“Meet Laura, Queen of chaos, empress of darkness, also known as a lazy natural disaster on legs”.
But guess what? I wouldn’t be any other way.
I guess I was born this way for a reason and if my reckless ways haven’t got me killed yet, then I guess I was born to survive things that most people can’t even bear to think about.
As they say… “some people drown in a glass of water. Others, drink the water and sell the glass”. I guess I’m turning more into the second kind of people.
Nobody told me when I was young it was ok to be born this way, though. In fact, it seemed quite the opposite. My mother didn’t tell me it was ok to be a forgetful mess and Lady Gaga wasn’t around either to make me feel better about being “all that different”.
I had to figure it all out on my own after many years of feeling like shit and taking tons of shit from a lot of shit people who obviously noticed my inability to do “normal” well and felt the need to pick up on me simply because of that.
Honestly, I always knew there was something not quite right with me, but from age 11 or 12 my unability to concentrate became notorious to me and other people. My friends got all straight As and were ever such good students, I wanted to do well as well, but I knew I was lacking something and I didn’t know what, because I never had concentration, so how can you tell it’s missing if you don’t even know what is like to have it?.
Unlike Lady Gaga who thanks God for it, I guess I just have to thank my genetic make-up for creating me this way.
What most people think are my most notorious personal flaws are actually clear cut symptoms of my both invisible chronical illnesses.
Invisible chronical illness Number 1 major noticeable symptoms;
- Feeling Tired (what a coincidence! )
- Trouble concentrating and remembering stuff (go figure!!)
- Feeling Down or Depressed (not surprised at all!)
Invisible chronical illness Number 2 major noticeable symptoms:
- Disorganization and problems at prioritizing tasks (hello?)
- Poor time management skills (hello?)
- Problems focusing on a task
- Low frustration tolerance
Now, nevermind how all those symptoms have impacted my life in obvious ways all the time… You better don’t try to tell people about how your invisible chronic physical or mental illness makes you do this or act that way. They won’t see it because you look fine and capable.
It seems they can only see the physical ones, they will not ask a blind person to make an effort to actually “look”, would they? or ask a deaf-mute person to actually just try to hear and talk. “Why woulnd’t they just go and do it? right? If they’re not seeing or talking it’s surely because they’re not trying “hard” enough”. Nobody would say this to any of those evident impaired people. It would seem extremely cruel and unreasonable.
But when it comes to invisible illnesses that are not noticeable to the eye other than in the fact that you’re always late, forgetful or disorganized, then apparently to do what you can’t do is perceived as a lack of effort. To them, you’re simply not trying hard enough and therefore you don’t get excluded from the level of expectation they have of you as a “seemingly” highly functional individual. And that is like basically getting annoyed with a blind man to avoid stepping on dog poop when they walk on their own or getting angry with a deaf person who doesn’t answer when they’re called out loud.
But to someone who suffers from forgetfulness, disorganization and tiredness it’s perfectly ok to tell them “why the fuck don’t you concentrate on your studies?” “how could you forget about this or that? You can’t concentrate? are you stupid?” “are you telling me that you’re unable to set your own priorities?” or “how could you be such a disaster?”
It’s nothing I can keep under control even though I try all day long. All the damn time. In fact, the second invisible condition it’s called a disorder and not an illness because it impacts your daily day to day life a little bit too much.
Although I get extremely thankful nobody gets to find out exactly how much money and time of my life is actually wasted dealing with all the negative down sides of my forgetful foggy disorganized brain when nobody else but me is involved… this includes … driving fines, parking tolls, time wasted calling someone to open the door for me because I forgot the key or money spent on locksmiths or impulsive buys, etc).
The problem is when it becomes notoriously difficult to hide our “mess-ups” to other people, and, ups by “mess ups” I actually mean our symptoms!!!.
Because the moment other people’s lives or plans remotely depend on our good organizational skills then conflict arises.
