Being Present

-This blog post is in response to “The Sacrament of the Present Moment” by Richard Rohr. –

I am very bad at living in the moment. Of breaking free of “the dualistic pattern” of thinking, as Rohr puts it. I overanalyze. I daydream. I think and can’t turn thoughts off. It can distract me from school work, from writing this very blog post. It can take enjoyment out of watching a show when I get caught up in thinking about the technicalities, or how I’m going to find the time to write the newspaper article covering it when I have two tests in the next week. It hypes up my anxiety and is probably a part of my ADHD. I used to be on medication for it. I’ve considered going back recently, yet I seem to be doing okay.

I was always doing okay, at least on the outside. I made straight A’s throughout school (except for that one B in math in the fourth grade). I wasn’t struggling to concentrate, I didn’t feel the need to run around the room. There was no reason for anyone to suspect ADHD in the star student of middle school.

Looking back on it, I can see signs. I was a hyper theater kid who loved attention and running around performing crazy skits at the Renaissance festival. I danced, played soccer, performed, was in Girl Scouts. I liked to be busy and thrived that way.

In the fourth grade, we read a book about tornadoes. I loved reading, that wasn’t the issue for me. The problem was that I couldn’t stop focusing on storms. On tornadoes. On whether or not one would be coming to kill me and my family. There was mild rain and I hid in our basement bathroom. I HYPER focused on it. I don’t know how old fourth graders are, but at whatever age that was, I wound up on a therapists couch. I listened to a CD they gave me to help me sleep every night. I was on meds. Once  I got better, we all conveniently forgot the episode happened.

In seventh grade, it came back. Small issues began to get to me. I became depressed. I hyper focused on things I couldn’t change. I cried. A lot. Again, I wound up on a therapists couch. Different therapist, better therapist. In about one session, he told my mother to read a book about ADHD and to see if it matched me. It did, but I got better with therapy and we decided against getting meds and an official diagnosis.

In ninth grade, it got bad again. I went to a fancy doctor in Charlotte and was officially diagnosed. I was prescribed meds. They helped me a lot but made me extremely nauseas. After about two years, I was sick of feeling sick and stopped taking it. I’ve been doing fine and well without it for now. My mom ran into my old therapist in the grocery store and told him about what all I’ve been up to. Still, living in the moment is a real issue for me. It has been for a long time.

I realize this is more of a tangent, hardly related to the article. But this is what I thought of while reading it. The religious part of the article doesn’t really connect with me. It’s more the emphasis on the living in the moment and on viewing people/things/moments complexly.




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