lost some things I don't intend to look for.

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