“You’re not paying attention!”
She was right. I knew she was right but no way did I want to admit it.
“Sure I was.”
She frowned. “Ok what did I just say?”
“Something about ….” I gave up. “Something about our Prime Minister having the itchy disgruntled face of a woman with PMS”
She slapped me. “I knew it. I can always tell when you’re not listening. Your eyes lose focus. ”
“I know. Sorry.”
Seems I’ve said sorry for stuff like this for ages. People think it’s a male thing.
I finally figured out just this morning that it’s not. And it’s not that she was boring (she wasn’t). It’s that I was bored. There’s a difference.
You have to factor in this seeming inattentiveness with some other factors.
Like, for example, the fact that in the time it takes me to walk to work – about a half-hour – I can pretty much write a novel in my head. It’s not a *great* novel, mind. In fact, if I were to put it down on paper, it would just seem like the ramblings of a crazy man. The topics would be myriad.
In short, my head is a very crowded place. Lots going on up there. All kinds of neat shiny things that pop in and out of my consciousness. I’m the human equivalent of a dog with a waggy tail, just waiting for that shiny ball to go racing across the grass so that I can go chase it.
Consider too the fact that in my early years as an IT technician they had us attend some courses. It’s a good thing there were no tests because I know I would have failed. It’s not because I’m stupid either – I know I’m not. It’s just that I can’t sit that long and not go off into the corridors of my mind, opening interesting doors and basically plundering every errant thought that ever occurred.
Problems with concentration; problems with losing things like keys and things I just put down, damn it! More excited and invested in my imagination than in what’s going on around me. Unable to focus on simple tasks at work.
Does this any of this sound familiar to you?
Well these are the bits and pieces I began putting together today, when the local Breakfast Television show discussed ADD/ADHD this morning.
Before, when I thought about each of these personal characters, I considered them separately:
- Not paying attention when someone’s talking = “just being a guy”
- Not able to absorb long speeches or classroom training = “might be a tad stupid”
- losing things/words = “absent-minded” (whatever the hell that means)
- unable to focus on tasks and finish them = “disorganized; undisciplined”
When you put them all together though…. well that’s a different story isn’t it?
We may talk about this more a little later. I’d appreciate hearing your thoughts though. Particularly from those of you who are able to hold everything together, focus a task to completion, completely absorb hours-long lessons and lectures. I have no idea what that feels like.
Must be pretty cool.