My ADHD Journey – Part Two: or My Brain Feels Upgraded and It’s Weirding Me Out.

Being diagnosed with ADHD as an adult, late in life, is not only devastating, but it brings with it a lot of grief. Like a feeling you were denied a proper chance at life, cheated by. I had to ask my psychiatrist how I made it to 51 years old and not be dead.

Had I been diagnosed correctly, years ago, like I wrote in part one, things (I know) would have been vastly different for me.

I would never have gone to prison if the so called professionals had done their jobs. Sadly, as of 2019 statistics showed that out of over 45,000 people sentenced to actual prison time, 1006 were ADHD. That year alone, the total cost directly attributed to crimes committed by someone with ADHD was over $300 million.

However, the flip of the coin to that debacle is if it didn’t happen. I may not have got diagnosed. So here we are and I am trying my best to move forward and hopefully help someone else before they, too, land in prison or dead. Or, hurt someone or themselves.

Right! Back to my brain weirding me out.

In the last week or so, I had noticed I felt different in my head. Evolved as it were. The further I go on this journey I feel the old ‘Grant’ slipping away into an abyss. He does come back when the dex wears off but that’s just before bed and about an hour on waking. ADHD doesn’t go away.

But, the ‘Grant’ falling into the abyss, who was quick to anger, had no time for anyone who had nothing really much to do with him, drank a lot and railed at the world. Whined and complained a lot, yet did nothing about his grievances.

Constantly whining about this, that and the other. Also, banged on about being lonely all the time. Yet, at the same time, could be friendly as punch, socialable, likeable but then with a flick of the switch.. Dr Jekyll turns into Mr Hyde.

He’s gone, now. Thank f*ck.

Trust me, I bet any money you know a ‘Grant’ yourself? Someone who can be a complete arsehole for no absolute reason. But, friendly as, the next. Then screaming at other drivers in the traffic. Getting worked up over the slightest of things. Noises and certain sounds drive them up the walls. They might have kids, too, and get annoyed at the noises they make when playing in the yard with their friends. Unnecessary yelling at anything. Cold, indifferent.

ADHD isn’t being all quirky and forgetting shit. Anger is a HUGE part. The ‘Dark Side’ of ADHD.

So, getting back to my brain’s evolution.

I noticed in the last few weeks I had become more ‘dexterous’. I asked my psychiatrist about this on Friday when I saw him. He said, due to all the exercise I had been doing these last 8 months, along with the dexamphetamine, both are changing my brain; physically and neurologically.

A new and improved say, ‘Pilot’ has taken command.

I am right-handed. I noticed a couple of weeks back that I had started to use my left-hand while shaving my head with the hair clippers. Normally, I’d just use my right. For most of my life, I have always felt uncoordinated. As I got older, I noticed my balance was a little ‘off’. Like most things in my life, health etc. I just never put much stock into anything my body was doing. Yet I filled it with enough booze and drugs to put any one four of you in an early grave.

The bit of the brain I wrote about in part one, the Anterior Cingulate Cortex not only regulates the emotions, but also the left and right sides of the body. As my psychiatrist said, my brain is changing, evolving. What is happening is a thing called ‘neuroplasticity’.

Basically, your brain when given the chance to experience something new will adapt and reshape itself. This is what is happening with my brain. With both the exercise, and the Vyvanse, my brain is building new pathways, creating new connections, and even new neurones.

This is what’s weirding me out at the moment. I don’t know this person, in my head, now. Organised, productive, focused… enhanced. The ‘Grant’ that is up at 5:30AM every day, even weekends. Exercising within the hour, breakfast, writing, reading and household duties without even a complaint.

Old ‘Grant’ would have got up about 10AM. Two cups of coffee. Stared at the internet for hours only to realise that lunchtime was two hours ago and it is getting close to dinnertime and he hadn’t done any shopping so now he has to shower and get to the shops only to find he hadn’t made a list of food items required for the recipe he quickly scanned online and thought that sounded half healthy but he didn’t care about cooking things that required a long list of instructions and many many steps to cook a meal so when he gets to the shops he just grabs something that can be fried or baked and microwaved and then after dinner the dishes might get done but someone messaged him and he now has to have an in-depth discussion about random shit and drink himself stupid and oh, shit, it’s 10AM again.

Sounds exhausting, right?

Published by G.D. Ison

I'm a neurodivergent heavy metal loving motorcycle riding cat owning writer living in Brisbane (Meanjin), Australia. Always was, always will be Aboriginal land. I hold a Masters degree in Creative Writing from the University of the Sunshine Coast and a Bachelor degree in the same, obtained from the Queensland University of Technology. I also hold a Bachelor degree in Visual Communication (Design) from Griffith University College of Art. Considering those academic achievements, I actually failed high school.

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