Off-the-Cuff: 30 Minutes of Extemporaneous ADHD Blog Therapy

The Challenge

The other day, my mind was spinning a million miles an hour and I was struggling to think in a straight line without going back and forth — bouncing between things I was juggling. My ADHD brain was on overload and in need of blog therapy. Plus I had a post to write! So, knowing that one of those bouncing balls in my head belonged to my next blog post and that I was quickly feeling I didn’t have time to write that post, I decided to seek rest in some advice from Anne Lamott. Inspired by Anne’s masterful insight on writing, I decided to just commit to putting down a terrible first draft. And one step further, I’ve decided to expose it all bare-bones and WYSIWYG … a glimpse into my head, my ADHD thoughts exactly as they emerged … word for word.

In her book, Bird by Bird, Anne argues the need for all writers to let go and commit to writing “shitty first drafts.” This is what breaks way to clarity and sometimes brilliance with your second and third drafts. I’ve definitely found that I’m usually not happy until the third draft of a blog post. But, for the sake of time and again to share a raw quick look, this vignette below is 30 minutes of straight stream of consciousness writing … which is either genius, or a random brain fart (excuse the crude). Enjoy it or toss it. It’s what’s for dinner.

 

• • •

 

Image of snow globe turned upside down to reflect thoughts in the mind.

I’m going to offload the swimming mixed thoughts in my head in attempt to get them to settle down like snow in a snow globe. And then I hope to organize them into a blog post … or maybe I just publish this thing in the raw just as it flows out of my head … train-of-thought style. A window into the ADHD mind … a “glimpse.” Did you ever see that movie with Nicholas Cage? My husband and I just watched it again the other night. Well — actually — over a few nights, because we kept falling asleep on it. The name? What’s the name of that movie? Family Man maybe? Anyway … that’s the glimpse reference, if you like googling. Although it’s really not the same because that “glimpse” was a hypothetical window into what life would be / could be like … whereas all this is in my “glimpse” is really happening. So really there’s not a huge connection here. No real parallel. Just a word.

This is normal though — thoughts like this interjecting — all — the — time. Well, either that or I stare endlessly trying to remember where I was at or what I was doing 10 seconds ago. Ten-Second Tom!! Another movie reference (from 50 First Dates) … Holy cow, do I love that movie!?! Hopefully I didn’t just accidentally offend any Hindus. Sometimes you feel like a crazy. It’s serious work editing yourself constantly in front of a world of people who wouldn’t get all this flowing out your mouth constantly.

Phone just beeped from texts (x2). Can’t keep ignoring … have to look. Ok, all good. Confirmed an appointment. All is good for weekend party too. We’re throwing a little Birthday party for our rescue wonder pup. This Saturday afternoon. After our son’s hair appointment. He’s getting a cut and some flashy green up front for fun because little guy likes being unique. Love that about him. Despite having some shyness like his folks do, he leans into loving being different. That’s worth a million dollars right there. I only wish I’d felt free to feel that way when I was his age!

Made a lovely new friend recently over Twitter. A British “Postie,” newly ADHD diagnosed last year, the same month as me, but he’s 4 years younger, same age as my Indy. Sounds like he’s been through so much. So grateful for social media and the short bridge it can build between people who can support each other because of it’s existence.

Can’t stop thinking about what to title this crazy post. ‘Brain Dump’ is a horrible idea, so I will NOT be calling it that! Even though it just flashed across the screen in the sky of my brain. Trying to make myself just stream of consciousness first before I give any time to titling even though that’s part of what is coming up in my thought flow. I love naming things. I want to come up with something clever.

Another text … Cool, just Indy (aka, “the Hubs” (husband)) on his way to lunch with his bro (brother) confirming he got my message from earlier and all is good on some other party plans and stuff.

Having the party at my mom’s house — who doesn’t even know about this blog yet. She knows about the ADHD though. Her house has a fenced back yard which is much better for doggies who like to run and play. Inviting our BFFs, whose kids are BFFs with ours, and whose dog is BFFs with ours, and another BFF of our son’s and my brother and his girl, and my other bro will be there too. He lives at home with Mom. Our foster girlie is working a double shift so she can’t come. We’ll have to get together with her another time.

It’s a silly thing to do, have a birthday party for a doggy, our Fiesty pup won’t even know what’s up exactly … but he’ll feel the happy. It’s nice just to get together with sweet peeps for any silly purpose, right? And … cake! ice cream! Need I say more? Got some dietary-conscious planning and making to do for our little shindig to make the food safe for our attenders. Going to make some pup-cakes too! Hee Hee …

The Hubs is hitting the grocery on the way home after he picks up our boy from school. He’ll need my list of what I’ll need for the party before he goes. So, I should make that list! I think I’ve contacted everyone I need to contact. Oohh … maybe I call this post, “Off-the-Cuff … (so many) Minutes of Random Thoughts.” I started writing 20 min ago. So maybe I write for 10 more? If I really did publish this as a blog post it would the shortest time spent in writing a blog post ever for me! Haha … because I usually spend hours and hours putting a post together!

My fingernail polish keeps peeling off in whole chunks.

I need to finally sit still with my Bullet Journal as soon as I’m done and get all the things I need to do today listed out. I started a list on another sheet of paper, instead of my BuJo and I’ve been fielding shiny things one after another all morning. If I don’t check myself before I wreck myself … the day will slip between my fingers like always and I won’t be able to pull off the things I really NEED to do but hardly pay attention to because all the shiny things are SO MUCH LOUDER! Queen of run-on sentences in the haaaay—ouse. Oh … geeze … do I need to meditate!?! How many days has it been? Oh … not as bad as I thought … it’s only been 3 days. But still. I need to get back to it.

Honestly there were so many more thoughts that never made it through my fingers to the keyboard. And my 30 minutes are up. I could write for 3 hours … Does this count as meditation? Probably not. But I do weirdly feel better. Maybe it counts as therapy? Maybe I can actually calmly sit still to make a list now? Maybe.

Image of sparkly purple fingernail polish from two fingernails that has popped off her fingernails while blogging.

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The End Result?

Before I started the free-writing exercise, I felt like I was going to plummet, fail, falter, come up short, … explode, etc. Whereas, after stream-of-consciousness writing, I felt … better. I felt more clear, present and not as scattered at least. I could more easily see the big bucket tasks I needed to complete in the remaining hours I had that day. The most important takeaway though, was that I felt like I COULD do what I needed to do afterwards. I also felt and could honestly believe that even if I didn’t tackle everything I needed to do that day, that it would be okay AND that I was going to feel better about whatever I accomplished, which was a really welcome feeling.

Blog Therapy

Even though I’ve still far to go, a bundle to learn, blogging and sharing with you guys on social media has truly been therapeutic for me. I’ve needed something “more” for a long time — something to get and keep me motivated. And to be of service to others with ADHD, is delightfully compelling. The more I share my story, the more I reach others in the ADHD community with adversities similar to my own, the stronger, happier and more “me” I feel. I’m going to start an email list soon with Mail Chimp to stay even better connected with all of you. I do hope you’ll sign up so we can stay in touch!

 

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