The alarm went off at the ungodly hour of 5:00 a.m.
I live alone but still shouted “I’m up I’m up!” – like the stupid thing would shut off if it heard my voice.
Reality slowly wound itself into my consciousness. Today was the day. I was due in court for 9:00 a.m. to do my civic duty.
I was going for jury duty.
There was both curious anticipation and a heightened sense of anxiety warring for attention when I faced the day.
I wondered about the process, and whether or not I’d actually make it to the jury level. There’s a requirement – if you’re picked – to face the accused and answer any of the questions the lawyers submit.
“Are you aware of this case? Have you already made up your mind about what should happen to the defendant?” These are the questions I’d imagine being asked.
Having ADHD all of my life, I was deathly afraid of showing up late. (Being late once in a while is embarrassing. Being late all the time provokes a social indictment; one becomes known for being a failure)
Thus the early alarm. And thus the plan to get out the door no later than 7:30 a.m.
I even worked it out the night before. Google Maps told me the trip would take forty-five minutes. I took no chances and planned for ninety.
As it turned out, I left only fifteen minutes later than planned.
After double-locking the door, I got part way to the bus stop when I remembered that I had forgotten my bus pass. That sucker is worth $120 so it was worth it to go back through my double-locked door to get it. There’s always something I’d forgotten so there was no way I was going to start my journey with the planned ninety minutes anyway.
The plan worked! When I got out of the subway I discovered I was a half an hour early.
The short walk through sticky humid air did nothing to dampen my excitement. I looked around at the crowd of commuters, all resigned to their fate on their painful march to whatever jobs and appointments awaited their grumpy faces. Maybe the grey sky had something to do with it. There were no smiles or even half smiles or smirks. Torontonians take their seriousness seriously.
Security guards greeted me at the front door of the court building. There was no lineup, so I got to empty my pockets and place my briefcase on the small conveyor right away while one of them did his wand thing.
“There’s something in your back pocket sir.”
I reached and pulled out my keys. “Sorry”
“No worries. Please go ahead.”
I retrieved everything and made my way to the courtroom.
The doors were locked, which……..made sense as I was still about twenty minutes early. It seemed odd that I was the only one in the hallway though. Four empty chairs sat silently, all desperately hugging each other. I pulled one of them free from the rest before settling my butt down onto it.
I waited impatiently; way too keyed up to read anything on my iPad.
9:00 a.m. came and the door remained closed.
Maybe I was in the wrong place. I opened up my briefcase and took out the summons again.
“6th floor”. Yup. That’s where I was. “Courtroom 6-1”. I looked up at the sign on the wall. Courtroom 6-1
I was definitely in the right place.
I thought “maybe they’re a little relaxed on their schedule.”
I looked at the summons again. Then I looked at the date.
Today was August 18.
The summons said September 18.
I rolled my eyes and then sat there laughing quietly to myself.
I quickly did a sprint around in my head, processing all that I needed to now do.
I had to inform not only my boss but my team and colleagues about my gaffe.
Plus I had to re-do the paperwork for the acting assignment for the guy who was supposed to replace me.
We all make mistakes from time to time but it’s rare that we get the opportunity to broadcast our mistakes to everyone we know.
Which is one reason I wrote this blog to follow-up the one from yesterday. I figured I may as well go for broke and announce it to the world.
The other reason is that it seems like a good idea to write a series of blogs about the symptoms of ADHD. Many non-ADHDers are under the assumption there’s only one or two. Say the term “ADHD” and some will think “someone who can’t sit still” or “someone who gets distracted easily”.
Did you know that according to the Diagnostic and Statistical Manual of Mental Disorders, there are 18 symptoms of ADHD?
Anyway, let’s file this one under Symptom Number 1:
Fails to give close attention to details or makes careless mistakes in schoolwork, work, or other activities.