When I was a child back in Indiana and Chicago I was always being sent home with notes to my parents. It wasn’t for behavioral problems – I wasn’t the class clown or disruptor – No it was for shyness and in-attentiveness. The notes home read like this:
“Dear Mr. and Mrs. Gonzalez, Your daughter Vivian is daydreaming in class and is so shy she has trouble speaking with me fill in the blank teachers name about why she is falling behind in our classroom assignments. I recommend that we test Vivian for a learning disability. Sincerely, Miss So and so.
Yes its true I was and still am a Daydreamer but I also had serious attention issues that went undiagnosed for most of my adult life. Contrary to the teachers who had me and my family believe that I had a learning disability what I really had was ADD. Only in those days there wasn’t a name for one who is ” a daydream believer,” so I was definitely made to feel like the proverbial square peg. Other than numbers that to this day can make me sweat I was actually a smart and intuitive child and because most children and adults with ADD are smart they over compensate for their lack of attention span by becoming really really good multitaskers.
However eventually without medication – I finally bottomed out and found that reading was becoming harder even though I could still run my household simultaneously raise my kids and take care of my two rowdy dogs. So I found a specialist who tested me for ADD and what a surprise I was off the charts Attention lacking. How I made it through childhood and then adulthood without the help of medication you ask? It wasn’t easy and took it toll on me emotionally.
Prozac helped with the depression that accompanies ADD until it didn’t then I was put on Addy – yes Adderall and for first time was able to completely finish a book without having to read one paragraph up to 5 times over. Now I am not thin by any means – for those of us true ADD sufferers these meds don’t make one lose weight we can actually gain weight and I have. I am a size 8 or 10 depending on bloat, honest.
But the reason why I’m writing about this issue now is for two reasons first it runs in families, my mother definitely has it and my eldest son has inherited these same traits. but in this small town where my husband chose to retire the local pharmacy gives me a hard time every time I have to fill my script – because in their stupidity and judgement I am a drug abuser! Well to this end I have begun to read extensively about ADD – numerous articles say it doesn’t exist etc..but I found a book called Getting Unstuck written by Don Kerson, M.D. – a psychiatrist and sufferer himself – although highly clinical in nature the book is probably intended for doctors I did find some valuable information.
Then recently I was watching my local PBS station and The Amen’s who by the way have institutes across the country where they specialize in brain mapping and correctly treating the 7 different kinds of ADD. Yes there are 7 different kinds. Dr. Daniel Amen and his nurse/wife Tana were selling a 7 CD training manual to “cure ADD.” For the mere price of $247 I will attempt to get through these Cd’s workbooks and cookbooks, (exhausted just looking at them) while giving you the blow by blow of how I improve, or not or maintain throughout this rigorous process,
Stayed tune if you can…and dare. Vivian