Wednesday, February 17, 2010

Then the Concerta wore off...

...I could write a whole book based on that premise.
The other night in Argentine Tango class, a classmate was having a hard time learning to lead a certain sequence of dance moves.
As he and his partner finally nearly nailed it I spontaneously started singing "Almost Paradise". Out loud...yep...out loud...because you know, he almost totally got it, and clearly needed a soundtrack to celebrate the moment. I'm just glad they thought it was funny. This was just a highlight of a whole second-hour of class that was all about me making random comments, apologizing for them, cracking up the class and trying really hard not to...but doing it anyway about 70% of the time. I was much quieter when I was younger...but I also spent a LOT of energy when I was young on trying not to interrupt (and anxiety is a powerful agent of control...but not the good kind...that's a whole other blog post...about noticing everything...having a too busy brain...overdosing on a lethal mixture of cognitive overabundance and ADHD "drive"...but anyway...<----------see, the Concerta's worn off and I'm not going to bother with editing...). And its amazing how much energy you can spend on that...I just don't waste the energy anymore unless I really have to. I still sort of can't believe I burst into "Almost Paradise" though....
And last night...holy crap, it's a good thing that monologing doesn't seem to be one of ADHD boy's primary ADHD manifestations...because it sure as shit is one of mine, and good lord, did that man get the monologue of his life last night. Ran about 40 minutes of Concerta-free living if I have to guess...he finished his dinner and two beers and there I was with my nachos still on my plate and unfortunately I'd also sucked down a margarita pretty quickly. That didn't quell the compulsion on bit, as I'm sure you can imagine. He always just smiles and listens when I do this. Who knows where HIS mind is while this is happening. Honestly...he seems to be actually listening. Maybe my talking is actually interesting enough to him still, at this early stage, that his ADHD brain is content to just hang out listening as the contents of mine puke themselves onto the table. Maybe he's just had a lot of practice at "active listening". Maybe he's sort of listening, but also sort of composing music in his head...or listening to the band at the other end of the bar...who knows...
The late evening is apparently when it wears off (which makes sense). Right around 8 PM the party begins in my brain. I don't notice it at first...I notice it when I finally do or say something ridiculous and obvious and then I feel like there's a spotlight shining on me and I'm embarrassed for a minute...and then think to myself "oh...the meds wore off...good times...". Then I just know that I need to go back into "consciously thinking about not going off on audible mental tangents" mode.
And just now...I'm a tree falling in the forest with no immediate audience because it's night-time. And zzzzzzzz to that...good night readers...good night mixed metaphors...good night cognitive overabundance...good night ADHD tangents....

Monday, February 15, 2010

Lollipops as concentration aid...

...sitting with ADHD boy's daughter on my lap yesterday, I felt the value of my diagnosis.

She sat on my lap, facing me, popping her cherry lollypop into her mouth, sucking on it, eyes scanning the room, popping it out of her mouth, sticking it on the end of my nose, then back into her mouth...over and over and over and says: "Daddy and Mumma told me I have something with my brain. I guess it makes it so your brain works differently and you have a harder time focusing on things and concentrating and uh, stuff like that...". Pause.

"Oh?" I say.

Lollypop goes back in mouth. Pops the lollypop back out of her mouth, sticks it on my nose again:

"I guess Daddy has it too."

"Yeah, he does," I reply. "Do you know who else does?".

Lollypop audibly re-appears. "Who!?".

"Me! I do."


"Yep. Really."

She inspects me sternly and carefully, lollipop twirling behind her lips...then smiles...and sticks the lollypop back on the end of my nose. Then attempts to jettison herself backward off of my lap with the lollipop back in her mouth. I grab her hands and remind her that gymnastics and lollipops just don't mix.

Even an ADHDer should only attempt doing just so many things at one time...

She removes the lollipop and resumes her contemplation, upside down.