I’ll preface this with a disclaimer: I have not been diagnosed with ADHD. Having said that, I am 99% sure I have some form of the disorder.
Generally speaking, I handle the days fairly well and things manage to work smoothly. However, there are those times when I can’t keep anything straight. Welcome to a day in the life of Jen…
Multiple-step oral directions: Just this week, my friend, Carmen Reed, came by my office and asked me to have some kids sent to her room. She rattled off the names of 3 kids, then she told me where to have the teacher send them. Couldn’t. Remember. Anything. Thank goodness she stood there and repeated it while I was on the phone, calling the other teacher’s room. Multi-step directions don’t work often, and never if my mind has been focused on ANYTHING else. (This is the point where I’m going to place blame on the kid that was in the office, constantly talking and crying.) And the way I cope with this? Write it down, then read it back to the person before moving on to anything else. If I don’t write it down, changes are 99% that I will forget part (or all) of it.
Allergy shots: Things were all well and good when the lab was able to get all my allergens into one vial. It was just a matter of keeping up arm got the last shot, as I had to alternate (which was easy, since there was a log). Then my doctor changed labs and now I have TWO vials of allergy serum. What this means is that I get a shot from each vial, one in each arm. But I have to keep up with it and make sure that I alternate the arms so that I don’t get a shot in the same arm from the same vial each time. The log sheet *should* make it fairly fool-proof. But it isn’t. I cannot be distracted AT ALL when I do this. Recently, I drew both needles from the same vial; thank goodness my gut told me something was wrong and to scrap that attempt. Keep in mind that’s just one close call that I’ve had… Thankfully, I have an Epi Pen. And now, I have a routine from which I never deviate to ensure I get the shots drawn up correctly.
Typos: One of my life goals is to post on social media sans typos. I know…..that is a LOFTY goal. I am pretty sure that if typo data was collected on my status updates, tweets and IG posts, I would be posting error-free *maybe* 20% of the time. (OK, that percentage is a generous estimate) Yes, it occurs to me to proof AFTER I post and notice the typo. Facebook understands my disorder and allows me to edit my posts. Twitter and IG need to hop on the band wagon.
Noise: I cannot carry on a conversation with someone if another conversation is going on within earshot. I cannot filter out some noise to concentrate on other noise. I can, however, filter out all noise in order to concentrate on one thing. And I have to be honest, sometimes (well….A LOT of times), my brain just shuts off when people are talking on and on about things that don’t matter (to my brain, anyway). Then they ask a question and I have no idea what they said. That’s when I nod my head in agreement. (Don’t try this at home….the practice is prone to land one in an awkward situation.)
Carrying *things*: I rely heavily on routine. Every morning I have the same number of *things* I bring with me in my bag. If I bring something extra, chances are I will forget to bring one of the regular somethings. Once I have prepared that number of things to bring with me, my brain shuts down. Same thing with running. I have the normal items that I bring with me for a run and when I add an item, something else always gets left behind!
Lists: OK, I make LOTS of lists, but then I forget to reference them. I don’t even know how to fix that.
Notifications: Not trying to brag or say that I get a ton of notifications, but sometimes I am overwhelmed by social media notifications. This happens most often when I have been unable to check them for a period of time (when I have been refereeing a tournament, for example). If my head could spin around like an owl, that is exactly how my body would react! LOL
Thankfully, running and exercising helps me cope with my shortcomings in the attention department. I can feel so tired from all the noise and stimulus, but all that melts away when I get into the run.
And speaking of run….I got one in yesterday! IT. WAS. AWESOME! I am sticking with the 3 min run/1 min walk x8, for a couple more runs. I am enjoying running with the shorter walk intervals. And guess whose heart rate went over target only ONCE?? ME!!! (Previously, my watch yelled at me no less than 5 times each interval.) Something even more awesome is that even though my heart rate was lower, I ran roughly the same pace during the intervals as in my previous run. Even though I can tell that my left hip area is much stronger, I can also tell that it is still weaker than my right side. To me, that is just reinforcement to continue what I have been doing with strength exercises, cross training and proper rest days. Having said that, progress is progress and I am celebrating!! I finally believe that I can and WILL beat this and emerge a stronger, smarter runner!
In all the articles that I have read over the course of this injury, I have seen several about flexibility, specifically in the ankles. I found a resource to measure my ankle flexibility which included exercises to increase mobility in the ankles (aka tight calves). So one test was to kneel down with your toes 5″ from a wall and see how far forward you could push your leg AND keep your heel on the floor. I decided to try it on my lunch break and here is proof of my sad results.
Yep. You are seeing that correctly. My knee will NOT go past my toes. I’m adding that to one of my lists (to which I’ll forget to refer) in hopes that I can loosen up my calves and increase my ankle mobility, which, in turn, will hopefully contribute to my overall health as a runner.
Happy Thursday, all!