The Time I Thought I Was Losing My Mind
March 22, 2013 blogging

I’ve been keeping a secret from you, dear reader.

Over the past year, I’ve had little issues that seemed to creep up on me, bit by bit, until it was overwhelming. At first, it felt like my memory was just slipping. My son would ask me for a glass of water and I’d forget what I was doing when I walked into the kitchen. My husband and I would have a conversation, and I would not remember it later. I’ve always been a fast talker and an interrupter in conversation, but it was becoming worse. If I waited until my husband was done talking, I wouldn’t remember what it was that I wanted to say to him in response to his conversation. Then my husband started to have more health problems, so I put my concerns on the back burner.

Unfortunately, as you might imagine, ignoring the problem did not make it go away. I started to have anger issues – I was so frustrated that I couldn’t remember what I was thinking, and it made me so angry. But I couldn’t remember why I was angry. And then the scariest part started happening – I couldn’t remember words. I would be going along trying to write or say something, and I couldn’t think of the next word. You know, like the feeling that it’s on the tip of your tongue? But all the time. With easy words. It was rather disconcerting. It was also the last straw, so I convinced myself to to in to see my doctor.

Growing up, I was always a pretty decent student, except in the winter when my grades would slip. I would have to concentrate on getting myself back together, and I would pick up again in the spring. When I worked outside the home, I did the best when I had lots of projects to work on, so that I could flip back and forth to different ones as my interested faded. I was constantly losing or misplacing my possessions – even possessions that were very important to me. I always thought that I was simply lazy and disorganized. I can’t even begin to tell you how many organizing and cleaning books I’ve owned or borrowed from the library. But not one of them held the secret.

With all of this background, it was a surprise to me when my doctor suggested that we try treating me for ADD. My parents were surprised – I don’t know if it was because of the diagnosis or because I was willing to try medication, but my husband was not. Since I’ve been taking the medication, I can feel a difference. I notice that I am talking too fast and can slow myself down. I am able to keep a thought in my head to respond in a conversation and not talking over someone. I’m still forgetting things here and there, but it is not nearly as bad. I’m seeing improvement.

For the past year, I thought I was losing my mind. But now I know I’m just learning how to understand it better. I hope you’ll join me in this process, or at least not be offended when I fly off on a tangent about my thinking. I’m learning new techniques to organize myself, new ways to focus and I think it will be beneficial for myself, my family, my volunteer work, and my writing. I hope. So there you go, I’ve spilled my guts.

Do you know anyone who has ADD? Do you have any organizing or cleaning tips that would work well for someone with ADD? Tomorrow I will be sharing a review with you of  a book that has been very beneficial to me during this process.