9/16/09

I'm Putting the Deficit in Attention

Wednesday~September 16, 2009


This is getting ridiculous.

Really.

I screamed today. At myself. Hands up in the air, flailing about and then down to my face to cover it because I was SO FRUSTRATED WITH MY FREAKING BRAIN. I was saying "NOOOOO....NOOOOO you DID NOT!" All by myself with no one around, just me yelling at me.

Last week Asher's pediatrician looked at me and told me I have Attention Deficit Disorder.

He's not even my doctor, but he can tell. THAT'S not embarrassing AT ALL.

I said, "Yeah, I know."

He said, "Do you get help for it?"

I said, "Um...no."

He said that it might be a good idea, and to try to not be ashamed, and then I almost cried. Then I was all, "yeeeaaaah, you're right, I should," but my mind had already wandered. So it was too late, how would I remember to get help later if I had already moved on to thinking about pretty flowers or dinner or the way his foot was tapping?

So this will come as no surprise, but I forgot about the preschool picnic. Then I forgot about orientation. Then today, I forgot about Asher's eye appointment. Even though it was all on the calendar.

You know, the calendar I forget to look at.

Oh...and this is the clincher. The appointment we missed today? TWO reminder calls yesterday!!! Yes! They called me TWO times and I was all "yeah, yeah, yeah...we'll be there."

Ha!

My best friend said, "You never used to be like this," and I was all, "I KNOW!" Then I said, "Maybe it's just Mommy Brain, but wait....no...it's been there my whole life, I just could manage it before because there weren't as many distractions!!!" Uh huh, I had a light bulb moment! (All too frequent in my busy brain.)

So now I'm that mom...you know the one. The one who is always late, forgets play dates, forgets to pay for stuff, forgets to return calls, has piles of paper EVERYWHERE, and does absolutely everything sporadically. The one who seems to not care about anything when really, she does care but she just can't manage anything. Yeah...that's me. Great.

Just so you know. I care about you. I just can't find my keys. Or my phone. Or my way around the house.

The other day, when Asher's doctor was talking to me about my brain he said, "You know...the very most creative people have minds like yours. You have to look at it that way."

Which is fine. That's nice and everything. But while I'm being all creative, who in the world is going to show up to stuff on my behalf?

Just wondering. Cause that's pretty much all I do. I wonder.

The End.

54 clicked right here to comment:

wendy said...

See-----YOU ARE CREATIVE --that was a funny post, even though it was about a frustrating situation for you. HEY, you care about the important things --you said so --you care about people.
Those you come in contact with KNOW that.
Do you need to stick post it notes all around the house?????
hang in there

Blessed said...

I have the very same problem - my hubby doesn't get it - that makes it worse.

Jen said...

You are a very creative person. I don't think that you have anything to be ashamed of. Maybe a little help would make you an even better, more organized, Mommy.

Kristina P. said...

My husband has it. Instead of being an understanding social worker wife, I just berate him.

Oh, and will you tell Kelly that her no commenting experiment is stupid and it should be over. I miss her and I hate that I can't comment!!

C @ Kid Things said...

I'm not sure what's worse; forgetting everything, or doing what I do and worrying over every little thing.

Tracey - Just Another Mommy Blog said...

I totally forgot what I was going to say here which would be a funny little joke to type except for the fact that it's 100% true.

Steph @ Diapers and Divinity said...

Note to self: Send Heather THREE reminders before our next bloggy get together. :)

Oh, and it would be very wrong if I judged you for this. Only within the last six months have I begun to arrive at anything on time since 2003.

Heather of the EO said...

C- You know, that's part of my problem. I think about ALL things SO much (worrying some too) that they all just run together and then I shut down and forget stuff. It's totally not awesome.

Kimberly said...

Now I'm wondering if I need to go see a doctor because you just described MY life and MY brain. I got a threatening letter from the dentist's office even saying if I missed another appointment they'd have to start charging me a fee. SO embarrassing.

I spend so much time flitting from thought to thought that I never do what I'm meant to be doing. My husband is the exact opposite which makes me feel even more freakish. But you, writing this, made me feel not so alone in it. Thank you, you brave girl you!

katdish said...

