Finishing up from yesterday after the jump.
Taking Adderall is like taking a “get shit done” pill. Most people can do their chores without added stimulus, regardless of how begrudging they might be. Adderall makes doing those types of things less of a chore or maybe even an enjoyment for people without ADD or ADHD. Let’s not kid ourselves and pretend that there aren’t people who take it even though they don’t need it. For people like myself, Adderall brings you up to the level of just being able to do it begrudgingly. Rather than losing steam halfway through cleaning or a project at work because my brain isn’t able to focus, I have the choice to stay focused and can do so without becoming burnt out or frustrated.
Within the first month of my new prescription there was a night and day difference in my grades. I had previously been on the verge of not graduating and now my grades were up to straight A’s and B’s (and a C in chemistry because I’m not a friggin’ Super Woman). I was not only awake and focused in classes but I was actually interested in them. My grades were never a reflection of my intelligence or lack thereof, nor was it an indication that I was lazy or delinquent. It was simply the product of my brains inability to focus.
However there were also side effects. Some, such as losing weight, were obviously nothing I was going to complain about at the time. However I didn’t realize how sickly thin I was becoming. Sometimes I would get headaches day after day because I would forget to eat. I just wasn’t hungry and I didn’t think about the fact that even though I didn’t feel hungry, my body still needed sustenance. I developed TMJ, causing my jaw to pop when eating due to clenching it throughout the day and grinding my teeth at night. I would also find that sometimes I would become so focused on small details that I would lose sight of the big picture. In fact, this is something I still struggle with.
In a way, I had developed all the characteristics of a Meth addict. This makes sense because Adderall is only a compound short of Meth. (Amphetamine salts + Methyl = Methamphetamine.) Whats worse is that over time the body begins to have a tolerance. Similar to Alcohol, if you drink everyday eventually it’s going to take quite a bit more to get buzzed.
There are days when I decide not to take my dose, just so that I don’t build up a tolerance. I am also constantly trying to find ways to improve myself and my mental functioning on my own so that I don’t rely on a drug for the rest of my life. Organization is a life-saver, as is having a routine. My friends have often made fun of me because I actually enjoy cleaning my apartment and do it every weekend. What they don’t realize is that it’s my way of reinforcing my habits and finding gratification in them so that eventually I can do it without any stimulant. I still see Adderall as a crutch or band-aid. While it has helped me ‘walk’ over the years, eventually I want to run on my own.