Years ago, I was diagnosed with ADHD. I've known I've had it my entire life. It was incredibly hard to sit still in class when I was little, and my mind constantly wandered. I would often be out on the prairie with Laura, Mary, and Carrie in my mind. We weren't just picking wildflowers. We were building treehouses, fighting with riding horses, or surviving being stalked by a bear or mountain lion during math class. It hasn't let up. I still struggle with keeping my mind in one lane. The Fibro has made it worse. There are days the fog is so thick that I struggle to remember my own name. Okay. Maybe not my name, but definitely my birth year.
I had tried one of the name brands of ADHD medicines years ago, and I was amazed at how well I could put not only 2 thoughts, but 3, 4, or 5 thoughts, together at one time! Alsas, I was allergic to it. It raised my blood pressure and gave me horrible headaches, so I only took it for about a week. It was such a disappointment that I couldn't take it anymore. I was able to function efficiently for the first time in my life! However, being concerned about similar reactions to other medications, I didn't try anything else for my ADHD for another 15 years. Until recently.
Lately, thoughts bounce in an out of my mind at incredible speed. I try to focus on one thing and another thought pops it right out of my mind. So I talked to my doctor about my ADHD, and they agreed that I could try something else. I did really well with it for the first 9 days or so. I was able to have coherent thoughts without having to repeat what I was saying multiple times. However, on the night of the 9th dose, I noticed my upper lip was tingling. It felt like it was waking up from a trip to the dentist. However, it was gone in the morning, so I didn't think much of it.
The next morning, I had no tingling, so I took the medication again. An hour or so after taking the med, my lip started tingling. Then my left eyebrow. Then my chin was numb. Then my right eyelid, followed by my left cheek. An hour later, I was not only still struggling with odd facial tingling and numbness, but my scalp started playing Simon on me. Remember the light up game with the colors that would light up, and you'd have to remember their sequence? It was just a random pattern that pulsed, never made any sense, and could be dizzying to watch. Well, that's what my scalp started doing. It would jump from one patch to being numb, to another patch tingling, to yet another tightening.
It lasted for 7 hours.
Needless to say, I didn't take any more of the medication. And when I was still struggling with facial numbness and tingling a week later, I made an appointment with a neurologist. He talked about how migraines and a pinched nerve could account for the numbness and tingling, and we talked about an MRI I'd had done 11 years ago. (The neurologist at the time said that I had a couple of spots on my brain, but he also specifically said I did not have MS. However, he also signed me up with the MS Society to receive all the info on MS. It concerned me that he would do it, so I called and asked his office, if it said in my records that I had MS. It did not, so I asked them to remove my name from their mailing list. It was disconcerting to get requests to join clinical trials for something I didn't have!)
I had the MRI on the 30th and went in last week to find out the results. I had the CD in my hand, and the doctor asked me, if I'd looked at it yet. I hadn't. How unlike me is it that I wouldn't even look at it? Obviously, if I had been thinking clearly, the first thing I'd have done was pop it into the computer and looked at it. I certainly wouldn't have been thinking migraines and a pinched nerve had I seen it. The MRI looked like someone had spilled popcorn all over the film. My brain is full of lesions.
I have MS.
Compulsive hoarding is a mental disorder that is just beginning to be understood. As a hoarder, I have acquired things over the years with a specific purpose in mind at the time of the acquisition, used some of those items for their intended purposes, forgotten the goal for different objects, but now that I find that they have outlived their purpose in my life I am struggling to rid myself of those same things.
You can read the start of my journey here.