|Kristin Leigh Mullen, PhD||
One of the things I have noticed about my brain that I think I'm only now able to explain is that there seem to be fuzzy edges surrounding my intentions to think. For example, it is easy for me to decide to file something or make a folder for a file. It's clearly defined and not problematic, so I can do that with no trouble. It is the same with showering, dressing, and putting on makeup, for instance. However, when I decide to work on a research project or prep for my college classes that I teach, I find it extremely difficult to sharply and clearly focus on the assignments at hand. When I sit at my computer to write or develop something, my brain feels fuzzy and unclear. It is almost like I don't even know how to do it, or like it is too complex of a task for my brain to focus on, in and of itself.
I realize I'm still not defining this well, but for now, that is the best way I can describe what happens when I need to work on something that is difficult and complex. If something takes many steps to do to complete it, and if many of those steps have to be thought over in advance, my brain does not seem to have the capacity to do it without a great deal of effort, which leads to paralysis and feelings of incompetence and not feeling confident in my abilities. Thus the cycle continues and the anxiety builds. I think dread is a common emotion for people with learning disabilities.
I was talking with an ADD student the other day, and she informed me how difficult it is for her to concentrate and stay focused on a task, especially when it comes to reading or studying. I so totally understand this dilemma because it is the challenging work we do that makes the ADD/ADHD most manifest. If it is something easy and, perhaps, even something we thoroughly enjoy, it is much easier to do. Yet it seems that at some point in our lives, what is easy now, must have been challenging at an earlier time, and we worked through those challenges, which allowed them to become easier tasks to perform. I can only hope that the more I continue to work through my difficulties with reading, writing, performing research, etc. that they will become easier and more enjoyable tasks. Additionally, I have to believe that the more I creep and crawl, particularly, my brain will sharpen and those fuzzy edges surrounding complex, abstract work will become something of the past. I so desperately want and need for my brain to have sharp edges surrounding my thinking.
If anyone reading my blog experiences similar issues that I discuss, please share those experiences with me. I imagine there are much better ways to explain what goes on with a disorganized brain, and I'd love to hear from others how you might describe the process and feelings that go along with a disorganized brain.