When I worked in advertising and attended a creative briefing, I’d usually have what she’s having. That is, if, say, we were briefed on a new drug launch, we’d hear about all the symptoms and how the new drug helped the target audience, then we’d scamper off to brainstorm and search for relevant art (insert photos of optimistic faces and active bodies). My upper lip would prickle, then the sweat, and irregular shallow breathing, because whatever chronic illness or disease they described, man, did I have it, too.
One better is if you look up the definition of mental problems, major social disorders, and you’re like, “Oh, that’s me.” But, it never actually is.
Learning disabilities is another “I’ll have what she’s having” category. Give me the definition of a handful of these, and I’m the first to raise my hand. “Oh, that’s so totally me.” When I was in school, actually, I was tested and found that I was correct, though they didn’t have a name for the disability then. Now, we know it as ADHD (inattentive type), or ADD. Many people with this, however, tend to outgrow it come adulthood. Again, there was no name for what I had; I was just “other health impairment.” A vague disability, the catchall. So, I never identified myself as ADHD or ADD.
Then, many years later, post-college (where I received disability services, like text books on tape and extra scrap paper and a private room for testing), in a Couples Therapy session in Texas, our therapist brought it up. Based on everything she heard from Phil (many complaints about my disorganization, my inability to remember certain important tasks, leaving random things all over the house–my cell phone on a closet shelf as I reorganized toddler clothing, to open kitchen cabinets, to little half-finished activities left “open” all over the house), she suggested that I had ADHD.
“Why can’t you put things back where they belong?” Because I get distracted! Someone calls my name, and I forget to return to what I was doing. What was I doing? It’s the same today. The therapist asked if I was in the habit of staying up late. Oh, yes. Then she dug out that once I start something (like writing on a single project), I can’t stop! Do not stop me! I am in this. I hear nothing else. No alarms, no one calling my name. I am hyper-focused. But to start something new, oh the drag and avoidance. It takes me forever to ramp up, and once I’m in it, you can’t stop me, or forget it, it will take me forever again to refocus and catch up to where I was. She said, “It sounds like you have Adult ADHD, especially if you had problems learning in school.” Oh, yes, so me. And that certainly explains why I’m prone to tangents and can’t seem to outline anything. Definitely me.
Fast forward to today. I’m not on any ADHD meds, but maybe I should be. Or maybe it’s ADHD combined with my latest blood test results from the gynecologist, which ain’t too pretty…
MAYBE DRINKING TEARS WILL CHANGE MY BLOOD TEST RESULTS
I want to cry, but no tears come out. I am super depressed. I had blood drawn last Monday and kept calling the doctor’s office for the results. It’s a new doctor, and no one would give me the results. I phoned twice today, and the nurse said, “The doctor hasn’t reviewed these yet. She probably won’t get to these until tomorrow.” WHAT? Okay, so no news is always good news, right? You figure if they saw something alarming, they’d phone you right away. Wrong.
The only things she tested were my thyroid, my progesterone level, estradiol level, progesterone level, testosterone (serum & free). The results have me in a panic, thanks to all the drugs I have to take (a drop of testosterone gel, progesterone 10 days a month, estradiol once daily). These are the results I received when I asked the nurse for something. Anything!
Serum Testosterone 4.7
Free Testosterone 25.3
My free testosterone is abnormally high and my progesterone is at the level of a woman who’s over 60 years old. HOW DO YOU NOT TOTALLY FREAK OUT AT THIS NEWS? You cry, but no tears come out. Instead, you vent on your blog and write about your ADHD (totally unrelated) and google progesterone levels and what the hell free testosterone is, versus total. You do all kinds of panic research on a testosterone supplements review just to inform yourself further on how you are not normal and then you want to throw up, but you don’t because you have to take your daughter to a Girl Scout event, where she learns about First Aid.
A progesterone deficiency (which leads to an estrogen dominance) can result in hair loss, memory loss, weight gain, and water retention.
Absence of menstruation
Loss of libido
Increased risk of endometrial cancer
Night sweats and hot flashes
Gum disease (i.e., gingivitis)
Infertility or not ovulating
Puffiness or bloating
Lower body temperature
Um, yeah, that’s totally me. And how do all of these symptoms factor in compared to the symptoms of an elevated Free Testosterone of 4.7?