In David Goggins new book, Can't Hurt Me, the first challenge he gives you is to write about your "bad hand" so here's mine.
Growing up with ADHD, I couldn't control myself at all without my medicine. Without my medicine, I would basically be in my own little world, while typically destroying things, annoying people, talking a lot and interrupting people, not being able to focus at all, and being insanely hyper in general. When scolded by an authority figure for misbehaving, I would try really really hard to control myself and that would last about 6 seconds and I was back to doing exactly what got me scolded.
I couldn't swallow a pill so I would have to take my medicine in pbj crackers given to me by the elementary school nurse. They were pretty much all peanut butter flavor and the medicine was in a capsule and it was fucking disgusting but I took it every day, twice a day. Once in the morning before school, typically in an actually peanut butter jelly sandwich where I would often give my mom a hard time about it.
Why should I have to take medicine when all the other [normal] kids definitely don't?
This was a daily confirmation and reminder that I was different and I really didn't like that. Different meant more attention, bad attention. I know I needed my medicine though, even if it was absolutely disgusting and a pain in my ass. Having to explain why I go to the nurse every day to curious kids really took a hit emotionally.
Here’s an account of every memorable time I didn't take my medicine in elementary:
I got sent to the principal’s office for touching a students butt and doing bunny ears.
I got sent to the principal’s office for stealing a mouse (a kid that "no one liked" at the time, ratted me out) because in my mind I was going to use it to build a robot.
Yep. Literally every time I didn't take my medicine I'd do something that was awful. Every time I lied to my mom and didn't take my medicine, making in through one school day was one hell of a challenge, one that I always lost.
I also was easily one of the least athletic kids in school and mandatory gym class was awful for me. I'd feel like an inadequate burden every day.
I also did not understand the students new found obsession of "who likes who" and I wanted nothing to do with it. They would ask me who I liked and I'd say no one but they just took that for me concealing who I liked. Pissed me off.
I kept a journal with stupid mushy gushy stuff in it about a girl in my class at the time probably because she was the only one in class that was actually genuinely nice to me. My sisters found it in my room and exposed me. I was so angry and I felt humiliated. I remember hiding in my closet.
There was also a point in elementary school where we were allowed snack time in class but it was too short for me, so I would place my unfinished food inside of my hollow desk to munch on later but they started piling up and getting pretty bad. I would've just thrown them out like all the normal kids but I was far too self conscious to throw anything out for fear of judgement. I remember one day, I walked into class, all eyes went on me, and one kid said "we know your secret". I said terrified, "What secret?". That teacher exposed me to the entire fucking class, my worst nightmare. This kid helped me clean out my desk and I was super embarrassed.
I didn't have any friends in elementary school (real ones anyway), so I would just force myself into friend groups in the cafeteria so I wouldn't have to face the fear of sitting alone. I could feel that I didn't really belong so I would alter my personality to fit in and internally hate myself for it. I had to literally become a different person. This carried on to middle school and stopped in high school when I finally learned from my mistakes.
When I didn't take my medicine on the weekends or whatever, I would raid the chemical cabinet at night and mix shit up and paint it on my walls, make holes in the walls, and draw on them.
I knew I could never have anyone over because my mother was essentially a hoarder and the house was a total mess. It's not like I had a lot of friends anyway so this wasn't much of a problem, but knowing that I was missing out on what normal kids did with sleepovers and stuff was quite devastating.
When I was really young, my parents would bring my sister and I to the YMCA and my sister and I had no idea how to swim and one of the "life guards" threw us in to the water (if he thought that I would suddenly learn how to swim, he was mistaken).
When I was 12/13 I entered a one sided romantic relationship with a girl from church and felt quite guilty for doing so. I entered the relationship because I wanted to feel normal for once.
Fast forward to when I was 14/15 and I attended a summer camp and took swimming lessons and I managed to go through the entire lesson without picking up anything because I couldn't get over the thought of trusting another human being with my life for even two seconds. One day, when I was kickboarding (this I picked up instantly) across the pool, my kickboard slipped out of my hands and I was drowning but the lifeguards were not paying attention ( which reinforces my belief in not trusting another person with my life), thankfully my sister was present and yelled at them and they saved me.
Throughout my school experience, I never studied, I never truly cared about schoolwork because I knew deep down that the shit they taught didn't matter in the real world outside of basic math, english, history, and science. I was more interested in playing legos and Yu-gi-oh and eventually I moved on to the internet. I was always afraid to ask questions because I feared judgement, being annoying, and looking dumb.
In high school, my social anxiety peaked in freshman and sophomore year. I was self conscious and insecure about everything. I would lie to people so they would like me. I lied about the music I liked, what I did in my free time, anything that could be seen as "weird" or potentially lame. I hated myself and that I lied to others in order to be feel accepted and that I hid my true self. I felt that I wasn't good enough because I had failed right out of my honors classes that I arrived in high school with. My parents would constantly compare my to what my sister was doing academically, which made me feel quite inadequate. I would avert eyes and plant my face in my phone to make it through the day.
I attended college because my parents wanted to instead of looking for an alternative. I hated college from day one and it made me pretty depressed and eventually dropped out and attended a coding bootcamp which I basically dropped out of because I couldn't learn in that fast paced environment so I said a painful goodbye and flew home.