My Other Self: Shame, Perfectionism, and ADHD

“I’m afraid of disappointing the people in my life.”

A minute or two after I said these words, I realized they weren’t true. I was trying to explain to a friend the sense of free-floating anxiety and general frustration I’d been feeling the past month. With a few glorious exceptions including my sister’s wedding, a memorable 4th of July in the city, and a weekend getaway upstate, I’d felt myself starting to stagnate. It was an odd feeling because even though moving to NYC  has had its challenges, I’ve mostly been happy (even elated) since I arrived in early March. 

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Me Myself and The Gym: Exercise and ADHD


I gotta work out. I keep saying it all the time. I keep saying I gotta start working out. It’s been about two months since I’ve worked out. And I just don’t have the time. Which odd. Because I have the time to go out to dinner. And uh…and watch TV And get a bone density test. And uh…try to figure out what my phone number spells in words.
– Ellen DeGeneres

I’m in plank position, the palms of my hands digging into the scratchy astroturf. Above me fluorescent lights glare and I hear my trainer’s voice patiently encouraging me to keep going. The exercise I’m doing is basically a plank but while shuffling sideways on my hands and feet. I’m sweaty, my back hurts, and I’m self-conscious about my trainer’s cute assistant seeing me flopping around like a clumsy, out of shape sea lion. Continue reading “Me Myself and The Gym: Exercise and ADHD”

Superhero Origin Story

Well I’m on my way/I don’t know where I’m going/I’m on my way/Takin’ my time but I don’t know where.   — Paul Simon

It’s my first shift at work on Adderall and I feel like Peter Parker when he turned from being a nerdy outcast into a badass who could shoot spider webs from his wrists, beat up the school bully, and get the girl. Or when Harry Potter learned he was a wizard instead of just a weird, lonely kid who could talk to snakes.

I’m calm and pleasant with customers. I smile, joke and even make small talk! I don’t drop a plate or glass my entire shift. I notice near-mistakes before they happen, whereas in the past I would have mixed up a customer’s order or tripped over my own shoelace. I literally see things I wouldn’t have seen before, no longer asking coworkers where to find the extra sugar packets (to-go boxes, napkins, aprons…). The time goes quickly and I’m light on my feet. My mind is no longer screaming desperately to be freed from the prison of an hourly food-server job. I’m not asleep standing up by the end of my shift, barely able to carry two plates at once. I actually feel happy! One coworkers catches me singing about gazpacho in the stockroom.  Being properly medicated has made reality itself more tolerable or at least more capable of handling multiple stimuli and demands without needing to escape to the broom closet and weep.

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Autobiography of a “Schmidiot”

“This one a long time have I watched. All his life he has looked away to the future…to the horizon. Never his mind on where he was. Hmm? What he was doing!” –Yoda, The Empire Strikes Back”


I step into the kitchen and my mom asks, “Do you think it’s working?”
“I don’t think so. I just organized, vacuumed and dusted my entire room and bathroom, paid all my bills, and started a blog.” She smiles, waiting patiently for me to get the punchline. “Oh…I guess it’s working,” I admit sheepishly.

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