Now as I mentioned in my last blog I had two, count them, two, incidents when I managed to turn my cook book into my “cooked book.” I could have gotten really frustrated with myself over that, bashed myself over all the “what ifs” and pretty much been very negative inside, and thus very much un-fun to be around. It’s important to recognize, “Oh, wow! That could have gone really bad, but thank God it didn’t!” and then tuck that little nugget of knowledge in your noggin for next time. As long as you do that at some point in the day, then let go, move on and possibly laugh at the ridiculous situation you managed to create all by yourself!
Laughter triggers a key chemical that is important for all of us. However, an individual with ADHD truly needs a good dose of laughter every day to help balance out the chemicals in their brain. Folks with ADHD are low in the chemical, serotonin. This chemical helps keep spirits up, clears our minds for thinking, and gives us the enthusiasm and energy to keep moving forward. When we get disgusted with ourselves we have more trouble thinking clearly and often make more mistakes in the process.
As a family, it is important to talk about the frustrations and let the one with ADHD know about how they are impacting the rest of the family. However, yelling at the one with ADHD will only make them feel worse. What they do is not on purpose and often isn’t even conscious in their decision-making. Yelling at them may or may not help them remember your feelings but it will definitely leave a painful memory that isn’t forgotten. Often, they will be more likely to make the mistakes again because they are so concerned about not having you get so mad again. If you can make it clear how much the ADHDers behavior hurts or frustrates you, while also in the back of your head acknowledging that it wasn’t done maliciously, there is a better chance that you will get to say what you need to say and also actually be heard.
On the other side of the equation, it is important that the one with ADHD is dialed in enough to know that we can be a little too inwardly focused and not see how we impact those around us. For the health of the family, we must choose to listen to the experiences of our families and then strive to keep the family members feelings at the surface of our conscience as we make choices throughout the day.
Our feelings count…and so do theirs! If you are interested in learning more about ADHD click the word support. You will find a page with some excellent books that deal specifically with ADHD for all ages in the family.
Do you, or someone in your circle of family or friends, deal with a chronic issue, like ADHD? What resources have you found helpful? Are there communication tips you’d like to share?
I wrote this song for my husband, Joel, and daughter, Jessica. It was actually a Valentine’s gift a few years ago. We had survived our first year of knowing I had ADHD which was why we were…..uh, let’s just say, when it came to communicating with each other we were “having troubles,” as Jessica use to say when she was a wee person. (Not Wii, wee)
In fact, the first verse is written from my daughters perspective and the second verse is written from my husband’s perspective. Dealing with ADHD is difficult. Living family life with a member with ADHD really can be very difficult. Yet, sometimes it can provide a family with some wacky or fun moments too! Seriously, the spectrum is that wide of a range!
Now, you can’t ignore the challenges that come with ADHD but you also don’t have to sit and stew in them, either, singing your woes. There are two things I strongly recommend, instead:
First, celebrate the colorful dynamics that come with ADHD. Kind of like a magnifying glass, ADHD magnifies not just the challenges but beautifully magnifies the gifts that each person has been blessed with. Focusing on these things helps you remember you are valuable and you bring something special to the world.
Second, you just gotta laugh at some of the silly predicaments you get yourself and/or your family into. One example of that is this dilemma that happened twice! I have one of those Betty Crocker Cookbooks that everyone seems to get when they get married. Well, mine is no longer a cook book but a “cooked book”! Twice I have managed to lay the book down on the stove and then accidentally turn on the wrong burner. Yep, the back of that book has been nicely branded with that unique spiral that can only come from an electric burner. (Good thing it didn’t happen when we had a gas burner, eh?!)
I can’t help but smile whenever I interact with that book!
(Stay tuned for part deux coming soon to a website near you!)
While waiting for part deux you may want to click on support info and check out the excellent ADHD books listed. They are some of the best to read whether you are single, married, or have kids. The books are written for adults and kids.
So, what’s your story? Do you deal with ADHD challenges? Do you also “cook” your cook books?
“I may be unstrung but I’m not undone. I’m praising the Lord and I’m having fun!”
Unstrung by Pain
I wrote this song during a 5 year period of time when I was unable to play my guitar due to chronic pain in my hands. This was a very difficult time for me. Not only did it feel like I had lost a part of me (I had played the guitar since I was 8 years old), but the never-ending pain soaked up all my energy.
Becoming more and more depressed about life, I finally decided to write an acapella song. I needed to feel empowered to sing a song on my own without any instruments required. In my Orcadians Choir and Chansons Jazz Choir, at Shorecrest High school (Go Scots!!), I learned how to sing many acapella songs and knew I could do it. So, I wrote this song as a gift for myself to lift my spirits up when the pain in my hands would bring me down.
In the past the guitar had become my way of communicating my feelings. Without the guitar, but with a friend, I was able to discover that I could be very musical through writing and singing songs. The inability to play guitar forced me to stretch and discover my song writing skills. After 5 years of writing songs without the guitar, my husband encouraged me to try playing again just a little bit to see how it would go.
At first I was resistant because I didn’t think I could survive the disappointment if I couldn’t play. However, the desire to play again ran so deep within, I just had to give it a try! After a few minutes of playing–and then a few minutes more–I just about fell over. It seemed that there was a chance I could play again! Over time I gradually built up my little hand muscles enough to be able to play multiple songs again. Now I can play for a couple hours!
