Monday, April 11, 2011

Let's talk about what "as is" means...

Someone left a comment about just being myself "as is", and that's really an important concept to grasp. It's a comment with sincerity, simplicity and value, and when I am able to do so, this is what I really strive for.

It gets tricky though on the days where, for whatever reason, me in my natural state is in inherent conflict with everything else in my life. And I am not a person that seeks conflict.

This is where "being yourself" starts edging you into the territory where conflict with one's surroundings can be defined as a disorder.

There are mornings where I am truly too depressed to get up and I do anyway. There are mornings where I am so anxious that I feel like my innards might explode but I still have to go to work or wherever else I need to be that day. There are days where, for whatever reason, everything makes me want to cry, but I still need to do some laundry and help my husband with the kids. There are days when I am exuberant and unable to sit still but I still have to get the boring stuff taken care of. There are days where I feel simply at peace. Every day, at some point, inability to "focus" becomes an issue. And I have had to learn to temper various types of reactivity. At least one to two of these issues is at play every single day and it's not something I can choose.

I am the first to say that there is nothing inherently wrong with any of these states of being. But no matter what I think of them, I have to think about how my behavior will help me to mesh or not mesh with whatever it is that I need to do that day. I cannot choose what my body chemistry is doing. I cannot choose how I "feel". But I CAN choose what I will do and say as I move through the day.

My dog doesn't think about what and who he is like I do and there's charm to that. But frankly, it's gotten him into big trouble on occasion. You can't just bite people when you're feeling insecure and expect no consequences. You can't just pee on the rug every time you feel like it, because you don't feel like going outside.

Happily, my dog now sees the superiority of peeing outdoors (he gets a lot more freedom now that he does). My natural, unaltered state with no behavioral intervention involves a lot of behaviors and vocalizations that are simply not appropriate in settings where functional adult humans exist in their daily out-of-the-home-routines. Many of them would not be appropriate in my home either, really.

We with ADHD (or any other "disorder" that takes us out of the normal acceptable range of behavior) need to take responsibility for ourselves. So yes...we DO need to accept ourselves. But we also owe it to ourselves and every other creature we share space with during the day, to find that line between "us being us" and "us being assholes". This is not neurosis...this is necessity.


  1. Wow! That's the closest description to my life that I've ever heard! It was surreal to read about someone else experiencing virtually the same feelings and moods I have had all of my life. I'm truly happy to have found your blog. Love the ...that line between "us being us" and "us being assholes". I actually did lol. I have a 15 year old daughter with ADD and two step-daughters who are grown up now; one of whom also had ADD. Raising kids with ADD can be a daunting and exhausting job but your personal experience with ADD, guidance, and love will be invaluable gifts to them now and as they get older.

    God bless you!

  2. yes, I am so with you on all of that. I am a loving mom who sometimes has to make a concious choice of being a decent self regardless of my tempestuous range of emotions.

  3. Thank you for reading ADDMOM and other "Anonymous". I definitely write with the hope that people will take something useful away from what I right and I know what you mean - it feels good to find others who seem to understand what we are saying :)