I went in with Thomas and his nurse psychiatrist Friday for an emergency session (he’s been having some growing issues and we’re trying to head off a major meltdown). And we were talking about this and that, and then she noticed a look on my face and said, “What?” and I said, “I do that.” She whipped out two evaluation forms and gave me and Thomas both copies and told us to get busy. I scored twice what Thomas did. She sent me home armed with a long list of URLs to read and information to discuss with my psychologist next Friday – as well as stuff to watch for in Thomas over the next three weeks until we see her again.
What we discussed makes a ton of sense in retrospect.
I got bored in school – I thought it was the teachers and materials, but like Thomas I have to be actively engaged in something or I get bored real quick (I can’t watch tv without doing something else to save my life). And if I’m in a bad mood or upset and get bored, then bad random things happen. I don’t tend to turn pyromaniac or raze the apartment complex. But I’ll find little things to destroy. Like I’ll take a sheet of writing paper and tear it into tiny thin strips and then tear the strips into 1/4″ pieces, for example.
People can look me straight in the face and say, “The sky is blue,” and I’ll have no understanding of what they said no matter how many times they explain it. Preston can tell me, “I love you,” and sometimes I don’t ‘get it’. Or people can look me straight in the face and talk to me and I’ll have no clue what they’re saying. It turns into listening to the teacher from the Peanuts. “Wah wah wah wah wah.” That happened to me with teachers in school, too. It happens to me all the time. It’s embarrassing. It’s not that I’m not listening, I am. It’s just that what they’re saying just doesn’t make sense.
If I’m having a bad day, the least little tiny thing can be absolutely overwhelming – enough to the point that I have to go lay down and sleep, and I’ll sleep so hard that I dream. Thomas’ nurse psychiatrist said this is normal. She said kids with undiagnosed ADHD have been diagnosed with narcolepsy because they get overwhelmed in school and their brains / bodies just shut down.
I’m bad for leaving the oven on or walking away and leaving stove burners on (it’s a good thing all the apartments I’ve ever lived in have electric stoves). I’m bad, even, for forgetting I’m cooking. I can take a book into the kitchen with me to read or editing to work on while I’m fixing in-depth stuff that takes a while (like stuff you have to stand and stir or stuff you have to flip) and even with me right there, I’ll forget I’m cooking and end up burning something – even with a timer set.
My pantry is so organized that it’s ridiculous. I can’t stand anything out of order. I have to ‘fix it’. All of my books are arranged on the shelf alphabetically by author (then by date of release). All of our dvds are arranged alphabetically (with my Disney collection first so it’s all in the same place, and all the tv shows are together inside the entertainment center). I’m meticulous about what I write on the backs of photographs. Who, what, when, where. I have organizer dividers in my ‘junk drawer’ in both my bedroom and my kitchen. I know where everything I own is and I know when something goes missing or is out of place. I keep certain things in certain places in my kitchen – hell, even my refrigerator and freezer are ‘organized’.
There’s more, but that’s the gist.
Apparently ADHD and Bipolar are common together.
I’ve never been one to ‘believe’ in ADD or ADHD. I’ve always thought they were labels thrust upon children who lacked proper discipline and supervision – and children like Thomas who need undivided attention whenever they’re awake. But I do ‘believe’ that there are true cases here and there. I have to say seeing this in myself has been a shock – but not a shock. If that makes any sense. It’s just that while we were sitting there talking, a lot became crystal clear and made so much sense.
I’m going to have a long discussion with my psychologist about this on Friday morning. She’s probably going to tell me it’s a logical manifestation of my panic disorder – I won’t be surprised. She’s already told me that OCD is manifested because it helps us control at least one thing in our environment.
[[eta ~~> I want to say that I dropped out of my weekly panic disorder therapy group three weeks ago. My therapist and I found ourselves sitting there alone at one point on the last Monday I went, and we started discussing some things. It became abundantly clear that I needed to leave the group and fall back into individual therapy. It also became clear that I have to go on antidepressant medication of some kind. I’ve avoided such for the last twenty years. It does bad things to me – although I keep hoping that there’s one out there somewhere that can do some good; medicine has come a very long way the last twenty years.
So while I was in therapy with Thomas Friday I asked his nurse practitioner about seeing someone at his clinic – since they take Medicaid (I’ve been uninsured since July 1991), and I have to go somewhere I can afford (like where my therapist works is run by the state). She told me to apply for Medicaid and bring in a copy of my denial letter. Then the appointments will be only $25 (am paying $12 per visit to my current therapist). She said I could continue on with my current therapist and use their clinic to help with medications.
I was discussing this with Kathy while Thomas and I were in Renfro Valley last week because I had no clue how I could ever afford the medication once I do get it. She got to looking at Wal-Mart and Kroger online and a large number of antidepressants and antianxietals are available from both under their ’30 day supply for $4-$10′ plans. We were able to find the antidepressant I was on after I had Thomas. It’s the only one that ever did me any good. I was happy and surprised it’s even still being made.
Now I’ve just got to apply for Medicaid, get to CKBH, and get on with it.
Busy. Busy. Busy.]]