alleviatinganxiety was nice enough to nominate me for a Liebster Award this morning. For those of you not in the blogger-know, this is a kind of blogging chain letter which I assume we call an “award” to make ourselves feel better and encourage participation. And while I’m flattered that she nominated me, I was a little taken aback by the comment she left to inform me of this auspicious occasion. You can read our back-and-forth on my About Me page, but this is what made me double-take and nearly spit Earl Grey all over my computer:
“…It makes me happy to know that someone dealing with a learning disability has such a positive attitude and makes the best out of your situation…”
And this is what immediately happened in my brain:
Um, what!? Since when do I have a learning disability? I don’t have a learning disability. Wait, do I? What exactly constitutes a learning disability these days? What have I posted that would lead someone to believe I have a learning disability? Social anxiety, PMDD, gluten intolerance, allergies…none of those affect learning…Holy crap, I must sound like some kind of idiot who doesn’t even know what sort of learning disability she has…Must write more intelligent prose!
And that’s when it hit me. I knew exactly what learning disability she was talking about, because I have recently made several references to a very common learning disability: ADHD.
For the record, I don’t actually have ADHD. I realize ADHD is a serious, debilitating condition for many people. I have several friends who suffer from ADHD, and if I had a single ounce of seriousness in me, I would say it’s no laughing matter.
But those of you who know me know that I can and will laugh at just about anything (the only exceptions to date are rape, hate crimes, and social injustice). As my friends who have ADHD often joke about it, I feel no qualms in joking about it myself. So when a medication makes me hyperactive and limits my ability to focus, such as my recent experiences with prednisone, I sardonically proclaim myself to have medicinally-induced ADHD. I also regularly experience what I call Friday ADHD, which is merely the unwillingness to stay on-task when the weekend is drawing near. However, I have never been diagnosed with any form of ADHD, nor do I experience any of the symptoms on a regular basis. In reality, I have always had the ability to engage in laser-like focus on most things, especially reading, schoolwork, and writing. And because many of my friends with ADHD are highly intelligent, I always forget that it is technically a learning disability. One which I do not have nor have ever had.
Luckily, this was all just a misunderstanding, and she still wanted to nominate me for this prestigious “award”. I’m not going to nominate anyone else, because I am and have always been the jerk that breaks the chain letter; it is a matter of principle. But since alleviatinganxiety was kind enough to think well of my little blog, I will do the other stuff. I was actually wondering what in the hell to write about today, so this couldn’t have come at a better time.
11 Random Facts about Me
- My dad, my brother, and I all have identical feet.
- If I don’t like a food, it will more likely have something to do with the texture than the flavor.
- I consider myself a redhead by choice. My natural hair color is a sort of mousey brown or dark blonde, but I think auburn better suites my skin tone and personality.
- I am a paper packrat. While I seldom hold onto things out of sentiment, I still have bills and medical receipts from years past that I just never get around to shredding.
- I only remember three spankings and one time-out from the whole duration of my childhood.
- I once got a “non-satisfactory” grade in PE because I couldn’t do a pull-up.
- I am terrified of wasps because when I was little one crawled into one of my socks which I then put on my foot. It stung me like five or six times before my mom figured out what was wrong and took off my sock.
- I had braces in high school, and still have a permanent retainer behind my front-teeth on the bottom.
- I sometimes make abstract art for my bulletin board at work using ink pens and Post-its.
- My sister convinced me on several occasions throughout my childhood that I was adopted. One of these occasions (when I was very young) included aliens leaving me on the doorstep.
- I have a hereditary speech impediment that sometimes makes it difficult to pronounce Rs. The words “oral” and “rural” are the most difficult for me out of the entire English language.
11 Questions from alleviatinganxiety:
1. Who do you admire most in your life (famous or not famous) and why?
My paternal grandmother. She’s fun and spunky, even in her eighties. She’s lived through so much, from the Great Depression to the Civil Rights Movement, but she talks about them like they were no big deal. She’s one of the most open and accepting people I’ve ever known. And she faces everything in life with a brilliant sense of humor. I hope I’m like her when I’m old.
2. What do you like most about yourself?
My sense of humor. It’s gotten me through a lot, and I’m sure it will get me through much, much more in the future. To quote Garden State, “If you can’t laugh at yourself, life’s going to seem a whole lot longer than you’d like.”
3. If you can only eat one food for the rest of your life, what would it be?
Cheese. I have a serious addiction to cheese.
4. If you could visit any place in the world, where would it be and why?
England. I’ve been fascinated by British culture since my family first got cable. I also really want to use the British accent I learned in all my theatre years and see if anyone realizes I’m not actually a Brit.
5. Do you have any special talents? If so, what is it?
I’m really good at making faces. Does that count?
6. Who was your favorite teacher?
It is nigh impossible for me to pick one from college, so I’ll go with my favorite high school teacher: Mrs. Bradshaw, 10th and 11th grade English. She was one of the first people to encourage me to write for myself, not just for school assignments. She prepared me for college better than any other teacher, and taught me and my fellow students to think critically and come to our own conclusions in a time when “teaching to the test” was becoming prevalent. She is the only teacher from high school I ever went back and visited after graduating.
7. What season do you like best and why?
I’ve always been partial to the autumn, even though that is the worst time for my allergies. Spring might have all the pretty flowers, but I prefer the richer reds, oranges, and yellows of leaves in the fall.
8. What is your favorite movie and why?
This question has a different answer most days of the week. Maybe it’s a Gemini thing, but asking me to pick a favorite anything is like asking the world’s most indecisive man whether he wants his sandwich on white or wheat.
My answer at this exact moment is Wristcutters: a Love Story. It’s a quirky romantic comedy that takes place in the afterlife for people who’ve committed suicide. It’s a really sweet story that appeals to my irreverent sense of humor. Plus Tom Waits is in it, and it is the film which first introduced me to the awesomeness that is Gogol Bordello.
9. What was your favorite cartoon as a child?
Oddly enough, I don’t remember. I remember watching Looney Tunes and Tom and Jerry and Captain Planet and Teenaged Mutant Ninja Turtles, but to be honest I spent most of my TV time growing up watching BBC America and the History Channel. I was a strange child.
10. What is the craziest thing you’ve ever done?
Drove myself to the hospital after a bronchospasm? Confronted a burglar in my underpants? It’s a toss-up between those two, really. But I’ve done so many ill-advised things…
11. Is there anything you’re looking forward to right now? If so what is it?
Fridays off for the summer. Yeah, bitches!