Looking back (and forwards) after 100 days of diagnosed and medicated ADHD
Day 100: Recap
Day 100 – the big recap
Well, it’s been not-quite-a-third of a year. In that time:
- I got officially diagnosed with ADHD and given medication that has scrolled life’s difficulty level down to “normal”.
- I got married.
- We got a puppy.
That’s a hell of a hundred days.
Scrolling back through the Word doc that holds my ADHD diary (I do give you the edited version, believe it or not), I can see relief and euphoria give way to a new normal – one that I now have to remind myself is very new, and very different.
I fluctuate between feeling very lucky and feeling very unlucky.
It is hard not to look back over the first 26 years of my life and not feel a little jaded at what could have been, had I only known X, been treated properly for Y, been helped before I resorted to Z.
Rewinding through various trauma and playing ‘spot the ADHD symptoms’ is useful in some ways and heartbreaking in others. How much pain could I have saved myself if I received diagnosis at 18? 13? 5?
How much pain could I have saved myself by being diagnosed earlier?
But there is no good to be found down that path of thought – not even the strangely enjoyable melancholy of longing. I don’t know what could have been. I might be at the perfect place in my life to make the most of the diagnosis and the knowledge that comes with it.
Furthermore, I am lucky – and I know it. For the vast majority of history I would not have been tolerated pre-diagnosis, let alone helped.
Back in the 90s, when a diagnosis would have stood a chance of really changing my life trajectory, most doctors wouldn’t have seriously entertained the idea that a girl could have the disorder. If I’d been rebuffed then, would I have bothered seeking diagnosis as an adult?
Even now, I’ve been incredibly fortunate. I live in a country with nationalised healthcare, so the only expense of my diagnosis is the £8.80 a month I pay in flat prescription charges.
The mental health professionals I have dealt with have all been credulous and kind. My case was dealt with from start to finish in six months – it can take years in parts of the UK.
I have a partner who is supportive of 100% of my health-related decisions : something I’ve learned from other women on ADHD forums is quite rare.
What I’ve learnt
This is a lot of information all at once, so I’m splitting it into several posts, which will be linked below as they’re published.
- How I got my ADHD diagnosis and treatment (updated)
- Symptom progress
- Side effects of Elvanse (Vyvanse)
- The ADHD community & neurodiversity