It has taken me a long while to really get the whole ADHD thing down, not that you ever really do get it completely down pat. There will always be more to learn with each new year and every new experience. I’ve had to educate myself (and a few others) about this neurological disorder, and it’s been exhausting and rough at times. It’s also been very enlightening, both about Leon and about myself (going over my own life with undiagnosed ADHD). I have learned more about life and myself in the 9 years that this little boy has been alive than I had ever learned prior to that.
In looking for answers for him I have found a few for myself. Still, I never felt that I had enough answers for him. It has always seemed to me like what we knew about him, just was not enough. There had to be something more to Leon and what’s “different” about him than just the ADHD. And I say “different”, because there is nothing wrong with my child, just a lot of differences! But his differences have made his life more difficult.
I’m not saying he isn’t ADHD; on the contrary Leon could be the poster boy for ADHD. His severe hyperactivity and uncontrollable impulsiveness has gotten him into more than his share of trouble. We have clearly seen how severely his ADHD has impacted his life and that without his ADHD medication he just cannot control those impulses and can find himself in potentially dangerous situations. He’s goofy and quirky, and does thinks that make him so uniquely different from everyone else.
But it is also for that very reason that I have long said there’s got to be more too it than just the ADHD. The fact that we, both my husband and I have always known that our child cannot and should not be left to his own devises for too long when not on medication has kept me searching for more answers.
When he is left to his own devises things seem to become … well lets just say challenging, to put it mildly. He becomes argumentative and seemingly willful. His actions tend to be unintentionally destructive – just last week he managed to …yank the handle off of the refrigerator door; …battle it out with his Dr. Seuss toothpaste – leaving a smeary mess; …chew up a handful of paperclips; …stuff his pockets full of rocks, sticks, snack bags, bolts, pens, pencils and any other thing small enough to fit.