Oh, Heather! It's okay. Really. I completely understand your frustration. I am so ADD it's not even funny. And I mean that - sometimes you have to laugh to keep from crying. I was diagnosed when I was 20 years old. I had never even heard of ADD or AD/HD before. When I was tested, the doctor asked me to answer a series of questions. He started asking me, "What is 50 + 51, the 150 + 201, etc. I burst into tears. I was so ashamed because my mind simply could not compute those simple equations. But it was a huge weight off of my shoulders just knowing what I was dealing with.

And not to pimp my own blog here, but you might find this a bit amusing if not helpful:

The Top Ten Things your friend/significant other with ADD wants you to know but keeps forgetting to tell you.

togetherforgood said...

Girl I feel your pain. I can tell you one thing that has helped a lot-- not made it perfect, but helped-- and that is my google calendar. I enter EVERYTHING in there, and if it's something I'm likely to forget I set it up to send me email reminders. Because I am constantly checking my email. I cannot tell you how much it has helped. Seriously.

Anonymous said...

I so relate.
Ummm, what was that post about again?

susannah said...

oh my goodness. i soooooo relate to this one. i swear i am that mom too! and i hate it. sigh.

Anonymous said...

I'm 52 yrs. old & after spending my entire life thinking about everything & concentrating on nothing, I finally decided to go to a dr. who encouraged me to try some ADD medication. It really works! I can listen to lectures all the way through, I can read an entire chapter of a book without day-dreaming through half of it, & recently I sat through a 4-hr CPR class & didn't have to panic that I forgot to listen. Driving for long stretches is easier too.

I always came up with just enough survival strategies to keep my head above water and appeared to function normally, but I always felt like I had a lot of secrets. And I dreaded doing anything which required concentration like balancing a checkbook or learning ANYTHING new.

There are some days when I just feel like letting my mind wander all over the place so I don't take the medicine. But most of the time, it's wonderful to have 'mental-traction'. MIME

warmchocmilk said...

Okay. You better not forget about our dinner tomorrow night. 7pm. Well whatever I am coming to your house to pick you up, if you forget, you'll remember when you see me sitting in the driveway :)

Oh Heather! It's fine...we all forget stuff. No big deal.

blueviolet said...

Your kids are all fed, clothed, and alive. I'd say you're in good shape.

Lara said...

I am this post.

My husband doesn't get ADD. And he can't understand why it is so hard for me to get myself to appointments. Bria used to have a church activity she was supposed to go to every other Wednesday and I made it ONCE in a year's time. ONCE. Joel was so bugged at me. It was the every other week thing that killed me. But, doctor's appointments and everything else is hard, too. I have to remember to look at my planner.

I have kind of been against medication, but I'm curious now after reading anonymous up there a couple posts. Interesting. Hmmmm.

Haley said...

This happens to the best of us...ADD or not.

Being a mom is tough stuff...plain and simple.

Elaine A. said...

If you ever forget to be creative then I'll worry. Otherwise, not so much.... ;-)

Jillene said...

I think you are AMAZING!!

april said...

Yeah, I have a little bit of that AND OCD. Seriously.

And I heart you. Have I told you that lately?

L.T. Elliot said...

My husband and my twin sons have ADD. For my husband, this post is his life every day! Sometimes we'll fight and literally by the end of the fight, he'll have no clue what we were fighting about to begin with. It's frustrating for him but it honestly doesn't bother me much. We adapt.
However, for my hubby, he doesn't want to have to adapt. He hates it.
I'm sorry, Heather. But I'm with everyone else here: You're VERY creative and I love you just the way you are.

Jamie said...

I seem to be getting more and more like this as I get older...except I'm totally not creative at all!

Sara E said...

we are soooo in the same club! a little scatterbrained and creative :) I like it

Motherboard said...

That is the story of my life! I kid you not-- we live parallel lives!

1 word: Wellbutrin. Works for depression AND ADD... just sayin'.

momcat said...

The thing is with forgetting stuff especially important stuff is it makes you feel incapable. I'm a mom of ADD kids and I know how frustrated I feel about them forgetting stuff after I've reminded them. How about getting hub to programme your cellphone with alarm reminders for like the day before to prepare and for the morning when you have to go to an appointment or school function. Whatever you think would work for you. There's always a solution to the problem. If you were blind you would have to rearrange the furniture so dont beat yourself up about something you have little control over.

a Tonggu Momma said...

