A recent vacation gave me not only the gift of relaxation, but it also helped me have a greater appreciation of my ADHD. Immersed in nature and in my own daydreams, I rediscovered the many joys of life with ADHD.
by Ben T.
In my last post I mentioned that I have been at sea on deployment with the U.S. Navy and how much of a challenge being stuck on a ship day after day can be for an adult with attention deficit hyperactivity disorder (ADD/ADHD). Well, I'm in the States again, and I was able to find a week to spend with my mom in her summer vacation home in upstate New York. As I write this, I am enjoying a little rest and relaxation and breathing the clean air of the Adirondack wilderness before I soon have to return to work.
Have you ever sat back and enjoyed your ADD/ADHD -- instead of wishing you could be someone different? As I enjoy this remote wilderness, I feel no guilt about letting my ADD/ADHD mind wander and explore the network of leaves around me, the little crystals of light floating on the lake nearby, and the blue sky sliced in half by the smooth rolling Adirondack Mountains. In fact, I welcome these distractions. When I'm in a place like this, I realize the advantage I have over others without the condition. Unlike Average Jane or Joe, I can immerse myself in the miracles of the wild and let the small, everyday problems of my life quickly fade away.
I like to explore and get lost in music in the same way. When I hear a musician like Dave Mathews play, it's as if the strings on his guitar vibrate, sending waves of molecules through the air, moving through flesh and bone, with the reverberation landing deep within my soul. With the ADD/ADHD superpower hyperfocus, I can find the hidden meanings of song lyrics while I explore the audible hills and valleys in the landscape of the music. And it's in moments like these that I realize it’s OK to think the way we think. In fact, sometimes it can be kind of fun.
So find a moment to sit back, relax, and enjoy ADD/ADHD for a change -- and enjoy where your mind takes you!
(Note: It is an important skill to be able to keep these moments at bay when necessary, particularly in the classroom and the workplace. After all, if we don’t keep on our toes, the Average Janes and Joes of the world may figure out where they have an advantage over us!)