This is because my inability to tell my brain what to remember or what to pay attention to or what to focus on mystifies the hell out of people who apparently have a full command on what to remember, what to pay attention to or what to focus on. A certain ability I definitely lack.
“Why is your phone always on silent mode?”, “How could you forget to put the volume back after you left the meeting?”, “what kind of parent is not responsible enough to remember this or that??” “how could you book a flight and not check the passport expiring date prior to that?” are criticismsI get all the time.
I admit is not something I do on purpose at all. Yet I somewhat grew to love the fact that I seem to have a rebellious brain with a mind of its own that prioritizes what it thinks it’s most important to get sorted and not what other people think I should focus on getting sorted. And that makes it and me… unruly.
After all, some are just pissed off they can’t control us when they want to or as much as they wished to do so. So it turns into a super power and a self-defence mechanism all at once. Perhaps I was created to be wild and free and definitely not following someone else’s expectations of me.
Let’s just be thankful we don’t live in that “1984” world Orson Wells depicted back in the day and we can still embrace our unique randomness.
Not sure for how long though …. (especially since Covid started)
And I began to own it and flaunt it because that which makes us different makes us unique.
And so…. what if actually my meant to be soooo negative traits are actually all blessings in disguise to actually survive living in a world surrounded by boring methodical people that do what they’re told 24/7? I’ve got a mind with a mind of its own!!
But I can tell you that thanks to these invisible illnesses my life is full of excitement. And so it feels for the ones who dare to join us in life for a while. We make their lives exciting and thrilling. They never know what new adventure we’ll have to be involved next. I may forget the house keys, my purse, etc.
By the way, If you happen to suffer from any of those above I can also help you how to cope or deal with them in the most advantageous way. I know how to go from “Ds” to get “Straight A’s”. How to go from low energy to enthusiastic, how to go from low self-esteem to diva or queen status, etc etc.
Invisible chronical illness number one it’s called hypothyroidism.
Tips on surviving with hypothyroidism:
Challenge your doctors in the way they handle your health, as if your own life and experience of life depended on it, because it does.
We tend to leave our lives at the mercy of the so called “experts” (doctors), but in fact, not a single doctor has to live inside our bodies or minds with our own set of ailments. So they don’t know how their pills impact us, if anything at all.
Yes. They studied, and probably studied hard, to obtain their knowledge. But… each body is different. Otherwise, why such a seemingly never ending list of side effects to each medication? If all bodies were the same and fed the same, well, I guess we would all react the same to all medicines. Wouldn’t we?
Must be because medication has different effects on different bodies, right? depending on the amount of red blood cells it may do you this or that, depending on your heart pressure, depending on your iron levels, depending on your liver, even depending on your stomach bugs and so on.
And I think, in my case… my meds weren’t having the effect they were supposed to have. Yes, physically I was well developed, but I think I wasn’t taking enough dosage and that was keeping me clinically depressed..
Luckily now I take a dosage that, even though my doctors don’t recommend it at all, helps me remember to take my pills on a daily basis, something that didn’t use to happen before. And that has managed to improve my life overall when it comes to forgetfulness. At least now I remember to take them every day. It has taken me like 30 years to develop such a habit or see it as a habit I should keep.
I also found this webpage of Hypothyroidmom very helpful to understand why I feel that most of my life I have actually been undermedicated due to that golden standard TSH levels endocrinologists followed for years.
So I’ve fought my way with several doctors or GPs to get what I feel I need to function or make my life worth living after I have discovered by accident I sometimes can feel energetic and all!!
They keep saying that I could die from this or that other side-effect of overdosing. To me, and as far as I’m concerned, I think I could also die tomorrow in a car accident, so I rather live now as merrily as I can overdosing than make it up to 80 feeling constantly drained and depressed.
It’s because I lost the fear to die a loooooong time ago. In a way is like I already died and this is like my second chance to actually fully appreciate what it means to be alive. So I’m gonna do what I want when I want it. I’m going to live now that I’m alive.
