Thursday, February 4, 2010

It's official

Today I got the official diagnosis, I definitely have ADD. What a relief.

I really enjoy talking with my new friend for many reasons. She's easy going, but, straight forward. She's factual without going over my head. She's genuinely concerned, and understands. She's not judgemental. She is there to help me. Conversely, I'm ready for the help.

My head has filled with memories of the past over the last couple of days since we first talked about ADD. So many things started to make sense, so many judgements I've made of myself have been proven false, and many others proven true. I actually realized yesterday that I have some awesome strengths. That was probably the first time that I've had such a thought. All these things about myself which are related to the ADD, I usually thought were negatives. Now I realize that they are not bad things, and they can be used to my advantage!

We did an assessment today, to confirm and officially diagnose the ADD. After rating a series of questions from zero to three (zero = the absence of; three = extreme presence of), there was no doubt that my new friend had hit the nail on the head. It was very interesting listening to the questions, and realizing that all these things about me were for a real reason. I'm not just stubborn, impatient, and judgemental of others. I'm actually moving so quickly that I get frustrated easily when others aren't moving at the same speed. And, that speed is quicker than most others around me. Sometimes, even I can't keep up.

What keeps coming to mind for me is my kids. I need to be able to slow down enough that I will be able to recognize the symptoms in my kids. I want to be able to parent them the way they deserve to be parented, rather than be the nagging, expecting-too-much kind of mom for whom nothing is good enough. I want to be able to slow down long enough to enjoy activities with my kids, and enjoy their enjoyment. I want to be able to listen to them without them feeling like I'm not really there. I want them to grow up able to cope with school, friends, and life in general. I don't want them to have to feel that they don't measure up, and try to over compensate in other ways.

I want my daughter to feel pretty. I want my son to feel handsome. I want both my kids to feel valued, wanted, and able. I don't want to get in their way just because I can't wrap my head around getting through the day.

I feel empowered as a mom because I now have the awareness, the tools, and the knowledge to watch my kids, and offer them guidance. I can take steps to help them if they need it, but also to let them flourish in their own ways without making them feel that their own way is the wrong way, or isn't good enough. By healing myself, I can be a better mom.

My new friend and I talked today about my relationship with money. We identified and agreed that the relationship isn't truly about money. There's something else there. There's something behind the self-deprivation, the self-denial, the negative feelings that come to the surface with money. All the money in the world won't change the feelings that exist, and that's the core I need to reach for and explore. What makes me so resistant to doing for me? It's more than the usual "mom puts herself last", which is common among mothers. I don't want to show my children that I don't value myself, and that I am not worth being valued by them. I want my kids to see their mommy as someone to look up to, to respect, and who is worthy. I don't want to be the Mommy who did without and became bitter and couldn't be a happy person. I certainly don't want my children to become any of those things. So, it's time to break that pattern in myself, and find the real me.

I have now left the computer at least four times. Twice to go to the kitchen and come back empty handed, twice to go into my daughter's room to intervene as she made mess after mess, rather than cleaning up one thing before moving on to another (per the rule in the house). Now I understand why some of the questions on the ADD assessment were about whether I tend to interrupt people when they're talking, or enter conversations I'm not initially included in. Blush, blush..... :)

So, I have to figure out why I deny myself. Why do I neglect me? What is it from my past that caused me to develop this way of thinking? Then, how do I correct it? I am anxious to get to the root of that so that I can finally treat me, and in turn, be more giving in the right ways to my family.

The journey has only just begun, so I'd better get my seat belt on and buckle up for the ride.