Thursday, February 12, 2009

Stimulus and Stimulants

President Obama and I have a lot in common these days. He doesn't know me from Adam (or Eve) although I would have practically traded in my fuzzy red socks to see him get elected. I would have jumped ship temporarily (or house and home) to work on his campaign if I had been at a different stage in my life. No, he doesn't know me and never will, but we are both working for a common goal these days.

While President Obama is feverishly trying to stimulate the economy, I am desperately trying to stimulate my brain which has been misfiring all my life. The catch is that it's a lot easier to stimulate a brain IF you have the right tools than to stimulate a sagging, ailing economy. The irony is that it's taken me 42 years of struggle to find out what's wrong with me, and once discovered, it seems almost too easy. For our economy, however, there are multiple layers of reasons for its malfunction, and connecting the wires is a Herculean task.

I wish that creating jobs and improving the lives of Americans were so simple and fixable as my own brain. As all economists are warning, there is no magic pill, unfortunately. But for me, there is, or seems to be, at this moment. I am in the honeymoon phase of OBF optimal brain function (my own term) and each day's moments are lovely and relieving.

A couple of weeks ago I was diagnosed with adult ADD. That's Attention Deficit Disorder, for all of you whose brains are functioning optimally today. No, I do not have the ADHD type, "H" standing for hyper. Most adults don't actually. I have come up with a few of my own words to make it sound better, or sillier than it actually is, like ALWAYS DOING DUMB things or ALWAYS DREADING the DAY or ATTENTION: DRAMA DANCE coming your way or ATTENTION: DISASTER DEAD ahead or other nonsense.

Just one more: ATTENTION: DUH! DUH!!!!!!!!

But this disorder is real, as real as my heart pumping blood. Real.

Multiple times a day since the diagnosis I say to myself, "Oh yeah, that's why that happened and that's why I did that." If anymore light bulbs go on in my brain I will have to put on sunglasses to fight the glare of revelation that has opened up to me.

Since I started taking my stimulant medication I have gone from feeling half dead to feeling alive. The snow is pretty, not a pain in the butt. The autistic kids at school are funny instead of a pain in the butt. My children are busy, interesting and entertaining with lots of good things that I can be part of instead of energy sucking creatures that consume food, make a ton of dirty laundry and keep me taxiing around the city for hours a day. I love them so much!

Geez, will I finally be able to sit through church without wanting to get up and wander? Will I stop running to the store all the time? Will I stop overeating? Will I stop being the world's grouchiest MAMA in the mornings? Will I be able to function past 9 pm? Will I be able to finish a novel? Will I blog more than once a month? Will I start solving problems instead of creating them? Will I keep this same cell phone for more than six months? Will I? Will I? Will I? Perhaps, maybe, and I hope so more than anything.

Darren says I'm "firing from all cylinders" this week, like the Titanic without an iceberg in sight. Smooth sailing, calm waters, full steam ahead. Don't. Look. Back.


Whew! Mr. President, my fog is lifting, and I wish you luck in finding the light that can lift the mucky haze from the American economy and people.

I wish it were not so real for you.


Mark G said...

"...will I finally be able to sit through church without wanting to get up and wander?" I bet that has nothing to do with ADD... Hey, by the way I have ESS. Extreme Skeptic Syndrome. But if you're happy we're happy for you.

Kimberly said...

Hey welcome to the club. I know the feeling. When returning to school at the age of 32 to try and finish a Bachelor degree, I had a professor tell me "you act as if your not really here", Nice! I too am searching for a good stimulant that doesn't have nasty side effects. Let me know what you find.

Kimberly's husband Ashely

Marshall and Alison said...

I loved this. You are so eloquent and funny and real. "Will I...start writing again?" I hope so!

Macy said...

I like how you put things! I am glad that you are feeling good and moving "full steam ahead"! Spring is coming and that will help us all feel better!!! You are so great and I love chatting with you!

Cathy said...

Well written and I am so happy for you!