Tag Archives: adhd

Time cards are for geniuses

For this otherwise glorious job, I have to fill out timecards once every two weeks. I’ve never managed to get it right. I write down the wrote date, forget to give myself credit for hours I’ve worked and once had to pay for days I actually worked because I screwed up so badly. It sucks and I hate it. I wish I had a job with a personal secretary, a competent, good one, because I need it. I need a housekeeper, too. Those are two tasks beyond my level of skills. I think I always thought I’d have those things, so I didn’t focus on two very important tasks. My house remains a mess, and often visits the world of shambles. I am not sure how to handle this well. There is this book my mom got me, “Sidetracked Home Executive” and it is effective. But I have to remember to use it, and not just skip things in to the back of my 3×5 cards labeled with important chores and activities. Some of the things are like: Tidy kitchen. That usually means putting my husband’s eggs away. Other things like: Put on makeup, frequently get ignored. I think I’m prettier at 35 than i was at 25, but I’m really not the one to judge.

I had another bad morning. Yesterday was terrible. I just feel, I don’t know, unusual. It’s like I skipped an important medication, or got treated differently than I am used to be treated. It throws me. It looks like the Malakoa who thought she could do anything was wrong.

I read the other day how bipolar people believe they can do things they cannot do. This is true, and I wished I had known it before. It’s not the same as having dreams, dreams are important. There are some folks with bipolar who think they can fly, or know how to solve California’s budget problems. I believed I could roller skate and invited friends out skating. (I do not roller skate.) The confidence is compelling, so sometimes we get jobs based on claims we make in job interviews. Yes, in college I read 100 pages an hour. Now, I sometimes take 1/2 hour to read three.

I can think of two great big examples of how I screwed my college education up. One was my major. I studied Comparative Literature and thought I could go to graduate school. I spoke pretty competent Spanish but could not read and write it well. I took the Spanish 25 class, which it like English 1A. You are expected to know Spanish, but not be familiar with the skills necessary to write essays or interpret readings. I got a “C”. I didn’t take this as a sign that I should change my major, which required upper division work in Spanish. I just plugged along, got a tutor and kept getting those “C”s. I do not know what I was thinking.

Another thing I did was decided I wanted to take a graduate level class in Anglo-Saxon literature. I was not earning good grades and I was not regularly attending class. However, my enthusiastic demeanor earned me a space in the small, exclusive seven person group, filled with the finest English graduate students in the United States, and me. I did horribly in the class. I was asked to drop it, but instead hung around and didn’t quite get why I wasn’t doing well. I never dropped the class, and what’s more I arrive an hour late to the final because I wrote the time down right but read it long. I didn’t take the final at all. The teacher felt “betrayed” and refused to even give me a grade in the class.

It really screwed up my GPA, which wasn’t so great in the first place.

I didn’t know then, but my behavior was classic bipolar nonsense. I can’t go back to school and fix things. I earned my Bachelor’s degree with out commendation and had similar troubles in graduate school. I dream of going back to school and earning a psychology degree so I can work with other mentally ill folks, but the truth is I don’t have the chops. My memory is not good and there are probably not a lot of schools that would take me. National University, maybe? I’m not too proud. But we’re wise enough right now not to go into debit so I can get a degree for a job I may or may not get. I can’t work too much, it’s do much responsibility. I don’t want to be in charge of anyone either. I like my Genesis job. I do not like payroll, but you can’t like everything. If you do, it seems to me, you are not paying attention. It’s silly. Do not always be silly, all your credibility will be gone and no one likes that.

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What goes on inside me while I exercise. And ADD tales.

Every other day I do this exercise routine.  It comes from Dan John (danjohn.org) whose favorite habit is to destroy someone physically.  He also has scads of integrity and  credibility.  There is one exercise, the “get-ups” that is killer.  Look here to see what I’m talking about.

Why should you care?  First of all, go ahead and try this exercise without any weight.  If you can do it easily, you’re awesome.  Now go get some weight and try it again.  This is probably the most difficult exercise I’ve ever done, and I’m doing it, every other day.  I’ve been at it for two weeks and there is already a notable change.

I was setting up for one of the “ups” (I do them slightly different than the women in the videos).  I looked to the ground to make sure it was clear.  I had already done this twice, there was no need to check.  I think it’s’ the OCD showing through.  Anyway, I checked and it was fine of course.  I completed the rep with little problem. 

Then came my last set.  I decided to try to do two, right in a row.  I looked around and reminded myself if I dropped the weight, it would go to the side so I wouldn’t get hurt.

When I lifted the weight, my arm buckled and gave way. 

I had given myself permission to fail. 