Are the children alive? Check. Are they dressed and fed? Check. You're all set. Oh, wait a minute, one more thing. Are YOU dressed??? (Because it's not good to run around the house in your underthings. Believe me, I learned that lesson the hard way.)

Gretchen said...

No worries, you are perfectly normal! My mom told me a story about when she was young, her mother (who had five small kids at the time)got all the kids dressed and out the door, started walking down the street to church before realizing that she was still only wearing her slip. She totally forgot to put her dress on!

Janet said...

Can you get an iPhone and use the calendar? Set the alarm to ring twice - once a few hours before an event, and once when you need to leave the house to get there. With a little organization, you can get back on track. Good luck!

Janet said...

Can you get an iPhone and use the calendar? Set the alarm to ring twice - once a few hours before an event, and once when you need to leave the house to get there. With a little organization, you can get back on track. Good luck!

WhisperingWriter said...

It's Mommy Brain. Really. I suffer from it too. I can't remember things and I feel so spacey half the time.

charrette said...

This is exactly me. EXACTLY. I forget to write stuff in the calendar, or write it and forget to look at it, or forget where I put it. And I forgot to take Jeremiah to scouts last week after two reminder calls! Pathetic.

And I KNOW I'm creative. But society seems to favor efficient and organized over creative.

And I SWEAR I got ADD from my kids (like maybe it's contagious, or inherited in reverse?) because I was NEVER like this before.

The killer was when I suddenly realized I missed the entry deadlines for two art exhibits I'd been planning on for months. For one i had the paintings all framed and ready to go, just FORGOT TO TAKE THEM TO THE MUSEUM!

The sad thing? is it appears to be worsening with age....

Well, at least I know I'm in good company!

Billy Coffey said...

You know, those people are right. They say da Vinci was like this. And Einstein. And Edison. So you see, you're in great company.

In the meantime, I find that carrying a notebook wherever I go helps. I write everything down, which helps me remember. Unless I forget to put it in my pocket, of course.

Sabrina said...

You are awesome! Don't forget about our date tonight. JUST KIDDING!! I'm just messing with you! :)
Hope to see you soon though!

Sara@i.Sass said...

Heather I need to tell you I was laughing through the whole post.
Not AT you.
Just because I was like:
"Yeh, so , I'm the same way. I thought it was NORMAL for the mind to wonder and forget things. Isn't that just getting old, not challenging the mind."
I'm certainly not going to sit and do crossword puzzles to "stay sharp" I'd never get anything done. I'd start obsessing over completing them and having the right answer meanwhile the laundry would pile up, the kids would get forgotten..."What, you want lunch but it's only (look at the clock) 2PM!!!! Well, I was only trying to keep sharp!"
I think it's normal, I think we are so used to the world going at such a fast pace we feel we can't keep up and if fact WE can't. If you are worried see YOUR doctor, talk it over with him.
As for me, I love you JUST the way you are! :)

SPEAKING FROM THE CRIB said...

visiting from SITS - i also forget everything too and never used to be like that either. i have the calendar posted on the fridge, bc God knows I could there 50 times a day, and I still forget nearly everything I'm supposed to do, including going to my son's 1st grade open house. you're not alone!

Wendi @ Every Day Miracles said...

Oh man - I know, I know, I know. I have been a little bit worried about myself lately - all of my forgetting and stuff. I was blaming it on "placenta brain" (always a good excuse when one is pregnant) but felt a little panicky for when the pregnancy is over and the forgetful distracted behavior continues - 'cause I KNOW it will.

Big bold heart you Heather. :)

Laura Moffitt said...

Well yesterday I went and had an ADD assessment because I work for three different people about to have a fourth and things are slipping, alot of things. So turns out hey I do have it and my doc didn't talk about anything but drugs. No other options just here is a prescription you get a free 30day trail start it tomorrow morning. Since I am so impulsive I got the prescription I took the pill this morning, haven't really noticed a difference, and then my sister asked about all the side effects especially for pregnant women since I have no children and am planning on it in the near future. I hate when she makes me second guess but she is usually right. Do I really want to become dependent on a pill forever and have to slowly increase my dosage over the years? What happens when I die and I am the same person without the pills to keep me straight and I never learned how to do it on my own?!! But on the other side can I afford to not do it because one day the thing that slips at work will be monumental and then what? Sorry I don't have any tips or suggestions for you but I do have empathy, alot of it. I am always here for a chat.

