What is “normal” for an A.D.D.er?

A s I write this…I suddenly feel normal or, to be exact, what I think normal is. I think normal is no waves of panic. Normal is knowing how much money is in your checking account. Normal is not feeling like your nerves are firing erratically. Normal is just to feel tired at the end of the day…period. It is to know that you’ve accomplished some of the things you set out to accomplish. You have become goal-oriented and lived the life of a goal-oriented person.

I must emphasize, again, that I don’t really know what “normal” is. I can only assume what normal is, what normal feels like, what it means to live a normal life. I don’t know from firsthand experience (in fact, can never know) and can not really know what it is from careful observation. After all, what I observe is only the external manifestations of inner “normality.” I have no clue what it is like to live it, what it is like to have an inner life that is not in A.D.D. turmoil. So perhaps normal for an A.D.D.er is to have brief moments of non-turmoil. But, as an A.D.D.er, those brief moments remain brief moments. The key to living a better life is to determine how to extend those brief moments so that they last more than a handful of hours.1


1 – For the non-A.D.D.er who might be reading this, you may not understand the struggles of the A.D.D.er and why “normality,” described here as “non-turmoil,” may only be brief in duration. There is a small anecdote that I picked up somewhere which purports to explain why the sun rises each morning. According to this anecdote, the sun rises each morning because god says “Do it again.” That, in a nutshell, is the struggle of the A.D.D.er who must consciously say to himself, “Do it again.” And again can be defined as most of those things that non-A.D.D.ers take for granted: financial control, longevity in a job, no inappropriate outbursts or explosions of rage. A.D.D.ers must, too often, tell themselves to do these things and they must tell themselves to do it again and again and again. (I assume they eventually become habits…we’ll see.)

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