Now, I’m not a good athlete.  Chances are I work out more than you do, but I don’t catch on well, I have to have things explained to me over and over and over again.  I talked about my physical disabilities in a previous blog and I’m not in the mood to go over them again, but I have physical as well as mental challenges.  This time I psyched myself out.  I physically could do what I wanted to do, I just mentally wouldn’t let myself.  I picked up the weight and did it all again like I wanted to before.  It was hard, but I did it.

Lately, I feel like I have a lean body inside of me.  I know I’ve said it before but I’m really growing adamant.  “Malakoa,”  I say crossly to myself, “If you would just stop it with all the junk food, you might have some good luck shedding the extra weight.”  It’s not just vanity, but it does play a part in it.  I have all of this weight in belly fat, the most dangerous kind.  And I have high cholesterol.  Just a little high, but still.

So, I was having this stern talk with myself, telling myself to be better about what I ate when I stumbled upon Small’s Halloween candy.  Mr. M hid it so we wouldn’t eat it.  I found it two days ago and at a bunch of it.  And today, in the middle of my stern lecture, I ate even more.

This is not going to work the way I’m going at it.  I’m just not sure what would.

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Another day off the Vyvanse.  I feel fine, but I’m noticing that I’m not focusing like I could before.  I can focus on writing, but other thoughts are floating through my head.  No matter how hard I try, I have other things in mind.  This is me no matter what I do or say.  I’m typing my blog, I’m thinking about rants running through mazes.  I’m cooking, I’m thinking about how I need to color my hair, I’m at church, I’m totally restless and want to get up and leave.  These are three things I love to do and I can’t “just” do them, I’m all over the place.

But when I’m not all over the place, I’m not me.  My thoughts are dull.  My experiences, especially time alone with my husband, are more intense, but it is difficult for me to switch gears.  If I’m trying to do something I can’t answer a question about something else.  I wasn’t able to be creative, it’s like my thoughs were in a box.  Now, sometimes, it feels like they are in a hamster wheel.  Getting to sleep is not difficult, but it’s like a ticker-tape parade going on.  It’s like that everytime I try to clear or calm my thoughts.

I did take yoga.  In fact, my first yoga class was in 1994, thank you very much.  I’m not a mindless trendiod like you think.  Just because I like scrapbooking.  Anyway, I appreciate the work it takes to clear my mind and believe it is worth it.  There are other times, however, where it’s better just to let them go.  I can sleep with them going strong.  I can write most of the time.  There are times it will be difficult, I imagine school might be, but I can always go back on the meds.  I haven’t had trouble reading but I had trouble comprehending a lot of things.  I had to re-read paragraphs, even pages while I was on the drugs.

One think I’ve learned is songs running through my head can be a very good thing.  Today I was replaying some resentment I had re: my brother’s ex-girlfriend.  She was as phoney as all get out, and a general thorn in my side.  She is gone, out of the picture, and he is married to someone else.  Thank God.  Anyway, my ruminations were making me really angry.  Songs, however, generally don’t do that.  I whistle a happy tune, one with sentimental meanings, or just one I enjoy and that replaces my anger and frustration.  Most of the time.

I totally and completely believe that some people, including some children, should take medicine for their ADHD.  I hope that I’m not discouraging you from the decisions you make with your doctor.  If you’ll see things you don’t like, then work with your doc to find something that works for you.  I’m not saying that the meds aren’t helpful.  They were, but for me, I didn’t have trouble controlling impulses, it wasn’t causing me to do things I regret or interfering with every day life.  If you do, you may want to consider something like Vyvanse.  There are a lot of options and I exercised them.  They weren’t my first choice, but they did do a lot for me.  And of course, if you don’t like the effect, you can try something new.


a down time for the Malakoa family

There is one rule that everyone in this house follows.  One rule that is able to held its head high.  One rule we respect, encourage and entice.

The rule is…..

No food upstairs.  So the fact that I’m munching on macadamia nuts, coconut and dark chocolate chips all stirred up, melty and gooey, is wrong.

Full disclosure was yesterday and today.  We got out receipts and I got embarrassed.  We made promises, threats, all sorts of trouble and anger.  I had the feeling I’ve only had before when relationships were at an end.

It’s not.  I told Mr. M and he said it wasn’t like that at all, but the feeling is what dominated me all afternoon and in to the evening.  Now, I can look at it and see my own desires to avoid the very real problems might be encouraging it as, I don’t know, wishful thinking?  But we’re here, stuck together.  In a good way.

I’m still off the Vyvanse (ADHD).  At first, my brain just felt better.  Now, I am getting scattered all over the place.  Instead of just laying down and soothing myself to sleep I get these weird chains of pictures or songs or whatever.  I prefer the second, it’s what I’m used to.  I haven’t really been able to test drive the experiences in inter-personal work related situations, because volunteering in a crazy person’s class does not present itself with those kinds of challenges.