Restrung by Hope
I am so grateful to all those who prayed for me over the years when I had run out of hope, myself. Sometimes we need to keep hope alive for others until they are able to hope again! My story reminds me of the paralyzed man whose friends lowered him through the roof down to Jesus so he could be healed. My friends and family raised my prayers up to God continuously for me when I couldn’t.
Even though my hands are not fully recovered I am incredibly grateful! I have been given a second chance to do my favorite thing – accompany myself on the guitar while singing for myself and others.
The most important things I learned from this experience is, be grateful for each day and that no matter how bad things get it isn’t necessarily the end of the story!
Have you ever experienced having something very important “taken away” from you? Have you ever got to the point of feeling hopeless? Did you share your burden with someone else so they could help you? How did it go? Are you still hanging on?
Add to the conversation below. We’ll be glad you did.
This song was written for our God-daughter, Maria, who lives in Norway with her parents, Katie & Kjell Møgster, and three big brothers. Back in 2006, the Møgsters called us from Mali, Africa (during their missionary years) and asked us to be her God-Family. They invited us to meet them in Norway to attend Maria’s baptism. Well, of course, we said “yes!” with great enthusiasm and immediately started the process of obtaining tickets that would eventually have us arrive in Ålesund, Norway.
Now, a baptism is always a special event. But in Norway, it is a HUGE event. Many hours of preparation were put into decorating the house, setting up tables, making centerpieces, organizing name tags, and preparing group games. Oh yes, then there is the never-ending supply of food!
The morning of the baptism was spent preparing for the special baptismal worship service. The worship experience was amazing! I couldn’t understand a word of it, but the rhythm of the liturgy and prayers felt familiar, especially the Lord’s Prayer.
There was only one part of the service that was in English, the part when I got up and sang. The Møgsters had informed me that it is often a tradition for the God-parents to have one of their gifts be a poem or song. So, I happily wrote Maria a song, in the weeks before our Norwegian odyssey. The words of the chorus were projected onto the screen and I invited everyone to sing along during the last time through…which they did, in their conservative Norwegian way of doing things.
After worship, we drove back to Kjell’s mothers home with the family. Immediately, their friends and family started arriving for the festivities. There must have been about 40 people there, each with a name tag showing them where they were going to sit. We heard Norwegian songs, ate Norwegian food, played group games and learned a lot about … Norwegians!! The last visitors (who weren’t going to be sleeping at the house) finally left around 8pm that night. Finally, it was down to just the…15 of us. This included 7 children, 5 of them young elementary school boys!
The whole trip was an amazing adventure. Being immersed in another culture for 2 1/2 weeks gave me a much bigger understanding of our world. My family and I didn’t want to leave!
In June, 2011, during one of our reunions with the Møgsters, here in the States, Maria asked me to sing her song. I happily agreed. Maria was 5 at this time, so I could look her in the eyes as I sang. She would blush and turn away, but soon I found her looking at me again. It was a precious moment. Clearly she felt very special about having her own song.
I am so glad that my song touched Maria’s heart. It clearly made her feel loved and cherished.
Has anyone done something extra special in your life while growing up? Have you ever told them what it meant to you? If not, think about doing that. It would mean a lot to them.
Writing songs for me is like getting a buzz from too much coffee. After I wrote “Let’s Get a Latte” I was so amped up that I had to keep the caffeinated lyrics flowing! Hence, “Too Much Caffeine.”
Being a person who loves learning the behind-the- scenes information, here is a little behind-the-scenes tid bit for you.
For some reason when I perform this song I feel like I am singing on stage in a Broadway musical.
Ever since I was in the musical Annie in 6th grade I have had a desire to bring a little drama into my music once in awhile.
I even have these hand gestures and dance moves that are acted out in my head. Due to the guitar in my hands it is a bit difficult to act them out. Instead I express my drama through my face and pregnant pauses in my guitar playing.
Anyway, speaking of drama, this song reminds me of how serious some people are about their morning coffee.
Not quite a year after moving to Boise I attended a women’s convention with a bunch of church ladies I was getting to know. We had a delightful time together.
On the final morning of the event we all gathered in the conference room at the hotel for breakfast. We had all just received our breakfast when I heard some grumbling sounds across the room. I looked up and saw that this older lady had just discovered that we had already run out of coffee. Up to this point I had not realized how important it is for some people to have their morning cup of joe. It’s like coffee is the key to opening the door to their “smile”. No coffee. No smile.
Since I had never really witnessed this before, I almost started laughing at her behavior. But luckily I stopped myself from letting loose a giggle. The look on this ladies face told me that this was no laughing matter. Eeesh!
I had to work hard not to laugh. Don’t you hate that! It’s seems the harder I try not to laugh the funnier the situation is to me and it just gets harder to keep it under control. Hee hee!
Caffeine To Go, Please
Stressing over a small cup of coffee seemed silly to me. However, I have my own moments when I take things too seriously, also. How well I played my guitar, sang a song, shared my thoughts with the audience…yep, I get pretty serious about those things. Countless other things, too. But, when I take things too seriously I just suck all the joy right out of it.
Now back to our story. I am happy to announce that the hotel did had more coffee and peace reigned on earth once again.
What are some things that you stress about in life? Is it necessary? Anything you get just a little too serious about? How do you deal?
Comment below. Add to the conversation. We’ll be glad you did.