Sometimes, when I’m driving my husband crazy, I think the world is divided into two halves. Those who have ADHD and those who live with those wild, crazy and fun-loving people who don’t. You can tell which half I belong to.
It can be so frustrating to be on either side of this equation. It feels liberating to me to leave for work and get in my car and go wherever I’m intending to go and actually have everything I need with me. I don’t even mind going back inside once for my keys. I’ll roll my eyes when going back again for my phone. I’m furious at myself when I have to make my third trip back for my travel mug of coffee. Then I’m disgusted with myself when I’m at work and realize my lunch bag is on the kitchen table at home.
So imagine how my husband feels? Actually, I can’t. It was probably cute on our first couple of dates. And an eccentricity which wasn’t a big deal until we lived together. I bet he can count on one hand the number of times he has had to go back into the house because he has forgotten something. His ability to get everything together in one shot is rather annoying, actually.
By the way, I’m just referring to walking to the car, getting in it, turning it on (if I haven’t left the keys inside) and then realizing something that I need, like my phone/bag/lunch bag/coffee/work papers/gloves/brain are still inside.
On my commute, I have a traffic light that I use as my last opportunity to turn around and return to the house to get something I left. Literally the point of no return.
My husband frequently tells me to make a list. Like I would remember to:
- Make the list
- Read the list
- Remember the list
Right now I am visualizing the ADD/ADHD readers nodding their heads and saying Yesssss! And the family members of the ADD/ADHD wonderful people, sighing and thinking how even reading this is putting them in a bad mood.
Oh I’m assuming that everyone knows that ADD is attention deficit disorder and ADHD is attention deficit hyperactivity disorder. I think I’m in the first category. I can sit still for 45 minutes to an hour. While mentally going through everything I’ve forgotten.
I’m getting a little better. Forget my iPhone, though. I rarely remember to put anything in the calendar on the phone. Unless it’s something that repeats daily. Like my noon prayer. But even with the home calendar, it’s a challenge to remember walking from one room to the next what I want to jot down on the kitchen calendar.
I never did remember what I was supposed to do a couple of weeks ago on the 11th. But I haven’t received any phone calls so I guess I’m in the clear.
One of my colleagues is now raising his hand “My turn, my turn.” He will recount that every single period that we teach together, almost every single day, before I leave the room he says :
Colleague: Do you have your keys? Do you have your bag? Do you have your coffee? Do you have your phone?
To all family members, friends and colleagues of ADD/ADHD people, thank you for your patience. Or for however much patience you are able to summon.
We don’t do it on purpose.