I was diagnosed a couple of years back with Adult ADHD. This was a surprise to me, but not especially for those who knew me and the sometimes chaotic way in which I respond to visual stimuli.
I did not remember ever having been hyperactive as a child, and attention did not seem to be an issue for me, though later in life, I found myself having trouble focusing on one task at one time, which sometimes made it hard to carry out tasks. Often, ADHD is lifelong, and does not typically just show up without an external source.
When researching possible causes for a late appearance of Adult ADHD, there is some evidence to support concussions and head injuries as a culprit. This made me think of the sometimes funny, often scary stories I have told of the many times I’ve been hit in the head. I’m going to tell those stories here, finishing with the most recent head injury, which happened just the other day.
1. Little league baseball.
I was not very good at baseball, and as a result, I ended up in the outfield. During practice one year, the coach was hitting out a practice pop fly, I did not have my glove in the right place, and the next thing I remember is waking up with everyone around me in the outfield.
2. Little league baseball, year 2.
That’s right, the same thing happened two years in a row, and I’m pretty sure I dropped out of little league after that.
3. Parks and Recreation.
The first time I ever got stitches was when I worked for my township’s Parks and Recreation department. Mostly, the work was emptying 50 gallon drums of empty beer bottles and cans in parks, with grass cutting in the summer, but we also maintained the playground equipment. One day, I was replacing a chain net on a basketball hoop by myself on a saturday. In order to get the hooks open to hold the net, you sometimes have to use pliers to open them a bit. I misjudged my grip and the pliers went into my head with all my might. Blood started coming down my head, and I went to the hospital. The diagnosis was a concussion.
4. Moving day.
When I moved from Levittown, PA to Ewing, NJ, we got a moving truck from the storage place we were using to hold our house’s contents between the residences. I was standing on the ground behind the truck when a wooden Ikea shelf fell over and hit me in the back of the head. We rescheduled the move, went to the hospital, and the diagnosis was a concussion.
5. First week at Princeton.
I was excited to be working at Princeton University, and was going to lunch with a friend. It was raining, and I was suffering from cataracts (I’ll explain in another post) and I misjudged the last step of a set of steps down into Woodrow Wilson Hall. I went headfirst into the glass and metal door at the entrance, and a girl who saw it shrieked. The blood flowed. I decided to forego a visit to the nurse, but I probably should have. The hit was at least as damaging as my previous injuries, and likely a concussion.
6. The occasional chandelier.
Most recently, I stood up too quickly into a chandelier and blood started to flow. I do these kinds of injuries from time to time, but this one made me think of the others.
I guess more than anything, I just wanted to note the history of these injuries, but I do wonder if they have anything to do with my recent discovery of ADHD.
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