Laura Moffitt said...

Well yesterday I went and had an ADD assessment because I work for three different people about to have a fourth and things are slipping, alot of things. So turns out hey I do have it and my doc didn't talk about anything but drugs. No other options just here is a prescription you get a free 30day trail start it tomorrow morning. Since I am so impulsive I got the prescription I took the pill this morning, haven't really noticed a difference, and then my sister asked about all the side effects especially for pregnant women since I have no children and am planning on it in the near future. I hate when she makes me second guess but she is usually right. Do I really want to become dependent on a pill forever and have to slowly increase my dosage over the years? What happens when I die and I am the same person without the pills to keep me straight and I never learned how to do it on my own?!! But on the other side can I afford to not do it because one day the thing that slips at work will be monumental and then what? Sorry I don't have any tips or suggestions for you but I do have empathy, alot of it. I am always here for a chat.

Laura Moffitt said...

Oh by the way if you are curious enough the pill I am taking is Vyvanse.

Eowyn said...

Sorry. I can't help you. I forget things all the time. I know that most of my family tends to be slightly that way--though I'm not that way to the extent that you talk about here.

I'll take the creativity! I'd show up for you, but. . .well. . .I am here. . .

radioactive girl said...

I have been feeling this way a lot lately too. I do have 4 kids and things are chaotic all the time here anyway, but I think other people might manage it a bit better than I do sometimes.

Don't worry, I bet if you forgot to show up I would have totally forgotten that you were supposed to anyway so we'd make pretty good friends I think.

mama-face said...

Dang. I have a great memory; which explains my lack of creativity. It's about time I learned this. pun intended.

Your son's Dr. diagnosed you. um..... not good.

My children's pediatrician once told me I was a good sized woman. ????? Maybe he said that because he was shorter than me. (I am a towering 5'5".) (Srsly, I'm just not that large...) And I am sure he never knew how sad that comment made me. men.

Melanie J said...

My MIL has ADD and drives me crazy and makes me laugh all at once. I say, just go with the laughing thing.

Shana said...

I feel like a broken record saying this yet AGAIN, but reading this post was like looking into a mirror. I kept yelling "Yes!" and "Exactly!" and "I KNOW!" in my head as I read your words and descriptions! Not to sound all creepy, but it's as if you totally GET ME. Ok, so that sounded creepy. But I really appreciate your posts because it makes me feel UNDERSTOOD. Thank you. Again.

Mammatalk said...

I hear ya. I'm lucky if I can find my own blog somedays...

Lisa @ Crazy Adventures in Parenting said...

I love you. We are the same. THE END.

To Think is to Create said...

Yes. Exactly me too. I really would like someone to just be my clone and do all the grown up stuff while I go around and be VERY CREATIVE.

Sigh.

Evolving Mommy Catherine said...

Okay seriously though, I think Mommy Brain should be a REAL diagnosis with treatment and everything. I think good treatment would be a nap for mommy or 20 minutes to drink a cup of coffee before it gets cold.

ADD isn't such a bad thing and there can be natural ways to help too.

CC said...

Awwwww! Hugs!!!

When my BIL was a family doctor, one of his specialty areas was adult ADD and ADHD. Just saying.....

Debbie said...

Yeah. I'm thinking it isn't ADD at all and that it really is Mommy Brain. Let's see that fancy shmancy doctor live your life for 3 days. He'll forget his own name.

Carrie said...

Heather, I totally have ADD, too - not even joking. I forget all kinds of things & because of it, like as a reaction to it, I plan everything out TO A T, and I get totally stressed if I don't have a plan - like on the way to town, the whole time, I'm going "okay I have 3 places to go - Walmart, Subway, Wegman's. Walmart, Subway, Wegman's, because I'm so afraid I'll forget something! So I totally understand!!!

Tiaras said...

I don't think I would like my kid's dr telling me that!! But, ONce I had kids, I forgot my brain somewhere too!

Tooj said...

Do you ever wonder if we're all that way...a bit? Some people might mask or manage it better...but what you've described...I feel like everyone I know has been there, to some extent. One day, I was alone at lunch....going through a drive-thru. I handed her my twenty, took my food, and off I went. Leaving 15bucks in change. Yeah. GO ME. I've forgotten orientation before and doc visits. I called to apologize. I'm sure they thought I was nutty. I said "I don't care." You should too. :)

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