Bipolar Disorder, Everyday Life, recovery

To Do Lists

What would I do without my to do list?  Whether it is scratched out on a note pad, on a lined legal pad or typed in my phone. 

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No major surprise but I would be lost, aimlessly wondering, staring at my computer screen blankly.

Over the last number of years I seem to have lost my capacity to remember things like I used to.  Short term and long-term memories can be a blur at times.  This memory loss drives me bonkers.

I remember how I used to be, prior to all the meds, and I long to be that way again, the memory not the insanity part.

I have figured out ways to politely ask for information to be reiterated.  “Would you please remind me the details of the meeting?” “I don’t believe I heard clearly; would you please repeat that for me?”  Uncomplicated ways to say, “I totally forgot” without actually saying it.

In my position as an executive assistant, it is a real challenge because part of my job is to remember things.  I have learned how to use my resources (computer, calendar, notebooks) to make sure that I am staying on top of things.

Then you throw in ADHD and I feel like I am drowning. I have learned ways around this too.  I focus on literally every word that is said and jot down what I feel is important.  If I do not take notes during a meeting, I may have not been there because my brain was on a beach with a cold glass of water in my hand.

I am learning how to adjust (it has only taken me some five years), but now is better than never.  There are days, especially when I do not sleep well, that my brain is mush.  This is quite infuriating to me.  But I have to love myself the way I would love another person, be kind and compassionate and look at the whole picture.  I did not sleep.  Therefore my brain did not rest and can not operate fully.  It is one day (or 5) and I will get past this.

The art of compromise I am finding is the true gift.  Kindness and compassion.  And taking notes, copious notes.  Plus, being thankful when you can finally type again.

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