I am stuck. I’m not sure I even know what to say here….and if I say it, will it make sense? Will I ramble until anyone with a semblance of interest, looses interest 5 lines in? I have no clue. But I am stuck. I need help, advice, something…damn…ANYTHING. My family seems to have given up, and I can’t say I blame them.
I’m not sure I can tell ‘my story’ here without losing anyone who might be interested enough to read. It is long and annoying, and very very confusing. But, I’m not a quitter. I have a young son who depends on me…he is the only thing that has kept me fighting this long. He deserves the world, and I’ll be darned if I give up before trying to give it to him. So, I will try to tell my story, and pray that someone out there listens long enough to offer something…anything.
I’ve not always known about my add. I was just…less, growing up. I was shy, quiet, polite, giving and caring. “pretty”, so they said, …all the things added up, except that polite, shy, young pretty girls are usually smart. (not my words). So I was told most of my life, that I had potential but didn’t try hard enough. I remember, so vividly, my step mom, trying to do homework with me. She became exasperated when I couldn’t answer things she had read to me just 3 minutes ago. I just wasn’t trying, she said. I needed to apply myself, and pay more attention. I “could be so much in life, if I would just TRY” Christ, those words haunted me all my life. I tried in school, I spent hours and hours reading the same chapters in school books, but the information never seemed to sink in. I never understood. Why did I try so hard and still barely make passing grades? By the time I was in my late-ish teens, I believed the words spoken to me all my life. Except, “I don’t understand why you aren’t trying”….year after year, started sounding like one thing. I was just not good enough. I wasn’t as smart, as good, as useful, as those around me. By the time I turned 16 I truly believed I was stupid. I could go on and on, and maybe I will if anyone can listen…later. But in short, my whole life was impacted by ‘not being good enough’. I had no long term friends, I always feared they didn;t like me. I thought they saw what I saw, when they looked at me. And who needs broken, damaged goods? God help me, but those years sucked. I feel a whole range of emotions when I come to terms with my lack of diagnoses, and subsequent life events…all because of what I was taught to think of myself. My step mom started hitting me at 6, my first serious boyfriend beat me, when I took him abck, he raped me and took my virginity (the last things of worth I had left)
But life went on.
At 37, after a few years on anti-depressants with a new doctor (on and off my whole life), something inside me clicked. I didn’t believe these meds did anything but make me feel numb. When my doctor stopped listening, I switched to a new physician. The first day I met her, and spoke to her at length…she handed me some forms, and asked me to fill them out and come back. The forms were an assortment of add tests. I laughed when I read the captions on the tests at first. Immediately dismissing them. I didn’t have ADD or ADHD, silly doctor. I was anything but hyper…But, I started to fill them in anyhow….and as I read, I started to tremble. These test, it was as if someone crawled into my head, and wrote them from my mind.
I’m rambling, as I said I would. Let me see if I can get to a point.
My doctor ‘diagnosed’ me with adhd. Wait times where I live, for psychologists, are 2+ years… but she firmly believed my history of anxiety, depression diagnosis , were a direct result of a life with adhd. I was still doubtful, but took the prescription home.
The day I took my first pill….it, just, stopped me in my tracks. One little pill, and it was as if someone wiped to fog from in front of my very eyes. As if I had been standing on a fast moving merry-go-round my whole life, and didn’t know it…as if someone finally slow the ride down. All these things that I never understood, couldn’t say, couldn’t explain, became crystal clear. I could talk to my husband , in clear words, and explain exactly what I wanted to say, without fumbling over my own words and thoughts. It was, surreal. Almost unbelievable. I told my doc, it was as if I spent my entire life in a room, a foggy room, much like that of a bathroom just after a shower. And everything I saw, and witnessed, everything I tried to say or experience was blanketed by that fog. While my dosage was adjusted over the next month, the feeling was incredible. I no longer needed, or wanted to hide within my self. I truly felt as if I started my life again. I became a true, and useful mommy to my son.
5 weeks in, my doctor pulled me off medication. That feeling, of the fog rolling back in was the worst in my life. Yes, I lived with it my whole life, dealth with ‘it’, so maybe not being on medication should not have felt so bad….but going from feeling dumb, to knowing that was not the case, to going back into that unclear fog of thought….it was the single worst feeling of my life. I had a ‘condition’ called SVT. One that made my heart beat fast, randomly. It started off at once or twice a year, and was gradually increasing before I started concerta. Once on concerta, it happened daily. My heart rate spiking from 85 bpm, to 200/210 in seconds. The medication was no longer safe for me. But, neither was the condition. After 3 trips to the ER to ‘restart’ the rhythm of my heart with Adenosine (spelling?), my cardiologist suggested surgery. An ablation fixed the issue by zapping some parts of my heart causing the issue. My doctor was happy to re-introduce me to medication, after my 6 month break.
The kicker….it didn’t work. All the way up to the highest recommended dose of Concerta….nothing. So we switched, and switched and switched. almost a year and a half after my heart procedure….after having my life opened up before my very eyes…I am still in that fog. Suddenly, no medication works, and trust me, I have now tried so many. Some, leave a slight tingling in the back of my brain. Like the slightest hint of recognition and understand, but nothing like how clear I felt when I took one 10m tablet of concerta.
There is more. Of course. But i feel like a patron who has overstayed her welcome. I feel, utterly useless. I feel like giving up. My family is at a loss. Tired of listening to things they do not understand. I want to lay down and give up. But my family, they need me…so I am stuck. Half whole. Back to just feeling stupid. And still 1 year left on a waitlist of someone with the experience that might help me.
I’m stuck in a place that feels like a dark hole. And alone, for the better part of it. At least in my head
For thsoe who have made it this far, thank you. Any advice…would be welcome. Just writing this took me…well, a long time.
so, for what it is worth. thank you
For what it is worth: my own take is that after seeing my ‘normal’ and how clear I could feel with medication, the sudden lack of it, and my dealing with that alone, lead to a secondary issue: Depression.
Last month my doctor agreed and put me on wellbutrin. On it, things started to improve after 6 weeks. So she started adderall in addition. The first few days, I started feeling really great. Even my family saw the change and became excited that mommy could be back on track. Then…abruptly, I felt nothing upon taking the two meds. How is that even possible? I am beginning to think I have gone mad…
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