Invisible chronical illness number two it’s called Attention Deficit Disorder.
And it came to me as a suprise… I found about it due to this song:
I couldn’t relate with the physical restlesness described in the song but the “I’m so distracted” of the chorus could definitely summarize my whole student experience ever since I got to school. Some school reports would have “SHE IS VERY SLOW AND GETS SO DISTRACTED” written in capital letters all over the observation section on the school report.
When I read the symptoms I ticked most of the boxes and I would swear I had it. When I read them to my ex partner at the time said “That’s so you”.
However I had already finished my master’s degree successfully, I had a job, I was married, and had coped somehow all my life without meds. So I felt no need to get a diagnosis.
But in the end I pursued a diagnosis just to see if I could run my business more efficiently.
Also, my mother thought I was obsessed and self diagnosing myself with something that according to her everyone struggled with, yet at the same time telling me off big deal for displaying all these symptoms explained above.
And no, no amount of post-its or mobile phone reminders ever helped me.
I managed to get my GP to refer me, and finally succeeded and got the diagnosis and treatment straight away. “I think it’s a clear case of ADHD. The way it affects her life and organization skills”. Right in front of my mother who still refuses to believe this experct but prefers to believe the one we once visited when I was 11 or 12 that said “nothing wrong with your daughter, she’s just lazy af”
Don’t get me wrong. I’m not complaining at all, as you can see I have developed super powers to cope and achieve whatever I want out of life.
And having these invisible chronic illnesses it’s no excuse to get what you want. One of my invisible illnesses should have me depressed and fat and another one should have me hopeless or helpless. But I’m none of those.
Are we all biologically gifted to learn by heart? are we all biologically gifted to be disciplined? are we all wired to focus on the same exact things or to value security and stability over uncertainty and spontaneity all the damn time? I very much doubt so.
But neurotypical brains will never get it.. and they’ll constantly ask “how could she forget about …… doctor appointments, taking purse with her, car keys, mobile phone, adding credit to mobile phone or checking up her e-mail, whatsapp, reply to my message, check if passports are expired or not, the vaccination when due a vaccination appointment… etc etc.”
And yes, we all need to become responsible of our actions and earn a living somehow. But making a fish feel useless for its inability to climb a tree is something I find it a bit sadistic and unfair. And it also distracts the fish from being successful as a fish. It’s like the ugly duckling story too. How are you expected to perform like a flawed duck when you’re actually created and designed to be a flawless swan?.
People like to complain a lot but I know and have reportedly been told to make their lives way more interesting and exciting thanks to all my adhd slips. They get high on all the last minute arrangements and how I manage to get by in the end. Oh yes. I add excitement and unpredicatibility into their other somewhat boring and predictable lives. A constant rollercoster of emotional highs and lows with unexpected last minute blisful decisions.
However I’m so much more than those major symptoms.
I am way more than just what I’m telling you here, I have layer upon layer of complexity and depth of character. That’s why most people who get to know the real me end up thinking I’m like a box full of endless surprises. Just when they think they have me nailed… they discover a new side of myself. I’m always growing. I can’t help it.
From a long time ago I’ve just simply lived not comparing myself to anyone. I don’t want to hurt anyone, I don’t hate anyone. I just want to live in peace.
I don’t answer most private messages, I prefer to meet people in real life. Those who really want to get to know me can do so here. Because these days all I want is to work and help other people live the way they want. Only those interested enough in improving their quality of life will be considered interesting enough for me to want to get to know.
And if you are one of those people in the world who feels entitled to give me an opinion on how I should act, behave and live my life according to how you’re living yours or how they taught you to live yours, please, remember that first of all, I’m not like you, and bear in mind that I probably never ever wanted to be like you either, not even if I could choose to. Those days I wished to be normal were short lived and are over and done with.