They say that some things are impossible to live without but also impossible to live with. Today I had a choice to make that was just about that: stop taking Ritalin. As you all know I have ADHD for which I take prescription medication, Ritalin.
I also have heart problems, heart palpitations and recently chest pains. The heart palpitations I can live with, although irritating they are quite harmless. I make jokes about it, I even write poems about it: Rhythm.
As the chest pains are increasingly worrying me I went to the doctor and she advised me to stop using Ritalin. She also referred me through to a Cardiologist in this town as she says this is quite serious.
Years ago, I think it was in 1998, one of my best friends told me he thought I had ADHD ( I CAN’T SIT STILL!).
Until then I managed to go through life somehow but had a lot of accidents, fights, moves, jobs and disillusion as I went along with it. My life was not easy and even though I met the most wonderful girl in my life and married her, I could not alter that, the constant disappointments that were part of my life.
Until that day my friend Han told me I had ADHD and I realised something just had to be done. Some time after that moment in our shop I made an appointment with a psychiatrist, had a lot of intensive assessments and the diagnose ADHD. I consequently started to take Ritalin and although it took the inspiration out of me to write (I only resumed writing again in 2005) I managed to organise my life in a much better way and keep a single job for over 9 years!
My life was changed from the moment I started to take this stuff, a powerful drug with a powerful result. My family, my colleagues, every person I was involved with in my surroundings noticed the change and for the first time I got compliments in my life, for being patient, for letting people speak without interrupting, for the quality of my work, and for a lot of things more. Just imagine the effect of having meals on time for my family, of the laundry being done before they ran out of socks or underwear.
But now, after 18 years of taking Ritalin, I was forced to say goodbye to this little white round tablet that had such a huge effect on me. I will be extremely honest with you my friends, I am scared. Scared for the negativity I said goodbye to 18 years ago. Scared for the chaos, not just in this household but even more for the chaos in my head. I fear the arguments about things that I have forgotten to do, not deliberately of course but things that needed to be done. I am scared of loosing people I love in the process, of hurting the ones I love without intent. On top of being chronically ill, this is just a bit too much for me now. Help me.
Breaking up is hard to do. Breaking down is much easier.