When ADHD Makes You Laugh…Sortta

Terry Matlen, ACSW Health Guide
  • I just came back from the store and added another two pound bottle of Ketchup to the already existing six pounds total that is sitting in my pantry. What's my point, you're wondering? Considering the fact that there are only three of us in this house and that it takes probably six months to get through a single two pound container (since only one of us uses it regularly), well...I think you know where I'm going with this.


    I keep forgetting that I already have enough Ketchup to last two years; this fourth bottle should see us through the birth of my future grandchildren, two new presidents and probably three new cars. Interestingly, but not surprisingly, on that same trip to the supermarket, I failed to buy eggs; a staple that we go through easily in one week.

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    Sometimes, you just have to laugh when ADHD comes out of nowhere and punches you in the stomach. Or in this case, tickles your funny bone.


    Lately, I've noticed that my writing has taken on a bit of a dark turn. I've mentioned the negatives of having ADHD, the stumbling blocks, bad media and more (wait, let me check- I've already forgotten).


    So I thought I'd take a new spin on this whole thing called living with ADHD, because truthfully, lots of things happen in my life that are actually pretty funny. At least to me, anyway.


    Like last week. Here in Michigan, we had the coldest day of the winter where the temperature hovered to exactly one degree Fahrenheit. Now you can imagine how many times I glanced at my car's thermometer, just waiting- dying for it to flash zero so I could shriek to my daughter that this was it, I AM moving out of this state of disgusting winters. Of course, the car defied me and it remained at one degree for the rest of my errand runs. One of those being, taking my daughter out for dinner.


    Not surprisingly, the new restaurant we wanted to try closed the minute we laid our hand on the front door. I could see it was going to be one of those days. Spotting another restaurant down the road, we got back in the car and turned around...only to find ourselves in the wrong driveway; I'd entered the car wash, instead.


    Instead of fighting my ADHD tendencies, like I do much of the time, I also have learned to "go with them", especially during times like this when it certainly wasn't the end of the world that I'd found my car in the wrong driveway. So, we paid for a super duper car wash, as my vehicle as usual, was filthy. (Does anyone really think about washing their car on a regular basis? I can't get my kitchen cleaned on a daily basis!) . Once we entered the drive- through, I was immediately brought back to 1969, watching with fascination as the sprayers dumped rainbow colored soap on the windshield. The colors danced and swayed, until they swirled into quite a psychedelic display reminiscent of the hippy t-shirts I wore back when I was in my teens.


    To further add to the experience, the soap was scented- grape! What an amazing multi sensory experience. All I needed was to blast on a Who CD to make it complete, but alas, I was outvoted by one and we had to listen instead to Hannah Montana.


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    We finished the car wash and as we left the rainbow grape experience, I stopped dead in my tracks. The doors, windows, mirrors- everything- had turned to ice and I was stuck with a tie dyed car. In fact, it was so thickly covered in a frozen "60s" design, I was unable to see where I was going.


    I turned around and headed back to the entrance where the attendant just laughed his head off. He asked me why I was dumb enough to wash my car on the coldest day of the season, and smirked that I probably wouldn't be able to open my car doors an hour from now. You don't want to know what I said to him, nor can it be repeated here. But I took his comments to heart and turned up the heat full blast and drove around the block more than a few times, hoping to warm up the car enough to ward off an ice disaster.


    We continued on our way to the restaurant, while my daughter began freaking out that after we ate, we'd be locked out of the frozen car. My ADHD brain kicked in as I thought of all the options, should that indeed happen. Did the restaurant have a blow torch for their crème brûlée and for browning the tops of meringue pies and baked Alaskas? In a pinch, I could use that to de-ice the door. Wait, no...this was a pizza joint. Could I get the dishwashing crew to toss boiling water down the seam of the door? No...I think that might destroy my paint job. I could have sat there for quite a long time, thinking of ways to get into a frozen car, but my daughter reminded me it was going to be midnight before I came up with a real solution. So we got out, crossed our fingers and entered the restaurant.


    Luckily, when we finished and returned to the car, we had no problem opening the doors. The car wash guy must still be laughing.


    Nearly every day, I experience something ADHD related that can either make me laugh or bring me to my knees. In years past, before I understood and accepted my ADHD, the latter would have been the norm. But with years of experience and being at a place where I'm pretty comfortable in my own ADHD skin, I can honestly say that I laugh about these mishaps. Well, most of the time, anyway.


    Do you have any funny ADHD stories to share?

Published On: February 26, 2008