St. Charles Herald-Guide

Voices of St. Charles Parish

By Barbara Munson - December 1, 2006

They say you learn something new every day. The other day I learned that most people don't have brains that ricochet off the walls of their heads like a superball. Who knew?

Attention Deficit Disorder (ADD) runs in my family, but I didn't realize that I had it until recently. Boredom, procrastination, and lack of focus have always been issues with me, but I figured they were part of my personality. I managed my short attention span by taking notes almost constantly and leaving lots of reminders for myself on my answer machine. I dealt with the boredom by hyper-focusing on things like reading, genealogy research, and things that challenged me mentally.

Lately, the boredom, procrastination, and lack of focus have become major issues, and I finally decided to talk to my doctor about them. He told me that these three symptoms were the most common for ADD, and that my hyper-focusing on intellectually challenging pursuits was also a symptom. He also told me that I probably wasn't diagnosed earlier because for years attention problems were associated with hyperactivity, behavior problems, and problems with schoolwork, none of which I had.

The only true way to diagnose ADD is to take the medication and see if it helps. I'm kicking myself for not seeking help sooner because for me the medication has been a godsend. My brain finally feels like my body does after I have a massage - totally at ease. What could be better than that?

Barbara Munson is a writer. She lives in St. Rose