I have had limited focus of late.
Firstly, I am head-over-heels-can’t-think-of-anything-else-in-love. I’ve been in this state a little while, to be honest, with a good measure of new relationship anxiety on top. My method of coping? Writing it down, without a doubt. The majority I have written on WordPress although I haven’t always published the posts. Some are for my eyes only. Some I have written in a journal and some on any bit of paper I can find and then securely hide away.
Writing helps me to focus. It empties and sorts my mind which then leads to greater focus afterwards.
However, the Coronavirus has definitely affected my focus too. For weeks I couldn’t watch TV, other than the news, couldn’t get in to a book, couldn’t face doing much really.
Eventually, my reading focus returned when I went back to an old favourite from my youth. Young Adult fiction is easy to read but works hard to be engaging for a highly demanding audience. It was definitely the book rather than the reading itself though. Once I finished the series I attempted other books to no avail. It’s been very much trial and error.
What has been particularly interesting for me is that I have had a taste of what my 13 year old son goes through every single day. He was diagnosed with ADHD a few months ago after a long battle and wait for CAMHS appointments. He is also now waiting to be assessed for autism.
I didn’t know my child had ADHD for a long time and that is distressing considering I am a teacher.
My first child, my daughter, was angelic in every sense of the word. Quiet, rarely cried, met every milestone, sweet, gentle… Easy. My son was completely different. Energetic, lively, loud, confident, smashed every milestone, intelligent, passionate, never sat still. For a long time, I just thought it was because he was a boy and a different personality.
Looking back, issues started in Primary School early on. My polite, well mannered, affectionate but very energetic child was struggling in school. Despite clear intelligence he failed to make progress. He struggled to physically write. It was blamed on him being left handed. Then poor teaching. Then laziness. Then eventually that he had joint laxity and therefore physically cannot write well. Lack of progress was also attributed to a number of personal events in our lives too.
By Year 5 though, he had started showing other traits. As well as poor attention and focus, he’d started to be aggressive at home. He’d have meltdowns and couldn’t control his emotions. He was frustrated and unhappy. I blamed school. I blamed my failing marriage.
When ADHD was mentioned by his Year 5 teacher, I initially disagreed. But through his final diagnosis of joint laxity by occupational health and the assistance they suggested for him, I realised that he was showing signs of ADHD.
This last few weeks have been the closest I will probably ever get to understanding how he feels. Not being able to relax or sit still. Feeling on edge and anxious. Feeling frustrated when I can’t focus. My mind jumping uncontrollably. Not being able to do anything but not being able to sit still either. Feeling like a failure. Not understanding how to stop.
My child goes through this every day. No wonder he can’t control his emotions.